"All things equal, I would prefer to have a child in a school that has a strong appreciation for the values of the Christian community."
This is a statement made by Rod Paige, the United States Secretary of Education, and it is only the latest in a series of offensive, insensitive and outrageous statements made by members of the Bush administration and its colleagues. What is wrong with it? Everything.
First, why would the values of the Christian community be superior to the values of other communities? Are there not admirable values in the Jewish community? The Muslim community? The Buddhist community? The community of people who don't hurt others and try to do the right thing?
Then there is the matter of the Christian community itself, which is a community not represented by the White House. The White House represents the "Christian" community, a core of people who do not respect the rights or beliefs of others, who are anti-Constitution, who blame the poor for their problems, who do not tolerate those who deviate from their narrowly defined values, and who freely promote killing.
Of course, there are many Christians in the nation who do not subscribe to the dangerous teachings of the White House "Christians," but who still hold values that others may not consider superior--such as promotion of capitol punishment and the exploitation of animals.
Americans hold a variety of values. Some are based on compassion and tolerance, and some are based on fear, ignorance and disregard for the welfare of others.
To say that a child is better off in a school that reflects the values of a Christian community--especially the kind of "Christians" Paige is talking about--is absurd. And it is yet another Bush White House slap in the face of what America is supposed to stand for.