After a 6-3 Supreme Court decision that Maine was violating the First Amendment by excluding religious schools from state tuition programs, Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey responded by condemning the decision and claimed that religious schools are discriminatory.
In a press release, Frey expressed his displeasure and blasted the schools for inadequately providing students with a public education and claimed they refused to admit LGBTQ students.
Frey said, “I am terribly disappointed and disheartened by today’s decision. Public education should expose children to a variety of viewpoints, promote tolerance and understanding, and prepare children for life in a diverse society. The education provided by the schools at issue here is inimical to a public education. They promote a single religion to the exclusion of all others, refuse to admit gay and transgender children, and openly discriminate in hiring teachers and staff. One school teaches children that the husband is to be the leader of the household.”
It seems that Frey doesn’t understand Christian religious principles. While every school has anti-discrimination policies, teaching students that men are the head of the household is biblical teaching.
1 Corinthians 11:3 says, “But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God.”
Frey expressed his confusion that the Supreme Court would allow the public to “pay for an education that is fundamentally at odds with values we hold dear.”
Frey also said, “I intend to explore with Governor Mills’ administration and members of the Legislature statutory amendments to address the Court’s decision and ensure that public money is not used to promote discrimination, intolerance, and bigotry.”
Jacob Posik, director of communications at Maine Policy Institute, in an op-ed for Bangor Daily explained that Frey immediately began reiterating arguments that the Supreme Court had rejected. Posik quoted Frey’s statement, “Public funds cannot be used to attend a private school that promotes religion because such schools, by definition, do not provide the equivalent of a public education.”
Posik said, “This is precisely the argument the court rejected last week. Writing for the majority, Chief Justice John Roberts said, ‘Regardless of how the benefit and restriction are described, the program operated to identify and exclude otherwise eligible schools on the basis of their religious exercise.”
Posik added that Frey was irresponsible for making the same argument that the Supreme Court rejected.
Carroll Conley, executive director of the Christian Civic League of Maine, told Fox News that Frey’s statement was actually bigotry.
Conley said, “Our AG’s response to losing this case was simultaneously baffling and offensive. His assertion that sectarian schools are ‘inimical to a public education’ simply for not aligning with the state’s orthodoxy regarding human sexuality is the very definition of bigotry.”
Carroll made the point that Frey used an example of a Hebrew school only hiring a Jewish teacher while asking the question that if a Muslim school refused to hire a male teacher who identified as a female, would they also be discriminatory?
The double standard is baffling and Frey can’t get away from this one. Going against the Supreme Court as Maine’s AG isn’t a smart move.