Now comes another goofy directive from on high -- this one to suppress the right to the free expression of religion. In the name of battling terrorists, the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) has decreed that chaplains in every federal prison must systematically purge their chapel libraries of all religious books, CDs, videos and other materials that are not on the approved list. Calling this purge the "Standardized Chapel Library Project," BOP says it relied on "experts" to choose 150 books for each of 20 religions. Who are these experts? BOP won't say.
Libraries that had thousands of religious texts have had their shelves decimated. The censorship is necessary, snapped a BOP official, in order to "assure reliable teachings." Hello! This is government dictating religious
teachings -- a Constitutional no-no.
Ah, the officials cluck, but we're protecting you from prisoners who might read some inflammatory Muslim materials and be converted to terrorists. Hmmm... but BOP's list excludes such writings as Living Positively by Pastor Robert Schuller -- are they calling that a militant text?
Perhaps the strategy of the Bushites is to show the terrorists that we can be nuttier than they are. Now that's really scary.
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