Holy Land News- What are we up to?
On January 31, five of the Holy Land Group went to Richmond with the Virginia Coalition for Human Rights (VCHR) for a 7:30-5:30 day of lobby work. The VCHR represents 17 organizations including the Alliance of Baptists, and many other church denominations. It also has Jewish members. I am a representative for the Alliance of Baptists in the VCHR, as part of the RBC Holy Land Group.
The group visited with 26 delegates and senators, asking them to do a Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee (JLARC) study on two areas of concern. We became aware that Virginia textbooks have very slanted information about Palestine and Israel. Members of the VCHR, including our own RBC members, researched this. VCHR had college professors, including some from George Washington, George Mason, and other universities, review the social studies books. The historians and social scientists that reviewed the selected textbooks found them to be “inaccurate” and “biased.” They found and documented the false statements.
As we dug deep in the process, we found the way in which textbooks are approved and chosen leaves a lot of room for mis-information. This is not only true for Palestinian issues, but for black history and science as well. So, we asked for this process to be investigated. It was a successful trip! We had several of the delegates and senators listen and welcome us back in April to discuss more thoroughly our findings and possibly join us in a resolution. We had another equally important topic, which got a good response as well.
You can ask any of the Holy Land Group about if you are interested. That was our day in Richmond-on to Capitol Hill next!
Working for Peace through Justice as the Spirit leads us,
Patti Brockmeier, Chair of RBC’s Holy Land Group