I had reason to run to the hospital emergency room for a little help yesterday evening. Health-wise it worked out just fine, but...
The gosh darn hospital is virtually littered with Gideon Bibles. They're everywhere. And I'm not kidding.
I tossed four of them in the trash while I was there. The one off the waiting room table where I sat; the one I found on a vacant chair in the triage nurse's office; the one from the treatment room where I was seen by the doctor and finally the extra one I picked up passing through the lobby on my way out all went straight into the nearest bin. (You're welcome, everyone.)
Now I have to ask: If instead of Bibles these books had been Yellow Pages advertising books or copies of Darwin's Origin of the Species would the hospital and everyone else around be so numb to their presence? If these were General Motors auto repair books, wouldn't someone complain that a car manufacturer had no place hawking its products in a public facility? Why then are Bibles allowed? Is the church paying everyone's medical bills these days and are they providing salaries for the staff? Are they the ones who erected the building and maintain it? What's up with this special privilege for religion at our hospitals?
I don't think the Koran would get as warm a welcome or be so blindly tolerated as the Bible seems to be. And Gideon Bible or not, Koran or King James version or whatever, hasn't anyone got any sense of church/state separation left in them? Bibles are instruments of private religions. Hospitals are public places of science and medicine. The two don't mix at all.
Visit your local hospital and see for yourself. While you're there, toss a Bible in the trash. And let's ask a few questions about what's going to be done to put an end to this practice of selling religion in public places.