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Evangelicals Invade Germany
Homeschooling Crusades

Melissa Busekros

For me revulsion is instinctive when government is so overbearing as to do this, as reported by the Christian Science Monitor:

For the past two months, the Busekros family has been fighting a court battle to regain custody of their 15-year-old daughter, Melissa. German police took her from her home here, and placed her in a psychiatric ward. The reason: She was being home-schooled, which violates Germany's compulsory education law.

The German government, like most European governments, tend to see repression in certain instances as their due, especially when it comes to social policy. But revulsion is equally instinctive when the story is followed by this:

Melissa's plight has struck a chord with US evangelicals, who often see home-schooling as a way to instill Christian values. American evangelical groups have rushed to the family's aid, providing legal counsel and lobbying the German parliament. [...] The Busekros case is emblematic of the growing effort by US Christian legal organizations to take the "culture wars" overseas. Pushing back against a perceived assault on their values by an increasingly secular society, the groups are striving to influence European law on issues ranging from home schooling to stem-cell research to gay marriage.

When Evangelicals get involved, watch out. It's more about opportunism than honesty or freedom combined, and home-schooling for religious reasons has never seemed to me a matter of home-schooling so much as self-segregation, a separation from state for church, and certainly not for education's sake. Unfortunately the Christian Science story doesn't offer further details about the Busekros case, this blogger does, with many links to other sources. Here, too, is a Der Spiegel piece on the case, though also focused on the American-Evangelical crusade. The story will surely migrate sooner or later to the front page of the Times and the Fox circus, or vice versa.

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