I just read an alert in the weekly update I receive from the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) that described a chilling law the Canadian province of Alberta is looking to pass.
Here’s a summary from the HSLDA which includes what appears to be a quote from the bill:
The legislative proposal known as Bill 2 in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta would explicitly require that all instructional materials “reflect the diverse nature and heritage of society in Alberta, promote understanding and respect for others and honour and respect the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Alberta Human Rights Act.” The bill further requires not only public schools, but also private schools and homeschools to comply with these requirements (§ 1 “interpretation of school”).
The alert also includes this quote from Alberta Minister of Education, Thomas Lukaszuk:
“Whatever the nature of schooling—homeschool, private school, Catholic school—we do not tolerate disrespect for differences.”
…and this quote from his assistant director for communications, Donna McColl:
“Whatever the nature of schooling—homeschool, private school, Catholic school—we do not tolerate disrespect for differences… You can affirm the family’s ideology in your family life; you just can’t do it as part of your educational study and instruction.”
Please understand: I’m not one to jump at conspiracy theories, and I hear my share. I’m not one who believes all the governmental “Straw Man” arguments, 501(c)(3) lunacy, etc. But these comments should be chilling to anyone who cherishes their ability to act on God’s command in Deuteronomy 6:6-7,
“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.”
Actually, these comments are both disturbing and revealing in a number of ways. For instance, it seems to make a magical distinction between “family life” and education and instruction–the exact opposite of what Deuteronomy 6 says, which describes instruction as interwoven with family life, teaching as you sit, walk by the way, lie down, rise up. Those who think that “family life” and “educational life” are two completely distinct things have fallen for a lie meant to weaken the family. (Not that they invented the lie or purpose to do wrong in their heart. It is from the father of lies, and those who believe it often think they are doing people a service.)
Also, it forces families schooling their children at home to be hypocrites. For instance, if Alberta decides that tolerance for homosexuality should be taught and the parents believe that it is a sin, the parents are somehow supposed to
teach “affirm in their family life” that the the choice to engage in homosexual practices is to be avoided as displeasing to God and not to be respected as an allowable choice on the one hand while simultaneously actively teaching that homosexual lifestyles are to be respected and upheld as just as good as proper sexual relations within marriage.
(It would be nice if Alberta allowed that a family could teach that truly respecting a person doesn’t mean one has to tolerate the presence of sin in their lives but that, quite the contrary, truly loving a person means being willing to warn them about the dangers of that sin in their lives and describing that sin for what it truly is: something noxious to their Creator. If someone in Alberta could help me see that this is what they mean by “respect,” I’d be much obliged.)
Of course, the comments are also irrational and misleading. After all, “disrespect for differences” is all over the place in both law and common society and is widely approved. Those who differ from the rest of us on how ownership should be understood are arrested when they steal. Those who differ on what constitutes “consent” in sexual matters are still arrested when they break applicable laws. How are those differences “respected”? It is a matter of what differences the government gives you the right to disrespect, of course–part of the ungodly idea that government determines right and wrong instead of God. The words “right and wrong” may be removed from the discussion, but they are implicitly present all the time in such legislation. As better men than me have noted, proclamations of government and legislature are inherently moral in spirit and tone and it is folly to pretend otherwise. This is often all the more blatant in laws dealing with education.
As English literary giant Samuel Johnson once noted, “The supreme end of education is expert discernment in all things–the power to tell the good from the bad, the genuine from the counterfeit, and to prefer the good and genuine to the bad and counterfeit.” Alberta’s proposed bill seeks to rob from parents the right to teach their own children how to distinguish the good from the bad and how to prefer the good and genuine to the bad and counterfeit. And worse still, it seeks to force parents to be the instruments of the state in indoctrinating their own children in the government’s ideas about what is good and bad–forcing the parents to be agents in teaching their children to believe things they do not themselves believe. How satanic.
More could be said, but I don’t have much more time–and it’s probably best that way, as my ire would probably keep me going for a while. As I have said many a time here on my blog, I am not political in the sense that I do not participate in the political life of any country (e.g., I do not vote, do not endorse political candidates, do not seek to affect legislation) — nor does anyone who shares my faith. I believe that Christ has called me out of that. But sighing and crying over the state of things is another matter (cf. Ezekiel 9:4), as is crying aloud about them (Isaiah 58:1) and looking forward to being empowered with Christ at His return to make a real, lasting difference (2 Cor. 10:4-6, Rev. 20:4, 6).
Unless HSLDA has done the worst job humanly possible in describing Alberta’s Bill 2, it truly does represent a horrendous moral attack on the integrity of the family, homeschooling or not, and for the sake of those families living in our wonderful neighbor to the north who are striving to teach their children godly morals that go against the grain of government-approved values, I pray that the bill fails. And I pray, too, that politicians in our own country don’t get any ideas.
- Alberta Catholics and homeschoolers may have to teach kids being gay is not a sin (drsaraheaton.wordpress.com)
- Homeschoolers can’t be taught ‘gay’ sex sinful in Canada (estherlou.wordpress.com)
- Alberta joins Quebec in imposing “diversity” education on homeschoolers (winteryknight.wordpress.com)