Religion Today Blog Christian Blog and Commentary

Atheist Richard Dawkins Supports Bibles in Schools

  • Religion Today Religious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
  • 2012 May 23

Atheist Richard Dawkins says he supports the mission of England's Department of Education to make sure every public school has a copy of the 1611 translation of the King James Bible -- and even went as far to say he would have donated to the cause if he'd had the opportunity, the Christian Post reports. "A native speaker of English who has never read a word of the King James Bible is verging on the barbarian," Dawkins write in a column in The Guardian. Though some have criticized the Department of Education's statement that the Bible's impact on history and culture makes it a worthwhile addition to any school library, Dawkins is backing the distribution plan -- albeit with an ulterior motive. "I have an ulterior motive for wishing to contribute to [education secretary Michael] Gove's scheme," he wrote. "People who do not know the Bible well have been gulled into thinking it is a good guide to morality. ... I have even heard the cynically misanthropic opinion that, without the Bible as a moral compass, people would have no restraint against murder, theft and mayhem. The surest way to disabuse yourself of this pernicious falsehood is to read the Bible itself." The project -- in celebration of the translation's 400th anniversary -- was funded by charitable donations; all 24,000 Bibles should be distributed to the nation's state-funded schools by the end of May.