School vouchers, revisited: See? I told you so!

Printed in the Indianapolis Star, October 7, 2018

I have been trying to warn my fellow conservatives for over twenty years that school vouchers are a bad idea. With government money comes government strings, and once you accept money from the state you accept that the state can put conditions on receiving that money. When you become dependent on government money, it becomes tempting to abandon your principles to keep the gravy train moving.

Now we see the “Republican” superintendent of public instruction wanting to dictate employment practices to religious schools that take vouchers. While it was a surprise to see a “Republican” attack religious liberty and freedom of association, it was not all all surprising to see the attack come. I predicted it, after all. And now I can say this to my conservative allies: See? I told you so!

While one can argue that a Roman Catholic school handled the discipline of a homosexual teacher poorly, a religious school should and does have the constitutional right to hire and fire who they want based on their theological commitments. Will the “Republican” superintendent next tell Christian schools that they may not discriminate against Muslims, who actively deny the core doctrine of the Christian faith? Exactly how far does the “tolerance” logic extend? More importantly, are the Christian schools – Roman Catholic or Protestant – willing to part with money from the government in order to stand by their confessions of faith? Do they serve the Lord Jesus Christ, or do they serve Mammon?

I am extremely proud of the fact that I voted for Dawn Wooten at the 2016 Republican state convention.