5) I dunno about bibles in schools, and I'm not American. But having spoken to many people of different faiths, and read the bible straight through (dear god that was a waste of time, but I did it because I thought it might not be) I think of the bible as being like a Rorschach test. It's incoherent, but there's enough stuff in there that you can make whatever meaning of it you want, because often it says one thing and then later says the opposite thing, and simple logic dictates that if the bible is the word of God you must have misunderstood one of the things, and you get to pick the one that makes the most sense to you and discard the other one. An idea that was present on the forums I was involved with was "self-projection as God". I, like many people, was brought up to believe that we have an innate sense of right and wrong. And if God gave us that, then what I think is right, must also be what God thinks is right. And anything that goes along with what I think is right, in the bible, must therefore be the correct interpretation of (objectively) a series of words that has no correct interpretation, in the same way that there is no correct thing to see in an inkblot test, although what you see may give others some insight into your thoughts and mental pre-conditioning. So... don't think that because people all read the bible and believe themselves to be following what it says, they all follow a common set of beliefs. In fact, most people in bible-based religions don't read it, they accept the interpretations of those around them. And those who do read it, interpret it in very widely varying ways. But many of them believe they have a lot in common, and "the bible is True" acts as a starting point for their discussions.
The forum I spoke about being heavily involved with was http://isgodimaginary.com/. Discussions there have helped me clarify my understanding of and views about religion. If you want to watch the evolution of my thoughts on that topic, my handle there is JustMyron. Would have been "JustMe" (so the "Just" in "JustMyron" = "merely", rather than "I am very just in my dealings with others") except I wanted to leave that for someone else.