Youth
11 min

History repeating: new funding for religious schools

BY ANDREA HOUSTON – After watching Ontario’s Catholic students battle for gay-straight alliances (GSAs) and the ongoing
calls for the province to fund only one secular public school system, it is
absolutely baffling that Saskatchewan is now offering public tax dollars to
religious schools
 not already part of the public system.

I guess they didn’t read the Dec 9 edition of The Globe and Mail in which columnist Adam Radwanski declared that it’s “it’s time to pull public funding of Catholic schools.”Or Xtra’s series on this topic, found here, here and here. (Psst! Religious schools often discriminate against queer people.)


On Jan 3, the issue was debated in the Ottawa Citizen.

“As the recent controversy over gay-straight alliances has
shown, Catholic doctrine cannot be reconciled with the promotion of gay rights.
It is impossible to honour gays and lesbians while simultaneously teaching a
faith that believes any sexual or romantic expression of their love is sinful.”

In the same edition, the other side is argued, which
actually just sounds a lot like privileged whining and foot-stamping, desperately trying to cling to an archaic constitutional loophole.

Apparently, indoctrination is far more important than even
“substandard buildings.”

How much clearer does this need to be? The government should
not fund or support any religious schools. Religion has proven itself incapable
of education, and religious “leaders” can’t be trusted around children.

All this and now Canada is considering establishing an
“Office of Religious Freedom” within the Department of Foreign Affairs, a stupid waste of
taxpayer money that will serve only to protect Western religions, particularly
Christianity, and further discriminate against queer people, women, pro-choice advocates, to name a few.

“Religious
freedom can have a ‘contentious relationship’ with other crucial
human-rights concerns such as women’s equality, the equality rights of gays and
lesbians, and freedom of expression,” reports the CBC.

Not to worry! We can trust the Harper government. John Baird
has been “consulting internationally,” including at meetings with the Vatican in
Rome and religious groups in Canada.

Here,
Warren Kinsella provides 10 reasons why the office is a bad idea.

“It appears the office will focus on promoting Judeo-Christian
traditions, and nobody else’s. Buddhists, Sikhs, Hindus and First Nation
religious leaders were also excluded from Baird’s secretive fall meeting. None
vote Conservative,” he says.

Not surprisingly, Sun TV’s Michael Coren thinks the office is a great
idea.

 

 

Then, this week, Pope Benedict said the greatest threat to
humanity is . . .

I’ll
let you try to guess.

The climate crisis? Religious extremism? Poverty?
Genocide? Nope. Gay marriage!

Maybe he’s just baiting us. He must be playing a game with
the world’s media, just hoping we all scream, “What about pedophile priests?”

Sadly, this hateful old man who actually has helped
pedophiles hide from custody, is dead serious. He’s like a cartoon character of
an evil villain. It would be funny if it wasn’t for the fact his brand of
religion is actually what’s destroying humanity.

As if to rub salt directly into the wound, the head of
the Catholic League, Bill Donohue, said the victims of pedophile priests are a
“pitiful bunch of malcontents.”  

“A whopping 75 people turned out for the conference, 25 of
whom were the speakers. How embarrassing. It’s clear that the professional
victims’ lobby is spent. Everyone else has moved on, but those who have an
ideological, emotional or financial interest in continuing this saga cannot let
go. What a pitiful bunch of malcontents.” They should just stop whining. It’s all in the past.

I think my head is going to explode.

 

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