Activist Seeks Bible Ban From All Florida Schools.
Chaz Stevens is a Florida-based political activist, artist, and entrepreneur, well-known for his colorful statewide and national advocacy for the separation of church and state. Routinely sought for his expertise, Stevens has appeared on the airwaves and in print of most major media outlets across the globe.
In March 2022, Stevens petitioned all 63 Florida public school districts "seek[ing] an immediate ban on all editions of the Bible accompanying this letter, along w/any instructional material containing citations from these texts." Stevens has since extended his ban request to include the Old Testament, Book of Mormon, and Talmud/Torah.
His petitions cited a new law signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis, allowing parents and residents to opt out of inappropriate educational materials. One such book is "Gender Queer: A Memoir," which deals with LGBTQ+ themes and coming-out stories, but some people believe it's too graphic for children still learning how their minds work as well as age-appropriate content about sex.
So, with Florida erupting in culture wars, Stevens decided to take up arms. His target: The Bible. Writes Stevens, "Do we really want to teach our youth about drunken orgies?”
Concerned about the Bible's age-inappropriateness, Stevens highlights its "casual" references to murder, adultery, sexual immorality, and fornication. Stevens takes issue with Biblical references to rape, bestiality, cannibalism and infanticide, writing, "In the end, if Jimmy and Susie are curious about any of the above, they can do what everyone else does – get a room at the Motel Six and grab the Gideons."
He highlights the Bible’s glaring hypocrisy: "When teaching morality and ethics, what's the value of a book that wants you to dash babies against rocks,” pointing to Psalm 137:9.
Wondering about the ban’s likelihood, "My activism in the past has been wildly successful," Stevens said. "And, I imagine, will continue on a similar trajectory."
It's not the first time Stevens has made waves for his activism. In 2015, he petitioned 11 South Florida municipalities to either drop the prayer that opens their city commission meetings or let him lead a prayer in the name of Satan.
After Stevens' requests, some Florida cities ended up dropping their moment of prayer altogether. "My faux-satanic stare withered them down," Stevens told the Sun Sentinel.
As CEO of ESADoggy, Stevens notes, "Business should be a powerful lever of change, driving progressive social justice by advancing the strategies and tools that deal with issues such as protecting democracy, LGBTQ+ matters, and racial inequality. Nonviolent methods of conflict resolution have been shown time and again as the most efficient way to achieve peace and justice. Like Ben & Jerry's, we mix corporate duty with social responsibility."
Stevens has been recently featured on the following podcasts:
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