Aussie atheist kids forced to take scripture class

I remember when I was a kid, I went to the only English elementary school in my hometown. Because of some stupid laws forcing most children to attend French school in my province, the only way to avoid this was by attending a Catholic school. Try as they might, they utterly failed to instill anything other than complete disdain for religion. Their pathetic religion failed to impress me even as a child, but that doesn’t mean I was a happy camper having this garbage shoved down my throat.

In a sense I’m happy that things worked out the way they did. As religious as the school was, it was pretty mild compared to the way some curricula are devised. Take South Coast, Australia. It seems atheist children are being forced to attend scripture class, even though their non-Christian religious counterparts are exempt from this torture.

One parent told the ABC her daughter came home distressed after being told God is going to burn the world, while another parent says her child walked out of class when the religious instructor claimed he could ‘cure’ homosexuals.

Man, I’m proud of that little guy that walked out of the class. There’s a fucking brave kid! It takes balls to stand up to people; most folks would have sit there quietly raging. Hearing that story at least makes me hopeful in the future, the next generation won’t stand for the kind of bigotry that’s still so prevalent today.

Comments (12)

  • avatar


    I think a perfect compromise would be to have atheists teaching these scripture classes. I mean no one knows religion like atheists, plus as the adage goes, Whats the fastest way to become an atheist? Read the bible.

  • avatar


    I’m aussie, and bi curious, though i thought i was totally straight back then… how i wish i could go back in time with the wisdom i have now and rip the scripture teachers a new one!

    we had two options… scripture, or sitting quietly in the library under the supervision of the library lady that everyone hated. Most kids unfortunately did scripture, and it maintains a strong presence in the public school system at least throughout new south wales… not sure how the other states & territories go, to be honest.

  • avatar


    My 10 year old sister recently came to me and said she doesn’t believe in God. So I asked her if she wants to do her religion class once a week at school.

    She said she did because if she dropped out, she’d have to do reading and comprehension in the library instead. What 10 year old wants to do that?

    So she said she’d stay in the religion class because they give out food and she doesn’t want to sit in the library.

    I’m thinking of writing a letter to the school telling them that they should offer an alternative class for the kids that don’t want to do religion.

  • avatar


    That’s a good idea, Manbearpig. If something comes of your efforts, please let us know.

  • avatar


    FFFFFFFFUUUUUU. I had that idea years ago… Y2K was my ticket.. I could be rich now…

  • avatar


    The only thing theist have to blame for their faith diminishing is there own hostility towards everything their religion doesn’t like.
    They are just pissed they can’t force it on kids anymore.
    Somehow I get the feeling when this apocalypse bullshit ends on May 22nd 2011, atheism will grow significantly in numbers, simply because people are finally realizing what the hell humanity has been doing to itself all these centuries.
    Again, they have no one to blame but themselves.

  • avatar


    I never had a choice about this sort of thing in school, but it was never really an issue (probably because i was christian for most of my time at school). We did Religious Education, but in high school it was mostly vague stuff about morals and so on, and looking at different religions. In primary school it was completely different, kind of taught as historical fact.
    In both we had prayers and such in assembly, and in primary school we also had to sing hymns, but i don’t recall anyone ever really caring.

  • avatar


    That is so fucking disgusting.

    I had to attend a catholic school when my family moved to Quebec. Thankfully I only had to be there for one year before my parents got me into a non-religious school because it was closer.

    The whole time I was there I was never forced to do anything… possibly because no one noticed me not taking part. But all in all it wasn’t that bad an experience.

    What happened to you, Australia? You used to be cool.

  • avatar


    What school is this? What are the details? Did you watch some sort of special on ABC? Was this a pubic or private school in Australia?

    “Somehow I get the feeling when this apocalypse bullshit ends on May 22nd 2011, atheism will grow significantly in numbers, simply because people are finally realizing what the hell humanity has been doing to itself all these centuries.” -Joey

    You do realize that only a very small fringe group of Christians believe they know the day the world will end?

  • avatar


    Brandon, could you please stop posting here, is totally right.

    When May 22nd passes and nothing happens, it’s not very likely to make an impact.

    Sorry, no Christian suicides this year. Damn.

  • avatar


    My kids go to a public school in New SOuth Wales (Australia) and they are told to sit in the hallway directly out the front of the classroom door. I am disgusted that things like this happen, the ABC had a debate (IQ2 I think it was) about ethics classes in NSW, the Church do not want them introduced as they believe that the kids that WANT to participate in religion will be disadvantaged by ‘missing out’ on the ethics class. WTF!!!!???? Get the hell out of the Public Education system for Gods sake, what expertese can the Anglican Church offer towards the curriculum? How dare they think they have any say in public education? The Ethics classes are being trialed in three schools in NSW, whether they stick with it or not is another question!

  • avatar

    Trevor C

    I had to write a note to my daughter’s school every year forbidding them to teach my daughter religion. The arrogance of the headmaster told me if I forgot the letter just once, he would send her to religious instruction. I got my daughter and told her in front of the headmaster if they ever tried that crap, she was to walk out and come straight home. The headmaster was suitably angry about that, but that was his problem. Okay! my daughter did have to go to the library, but at least she did not get her head filled with that religious crap.

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