Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Secularism - here's how it goes

"Parents face prosecution over gay lessons protest"
Christian and Muslim parents in London who kept their primary school children away from controversial lessons promoting homosexuality could now face legal action by the local council.
I spot a pattern that's played out again and again by the UK's secular government:
  • Stage one: government comes in to help - give a little expertise, lay down a few "best practice" guidelines, etcetera.
  • Stage two: government starts providing funding - and gets more say.
  • Stage three: government is now in control, whilst still allowing other approaches.
  • Stage four: the government's provision is now standard, and other approaches are only tolerated, whilst being subjected to increasing amounts of regulation and inconvenience and semi-official disapproval.
  • Stage five: either you do it the government's way, or they start prosecuting you.
The above story is an example of how that's happened in the world of education in the UK. Widespread education began as a church and charity venture, led by those with a heart for it and for the children. Then government crept in little by little... until we arrive at today where government-directed education is standard... and if you don't agree to swallow whatever controversial approach their so-called "experts" insist on, they'll threaten you with punishment. Your preferences for educating your children in some highly controversial area doesn't agree with theirs? Sorry.

Thankfully there's still freedom in the UK for parents to choose another approach, and it's time -whether independent schooling, co-operatives between like-minded parents, or mum home-schooling. We're past the days of the pioneers now, and nobody choosing any of these approaches will be going it alone. The days are increasingly passing in many areas when Christians can credibly say, "oh, the state schools are not that bad - they just teach them bare facts and we teach them the missing parts about God's world at home." State education's (with a very few notable exceptions) anti-Christian nature is not subtle any more and Christians need to know what they're doing with their children before it's too late.


Ned Kelly said...

I recently joined a community care group that was started by a Christian minister and has become one of the largest of its type in the country. What surprised me was how secular it had become, with nary a mention of God or prayer. Depending as it does on Government funding, secular rules and bureaucracy have penetrated to the extent that it now more represents the secular humanist view than the Christian one. Most, if not all, of the psychology of counselling is atheistic, based around the mind being an emergent property of biology, and behaviour a function of genetics modified by nurture and environment, with no acceptance of soul or spirit. This trend seems inevitable as Christian initiatives seek public (read Government) support, and tolerance of all views leads to commitment to none, or more notably, rejection of the true source of the compassion that is now espoused. There needs to be another Revival, another Reformation, some process or action that would rescue society from the creeping humanism that evicts God from our lives and society. The danger of basing our Christian community efforts on secular support becomes more evident every day - I have no clue as to how we can reverse that.

David Anderson said...

Hi Ned,

I think one thing is: He who pays the piper calls the tune. If Christians are serious about building an alternative to secular humanism, we need to start saying "no" to the cash and trusting that God will provide for us if we're really doing something worth doing.


dwlegg said...

You'd better stay in Kenya, where it's safe to bring up children David, er, or is it? At the current rate of government interference, we could all soon find ourselves begging to be allowed to come to Africa. Africa could be the new America for persecuted minorities, especially Christians.