Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Clash of Worldviews

Last week I posted about the family in Belgium having trouble with their government for homeschooling. The father, Paul Belien, is editor of the Brussels Journal. Belien refuses to sign a document that commits to raising his children according to the United Nations Convention on Children's Rights. His wife updates today,

If the Belgian authorities decide to prosecute us we think we can win in court - at least if the court bases its verdict on the Belgian Constitution. In order to prepare for court cases we have established a Vlaams Centrum voor Huisonderwijs (Flemish Home Education Centre), which can be contacted here. There is, unfortunately, always the possibility that activist judges will rule that the UN Convention overrules the Belgian Constitution. If this is the case, the consequences are far-reaching. Not only for us. In effect it would mean that the laws, and even the Constitution, of our lands are no longer decided by the people of the land, but by the UN, i.e. the international club of states that includes members such as North Korea, China, Cuba, Zimbabwe, Iran,...
Valerie Moon provides some interesting insight and links into the Belgian culture and politics that are helpful.

In Belgium, in addition to the good food, there is a separatist movement, and a separatist party is Vlaams Belang, formerly Vlaams Blok. The man who was summoned to the police station, Mr. Belien, who apparently is a flash point for Belgian authorities, is married to one of the Members of Parliament for the Vlaams Belang party, the lady who posted the report on the blog.
I'm not sure of all the political reasons for singling out this family now, after already successfully educating three of their four children. I'm sure there are many facets to this case we don't know or understand. This appears to be more about a clash of worldviews than of just homeschooling. I came across this quote by Mr. Belien that tells a little more about their family's worldview,
Europeans have foolishly replaced God by the State as the one on whom they rely to take care of all their needs from cradle to grave. The religious vacuum has led to a demographic vacuum, because those who lose faith in God lose faith in the future as well. A civilization that has created a religious and a demographic vacuum is bound to perish.
If this is indicative of what the "separatists" stand for, I can see why the state is trying to keep him quiet. This is definitely one to watch.

Related Blogs: Principled Discovery, Texas Ed., HE & OS

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