Sunday, January 21, 2007

The Religious Wrong and my Self-Righteous Rant

I was reading my son't blog today. He has some thoughts about vouchers and education. Kind of in a nutshell, I believe he was saying that the current governor of Texas supports vouchers in order to enable certain religious groups to send their children to private schools at public expense.

There is no question that the voucher system will take money away from already under-funded public education. The same public education that, by law, must take every child and provide an equal and adequate education for each.

(WARNING: massive generalities here) Private schools, on the other hand, have the power to deny any student entrance to their enchanted cloisters. Many private schools do not/cannot/will not provide special education to children with learning disabilities. (my friend's child attends a local catholic school, but comes to a district school daily for remedial reading not available in his private school) Private schools have the ability to refuse to enroll a student who is a discipline problem. Private schools have the option of not being bound by state requirements for the teachers they hire and can hire people who are not certificated teachers. They also have the option of paying those teachers low wages. Private schools are not bound by state requirements for passing state mandated testing.

People who think a private education is a better education need to check into the particular school to be sure it does indeed provide a quality education.

A lot of interest in vouchers is coming from the 'religious right.' These are the same people who tout Family Values. But whose family? When I see articles and letters to the editor about family values, I come away with a feeling that these are the values of a few fear-ridden right wing Christian conservatives. The same people who send me endless and stupid email poems about not having prayer in school, about (HORRORS) honoring the Muslim religion with a postage stamp, and chain letter emails that berate me if I don't send them on to "at least 11 friends in the next ten minutes" or something dire will happen.

Please.

This stuff is embarrassing at best. The religious right is kind of embarrassing. I'd rather not call myself a Christian if it means being lumped in with fear- and hate-mongers.

Prayer in school? Every child can pray in school. The law restricts a teacher from teaching religion in public school. No one "took God out of school." The teaching of religion is a parent responsibility.

Family values? Our family values honesty. We value a loving and supportive home where all people are welcome, and where all people are honored. What kind of values are being taught where incest or battering occur? ("values" which occur regardless of religion or socio-economic level)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Poor Me!

We are having some freak weather out here. Windstorms, snow, ice...no, I don't think it is global warming, nor do I think it is God's judgement. I think every few years we have freaky weather, and this is our year.

School was canceled Wednesday, started with a 2-hour delay yesterday, and is canceled again today. And I am stuck here in this warm, cozy little house with a fireplace, a tv, a stack of books, my xstitching, and my quilt. With school closed Monday for Martin Luther King, Jr, I am enduring a four-day weekend. I don't care for the idea of going to school until the 4th of July to make up missed days, but I'd rather that than to be out driving on icy sheets of glass.

The next big question is what to do first? I worked on my stitching while I watched Ellen; she is a favorite, and I don't get to indulge in her show very often. Now I am thinking of getting dressed. You can see the struggle.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

Boundaries

This is one of my most favorite cartoons. Like the woman in the cartoon, I'm not very good at establishing boundaries. I have a tendency to go too far one way or the other: either not firm enough, which then has no effect, or I go overboard and build a wall.

Moderation in all things is a philosophy that makes a lot of sense, but I don't know how to achieve that.

Thank you, Australia!

My blogger friend, Hannelie, has used her Aussie magic and fixed my blog. I know all she did was try to post, and it worked, but it must have jogged something back into place, because until just now, my cursor would not appear in the 'compose' window. And, I'm pretty sure, that extra tab that says 'edit html' was not there last time I checked.

So, I have been trying to post for some time now; in fact, ever since I switched to the new blogger from the old blogger. I forgot that I had sworn to never touch anything again, and I switched templates, then tried to add a new header...wrong, wrong, wrong. This is my solemn vow: I will never try to fix anything myself again.

Oh yeah, Hannelie, the sleeping koala isn't there.

Testing via Australia

Posting text: Testing: 1...2...3...
Results: Successfull

Posting an image: testing: Sleeping koala
Results: Successfull