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School Defends Textbook Calling Muhammad “God’s Messenger”

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School officials in Florida are defending a textbook that declares Muhammad as the “Messenger of God” after critics accused an Islamic education group of launching a stealth jihad in American public school classrooms.

The Prentice World History textbook being used in Brevard Public Schools includes a 36-page chapter on Islam but no chapters on Christianity or Judaism.jihad4

According to a copy obtained by Fox News, The ninth grade textbook declares that Muhammad is the “Messenger of God” and instructs students that jihad is a duty that Muslims must follow.

“Jihad may be interpreted as a holy war to defend Islam and the Muslim community, much like the Crusades to defend Christianity,” the book states.

The textbook published large passages from the Koran, but failed to include any Scripture from the Bible. And while the book  makes declarations about Muhammad being God’s messenger, it does not make declarations about Jesus being God’s son.

“Some believed he was the messiah,” the textbook noted in an entry about Jesus. The book noted that He was later executed, but failed to mention His resurrection.

Brevard Public Schools defended the textbook and said it provided a balanced view of world religions.

“An analysis of one textbook cannot provide a balanced understanding as to what the students in Brevard Public Schools are learning throughout their academic careers,” spokeswoman Michelle Irwin said in a statement.

jihad1She said the Prentice Hall World History textbook incorporated a review of the origin of Christianity and Judaism – subjects covered indepth in sixth grade classrooms.

She also pointed out the book was among those approved by the state of Florida and that parents as well as community members were given the opportunity to review the textbook before it was adopted.

The book has been used in the classroom for the past three years without any complaints – until now.

Susan Aspey, a spokeswoman for the book’s publisher, told Fox News the textbook is balanced.

“Pearson and its authors adhere to the highest editorial standards when creating course materials, which undergo a rigorous review process,” she said. “A review of the book shows there is balanced attention given to the beliefs of Islam, Judaism and Christianity.

William Saxton, the chairman of Citizens For National Security, testified before the Brevard, Fla. School Board, warning them that the book rewrites Islamic history and presents a biased and incorrect version of the Muslim faith.

“They promote Islam at the expense of Christianity and Judaism,” Saxton told Fox News. “It blew my mind to see the kind of propaganda, the pro-Islam information that’s in this book – at the expense of Christianity and Judaism.”jihad2

Saxton said he believes the inclusion is deliberate and he placed the blame an organization that was once called Council on Islamic Education. The group works with education officials and publishers to produce chapters on Islam for American textbooks.

But today, the Council on Islamic Education is known as the Institute on Religious and Civic Values. It’s founder, Shabbir Mansuri, is listed as an academic reviewer on the textbook used in Brevard County.

In 2001 the OC Weekly newspaper in California interviewed Mansuri about comments former Second Lady Lynne Cheney made lamenting the amount of time schools were spending teaching cultures that were not American. Mansuri took her comments as a personal attack.

“For the past 11 years, Mansuri has waged what he calls a ‘bloodless’ revolution: promoting an increased emphasis on world cultures and faiths – including Islam – inside American junior high and high school campuses,” the newspaper reported.

Saxton said he is highly suspicious of Mansuri’s organization and questioned why they changed their name.

“These people are dedicated to getting this language into the textbooks,” he said, noting their new name is “benign and does not sound “threatening or Islamic. “But the same people are running it.”

Saxton said they are hearing from concerned parents across the country – and the complaints have generally been the same: public school textbooks that favor Islam over other world religions.

“It’s a form of stealth jihad,” he said. “(Jihad) is not just blowing up buildings. It’s more subtle. I began to understand that one of the ways the bad guys are trying to threaten our way of life is through our children. The Islamists want to get to the hearts and minds of our kids.”

Saxton’s all-volunteer organization launched a nationwide study in 2009 to root out what they believed to be Islamic bias in American school textbooks. He said they found as many as 80 textbooks that overtly promoted Islam.

Last year, the Citizens For National Security was able to get a similar book removed from the classroom in Palm Beach County.

“In short, you are using an Islam-biased, flawed textbook that has neither partially nor fully been corrected,” he told Brevard County school leaders.jihad3

A spokesman for IRCV told Fox News they would agree to an interview but never returned repeated calls.

In 2009 Mansuri found himself facing similar accusations of promoting and glorifying Islam – accusations he strongly denied in an Orange County Register interview.

“IRCV is recognized within the education community for our expertise in teaching about world religions,” he told the newspaper. “This expertise stands from our long-standing interest in religious liberty, religious pluralism and the practice of faith within a civic social framework.”

He blamed the criticism on “children of 9-11,” who were miseducated, the newspaper reported.

Saxton said the Prentice Hall textbook is riddled with errors. He especially took issue with their definition of jihad. The book called it a personal duty for Muslims and a way to defend their faith.

“Violent Islamic groups have used jihad for centuries,” he said. “The 9-11 attacks were an example of jihad as terrorism, not self-defense. Declarations of jihad have been made for purposes of violence against Christians, Jews, Americans, British and fellow Muslims hundreds of times.”

The textbook also alleges that “Muslims consider Jews and Christians to be ‘People of the Book.’”

Saxton said in practice, Jews and Christians have been subjected historically to violence and murder by Muslims.

“Christians and Jews are permitted very few of the rights and freedoms that the Muslim majority is allowed,” he said.

The textbook said under Islamic law women are spiritually equal, although they may have different roles and rights.

“This content is confusing at best and intellectually dishonest at worst,” he said. In Egypt and other Arab countries, women may not be employed in the private sector because they belong in the home. Women are stoned to death under Sharia law in Iran for adultery.”

School Board member Amy Kneessy told Fox News she had a chance to read the textbook and she was especially troubled by the section about how Muslims treat women.

“I was really disheartened,” she said. “To see such a blatant misportrayal of how women are treated in Muslim countries, I found disconcerting.”

Kneessy said there seems to be a double-standard and found evidence of bias in a number of passages – especially when it came to religious wars.

“When wars were involving Jewish people or Christians, some very hard adjectives were used – like ‘massacre,’” she said. “Whereas when it was a Muslim group, it was ‘occupy’ or a very innocuous term.”

She said the school has an obligation to be fair and balanced when teaching history.

“War is never clean and tidy,” she said. “Wars are bloody. People die and bad things happen. The facts need to be reported fairly from all perspectives.”

Kneessy said she plans on asking the entire school board to reevaluate the textbook.

“I am concerned it is more ammunition that continues to water down what this country was founded on,” she said. “This country was founded with Christian values. God was very much a part of our government. When you take the religious context out of it, then you take away the very heart of what this country was founded on.”

source

by on Aug. 1, 2013 at 12:05 PM
Replies (21-30):
TCgirlatheart
by TC on Aug. 2, 2013 at 12:19 PM
Thank you for finding and sharing this. I agree, bad book.

Quoting Clairwil:


Quoting candlegal:


a textbook that declares
Muhammad as the “Messenger of God”

it does not make
declarations about Jesus being God’s son.

My initial thought was that this was unfair.   It should either add a disclaimer that each person is claimed to have status X, by religion Y, or it should state both without disclaimers.

My second thought was that perhaps it depends on the context.  If a chapter (or book) is explicitly stated to be from the viewpoint of how religion Y sees things, and other chapters or books are equally explicitly from the viewpoints of other religions, that would be ok.

So I went looking to find out more.


And it doesn't look good.   This isn't a particular book in a series.   And it claims to be "history", not religious education.

So, yes, it damn well ought to be showing the negative sides of each religion as well as the positive sides.

Bad book.


AlekD
by Gold Member on Aug. 2, 2013 at 12:30 PM
3 moms liked this

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. -Aristotle

Comprehensive world religion study is an essential part of a well-rounded education that is woefully lacking in this country's public education for fear of offending people by daring to mention that not everyone in the whole world shares the same beliefs (as this thread has so brilliantly demonstrated.) You simply cannot fully grasp historical events and continuity or cultural studies such as art and literature without also having at least a fundamental understanding of world religions.

Anyway, I can't find any information about this textbook that isn't alarmist right-wing squaking. Without the whole book in front of me I will withold judgement. There is not enough information here to make any kind of educated opinion on the matter.

romalove
by Roma on Aug. 2, 2013 at 12:34 PM
2 moms liked this


Quoting AlekD:

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. -Aristotle

Comprehensive world religion study is an essential part of a well-rounded education that is woefully lacking in this country's public education for fear of offending people by daring to mention that not everyone in the whole world shares the same beliefs (as this thread has so brilliantly demonstrated.) You simply cannot fully grasp historical events and continuity or cultural studies such as art and literature without also having at least a fundamental understanding of world religions.

Anyway, I can't find any information about this textbook that isn't alarmist right-wing squaking. Without the whole book in front of me I will withold judgement. There is not enough information here to make any kind of educated opinion on the matter.

I agree with your last paragraph.  I think it's OK to tell the kids that Muslims believe Muhammed is God's Messenger, but not to tell them that he "is" God's Messenger.

There is a difference.

Sisteract
by Whoopie on Aug. 2, 2013 at 12:45 PM
3 moms liked this

Wait, OP, you have problem with religion in government schools? or only certain religions?

Unless religion is being addressed in a historical context, I am for keeping ALL religion out of public schools, buildings, the government, policy making, elections......


lga1965
by Ruby Member on Aug. 2, 2013 at 1:00 PM
Stealth jihad........lol. What the heck ?
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
lga1965
by Ruby Member on Aug. 2, 2013 at 1:02 PM
1 mom liked this
Exactly. :)

Quoting romalove:


Quoting AlekD:

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. -Aristotle

Comprehensive world religion study is an essential part of a well-rounded education that is woefully lacking in this country's public education for fear of offending people by daring to mention that not everyone in the whole world shares the same beliefs (as this thread has so brilliantly demonstrated.) You simply cannot fully grasp historical events and continuity or cultural studies such as art and literature without also having at least a fundamental understanding of world religions.

Anyway, I can't find any information about this textbook that isn't alarmist right-wing squaking. Without the whole book in front of me I will withold judgement. There is not enough information here to make any kind of educated opinion on the matter.

I agree with your last paragraph.  I think it's OK to tell the kids that Muslims believe Muhammed is God's Messenger, but not to tell them that he "is" God's Messenger.

There is a difference.

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
AlekD
by Gold Member on Aug. 2, 2013 at 1:04 PM
2 moms liked this


Quoting romalove:


Quoting AlekD:

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. -Aristotle

Comprehensive world religion study is an essential part of a well-rounded education that is woefully lacking in this country's public education for fear of offending people by daring to mention that not everyone in the whole world shares the same beliefs (as this thread has so brilliantly demonstrated.) You simply cannot fully grasp historical events and continuity or cultural studies such as art and literature without also having at least a fundamental understanding of world religions.

Anyway, I can't find any information about this textbook that isn't alarmist right-wing squaking. Without the whole book in front of me I will withold judgement. There is not enough information here to make any kind of educated opinion on the matter.

I agree with your last paragraph.  I think it's OK to tell the kids that Muslims believe Muhammed is God's Messenger, but not to tell them that he "is" God's Messenger.

There is a difference.

I agree that there is a difference. Note that, in this article, the quote about that section is incomplete. The only part they put in quotes is "Messenger of God." They didn't quote the beginning of that sentence, which I think is telling.

                      

"True joy does not come from owning something, it comes from the encounter in relations with others, in feeling loved and understood. Because joy comes from the gratefulness of an encounter. The joy of "the encounter with Jesus" and in "feeling loved by God. " Pope Francis                                                    My Blog

muslimah
by on Aug. 2, 2013 at 5:31 PM

 

Quoting sweet-a-kins:

 

Quoting muslimah:

 

Quoting sweet-a-kins:

This article is bigoted and disgusting to read however I do agree with the section on how women are treated and the wording used as not accurate or truthful

 Something must be backwards here then because I or any Muslim I know has ever been treated badly by a man but I have helped and consoled more than one non-Muslim women who were in abusive relationships.

One non Muslim just told me a couple weeks ago on here in a message that she just got out of an abusive marriage and how her father was abusive to her mother. I told her I was sorry she has had to go though that and that it must be hard but I couldn't relate to how she feels because I have never been in that kind of situation before.

 There are abusive men in every country/culture, this is not what I was referring too.

This was in direct reference to laws that restrict women based on their sex and treat them as 'secon class' based on religious beliefs or interpretations of.

It is not all 'Muslim Countries' but a good many have such laws in place. Some women are not permitted to drive or work outside the home (these are less extreme versions) all the way to being put in jail for being a rape victim etc...

This country went through similar struggles and we still are coming out of it. It's not specific to only your religion, but many religion has used their hold books to condone the subjugation of women.

I am not looking for your approval of my opinion so..

  Here are the laws directltly from the, text Quran and the Haddith

Equality of men and women

I shall not lose sight of the labor of any of you who labor in my way be it man or women each of you is equal to the other

 Al-E-Imran:195 

O mankind be conscious of your sustainer who has created you out of one living entity and out of it created it's mate and out of the two spread abroad a multitude of men and women. And remain conscious of Allah in who's name you demand your rights from one another and of these ties of kindship. Verily Allah is ever watchful over you.

An-Anisa:1

 And the believers men and women are protecting friends one of another they enjoin the right and forbid the wrong and they establish worship and they pay the poor due and they obey Allah and his messenger. As for these Allah will have mercy on them. Lo Allah is mighty wise. And Allah promises to the believers men and women gardens underneath which rivers flow wherein they will abode blessed dwellings in gardens of Eden. And greater acceptance from Allah. That is the supreme triumph.

 Al-Tawba 71-72

If ye fear breach between husband and wife appoint an arbiter from his folk and from her folk. If they desire amendment Allah will make them of one mind. Lo Allah is ever knower aware.

 An-Nisa 4:34

Attitudes towards women

O ye who believe ye are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should ye treat them with harshnish that ye may take away part of their the dower ye have given them except where they have been guilty of open lewdness on the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing and Allah brings about through it a great deal of good.

 An-Nisa:19

Ibn Al-Jauzi narrated: Umar forbade the people from paying excessive dowries and addressed them saying "don't fix the dowries for women over forty ounces". If ever that is exceeded I shall deposit it the excess amount in the public treasury. As he descended from the pulpit a flat noses women stood firm from among the women audience and said "It is not within your right" Umar asked "why should this not be my right"? She relied "Because Allah has proclaimed even if you had given one of them a whole treasury for dowry take not least of it back. Would you take what is given by false claim and manifest sin?" When he heard this Umar said "the women is right and the man is wrong. It seems that all people have deeper insight and wisdom than Umar". Then he returned to the pulpit and declared "O people I had restricted the giving of more that four hundred dirhams in dowry. Whosoever wishes to give in dowry as much as he likes and finds satisfaction in doing so may do so".  

Narrated by Mu awwiyah al-Qushayri: I went to the apostle of Allah and asked him "what do you say about our wives?" He replied "give them food what you have for yourself and clothe them by which you clothe your yourself and do not beet them and do not vile them".

Sunan Abu Dawud book 11 3139

"The best of you is one who is best towards his family  and I am best towards the family"

"None but a noble man treats women in an honourable manner and none but an ignoble treats women disgracefully.

At-Tirmithy

Narrated Abu-Said al-Khudri: Allah's messenger said "The most wicked among the people in the eye of Allah on the Day Of Judgement is the man who goes to his wife and she comes to him and then he divulges her secret

Muslim book 8 3369 

And if wish to exchange one wife for another and ye have given unto one of them a sum of money take nothing from it. Would ye take it by the way of calumny and open wrong?

 An-Nisa:19

LaBuenaVida
by Bronze Member on Aug. 2, 2013 at 6:48 PM

 

Quoting muslimah:

 

Quoting smalltowngal:

He is mentioned in their sixth grade world history class.


Quoting LaBuenaVida:

 What, no interest in this article?


Not surprised. 


If Jesus Christ was mentioned in one of these lib's kid's textbooks, they'd be screaming their heads off. 


 Well I don't hear anyone "screeming their heads off".

 Because the article is not getting too much attention.  ;-)

collectivecow
by Gold Member on Aug. 2, 2013 at 10:22 PM

This article seems confusing. I'm an avid theology geek, meaning that if I'm studying a particular religion, I definitely want to experience/understand that theological point of view.

With that said: It's impossible to say anything without reading the actual chapter.

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