No Tax Funds for Religious Schools

David Card, “president of Escuela de Guadalupe, an independent Catholic, dual-language school in northwest Denver,” made a series of astounding comments in an article for the Denver Post today.

Card argues that some religious schools “are effective in developing Colorado standards-based academic proficiency in subjects like math, reading and science, and in producing high school graduates.” No doubt. But then Card adds, “Clearly, the state has an interest in this.”

Clearly, Card has lost his faculties. The government’s job is to protect people’s rights, not dictate education policy for private schools. Many parents flee to private schools precisely to get away from political interference. Card would extend that interference to schools that are currently private.

Card argues that the state — i.e., politicians — should finance religious schools (presumably including his own). He pretends that politicians can force other Coloradans to finance only “non-sectarian efforts” by religious schools. The division is impossible. A religious school of necessity infuses its entire program with its ideological premises.

I left the following comments online:

“No person shall be required to attend or support any ministry or place of worship, religious sect or denomination against his consent.” — Colorado Constitution, Article II, Section 4

Forcing a person to finance a religious institution, against his will, violates his freedom of conscience and right to property. Moreover, no conscientious religious school would willingly accept the political interference that inevitably follows political funding.