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Obama: Religious schools encourage division
Hotair ^ | 06/20/2013 | Ed Morrissey

Posted on 06/20/2013 7:57:47 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

Barack Obama actually made this claim at a speech in Belfast on Monday, but it seems to be gaining traction overnight. His claim, aimed at both Catholic and Protestant “schools and buildings,” came in prepared remarks rather than an extemporaneous response to a question. The Scottish Catholic Observer quotes the argument accurately:

The US President has made an alarming call for an end to Catholic education in Northern Ireland in spite of the fact that Archbishop Gerhard Müller told Scots that Catholic education was ‘a critical component of the Church.’

President Barack Obama (above), repeated the oft disproved claim that Catholic education increases division in front of an audience of 2000 young people, including many Catholics, at Belfast’s Waterfront hall when he arrived in the country this morning.

“If towns remain divided—if Catholics have their schools and buildings and Protestants have theirs, if we can’t see ourselves in one another and fear or resentment are allowed to harden—that too encourages division and discourages cooperation,” the US president said.

The US politician made the unfounded claim despite a top Vatican official spelling out the undeniable good done by Catholic education in a speech in Glasgow on Saturday and in his homily at Mass on Friday.

I’ll quote the passage in its full context:

We need you to get this right. And what’s more, you set an example for those who seek a peace of their own. Because beyond these shores, right now, in scattered corners of the world, there are people living in the grip of conflict — ethnic conflict, religious conflict, tribal conflicts — and they know something better is out there. And they’re groping to find a way to discover how to move beyond the heavy hand of history, to put aside the violence. They’re studying what you’re doing. And they’re wondering, perhaps if Northern Ireland can achieve peace, we can, too. You’re their blueprint to follow. You’re their proof of what is possible — because hope is contagious. They’re watching to see what you do next.

Now, some of that is up to your leaders. As someone who knows firsthand how politics can encourage division and discourage cooperation, I admire the Northern Ireland Executive and the Northern Ireland Assembly all the more for making power-sharing work. That’s not easy to do. It requires compromise, and it requires absorbing some pain from your own side. I applaud them for taking responsibility for law enforcement and for justice, and I commend their effort to “Building a United Community” — important next steps along your transformational journey.

Because issues like segregated schools and housing, lack of jobs and opportunity — symbols of history that are a source of pride for some and pain for others — these are not tangential to peace; they’re essential to it. If towns remain divided — if Catholics have their schools and buildings, and Protestants have theirs — if we can’t see ourselves in one another, if fear or resentment are allowed to harden, that encourages division. It discourages cooperation.

Ultimately, peace is just not about politics. It’s about attitudes; about a sense of empathy; about breaking down the divisions that we create for ourselves in our own minds and our own hearts that don’t exist in any objective reality, but that we carry with us generation after generation.

Does that make the context any better? Er … not really. He’s speaking in terms of Northern Ireland, but pretty explicitly calling for that to be a model for the rest of the world. His argument makes two very large assumptions, which is that the conflict in Northern Ireland was about religion, and that parochial schools make people inclined to violence. The first is a gross oversimplification; the conflict in recent times was political, dealing with ethnic conflict and sovereignty issues, with religion used more for tribal identification than a core of the conflict.

The second is just absurd. Catholics and Protestants have thousands of schools in the US, and we don’t have warfare in the streets in the US between the sects. The issue wasn’t the schools, nor the belief systems of Catholics and Protestants that such schools teach. However, this makes a handy mechanism to call for the displacement of private education and religious instruction from education, with nothing left except state-controlled schools that indoctrinate children into whatever norms the governing/ruling class deem acceptable.

My friend Father Z wonders whether Obama will make this call truly consistent:

Off the top of my head, I can’t think of a foreign visit to a Islamic nation where he told people on his arrival that they shouldn’t have madrasas. Can you?

Did he when visiting, say, Israel, say “You Jews shouldn’t have synagogue schools and you muslims shouldn’t have mosque schools.” I can’t remember. Did he?

I’d guess … no.

Update: The comments came in a speech on Monday, not on Friday. I’ve fixed it above; thanks to Joel Pollak at Breitbart for the heads-up.



TOPICS: Breaking News; Culture/Society; Philosophy
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1 posted on 06/20/2013 7:57:47 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
We always knew that "diversitah" was about just the opposite.
2 posted on 06/20/2013 7:58:33 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Religious faith in government is far crazier than religious faith in God.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Germany ruled the with the same reasoning to outlaw anything but public schooling

(where the kids get taught the State-approved information).


3 posted on 06/20/2013 7:58:53 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter admits whom he's working for)
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To: SeekAndFind

Barack Obama causes division, let’s get rid of him.


4 posted on 06/20/2013 7:58:57 AM PDT by DonkeyBonker (Hard to paddle against the flow of sewage coming out of the White House.)
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To: SeekAndFind

The faih-based schools encourage responsible citizenship.


5 posted on 06/20/2013 7:59:17 AM PDT by Biggirl ("Jesus talked to us as individuals"-Jim Vicevich/Thanks JimV!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Mr. Obama - does this reasoning apply to madrassas as well?


6 posted on 06/20/2013 7:59:56 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter admits whom he's working for)
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To: SeekAndFind

“The faih-based schools encourage responsible citizenship.”

The faith-based schools encourage responsible citizenship.


7 posted on 06/20/2013 8:01:09 AM PDT by Biggirl ("Jesus talked to us as individuals"-Jim Vicevich/Thanks JimV!)
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To: Biggirl

First, he came for the Home Schoolers, then the catholic Schools, what’s next?


8 posted on 06/20/2013 8:03:44 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Obama’s daughters attend a Quaker school...


9 posted on 06/20/2013 8:04:06 AM PDT by GOPJ (Why don't Democrats waste their time trying to win the votes of gun owners? - Coulter)
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To: SeekAndFind

Revolt has started, with yesterday’s rally in DC.


10 posted on 06/20/2013 8:07:41 AM PDT by Biggirl ("Jesus talked to us as individuals"-Jim Vicevich/Thanks JimV!)
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To: SeekAndFind
That's a good thing!

Christians should want to be separated from the secular Socialist/Communist nonsense that our PC public schools indoctrinate the kids with.

11 posted on 06/20/2013 8:08:11 AM PDT by PATRIOT1876 (The only crimes that are 100% preventable are crimes committed by illegal aliens)
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To: Biggirl

RE: Revolt has started, with yesterday’s rally in DC.

Does anyone know how large the crowd was?


12 posted on 06/20/2013 8:08:54 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Maybe pattern ourselves after the all inclusive leftists.
(mega-sarc)


13 posted on 06/20/2013 8:09:31 AM PDT by daku
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To: SeekAndFind

Now here’s one thing Obongo knows about:”DIVISIVNESS”!!!!He is a MASTER at it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


14 posted on 06/20/2013 8:10:01 AM PDT by bandleader
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To: GOPJ

RE: Obama’s daughters attend a Quaker school...

Yes, but how faithful are their teachers to the Bible?

“Quaker” today might mean as much nowadays as “Episcopalian” or “Anglican” or even Boy Scouts of America...


15 posted on 06/20/2013 8:11:07 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Up to between 7,000-10,000 on the USA Capitol grounds yesterday. Saw for a while on CSPAN.


16 posted on 06/20/2013 8:13:25 AM PDT by Biggirl ("Jesus talked to us as individuals"-Jim Vicevich/Thanks JimV!)
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To: SeekAndFind

I’m surprised the interfering arrogant citizen of the world didn’t order them to start busing that did such wonders for our schools. Didn’t himself attend a Catholic school somewhere...


17 posted on 06/20/2013 8:14:26 AM PDT by bronxville (Margaret Sanger - “We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population,)
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To: DonkeyBonker

AMEN


18 posted on 06/20/2013 8:21:42 AM PDT by ConservativeMan55
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To: SeekAndFind
And snotty nosed, elitist, prep schools don't???

What a freaking moron...

19 posted on 06/20/2013 8:23:03 AM PDT by gov_bean_ counter (Romans 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

20 posted on 06/20/2013 8:23:30 AM PDT by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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