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The First Amendment, School Vouchers and the Defense Budget

Today, May 25, 2011, Americans United for Separation of Church & State (AU) urged us to oppose Amendment #94 which has been added to the proposed Defense Department budget under H.R. 1540, aka the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012!

WHAT, WHO and WHY in the Constitution’s name is an amendment for school vouchers considered for the Defense Department budget?  This is absurd!  And yes, my fellow Americans, this is what some politicians do to try to sneak through funding for questionable and perhaps UNconstitutional “projects”.  To quote AU: “Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) has introduced an amendment to this bill that would create a private school voucher program for military dependent children with special needs.”

Let’s consider what this means to special education children. “First, if students with disabilities accept the voucher they could lose critical civil rights protections [which are already] afforded to them by the  Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA).  Second, if implemented, this program could have a negative effect on the Federal Impact Aid program, which funds districts with large concentrations of students from tax-exempt Federal property, such as military bases and Indian Lands.  Furthermore, vouchers raise religious liberty concerns because they provide taxpayer dollars to private and parochial schools.  And finally, vouchers just don’t work–studies of similar voucher programs show they do not improve education.”

Without this input from AU it is conceivable that Rep. Duncan could have slipped this through with the major funding bill.  Now the Congress is on notice!  On May 11, 2011, “a nearly identical amendment was considered by the House Armed Services Committee.”  Again, AU as a member of the National Coalition for Public Education (NCPE) along with the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities opposed the creation of this program.  Ultimately it was defeated by a vote of 34-26.

Do you, Dear Citizen, see my point for this website?  My book outlines and reports to you the very people who want to give YOUR money away to religious and private institutions that you may not even know about and who may not be eligible to receive Federal tax dollars!!  The U.S. Constitution in the First Amendment does not support any religion, in any fashion.

Please do get involved with the workings of your government.  Please pay attention to where your tax dollars are going– who is doing the directing of your dollars and why!  This is our right as citizens: to register to vote, to get involved and to vote!!

8:08 pm | Posted in First Amendment | Read More »

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