Forget loaves and fishes — the House Education Committee in Alabama’s state legislature pushed through a school prayer bill last week on a voice vote, even though more committee members voted against it than for it. The bill would require teachers to spend up to 15 minutes during the first class of each school day reading prayers said before the U.S. Senate or House of Representatives — so you see, it wouldn’t actually be an unconstitutional government-sponsored prayer, it’s civics. We totally believe that!What happened is that two committee members voted against moving the bill forward, and three members voted against, but the Republican committee chair says the ayes had it because she says so, that's why, and the rest of the committee didn't bother objecting to the botched vote because, apparently, they had other things to do. And it's a bill to require teachers to recite whatever prayers were presented to the Senate and House recently under the banner of learning about r gubbermint because Alabama, so of course it is.
Look, I think we all understand that counting is hard. That's one of the reasons we have schools, and one of the reasons we like to fill the school day with lessons like "why three is greater than two," things that even the adults in our society can struggle mightily with on a day to day basis. Gotta get the kids young or the lessons just don't stick. And while I salute the general notion that kids ought to know what sorts of things their government is up to, we don't devote 15 minutes a day to learning why you shouldn't drink paint, or learning why slavery really super-duper was the reason certain southern states tried to secede from the union, or any of a thousand other pretty important things for kids to know, so you have to question the time management skills of our Alabama Republican overlords. It seems a bit stretched to devote a quarter hour of each child's day to a portion of the Senate and House schedules that not even the Senate or the House generally show up for.