Thursday, March 24, 2011

Save our Indoctrination

I received this letter in the mail accompanying a flyer for the CDP (christian Democratic Party).

For those who aren't aware, over in Australia we have a class in public schools called "SRE" or "special religious education" and for many years those children who's parents opted out of this class where prohibited from attending any other educational instruction instead, so the kids are usually shoved in a room to do basically nothing. Along comes this idea for a Secular Ethics class on an opt in basis for those not attending scripture. Please check out the above link for more information on the classes and check out the Sydney Atheists for even more info, but for now let me take this letter point by point then on to the CDP.

Ummm sorry... replace??? Nope, supplement I think was the word you were looking for (or maybe not), parents still have the option of sending their kids to SRE but now there's another option and children aren't wasting important time accomplishing nothing just because they don't subscribe to your particular religion.

30 years hey? Well if that is the case then you must have at some point taught me and I don't seem to recall delight coming from myself or any of my friends. So how exactly is scripture helping children with difficulties?? Is that by releasing all control to an all knowing ego maniacal imaginary friend that will punish you if you don't follow an exact (although open to interpretation for any purpose you so desire) set of rules. Or maybe by making them feel ashamed by their natural human urges. Or possibly by teaching them that life is so simple that all the answers can be found in a translation of a translation of a translation of a 2000 year old grouping together of various texts with dubious authorship , contradicting stories, blatantly unethical teachings and patently false accounts of history.

Ethics classes will enable children to work through ethical dilemmas and come to their own conclusion on whether an action is right, wrong or one of the many shades of grey and the reason behind it. Isn't it far better for children to figure out right and wrong on their own in a semi-controlled environment other than just dictated to from an authority. It is good for children to be exposed to differing viewpoints and again Ethics classes are not about being dictated too, but more so working through moral issues together. There is loads of information as well as videos on the net that show how these classes are conducted, so parents can get informed before "OPTING THEIR CHILDREN IN" to the Ethics course.

 The Jesus portrayed in the bible was not particularly ethical by any modern standards, whilst there are some valuable ideas in there, they are in no way inherent to the faith and seriously you would expect the supposed son of an omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient creator would have been spot on. The Jesus in the bible bolsters the idea of women being akin to property, which if you really agree with that you have no place in modern society. Jesus also speaks of thought crimes being comparable to murder as well as infinite punishment for finite crimes. Freewill?? The very idea of a God that knows all, sees all and is all, is that we don't have a choice "everything is according to a plan" or as the line goes, which basically means that your whole existence is already mapped out, so technically you would not be responsible for your actions in such a world. If the christian god existed, we would be mere puppets controlled from before the beginning of time to play out a contrived plan set out by a ego-maniacal dictator who says "obey me" or else you'll spend eternity in torture.

It would be far better for our kids to feel empowered to make the tough decisions on their own without relying on an outside influence to provide the answer for them. How are any children missing the opportunity of learning about their parents religion?? Again YOU HAVE THE CHOICE, Ethics classes are not being forced on anyone SRE will still be offered, not to mention sunday school, church services and here's a novel idea, how about teaching your children yourself, then you can spout whatever you want (within reason). As well I believe the writer has contradicted herself with the  "His perfect plan for their lives" doesn't sound too conducive to free choice.

Small highly vocal minority hey??? One quick Google search say most reports state an overwhelming majority support the move. Blatantly making unresearched statements and placing them in a letter does not make them true. Ummm... I feel like it is ground hog day... but screw it here we go again "Ethics classes are not frick'n compulsory", you're still free to indoctrinate your own children into whatever religion you happen to adhere too, I don't agree with your choice but I'll fight for your right to make it. On that same line of reasoning why can't we wait till they are more educated before introducing religion?? If it really is so good for us we would choose it later in life regardless of upbringing. 

Sorry that last statement is just abhorrent, if your moral compass is so screwed up you believe this is cruel, next to teaching children that all who won't subscribe to your particular brand of nuttery will burn forever in hell or moreover that the child themselves will burn if they don't follow these outdated set of rules, well maybe you would benefit from some structured Ethics classes.

Another blatantly false set of statements, most parties support scripture in schools for those parents who wish their children to attend, but will also support Ethics classes for the rest of us. In fact I believe the Labor government wants to boost funding for the School Chaplaincy program.

Yes we have a great reputation for being 'laid Back' and yes the non-religious have been apathetic in not speaking up about public schools pandering to religion, and outraged about our kids being ostracised in a classroom not doing anything constructive because of it. Ok, so our Australian christian heritage is so strong that religion appears just once in the Constitution
Section 116 - Commonwealth not to legislate in respect of religion
"The Commonwealth shall not make any law for establishing any religion, or for imposing any religious observance, or for prohibiting the free exercise of any religion, and no religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth."
 But it doesn't seem like anyone wishes to pay the constitution any heed or seem to remember what our ancestors got up to when they arrived... Oh wait, sorry genocide and slavery are all common themes in christian heritage, so maybe your right.

May god richly bless you and your loved ones??? Unless you happen to believe something other than me, then please sit quietly in the corner why I indoctrinate your children and inform them why your going to hell.

You may think I have been too confronting with this issue, or I'm engaging in one long-winded rant (could be the case) but I attended two of these schools, my family went to these schools, I have lived in Emu Plains all my life and my parents have been here some 35+ years, I love it here and I hope to one day raise my own family here. I hate the thought that my children's  precious education time and funding could go to teaching them 2000yo superstitions as truth, I'm all for teaching comparative religion or religious history of how these beliefs evolved over time but not when the blatant falsehoods described in the bible (and other so called sacred texts) are portrayed as being fact where they clearly fly in the face of all current scientific knowledge.

In short I don't support SRE at all, parents have ample opportunity to teach their children about their particular religion without impacting the education of those who don't subscribe to it.

Party Responses to SRE

That's it for this post, I'll leave the SDP for another time.


1 comment:

  1. looks like someone had inspiration while writing this post. Nice commentary!