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(en) Poland: actions and statements against religion in schools

Date Fri, 13 Jan 2006 18:52:04 +0200

On wednesday FA-Szczecin organized an action against teaching catholic
morality in schools and calling for a stop of indoctrination by state institutions.
A similar action was held today in front of the Ministry of Education
in Warsaw. In a happening, activists expressed their reverence to the
"holy ministry" and kneeled down and laid on the ground in the
position of a cross: http://pl.indymedia.org/pl/2006/01/17874.shtml
The Polish Anarchist Federation has issued the following statement
about religion in schools:
"Taking into account the right to free choice of beliefs and values,
we consider groundless the proposal of the minister of education and
science - prof. Michal Sewerynski - to base education of youth on
christian principles.

Conscience is a private matter and no state institution can interfere
with it. We find unconvincing the minister's statement that any person
- even an atheist - has ultimately christian beliefs.

This thesis would suggest that only christians are truthful and that
roman-catholic morality is the only rightful and just way of acting.
Nothing farther from the truth!

We believe that education should be free of ideology and the attempts
by state or church authority of one "true" point of view. We oppose
any ideology imposed in education - including the christian one. It is
without doubt that atheists and persons of other beliefs encounter
problems in the institutions of education. Catholics are not even
expected to declare the desire to join religion lessons, whereas
atheists and people of other beliefs have to apply for exclusion from
religion lessons and provide the reasons for it.

This does not serve balance and equality and makes it more difficult
to express individual opinions. This inequality only serves to
strengthen the Catholic Church and the domination of its discourse in
the public sphere, including education.

Education should foster each child's individual abilities as much as
possible and be open for dialogue. What takes place of that is
catholic indoctrination from the earliest age.

We don not accept the teaching of superstition and censorship of
content not in line with catholic interpretations, posing as
"education". We call on all teachers and students who believe in
freedom of beliefs to express their protest. We need to oppose the
discrimination of those whose opinions are different than those of the
Catholic Church.

Polish Anarchist Federation"
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