Yesterday, Guatemalan Congress discussed a bill that would make Biblical ‘education’ compulsory. So the Asociación Guatemalteca de Humanistas Seculares (Guatemalan Secular Humanists Association) showed up to stand up for secularism and a secular, evidence based education.
They were not allowed to enter their own Congress (!) but one of them, Carlos Mendoza, was able to get in and talk. It didn’t go well:
Mendoza explained that the bill violates the National Education Law and the Law on the Integrity of Children and Adolescents, which ensures that the education in the country should be secular.
In the video you hear how members of an evangelical church tell Mendoza “Do not talk if you have no foundation” and “take out Satan” and then boo him.
In his own account of what happened, Mendoza says at one point, just after his microphone was turned off and he was pulled down, he feared for his life:
I was afraid when I saw that the aggressiveness of those present increased with every word that came out of my mouth. I asked congressman Osorio [who presented the bill] to guarantee my right to speak, but he just smiled. So I was taken by the arm again to expel me from the Hall of the People – as a nonbeliever, I was being excluded from it. I decided to leave “by hook” and along the way they yelled at me, “Ignorant of the Constitution, demon…” and other things that I do not remember, because I was trying to politely reassure them with arguments.
Carlos learned the hard way that arguing with someone who has given up reason is like giving medicine to a dead man. At any rate, it is worth noting his courage, courtesy and poise, which were tested by the bigots and zealots at their worst.
Does anyone need any more proof that Christianity (and any other religion for that matter) is incompatible with democracy?
(via Óscar Pineda and David Pineda | image: Asociación Guatemalteca de Humanistas Seculares)