Conservative commentator Charles Krauthammer says there’s a way for Jesus and Christianity to be taught in public school classrooms: By focusing on the faith’s historical relevance to and role in the nation’s founding.
“I’m all in favor of teaching history. I’m all in favor of teaching civics,” he told TV host Bill O’Reilly Tuesday night. “I’m all in favor of teaching where the founders derived the principles that went into the Declaration and then went into the Constitution.”
Krauthammer said that teaching about the impact the Greeks, Romans, Old Testament, New Testament and certain philosophers had on America’s framing would be appropriate.
He added that the Constitution protects public schools in teaching about Jesus and Christianity as it pertains to the historical narrative.
“Under the First Amendment you can clearly teach about religion,” Krauthammer said. “You want to have a high school course on the history of religions — of comparison religion — on the influence of religion on the American founding, on Lincoln on his view — his understanding of divine justice of the Civil War, that would be perfectly reasonable and I don’t think there’d be any objection.”
The commentator went on to claim that public schools aren’t teaching adequately about the Civil War and “who the founders are” and said that there are gaps in the way that history is presented to students.
During the segment, O’Reilly added that Jesus, Moses and Judeo-Christian traditions are important to the nation’s history, highlighting that there’s even a sculpture of Moses holding the Ten Commandments outside the U.S. Supreme Court building.
“You can’t teach the history of America by avoiding Judeo-Christian tradition and the impact it had on the framers. It’s impossible,” O’Reilly said.
Krauthammer concluded that “there’s nothing wrong with teaching Christianity in the context of the founding,” though he said that he wouldn’t want his child to be taught about “the nature of God and divinity” in the public school system.
Watch the clip below:
The commentator’s views on this issue are intriguing, considering that he said in an interview last year that he doesn’t believe in God in the traditional sense. But while Krauthammer doesn’t describe himself as an atheist, he has a “complicated notion of the deity.”
“There was once a philosopher who said, ‘I don’t believe in God, but I fear him greatly.’ That’s about where I am,” he told The Daily Caller. “I’ve had a fairly difficult and complicated notion of the deity.”
Featured image via Twitter/@krauthammer