Chuck Norris Fights For Bible Classes With "Mind Karate"
Bruce Wilson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Fri Apr 13, 2007 at 01:10:35 PM EST
[image courtesy of trulyawesome.com]

Since the tragic death of Bruce Lee, it's said that no human can best Chuck Norris in unarmed combat. Now, after decades of grueling physical combat, the former martial arts film icon and TV series actor, who has embarked on an impassioned crusade to bring Bible classes to American public schools, has turned to the practice of a different martial arts discipline. To bring Bible classes to public schools Chuck Norris has wisely turned to:

Mind Karate

Very well. I practice the same Mind Karate * school that Chuck Norris has chosen, the Way Of Punditry.

In hand to hand combat, I will be the first to admit, Chuck Norris probably would kick my ass, and quickly too. Fine. But, physical martial arts aren't very effective at getting Bible Classes into public schools.

Yes, Chuck Norris, unarmed, could probably fend off an angry mob of public school teachers while at the same time shouting verses from Leviticus at panicking high school students as they ran for  fire exits, but it wouldn't be long before a SWAT team showed up and I bet Norris wouldn't win that fight. That's the point, SWAT teams swat : even Chuck Norris.

Thus, Norris has turned to Mind Karate to advance his cause, and in that he is my foe. But, I'm not going fight Chuck in that battle, not yet at least. Martial Arts, all of them, demand a code of honor.

I'm not sure Chuck Norris has grasped the basics of Mind Karate or the subtleties of the Pundit's Way, and I'm, sure I could prevail against a herd of rampaging teletubbies too, but that would just be embarrassing and  grotesque.

So I'm not going to even deign to enter the realm of combat yet ; it would be a grossly unequal fight that would demean both of us and needlessly sully Chuck Norris' good reputation. You can take just about anything from a man, but if there's one thing you shouldn't take it's his pride. Or so they say. Maybe in Texas.

So, in that spirit, I'm going give Chuck Norris a lesson by analyzing the deadly flaws in his Mind Karate technique ;  

I'm going to go over an Op-Ed Norris wrote, for WorldNetDaily.com, entitled Bringing the Bible back into public schools, that argues for putting the National Council On Bible Curriculum In Public Schools' Bible curriculum in, well, public schools.

So, here we go. I'll try to make it short and minimize needless pain.

First, starting at the top ; Chuck, the first thing  you should consider is context. Look to the left of your Op-Ed title and your picture. What do you see ? An ad for "Zion Gas and Oil". Do you even know a thing about Zion Gas and Oil ?

Maybe, maybe not, but here's what your readers may see: there's a current fad among some American evangelicals, a belief that all truth, even scientific truth, even the geographical location of underground oil reserves, can be derived from the Bible.

The Zion Gas and Oil folks believe the Bible prophesies that oil will be found under an Israeli desert and they think they've got prophetic analysis down to such a precise affair, apparently, they believe that because the Bible mentions a "head" in close proximity to the word "oil" ( cooking oil ? massage oil ? sweet crude ? ) and so they've bought a head-shaped chunk of land in the Israeli desert on which to drill for oil. I guess they figure the Israelis are too dumb to ascertain whether or not oil reserves lie under Israeli land. This same crew could be found arguing, back in 2005, that the venture wasn't finding oil yet because there were too many Jews on the company board, and supposedly God didn't approve of Christians and Jews "mixing", because the Jews supposedly weren't "saved" and hence the dry oil well ;' God was mad.

So, Chuck, does the "Zion Gas and Oil" ad a) enhance or b) detract from your credibility ? Remember, if you really do want to make a case for Bible classes in public schools you're going to have to address a wide cross section of America, and I can guarantee that many Americans would view the "Zion Gas and Oil" project as deranged. It might even become a South Park episode for all I know and, to be honest Chuck, you may be skating on thin ice en route to getting featured in a South Park episode too, just like Bill Donohue, and I can guarantee that wouldn't be pretty. but I'm getting ahead of myself.

So, to start your piece you write:

"Three hundred eighty-two public school districts have voted to implement a course on it.

Over 1,350 schools in 37 states can now offer it as a textbook.

Approximately 190,000 students have already been taught from it as a course curriculum. "

OK, this isn't too bad in itself ; you're suggesting there's a aura of inevitability to the advance of the NCBCPS Bible class curriculum within American public schools, and that's a legitimate tactic per my knowledge of the Way Of Punditry. There's just one wee, itty bitty little problem. That Bible class curriculum contains fake history [ more on that coming up ] .

Do you really want fake history taught to Amerca's school kids ? What is this, the Soviet Union ? Plus, Chuck, think of your image, as martial arts star maybe but also as Walker, Texas Ranger. That role featured you as a straight shooter. It's a Texas tradition ; talk little, act more, and tell the truth. Do you really want to push a course curriculum with a falsified version of American history ? Would the founding fathers approve ? Would God approve ? What would Michael Carradine or, rest his soul, Bruce Lee think ?

They'd be appalled, Chuck. Truly appalled. Please, if you're going to sell a product, check it out first. Or else you'll soon find yourself on a steep downhill slope towards spots, on late night TV, hawking men's hair products or weird new meat grilling devices, OK ?

It only gets worse. Oh my.

In your next sentence you declare "I'm talking about the Bible In Public Schools. It's no Joke!"

Well, the very fact that you've decided to remind people "it's no joke" virtually guarantees that somebody, somewhere, will use that as a launching point for some sort of devastating satire, and I see that WorldNetDaily has already provided the punch line. I mean really, Chuck, couldn't you pay WorldNetDaily a little bit of money to get them to pull those ads, for your column at least, or even tone down the nature of the ads themselves ?

With the space of about 2 inches on my computer screen, here's what I see :

"I'm I'm talking about the Bible in public school. It's no joke!"

...Followed shortly by an ad for info & products to help men with enlarged Prostate glands

There's nothing funny about having an enlarged Prostate gland, but some ingrates somewhere, college students maybe, young folks for sure, somewhere, are bound to snicker at that. Guaranteed.

Now, Chuck, you look like you're in decent shape and you definitely still can play the "virile middle aged man" role. But, with this Prostate ad you're already way past the "Hair Club For Men" territory and are well on the way towards Geritol commercials. Beyond the issue of your personal branding, as Chuck Norris, martial arts star and Texas Ranger, I just don't see how Prostate ads support your "Bible Class In Schools" case.

Moving along....

Next, you cite the recent Time Magazine advocacy piece for Bible classes, then some stats on the advance of Bible classes in Georgia and Colorado ; all right, that's good for your case, but....

Then you proceed on to Texas:

In my own state of Texas, the House Public Education Committee is presently considering requiring the state's 1,700 school districts to offer history and literature courses using the Bible as the primary text."

So, Chuck, do you know who it is who's championing the bill to force Texas schools to offer elective Bible classes ?  Leaving aside the very un-Texan notion of cramming proscribed religious courses down the throats of local school districts, which might opt to use their dwindling school budget resources to teach subjects that might help their students get a leg up in career terms or equip them with other, more profane knowledge.....  leaving that whole mess out of the equation altogether, do you know who introduced the bill mandating Bible classes into the Texas State House ?

Warren Chisum. Interesting guy, Chisum ; last February, Chisum passed around a memo in the Texas State House. The memo claimed that the Theory of Evolution was actually based in Jewish Kabbalism and so was really a religion. The memo insinuated, in essence, that the Theory Of Evolution was part of a Jewish conspiracy.

Now, Chuck, I trust you don't harbor anti-Semitic views, so why do you associate with people who appear to do just that ?  This is the second anti-semitic theme I've found on the page your article is on and tied to your Op-ed itself. That's not really your fault, but Mind Karate is a tricky affair that demands research ; know your theater of combat, know your allies' backgrounds.

The Chisum association goes from anti-semitism to parody too ; the memo Chisum circulated in the Texas legislature referenced a website that claims the Earth doesn't rotate and the Sun revolves around the Earth as does the entire universe..... every 24 hours. It's called "Geocentrism".

Come on Chuck..... really now. You're in dubious company on this one. Chisum's not your fault but he sure is in your story here, and and so you're hanging out, exposed, like all heck here.

So, I want to wrap this up fairly soon so as to not bore my readers. Two major points:

First, you move on to attack the "Texas Freedom Network", and it's always strong to attack, right ?

Wrong. First of all, you've dismissed a serious Bible scholar, Dr. Mark Chauncey of Southern Methodist University, would did an extensive analysis of the NCBCPS curriculum . Chancey loves the  Bible and says he has no problem with Bible classes in public schools as long as those are taught fairly.

Chuck, you can't just sidestep that controversy or dismiss it. Chauncey's well thought out, clearly reasoned arguments  won't just magically go away and pretending they don't exist makes you look like a wimp.

Next, you've chosen to charge headlong into the big guns of maximum ridicule.

The "Charge Of The Light Brigade" was an attack, quite a splendid one at that until the cannon fire really got going. Then it was a mess.

Chuck, Chuck, Chuck.....

You've charged right into the heavy cannons of supreme ridicule, and flying drop kicks won't help you in Mind Karate land. Get a grip. Or, maybe you should reconsider your foray into punditry ? The Pundit's Way is not for everyone.

Here's why:

In challenging the Texas Freedom Network's call for five changes to the NCBCPS Bible class curriculum, you come out against:

Making sure "teachers have appropriate academic qualifications and sufficient training"

Requiring "rigorous, scholarly reviewed textbooks and other curriculum materials"

"strong and specific language that protects the religious freedom of students"

Chuck, you've just come out in favor of, essentially, unqualified teachers and sloppy, amateurish textbooks;  and you've come out against religious freedom. Nobody, but nobody, argues against religious freedom. Even people who actually oppose it.

Bad teachers, sloppy textbooks, religious suppression ?  

You might as well just come out with it and write an Op-Ed advocating for general societal incompetence and the ruthless suppression of minority rights.

That's your Constitutionally give right of course, but where's the spirit of Walker, Texas Ranger ?

One more quick point ; there's lots more I could say, but to make a quick historical and filmic analogy, do you remember that film scene, from early on in your career, in which you battled Bruce Lee ?

Of course you do. Lee kicked your ass, and I have no idea of whether he really kicked your ass or whether the fight was completely scripted, or a little of both. But, towards the end of the fight you're demolished, probably 3/4 dead, and yet you're still feebly trying to get to your feet and have at Bruce Lee ; Lee just gives you a disgusted look and walks off. He's confident you're finished. So, Chuck, that's you and me here.

If you have any doubts, consider:

Your foray into history is about on the level of exposing your bare chest to an opponent wielding the "claw of death", and if you want somebody to rip out your still beating heart that's your choice of course, but why ?

To begin with, you cite this :

"A study by the American Political Science Review on the political documents of the founding era, which was from 1760-1805, discovered that 94 percent of the period's documents were based on the Bible, with 34 percent of the contents being direct citations from the Bible."

Leaving aside what a "document" might be, how the heck does that relate to American government ? What's actually relevant is this perspective from real live historian, James Oakes:

" In the year 1700, in the thirteen colonies, there was one church for every 598 colonists.  Forty years later there was one church for every 642 colonists.  And by 1780, in the middle of the War for Independence, there was one church for every 807 Americans.  To put the matter simply, over the course of the eighteenth century the number of churches was declining in proportion to the number of Americans.  1780 was the lowpoint.

Here are some more numbers.  In 1730 just under half (48%) of all the titles published in the colonies were religious.  Religious titles dropped to 38 percent in 1760.  The slide continued until it bottomed out in 1775, where a mere 16 % of all the titles published in the colonies were religious "

The implication is that the United States was founded at a period when religion was at a low ebb.

But, that's just the whack to the head before the Bruce Lee flurry that finishes you off.

Next, you cite some material from the web page of the National Council On Bible Curriculum In Public Schools, most notably this:

"    "I have always said, and will always say, that studious perusal of the sacred volume will make us better citizens." - Thomas Jefferson

    While president of the United States, Thomas Jefferson was elected the first president of the Washington, D.C., public school board, which used the Bible as a reading text in the classroom.

If men like Jefferson believed in biblical education, it is not difficult to understand why liberal groups like TFN are losing the battle to prohibit the Bible and its influence on Western civilization from being taught in public schools."

Chuck, I'm sorry to tell you that the Jefferson quote has been debunked. The quote is a fake. And, the anecdote about Jefferson and the Bible in classrooms is a fake too.

You can read about it here, in an article by real, live historian Chris Rodda, author of "Liars For Jesus"

Rodda practices Mind Karate too, and on this field of combat she'll kick your ass, and the NCBCPS curriculum clear to China. Trust me.

Footnote:

What is Mind Karate ?

It is a sprawling martial arts discipline with many schools. "Mind Karate" includes the severe, ascetic discipline called "Mathematics" and the enormous, vastly powerful school of Mind Karate called "Science" that has brought humankind the automobile, antibiotics, Nuclear weapons, computers, and glow in the dark prophylactics.

Even though followers of those mighty schools of Mind Karate might turn up their noses at the school of Mind Karate Chuck Norris has chosen, The Way Of Punditry, this school may be the most subtle of al the forms of Mind Karate ; The Way Of Punditry demands knowledge of both a certain amount of logic and rigorous forms of argumentation but also skill in the slippery and quite often deadly realms of verbal combat with techniques such as allegory, allusion, hyperbole,  sarcasm, satire, and ridicule.

While the Mind Karate schools of "Science" and "Math" can be likened to the schools of Martial Arts developed at the now famous Chinese Shaolin Temple or to Japanese Zen Martial Arts schools, Zen Archery for example,  The Way Of Punditry can be likened to street fighting. Practitioners of The Pundits' Way aren't fussy, they just get the job done. So, this form of mental martial art seems very appropriate for Chuck Norris, a man who battled his way up from poverty and who, beyond his ability to land flurries of roundhouse kicks to opponents' heads,  is probably very good in a bar brawl or alley fight and is also handy with an Uzi or a shotgun, or at least that's the impression one would tend to get from watching "Walker, Texas Ranger".




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