Skip to comments.Obama: Religious schools encourage division
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 Belfasts Waterfront hall when he arrived in the country this morning.
If towns remain dividedif Catholics have their schools and buildings and Protestants have theirs, if we cant see ourselves in one another and fear or resentment are allowed to hardenthat 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 whats 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 theyre groping to find a way to discover how to move beyond the heavy hand of history, to put aside the violence. Theyre studying what youre doing. And theyre wondering, perhaps if Northern Ireland can achieve peace, we can, too. Youre their blueprint to follow. Youre their proof of what is possible — because hope is contagious. Theyre 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. Thats 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; theyre essential to it. If towns remain divided — if Catholics have their schools and buildings, and Protestants have theirs — if we cant 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. Its 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 dont 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 cant think of a foreign visit to a Islamic nation where he told people on his arrival that they shouldnt have madrasas. Can you?
Did he when visiting, say, Israel, say You Jews shouldnt have synagogue schools and you muslims shouldnt have mosque schools. I cant 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.
This is because many of them are Catholics in name only, and they hate a lot of what the Church stands for. They probably disagree with the Church on issues like abortion, homosexual marriage, premarital sex, birth control, attending Mass weekly, etc. Some might not be practicing at all and only identify as Catholic because they were raised that way.
Tradition, lack of knowledge, belief in the party of the "common man"
Maybe “999” Obama could make such an idea a priority.
Unless they’re of the islamofascists bent eh zer0?
"Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." ~John 14:6
I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! But I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how distressed I am till it is accomplished! Do you suppose that I came to give peace on earth? I tell you, not at all, but rather division. For from now on five in one house will be divided: three against two, and two against three. Father will be divided against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. ~Luke 12:49-53
"Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,..."~Romans 1:1:
What about black colleges in the US?
They have a right to be divisive.
What about addition, subtraction, and multiplication?
If this does not prove to anyone that this SOB is the most anti-Christian “president” in American history, nothing will.
He’s a damn Muslim and always has been.
He must have cajones the size of Gibraltar to go into a Catholic country and make such an assenine statement.
The dude is losing world points in a hurry. Just not fast enough for the safety of America.
That's right! Thank you for reminding us of this. So do lots of other left-wing members of the Washington elite because the public schools are so bad in DC.
I would have more respect for Obama’s view if he would at least follow his own advice, and the precedent of Jimmy Carter, and enroll his daughters in public school. I have zero problem with him using private schools but he can't logically attack private schools while his own daughter goes to one.
66 posted on 6/20/2013 12:49:55 PM by Yehuda: “Wish some people here would give Jews the same benefit of the doubt.”
I do, Yehuda. With each of these three phrases ... evangelical Protestant, traditional Catholic, Orthodox Jew ... the modifier is important. (And yes, I am quite aware that there are Jewish people who are politically conservative but not as strictly observant as the Orthodox, much as there are politically conservative members of mainline Protestant denominations.)
For people who want to blame all Jews for liberal nonsense by secular Jews, they need to be consistent and blame all Roman Catholics for nonsense coming from Pelosi, Kerrey, and the Kennedys, and blame all Protestants for nonsense from the National Council of Churches and Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
My guess is that the rapidly increasing assimilation of today's secular Jewish community in the United States, combined with aggressive Chabad and Modern Orthodox outreach, within a generation or two will transform Judaism much as the evangelical movement transformed the face of Protestantism between the 1930s and 1980s, with the liberals in control of dying institutions supported by large endowments and the conservatives in the driver's seat of the agenda outside those historic but hollowed-out institutions.
I am glad, though, to see that the Touro Synagogue has remained Orthodox over all these years despite a century and a half of liberalism in American Judaism. I wish I could say that about the Pilgrim Church in Plymouth, the early Anglican churches in Virginia, or most other historic Protestant congregations.
Spoken by the fool who went to Izzie schools.
I attended Catholic school. There was way more divisiveness encouraged and tolerated in the public schools I attended for Jr. High and HS than in the parochial school. This has absolutely nothing to do with “fixing” something broken, and everything to do with private schooling exposing the flaws in the public education system. It has everything to do with instituting absolute government oversight of our children - see Head Start for an example. They truly want our children from the cradle to the grave.
I have family members who are Quakers... Obama’s daughter are attending a religious school... (might not be your idea of ‘religious’ which is certainly beside the point).
‘The Bible’ is not the definition of religion in our culture... you’re a bright person Seek - you know that...
It’s absolutely ridiculous because you don’t even HAVE to be Catholic to attend a Catholic school! One of our fellow students was JEWISH, and I know there were some kids and families that I /never/ saw in Church on Sundays, either! Our teachers emphasized our equality to others as we were ALL God’s children no matter our backgrounds or faith, and didn’t encourage divisiveness - even to those outside the church. It wasn’t until going to public school that I saw that kind of divisive and damaging behavior among the students - divisive along every line you can think of; looks, money, clothes, cars, parents’ jobs, etc... etc... But then that’s what these politicians want. They don’t TRULY want peace, they strive for chaos because it gives them the foundation for seeking more power over us all.
RE: The Bible is not the definition of religion in our culture... youre a bright person Seek - you know that...
I am assuming that Quakers adhere to the Bible as the word of God. I am also assuming that Quakers are Christians.
If Sidwell friends ( a purported Quaker school ) does not, then I guess Obama DID NOT send his daughters to a Christian school after all.
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