U.S. Rep. Walter Jones opposes federal grant to provide books about Muslim culture to Craven Community College

c. StarNewsOnline.com 2013
Reprinted with permission

U.S. Rep. Walter Jones, R-Farmville, has taken a stand against a recent grant to Craven Community College to provide 25 books and a DVD to “introduce Muslim cultures to Americans,” Jones’ office said in a news release.

The “Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys” grant came from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Official portrait of Congressman Walter Jones.

Official portrait of Congressman Walter Jones.

Jones has consistently opposed federal spending bills that give money to the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts, his office said.

“It is appalling to me that a federal agency like NEH is wasting taxpayer money on programs like this,” Jones said.  “It makes zero sense for the U.S. government to borrow money from China in order to promote the culture of Islamic civilizations.”

Book titles include: “The Butterfly Mosque: A Young American Woman’s Journey to Love and Islam”, “The Story of the Qur’an, “Muhammad”, and “A Quiet Revolution: The Veil’s Resurgence, from the Middle East to America.”

To receive the grant, the college library is “required to organize programs that introduce the books and the Muslim Journeys themes to the library’s patrons and the broader community.” The library is also must add the books to its circulating collection.

If Craven Community College accepts the grant, Jones has called on college leaders to follow their policy of providing “balanced” resources for library patrons.

In a letter to the college, Jones asks the board of trustees to give equal exposure to books about Christianity and America’s rich Judeo-Christian heritage. The Craven-Pamlico Christian Coalition has committed to donating 25 books on those topics.

According to the news release, Jerry Schill, chairman of the Craven-Pamlico Christian Coalition said the coalition would provide materials about Christianity.

“However, in light of the government’s role in keeping God out of the public square and the obstacles that Christians face when it comes to prayer and the ability to publicly proclaim our faith, it just seems more than odd that the federal government will provide a package of “Muslim Journeys” to a number of colleges nationwide,” Schill said. “It’s even more perplexing knowing the fiscal problems facing our nation.”

In Congress, Jones represents all of Pender County and parts of New Hanover County, along with much of the eastern coast of the state.

One Response to “U.S. Rep. Walter Jones opposes federal grant to provide books about Muslim culture to Craven Community College”

  1. David Scott

    U.S. Representative Walter Jones strikes again! This recent account of his condemnation of a small federal grant to fund studies of Islam at Craven Community College is telling. Why would anyone in public life use his political currency or take the time to take a position against legitimate and unbiased religious education? Does education by definition not nurture understanding and tolerance of other people and other views? Do we not need more and not less of this? Does Rep. Jones think that encouraging students to think for themselves threatens his biased positions on religious issues? Is critical thinking the enemy of his faith? Should students ignore other religions and pretend they don’t exist? Of all the things I so deplore about the far right, it’s their anti-intellectualism and bigotry that scare me the worst. These people not only aspire to ignorance, they want to make it public policy.


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