and if we don’t, the ‘radicals’ are coming to terrorize us and murder our children?
By Tory Shepherd from the ‘dumber than dirt’ department:
30 years ago this was unfathomable:Â Indo females all wrapped up in Arab rags. This is now obligatory in a country with average temperatures over 30 C and 90 % humidity. The abominableÂ practice of FGM is also on the increase in this formerly Buddhist-Hindu nation.
Public money should not be spent on promoting religion.
We don’t need religious school chaplains. State schools should be well and truly secular. Religion is a choice, not an educational need. Taxpayers should not foot the bill for others to indulge their beliefs.
Except in Indonesia.
There, Australian money is needed to keep funding Islamic schools.
If we don’t support the teaching of moderate Islam, extreme Islam will quickly fill the vacuum.
Perhaps Tory Shepherd could enlighten us greasy Islamophobic racist bigots on how she intends to separate the ‘moderate Islam’ from the ‘extreme’…. we’ve been looking for such a genius for a long time….
Calls to rein in foreign aid are short-sighted, mean, and downright dangerous.
A heartbeat after Prime Minister Julia Gillard raised the flood levy spectre, the calls to can foreign aid began.Â People hauled out self-justifying catch cries such as “charity begins at home’‘, and “we need to look after our own’‘.
The money we spend on education in Indonesia works. It is a valuable program.
The Opposition’s proposal to suspend $440 million in spending on education in Indonesia – money that goes towards improving education at both Islamic and Government-run schools – is populist policy at its most abhorrent.
Indonesia is crucial. And Islam in Indonesia could go either way.
Our most important near neighbour is the world’s most populous Muslim country.
It has a history of trying – but often failing – to embrace pluralism and diversity. Enshrined in its official state philosophy, the Pancasila, is the right to practice different faiths.
But that hasn’t stop tension between Christians and Muslims leading to violence in recent times. Clashes between different faiths have often turned deadly.
And while Indonesians are mostly moderate Muslims, they are increasingly subject to the infiltration of extreme Wahhabi Islam.
There is a sense in Indonesia that the militants are hijacking the agenda. Sharia law is now enforced in Aceh. The extremists are in the political sphere and on the ground – in communities and their schools.
And they gain a foothold through pesantren, Muslim boarding schools.
Pesantren provide education for the poor.
Run and staffed by religious leaders, they are often excellent institutions. For those who would otherwise go without, they offer normal education during the day, supplemented by religious study, prayer and meditation in the morning and at night.
And some offer tutelage in extreme Islam, political Islam, and training in violent jihad.
As wrong as it may seem to spend Australian money to support religious teachings, it’s the outcome here that is important.
Education is the most effective way to quell the rise of radical Islam in our near neighbour.
A secular education for all may be ideal, but it is utterly unrealistic in a country that cannot tolerate the idea of life without religion; a country where religion imbues every day, every action.
So the next best option is to support the teaching of moderate Islam, and to work hard to improve the overall quality of education.
The funds will not be suspended. The whole idea, of course, was just Opposition pie in the sky. But it gave all that insularity bound up in anger at the idea of the levy a concrete focus. So those in support came out and looked selfish.
When, if you want to be smart about it, you need to be more selfish, and support the spend to protect Australians.