Episode 5: With All Due Respect on religious freedom in schools

Show notes for Episode 5

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Notes from Episode 5: Religious Freedom 

In For Argument’s Sake, Michael and Megan talk about the “real blow up” that is the religious freedom debate circling around whether Christian schools should be able to discriminate in the hiring of staff and selection of students. Triggered by a bill from the Greens, there has been heated debate about a letter from 34 Anglican schools in Sydney, organised by the Anglican Archbishop Glenn Davies which supported the schools’ right to uphold the Christian ethos of their school in their choice of teachers. Read more about the backlash, which included protests and apologies, here. Also, here is the letter from Anglican Principals, a letter in response from school alumni and the apology from the Archbishop. Phew. What a mess (and check out this Media Watch about the whole saga as it was reported in the media)  “It really went feral, didn’t it?” Michael says.

In the discussion, Michael and Megan try to get to the bottom of what it is that Christians are actually arguing for in this latest iteration of the religious freedom debate? And … is it a fair thing to be seeking to protect?

Then, Michael and Megan get into The Secret Life of Us, a new segment in which they try to figure out what makes the other tick. The topic? How their school experiences have shaped their worldview.

Just FYI: Michael went to North Newtown Public then Trinity Grammar (an Anglican boys school). Megan went to Loftus Public, Ferncourt Public, Campbelltown North Public, Kent Rd Public and Peter Board High. So, let the arguments begin about private vs public schooling.

Moving on to Marg and Dave, Megan chose the much-hyped Boy Swallows Universe by Trent Dalton and called it “one of the great Australian novels”. While the novel takes a good look at the “underbelly of Brisbane society”, Megan said she found it “quite a joyful novel”. Does Michael agree? Listen in to find out.

The book, says Megan, asks questions like, What is it to be a good person? How can I redeem myself? What motivates someone to be good? Listen to Trent Dalton talk about the book’s connection to his life on ABC’s Conversations podcast.

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Find out more about the hosts of With All Due Respect:

Rev Dr Michael Jensen, rector at St Mark’s Anglican Darling Point, author, public commentator.

Rev Megan Powell du Toit, ordained Baptist minister, Publishing Manager of the Australian College of Theology, editor of the journal Colloquium.

We got the idea of our two-header theology and culture podcast from this show: The Movie Show/At the Movies.

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