Should Christians support government-run day care?

Recently, a Gallup poll came out about human origins.

Here was an interesting finding in the survey:

A significantly higher percentage of Republicans indicated a creationist view of human origins, which Gallup experts say reflects in part the strong relationship between religion and politics in contemporary America. Republicans are also significantly more likely to attend church weekly than are others. Democrats and Independents showed similar views on human origins:

  • Republicans: 36 percent think humans evolved through a God-guided process; 8 percent say God had no part in the process; and 52 percent held the creationist view.
  • Democrats: 40 percent agree with evolution through a God-guided process; 20 percent say God had no part in the process; and 34 percent held the creationist view.
  • Independents: 39 percent agree with evolution through a God-guided process; 21 percent say God had no part in the process; and 34 percent held the creationist view.

Gallup officials wrote that it’s not surprising some 80 percent of Americans hold a view of human origins that involves God, since most Americans believe in God and about 85 percent identify with a religion.

What I find interesting is this – how the heck can someone be a young earth creationist, (which is a view that people can only hold because they are getting it out of the Bible), and yet vote for Democrats? Democrats stand for the enlargement of the secular leftist state, for the destruction of marriage and family, and for the complete elimination of religious liberty and traditional morality from the public square. No mature, authentic Christian votes Democrat.

What happens when Christians for left-wing parties?

Now, with that said, let’s look at the most liberal province in Canada, Quebec. Quebec is a French-speaking province that was traditionally dominated by Roman Catholicism.

Consider this editorial in the National Post, Canada’s best newspaper.

Excerpt:

It’s never too early to close the minds of the young. That’s the thinking of the provincial government in Quebec, which announced earlier this month a ban on religion in subsidized daycare centres.

Subsidized daycare is a central part of social policy in Quebec — parents pay $7/day, and provincial government pays the rest, which is about $40/day. The government of Quebec is now increasing its vigilance on what dangerous ideas the toddlers might be exposed to.

Just before Christmas, Family Minister Yolande James announced regulations that would seek to ban religion instruction from daycare centres that take government money. Given that four-year-olds are unlikely to be studying theology, the Quebec government is out to stamp out religious expressions — prayers, songs, bible stories, manger scenes and even explanations for religious dietary practices.

[…]Our editorial board argued on Tuesday that Quebec’s massive subsidies for approved daycare spaces has effectively crowded out non-subsidized daycare. The economic argument is clear — subsidize one form of child care over all others, and soon there will effectively be just one form of child care. Daycare has been de facto nationalized in Quebec, and the national religion of intolerant secularism will now be imposed.The cultural question is more troubling. So serious is Quebec’s government about imposing its view on all children that, concurrent with the new regulations, it will triple the number of inspectors to enforce them. Quebec will soon have 58 inquisitors dropping in on daycares to ensure compliance. One can only imagine the scene when the inquisition arrives, sifting through the sandbox in search of clandestine religious items. And who will write the code for the bureaucrats, ensuring that miscreant daycare workers don’t mention that la fête nationale was once upon a time Saint-Jean-Baptiste?

There is an economic cost to big government. There is also a cultural cost, if everywhere government goes alternative values and viewpoints must retreat. If government goes everywhere, including the care of babies, then not even babies are entitled to hear views that dissent from government dogma. Quebec has long since abandoned the neutral state in favour of the aggressively secular state. Where the Quebec state goes, religion must retreat, and there is no limit on where the Quebec state will go.

The heart of every culture is its attitude to the big questions of human life and existence. That’s why a sensible people leaves culture in the hands of the churches, the artists, the musicians and the writers. Only a deeply insecure society entrusts culture to bureaucratic inquisitors. And only bureaucratic inquisitors see threats emerging in the cradle.

Totalitarian states have always sought to control the kindergartens and the schools and the youth groups, all the better to ensure that the influence of parents on their own children is attenuated. There is the hard totalitarianism that comes by force of arms. Soft totalitarianism comes by way of subsidies, where first the family is embraced by the state, and only then is it suffocated.

The educational world in Quebec does not leave much room to breathe. On religious and cultural matters, the consensus position, as defined by the curriculum apparatchiks, must be taught without exception in all public schools, private schools and even at home. Until now, the preschoolers had escaped the stifling grasp of government. No longer.

As our editorial pointed out, the actual educational results of Quebec daycare are poor. Quebec’s nationalized daycares don’t teach little Quebeckers very much. Now they will ensure that the youngsters know even less.

And remember, the effort to ram sex education into the minds of younger children over the objections of their parents is quite common in Canada, and other European countries, too.

Every time a Christian votes to tax their rich neighbor or their rich employer, they are taking money away from the private, individual realm, and transferring it to the realm of government. Politicians use that money to buy votes from the masses by subsidizing their selfishness, irresponsibility and recklessness. Instead of having money spent by responsible workers and businesses for responsible workers and businesses, it gets wasted on people who are often lazy and who make poor decisions. To understand what this redistribution of wealth means, you need look no further than the skyrocketing out-of-wedlock birth rate and the resulting social problems, which imposes costs on all taxpayers.

There is a right way to look at politics and economics from the Christian perspective. And mature Christian should have thought these things through.

Now might be a good time to recommend Wayne Grudem’s new book, “Politics According to the Bible”. Grudem is a Bible-believing Christian with a Ph.D from Cambridge University. He is the author of the most widely used and respected systematic theology book. I also recommend Jay Richards’ book “Money, Greed and God”. Richards’ Ph.D is from Princeton University. Those looking for a smaller, simpler book can try “The Virtues of Capitalism”. A good economics book for beginners is “The Politically Incorrect Guide to Capitalism”. And a good longer book for beginners is “Basic Economics”, 4th edition, by Thomas Sowell.

One thought on “Should Christians support government-run day care?”

  1. I thought the editorial was quite incisive. I was taken by the lines:

    “The heart of every culture is its attitude to the big questions of human life and existence. That’s why a sensible people leaves culture in the hands of the churches, the artists, the musicians and the writers. Only a deeply insecure society entrusts culture to bureaucratic inquisitors. And only bureaucratic inquisitors see threats emerging in the cradle.”

    This brought to my mind a really moving discussion in First Things about a modern lament over the nature of life in Quebec.

    http://www.firstthings.com/onthesquare/2009/01/translating-degenerations-from

    Paul Allen describes a very politically incorrect song by Mes Aïeux, called Dégenerations, that is increasingly popular in Quebec. He writes:

    “The song’s title is a play on words, evoking the decline and decay of Québecois society. It eventually became a sensation, but when it first came out its politically incorrect lyrics made it the object of an unofficial media ban. While the song lauds the festive impulse of dancing, it refers critically to abortion, spurns TV, gives unequivocal praise to their ancestors’ (les aïeux) high birthrates, and pours scorn on the new culture of empty nests.

    Musicians and artists are often the first to see irony and tragedy in a social crisis. “Dégenerations” highlights a recent social shift in Québec, a reaction against the 1960s consensus. There is a new angst over the goals and assumptions that drove the province headlong into secular modernity, the so-called Quiet Revolution of the 1960s.”

    The post by Paul Allen is worth reading. I found the song especially moving.

    You can find the song, with english subtitles, at:

    How does this relate to the original post? Well, maybe as the state continues to overreach, we will see a slow resistance and counter against this move. We should pray that this is the case.

    Like

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