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THE DISCRIMINATORY AND THE DISCRIMINATING
See this link for introduction.
Recently there was an invitation for bodies to present their approach to the question of having more or less stringent conditions to the question of who must be hireable in religious bodies, in this land of Australia. Should every Staff member believe the basics of the body, or any, or some, and if so which ?
Since the ludicrous situation of having Communists teach classes on Karl Marx in a Christian school is by no means out of sight, or for that matter, on Jesus Christ, as if religion were in general too vague or vacillatory to matter while people raved on, whereas the truth is so vital as to bring down nations and has done so again and again, it is well to speak and think before acting. Unfortunately there are laws in action which tend in practice to slant liberties in the preliminary debate now on, favour free speech in one direction and there is no apparent action to remove these discriminatory legalities. Even feeling is made a criterion of blameworthiness, provided someone puts up the hand to object to something said, that it upset the same. Since the current mode is to have certain politically correct ways of being offended, and others which are simply passed over, matters in some directions being abused continually, while in others defended, there is a huge vulnerability which makes of preliminary discussion almost a contradiction in terms.
Nevertheless, it is necessary to think before making not only changes in this field, but in numerous allied ones, and government omission of care in this field is not a reason for joining it in this fault. We are therefore publishing our posting to the inviting authority in this field on the topic noted, and of course also on the background for perspective.
Résumé Chs. 1 and 2.
The present volume is 237 of In Praise of Christ Jesus, entitled World Amiss, Heaven Aboard, there are two Chapters at the first, the present one dealing with a further South Australian move towards loss of liberty (potentially), with the issue of religious Staff in Church or independent schools! Like smog in Beijing or Shanghai, there is little sign of these depredations of purity going away any time soon. However, currently, amid heavy discrimination in favour of secular concepts without ground pushed into religious places, there is the continuing pressure for grabbing more, more invasion, and making differentiae less, with simultaneous God make-over subtly and quietly, being pushed through unbased philosophies. The legal move is shown here. The Chapter title is: "The Discriminatory and the Discriminating," and the confusion of the two is where, to use Shakespeare's Macbeth after the murder of Duncan, "confusion now hath made his masterpiece."
There are many who seem desperate to encourage this situation.
The second Chapter extends and deals more broadly with "Dreams and Reality," to gain perspective. Undisciplined dreams readily become nightmares, though the corpses reduce those on earth experiencing them. Mercy however is not the objective of the assassins of liberty and human beings alike.
THE DISCRIMINATORY AND THE DISCRIMINATING
Re: South Australian Law Reform Institute Invitation
The Australian Presbyterian Bible Church
February 8, 2016
A Web Publication as follows calls for input (as in Appendix 1).
South Australian Law Reform Institute
‘Lawful Discrimination’: The effect of exceptions under the Equal Opportunity Act 1984 (SA) on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex and Queer (LGBTIQ) South Australians
Such input is supplied here with particular reference to Question 2 in the Appendix 1, but not this alone. As to the exceptions under review in this Web Publication, we are strongly against any increase in these.
Reasons for this approach need attention. This is given in this Church presentation.
The question of increase or decrease of such law must relate to its present condition, as in ducoing a car. Since data to hand indicate a vast discrimination in the area of schools in particular, already, it is apparent that any endeavour yet further to increase this is like overloading a burdened ship. This is apart from the questions of religious schools, where the Constitution provides proscription for the type of intervention already to hand, rather than prescribing it, or further entrance into that arena in this way.
February 8, 2016
The question of what practices are discriminatory relative 1) to a State chosen prioritisation and organisation of values and corresponding claims as to source and its own value, ground for it and application of it, on the one hand, and relative 2) to a specifically religious body on the other, is important. It is also easy to compound, confound and trail off in nugatory mistiness, in which everything is on the table, but the issue.
What issue is this ? It is the question of whether by Constitution, originally by decision, the State is bound to certain matters, namely religious. It is likewise whether by due regard for its development, it is advised to move in the area only when it is more than a march of the moment based merely on desire, with no components of wisdom at that level. In particular. As a third component there comes the question and issue, Is the religious an extra, not to be compared with the wisdom of secularity ? an assumption more readily made than justified.
For the practical work of the State, however, some standards are needed, preferably something that does not simply dismiss reason for desire, or wisdom for gratification, or the due grounds of truth for adherence to altar calls from philosophic prongs, here today and gone, if not tomorrow, then whenever the ephemeral passions, positions begin to pall.
Our State, that is here intended to refer to the chief expression the Commonwealth of Australia, strictly and at once requires two things (Section 116, Constitution )*1. Firstly, the State is not permitted to lay down the specifications of religion from itself. It cannot actuate and activate its own brand at will.
Secondly, it must allow the due exercise of the faith of those who do have religious organisation, presumably within limits such as those on murder, decapitation, stabbings, explosives of a very secular kind and the like.
When therefore, a secular concept in its formulation, such as the non-discrimination laws constitute, though often with religious overtones, enters into the State infiltration of the practice of a religion, there is at once a question, namely this. IS this tantamount to the exercise of the forbidden but intrusive State right of religious rule, in that it certainly modifies or would qualify or even render contrary to commandment for some religions, their way of working ? It becomes then part of a religious profile, which though not specifically cast in religious terms, constitutes the outline of their impact nevertheless, when in a particular case, all the "secular" inhibitions, prohibitions and directives are seen in context and perspective. You then see a religion, if of a hybrid, yet of a definable kind, leaving the question, State or other ?
The former becomes the guide, reference and almost expressly, the referee*2, the height of access for thought, of resolution for action, in much State business, not least education and related employment and deployment of resources *3.
In the particular case of applying anti-discrimination laws to religious school teaching Staff, which amazingly some would even imagine need not subscribe to a religious body's relevant presentation, the reverse discrimination readily applies. Thus you can discriminate against employer or employee, enterprise or those who carry it out. You can clip the wings of integrity or opportunity, and of course, in the latter case, opportunity includes that for the educational product relative to the non-State religious body concerned.
If, as government, you reduce options for schools by trifling with their values, or substituting your own, what happens ? You readily meet the case where ideas contrary to that which, to the religious body seems, or which it deems, essential to its existence - as likewise to its fidelity. These begin or proceed to take pride of place. As to the School, those contrary ideas become those required of it! Since one of the bases of a religious school (or college) is conviction normally, this could fatally harass its performance, example and action. Consistency is obtained where basics of this type are met happily by fellow workers, instead of the opposite: sedition of the operation by religiously alien sources, whether this be intentional or not.
It could then resemble, in another sphere, a business which MUST not exercise its peculiar genius or force or excellence, lest this productive power be found to be anti- this or anti-that, to be against this expansible dogma of secularity, or that.
Just as the nature-myth of organic evolution is part of the State's existing discriminatory failure (cf. The gods of naturalism have no go! an exceedingly broad work, amid the volumes of many from Ph.D. scientific specialists in relevant fields), so here is a case where a State component of what effectively is State religion, its choice, is currently forced into the unqualified domain of quasi-revelation, and applied like a compress to schools. In this way, there is a secular presentation of indoctrination with a naked show of intolerance, so then there arises a parallel. Should a State do this to a school ? should a school do it to an employee ?
Thus we have an extant parallel in the area of relevant employment as an issue. One major difference is this. In Australia, the State operation is to be chosen by all on a basis stated by the Constitution and election; the School however may well have stated its own 'election' features in order to exist, and those interested, Staff, parents, workers, come to participate by personal freewill and call. It is a voluntary, costly and unconstrained exercise, that may in fact become mandatory for some, when State quasi--religious moral, academic and ethical enterprise, conforming to fickle fashion or desire, is commanded for its own schools, or even others.
These of course involve microcosms called young persons, for each of whom there is potential for violation of religious liberties, both as to exclusivistic content and rampant specialisation in curriculum, and slant in selection of academic books. If even in religious schools, you extend to interfere in the religious aspect in Staff as well, then a well-rounded orb of religious control becomes increasingly visible.
But what of this relatively recent discriminatory action of the State ? What of this teaching directive (presented as a required basis in education), usurping knowledge with preference, and often aborting scientific method*4, which latter requires inter alia, that other ideas supported by empirical evidence or logical basis, be considered ? What if it is actually made to apply even to private schools created to overcome a number of such bents ? Commands here readily become factional, partial, preferential, unauthorised, shrines of subversion in the name of electors who often have given no such religious powers to the State, which by Constitution has excluded them. Thus State commands here readily become defective directives, whether moral, academic or other..
Pushed in terms of acknowledged or unacknowledged secular versions of religion, such ideas may be enforced wherever made applicable, whether in part or in whole, presented by such conforming government Staff members as are employed. Yet if the one (State) position and presentation is not too hard for teaching exposure, the governmental, neither is the other, the creationist. Indeed, if as an example to students, the methods of research here are exposed to breach, by force of exclusivistic authoritarianism, then that in itself is grossly abused education, even in style as example. A creeping paralysis of religious freedom has many components, sites for operation, exhibits of its movements.
Here is a prototype re institution in schools, for the related issue of employment, set in an invidiously slanted education by authority without internal exposure to challenge and perhaps external exposure to high-level public debate!
Although personally convinced exponents of non-conformity when it comes to passion and preference, rather than reason and revelation (cf. The Shadow of a Mighty Rock), this Church finds that there is a blatant extreme when the very nub and hub of a religion being clear, for a given school, yet the State or any power may seek to have even active contenders against the school's basic position, nevertheless employed in it.
This can then become a caricature of the School's official position, a distortion of its aims, a denial of those who have given to it in the past, or an enforced transmutation, an implicit duality or multiplicity for citing personal examples in a school, known to be contrary to singularity and steadfastness of purpose for it. This all helps to make the exhibition of the supposed excellence of the religious position of a given school in the upbringing of children, a mere verbal foible. This becomes an ideological putsch, not to be confused with education. Harassment by an anti-discriminatory body or bodies is hardly a fitting diversion from the implementation of their function.
It is then only a question of DEGREE of intrusion, of compromise, of disregard of intelligent seeking to do the best on behalf of the thing, religion, only then notionally excluded from governmental invasion and invasiveness. (Answers to any challenges here made may be considered as opportunity offers.)
But let us proceed in terms more broadly. Thus if architecture is a firm's excellence, we do not expect those whom the State deems to have input employment access even at levels basic to the enterprise, to come and do whatever the State may deem fitting. The firm was not normally invented for that, and if in any country, it is intended to take a dictatorial attitude to innovation or vision of truth, then this should be made exceptionally clear. For many this could make such a land an outcast, a place of harassment and compulsive criteria neither traditional nor warranted, but one freely granting government its own mind at any cost, arising to cover all. Further, government thrust in this direction could rapidly become discriminatory, especially if the party to be employed happens to lack artistic vision and activated imagination, so that this dilutes the character of the operation.
Nor do we expect a wise and experienced business firm to be required to accept novices, whether in years or training, for positions requiring nous and expertise. We do not expect, either, to turn a business into a virtual school, so that those who differ, may with give and take, have here a little, there a little of the business' acumen, and luxuriate in their own opinions, predilections and conditions concerning commercial prowess. This is especially so IF the business makes those very issues a declared part of its empire. Even productivity requires capacity to produce without dictatorial and intrusive presumption on the part of those whose religion, including morality, appears hard to differentiate from basically a matter of wish, count and provide orders, for the State; and in any case, for its preferential quasi-religion.
If however a given firm elects a policy of openness on various issues, not equivalent to a given base position of the enterprise, that is fine and may be most attractive. It is a question of the vision, the undertaking, the point of the issues to hand. Each aspect has its place, both the stimulus to ideas and the faithfulness to the declared purpose of the organisation.
Where then in this field does anti-discrimination fit in ? What can it say reasonably for itself in the issue of schools ? It comes in noting the difference between being discriminating and discriminatory. One of the main dangers in anti-discrimination tally-hos is that they often entirely lose sight of the issue in this land, and appear to imagine that nothing short of an equivalent to a comprehensive religious base is required, to and through which they then extend, intrusion by intrusion in ever-increasing discriminatory dictations of their own to the subordinated schools.
In this way, they discriminate against the freedom of those involved in what they do not esteem. This often flows for the sake of their alleged non-discrimination, even while they are pursuing an expansive quasi-religion. The naturalistic myth deemed by many to be required in schools is an excellent example. Take it, teach it, do not impeach it, do not compare it, for it is as sacred to some as any religion! Meanwhile, the missionary work of the State MUST go on, using tax-payer funds without electoral warrant for such a take-over. For this reason, curricular issues tend to become extremely tendentious, year 12 exams in related areas predisposed in approach, and the door to many professions more and more closely except for those on whom discrimination does not descend, not like a gentle rain, but like a prejudicial reign.
What then is to be faced ? It is this. A certain scientific option by a value system of some kind, is degraded and excluded, while another, which does not keep to the canons of scientific method, is exalted and insisted on, so that the State's insidious estimate in this religious field (origins and related morals) becomes a mandatory religion in operation. What of this ? That has the features of a current extreme discriminatory derangement. Even more appears desired by some, in a fashion of encroachment and expansion, in effect further to gut liberty, at any level chosen, in aims, procedures, propositions or personnel..
If, however, it be Staff instead of theories, for the sake of which discrimination against religion is practised, as now pondered, and if it be in the question of employment, so that those whose ideas, dispositions, attitudes, asides, example, underlying ethos and overlying programs are of another character, supported by desire and not by manifest reason or scientific method, in a word by preference, then the same applies. To FORCE a religious school in particular, to SUBMIT to any such State options required (compared with those schools including government ones which may actually prefer such an alternative and so get what they want), is precisely discriminatory. Even those who pay BOTH in taxes and again privately for education, are then flayed with fervour to conform. Readily for some, then vision is vitiated, spontaneity succumbs and ideals are interred. To be sure, some will hold out, as have Christians in such arenas for thousands of years, but this is State-induced affliction.
Here there surges in one element of that to which the philosophic tag of non-discrimination is made to apply, while the reality of actual discrimination is extreme, whether the case be propositional or personal as in employment..
The popular or State-approved position and directives (by unwritten religious preference on origins, morals, modes of living) become ground for a governmental putsch on religious schools who approve what differs from this, and the more so, when such difference is effectually basic to their creed. Nor is the Government the only source of such action; our Pastor himself gave up the principalship of a school rather than accept the philosophic milieu suddenly required, but previously denounced, because it did not square with the Bible or even with the entire scope of the issue. Illustrations are illustrations and may be many-sided, but the principles remain the same. If ostensibly you are thus placed, you may change the wording of what is required of you, or kneel before your oppressors' new look, or leave. With a country, the last option is not always easy or in various ways, desirable; so that the discrimination may become not far from a secular missionary mandate. Let us however return to the Government case.
Not only are miultitudes mis-educated through didactic intolerance of DISCUSSION by equal experts on both sides, but much is given in one side only, educating the forcibly ignorant to taste, and even determining who must be free to do their teaching! a double discrimination. There are of course sexual, moral, ethical, vital and social elements in the religions, including basics of what matters; and unless there is a dedicated, serious and consistent presentation of these things, given electoral approval, the same applies. Even if it were electorally approved, by this alone it would not remove its discriminatory character.
The professor who, smilingly as ultra-conformist, presents the "authority's" view of whatever matter may be in question, while baldly noting his own equation which works, hardly inspires, and is perhaps scarcely believed. There thus comes into line another assault on manifest exposure to truth, one that appears without principle or daring sufficient to face informed criticism. This moreover is on the part of whatever body disregards the Constitution's proscriptions, and turns what it denies as if they were instead prescriptions.
"The Commonwealth shall not make any law for establishing any religion, or for imposing any religious observance, or for prohibiting the free exercise of any religion, and no religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth."
On the topic of
classification, codification and control by the State, on a related matter,
see this link.
*3 The Circular to Principals of 1988, well illustrates this trend. Over private schools the same sort of secular religious hegemony appeared to be attempted. A news item in one field had the following. It illustrates some of the response.
“Christian schools angry over ban on teaching creationism” were the headlines on the Sydney Morning Herald website article on March 3, 2010.1
The issue was a policy release by the South Australian Non-Government Schools Registration Board “to effectively ban the teaching of creationism.”
The policy stated that the Board required ‘’teaching of science as an empirical discipline, focusing on inquiry, hypothesis, investigation, experimentation, observation and evidential analysis’’. So far, so good. But it also said that it
“does not accept as satisfactory a science curriculum in a non-government school which is based on, espouses or reflects the literal interpretation of a religious text in its treatment of either creationism or intelligent design.”
If a Christian school has its registration withdrawn, it means that parents who continue to send their children to that school would be in breach of truancy laws. In effect, it would shut down the school.
The presence of such movements is testimony enough to the force of the thrust towards the discriminatory processes noted in the text for this footnote. That this proposal appears not to have been adopted does not alter the fact that it was evidently tried, making much impact at the time on the minds of many, with considerable responses apparent.
See for example: Scientific Method ...
While it may be urged that the States have the authority to do what the Commonwealth is inhibited from doing, not being granted certain powers for its central government, nevertheless are they granted the power to remake the human race in their own image, either in terms of educational pretexts or in populist imaginings, as if they were elected to be God and not man!
If they want this sort of power, they must first find it, and then convince the people to vote for it, for they are a government that is democratic, and not a religion.
Furthermore, if the Commonwealth should use its funds, obtained in its name and in terms of its conditions and facilities and permissions and authority, to enable State plans in fields forbidden to the Commonwealth, as in religious self-affirmation, then this is abuse of its role to enable the States to secure their desires in a field where it is itself excluded. This is abuse of authority if therefore its power and place is used to effect what the States cannot or will not pay for. This is facilitation and even enablement of what it is forbidden to do, like a man maintaining a mistress without the knowledge or without permission of his wife.