John Howard calls for religious schools to have anti-discrimination exemption.
Former prime minister John Howard has told Family Voice Australia religious schools needed the right to teach the principles of their faith and not ‘employ somebody who is barracking for the other side’.
The former Australian prime minister John Howard has reignited the religious freedom debate, arguing schools should be able to hire teachers based on whether they accept the beliefs the school is based on in the same way political parties favour staff who believe in a party’s ideals.
In a presentation to Christian organisation Family Voice Australia on Tuesday evening, Howard also called for “people in authority” to more actively oppose “woke culture” that is trying to “alter society” in Australia.
Howard, speaking on the topic of freedom of speech, said one issue that had arisen out of the same-sex marriage postal survey , for which he publicly advocated a no vote , that needed to be addressed was the rights for faith-based schools to teach the principles of their faith.
“I’m hopeful when the government finally produces its legislative formula to deal with this issue is the absolute right of faith-based schools, whether they be Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Islamic or the like, the absolute right of those schools to teach the precepts of the faith which guides that school.
He said laws should entitle, for example, a Catholic school “to say ‘you’ve come to work for a Catholic school, parents send their children to a Catholic school to be educated in a Catholic framework. We’re not going to have you criticise that framework, of undermining the fundamental beliefs.’”
Howard noted “legislation in the various states of Australia when it comes to employment discrimination” that exempt political parties, and called for religious schools to be similarly exempt.
“I wouldn’t expect the Labor party to employ somebody in their office or on the staff of a Labor member who was a card-carrying member of the Liberal party.
“I think that the Labor party is perfectly entitled, the same as my own party, perfectly entitled to say well we’re not going to employ somebody who is barracking for the other side.
“Everybody accepts the common sense of that. Well, if you accept the common sense of that, why can’t you accept common sense that religious schools are entitled to require a general assent to the beliefs of the particular religion that inspires the teaching of that school?”
Howard said he believed it was important religious schools are “free to say ‘well, if you want to come and work for us, you’ve got to play with the team now’”.
“I think that’s common sense … And I think it’s only reasonable that in some way that be protected,” he said.
Liberal MP Kevin Andrews has said he believed attorney-general Christian Porter has a revised version of the religious freedom legislation ready to present to parliament.
While Porter produced a second draft of the bill in December 2019 and prepared to introduce it to parliament early last year, the Covid-19 pandemic overtook all government business.
However on Tuesday, Porter told the Guardian “that the government’s immediate priorities are protecting the health of all Australians”, and that “the government will revisit its legislative program as the situation develops, and bring the religious discrimination bill forward at an appropriate time”.
The government’s explanatory memorandum of the draft religious freedoms bill from December 2019 gave an example that a Jewish school may require that its staff and students be Jewish and accordingly refuse to hire or admit someone because they were not Jewish.
Regarding “woke culture”, Howard noted instances of “absurd” language “memorandums” distributed within public service organisations and universities that called for dropping “the use of words like mother or father or brother or sister”.
“The way it has to be fought is for people of authority to take it on … Every time that occurs, I would like to see somebody in authority bang it on the head from a great height.”
He said his views on woke culture were in line with the views of about 80% of the Australian community, and “that has to be articulated and articulated very strongly by people in authority”.
Howard also lamented recent laws passed by the Victorian government banning gay conversion practices in the state, calling on those concerned by the laws to protest Victorian politicians.
“If people believe it goes too far , and on the face of it seems to me completely unnecessary legislation, and something that interferes potentially with individual rights and parental rights and parental responsibilities , they should voice those concerns as vigorously as they want to, to any member of the Victorian upper house they can get their eyes on,” he said.
“Particularly on the Liberal-National party side of politics, because they have some capacity to affect the legislation, and thus far I haven’t seen enough evidence that they’re doing anything much about it.”
John Howard is a war criminal and belongs to the Liberal party that is known to protect pedophiles and rapists , and therefore has NO right to lecture on how a modern society evolves and moves past the archaic beliefs of his generation.
He is a dinosaur from the past , and is rolled out by the Liberal party this time as just another part of the distraction from the rape enabling and misogynist culture of the Morrison Government.
Howard is not an elected official nor does he hold ANY position in the government so his "views" are just that, his "opinion" , and as such should be ignored , as we have the right to do.
GA / AuspollBulletin