Soapbox Issues

Ethics, Religion and Politics

Over the weekend I read a piece of news that had me annoyed. Apparently, the NSW state government made a deal with the Christian Democratic Party and its leader Fred Nile to consider removing ethics classes from schools. Let me explain.

Students attending government schools (aka public schools) in NSW used to have a class called scripture where they studied religious scripture. However, towards the end of last year, the previous state government introduced ethics classes as an alternative to scripture. In other words, they didn’t remove scripture classes but gave students of non-religious families the option to study ethics. These ethics classes focus on issues ranging from children’s rights, human rights, animal cruelty, to whether children should be allowed to vote. In short, it appears to be teaching children to think critically about a variety of issues. 

Fred Nile and his conservative CDP seem to think this is wrong. After all, who wants a generation to think critically when you can brainwash them with religious scripture, right? Remember, this is a guy who wants bills to be passed repealing laws that allow same-sex couples to adopt and to ban individuals (adults) from possessing pornography.

But you know what? Fred Nile is entitled to have his views and opinions. No matter how backward they may seem to you and me. If he thinks homosexuality is a sin, so be it. But he needs to understand that most of us do not subscribe to his views. And that is where my problem lies.

I have a problem with him trying to push religion and scripture (any religion, by the way) onto young children today. Young kids that attend the public school system. If parents really want their kids to be taught religious scriptures, that’s what the catholic and other private religious schools are for. There are private Anglican, Catholic, Coptic, Greek Orthodox, Islamic and Assyrian schools that exist in NSW for parents who are keen for their kids to be oriented in the scripture and religion. The public system is not a place for preaching religion or scripture. Having said that, I am okay with scripture still being taught as long as it is a choice for students and not the only option thereby making it compulsory.

It makes my blood boil to think that the state government is even considering removing these classes. I was under the impression that the church (read: religion) has no place in politics. But I’m seriously starting to doubt that. What with the federal government spending millions to have chaplains in public schools (instead of qualified psychologists) and the state government thinking of giving in to a religious fanatic to get a vote on capping wages, I fear we may be heading the way the Americans did under Bush. Despite having an atheist prime minister. [Can you imagine how much worse off we would be with religious fanatic Tony Abbott???]

But I digress.

Here’s a wonderful piece written by an 11 year old who wants the ethics classes to stay.

If nothing, I hope the government keeps the ethics classes so we have more intelligent kids thinking critically and making good decisions in life. Although then, as the 11 year old himself said,

But then again, if children could go to the polls then perhaps Fred Nile, the leader of the Christian Democratic Party in NSW, wouldn’t have the power that he has today.

And maybe that’s the ulterior motive. To keep brainwashing young minds to be able to be voted in a position of power and thereby ensure we live in  regressive society that thinks homosexuality is a sin and divorce is wrong and watching pornography will result in us going to hell.

Until next time,

Cheers!!!

You Might Also Like

No Comments

  • Reply
    Red Handed
    August 2, 2011 at 5:14 am

    Its a shame that politics is paving its way into such topics.  and  as the 11 yr old quotes, they wouldnt have had made such a deformed decision if the kids could involve themselves.

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler
    August 2, 2011 at 5:35 am

    Welcome here Red Handed! It is such a shame isn’t it? And here I thought religion and politics were supposed to be kept separate. Sigh…let’s hope we don’t head that way and a sensible decision is made in the end…

  • Reply
    Jake
    August 2, 2011 at 8:11 am

    Oh dear god I hope that bill has not passed (that was just a figure of speech by the way)..

    Its shit like that pisses me off , so its not enough that you should be capable of telling wrong from right , the source of if has to be a religious dogma ?. Sometimes I wonder if the fanatics stop to think what religion is actually meant for. 

    I have to say I’m really surprised, are people in favor of this ? at least the majority ?

  • Reply
    Ayushi Bhatia
    August 2, 2011 at 8:27 am

    It couldn’t get more shameful, really !!

  • Reply
    Prateek Gupta
    August 2, 2011 at 8:30 am

    I agree and that is a very poor decision to move out ethics classes. On a more generic observation, I thought the religious fanatics and morons were active in national politics in developing countries like India, its sad to know its a menace in developed world like Australia too 🙁

  • Reply
    Bikram
    August 2, 2011 at 8:49 am

    such shame when politics comes into any phase , its always chaos and BAD TIMIE …

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler
    August 3, 2011 at 12:04 am

    No Jake..it hasn’t yet been passed. 🙂 Majority of the people don’t seem to be in favour of this because kids who do not study scripture, end up wasting time at school watching videos. So basically, it’s like either religion or nothing. Parents and teachers appear to have more sense than the politician in question and would rather kids studied ethics. It had me riled up too…big time! And mind you, the current NSW government which came into power earlier in the year made an election promise to *not* remove the ethics classes…typical…going back on election promises. Luckily we live in a democracy so it’s not just these two parties but others who are involved in the final decision and who oppose the ban…

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler
    August 3, 2011 at 12:05 am

    Tell me about it! It’s bad enough there is scripture in public schools which are not supposed to be religious but then to cancel the alternative for kids of parents who don’t want them to learn religion is ridiculous!

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler
    August 3, 2011 at 1:02 am

    I think the religious fanatics are everywhere Prats…they only probably show their dislike and fanaticism in a different way. For instance, in a country like Pakistan, they may blow someone up but here it’s done in sneaky manner and taking pot-shots. Not that they get much support from the general public. Having said that, our PM constantly receives snide remarks from the opposition leader for being an atheist and shock horror, a woman who is unmarried and has no children. FYI, our opposition leader is a devout Christian himself.

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler
    August 3, 2011 at 1:02 am

    Yeah Bikram…politics is a big problem world over. And politicians need to keep their nose out of certain things…especially ones who haven’t been voted into a governing party!

  • Reply
    R.Bit
    August 3, 2011 at 2:50 am

    O.M.G. You have to go see my blog. Now.
    I cannot stop laughing. 

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler
    August 3, 2011 at 3:56 am

    Yeah I noticed…it was like we were reading each others’ minds! Similar title and everything…:P Well, you know what they say — great minds think alike! By the way, I commented on your post before I saw your comment here…

  • Reply
    Jake
    August 3, 2011 at 7:58 am

    Prateek my friend …tch tch tch…google ted haggard, anjem choudary and there are a few other names that I can’t seem to remember right now.

    They are everywhere , human beings are the same everywhere man.
    Always need a reason to do the right thing, always need someone to place the blame on for things going wrong

  • Reply
    Jake
    August 3, 2011 at 8:05 am

    Well thats a relief, best news I’ve heard for a while tbh. By the way I read Fred Nile’s Wiki page, it looks like the guy is illiterate, I was looking at his education and all he has every learned is theology. And not just in school, but at uni also. They actually have classes for that !!!. Sure how hard can it be, day 1 god created light, day 7 he created man and woala you get your degree. Its shocking that he is in a position to make decisions for the country.

  • Reply
    Psych Babbler
    August 3, 2011 at 10:42 am

    Yes Jake, they do have degrees in theology. Was surprised myself but I think you can even do a PhD in that. Go figure. No wonder he has such narrow minded views though…only hearing one side of the story throughout your life can do that! Sigh…let’s hope he never gets the majority vote.

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge

Close
error: Content is protected !!