EDUCATION SECRETARY UNDER FIRE
Catalyst May Issue 2003, Front Page
U.S. Secretary of Education Roderick Paige has come under fire by secular extremists for extolling Christian values; his comments were made during an interview with the Baptist Press. The Catholic League rushed to his defense and was the first organization in the nation to do so.
“All things being equal,” Secretary Paige said, “I would prefer to have a child in a school that has a strong appreciation for the values of the Christian community, where a child is taught to have a strong faith.” He also compared public schools unfavorably to Christian schools because of the latter’s emphasis on values.
At no time in the interview did Secretary Paige say that religion should be taught in the public schools. But this did not stop him from being blasted by Americans United for Separation of Church and State, the ADL, the ACLU, the National Education Association, the Islamic Networks Group of San Jose and the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network.
The most harsh comments came from Congressman Gary Ackerman of New York who accused Paige of sponsoring “the Taliban approach to education,” and from Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen who charged Paige with seeking to mainstream the Christian faith into the public school curriculum.
- The Catholic League believes that what is going on here is much bigger than an attempt to stop Secretary Paige. His critics really want to rid society of Christianity and that is why they need to be defeated.