To the Editor:
School voucher granddaddy Milton Friedman’s comments during his interview with Education Week (“Friedman: The Solution Is Choice,” edweek.org, June 22, 2005) show that he willfully ignores the fact that vouchers would raise schooling costs, seriously damage the teaching profession by imposing religious tests on teachers, and promote and subsidize the fragmentation of school populations along sectarian, class, ethnic, and ideological lines. They also show that he scorns the wisdom of the millions of voters who have rejected voucher plans or their analogues by 2-to-1 in 25 statewide referendums between 1967 and 2004, and that he scoffs at the wisdom of national and state constitution writers since 1787 who recognized that forcing taxpayers to support sectarian schools is, in Thomas Jefferson’s words, “sinful and tyrannical.”
One wonders what Mr. Friedman thinks of the 3-to-1 rejection by Newfoundland voters of their in-place universal voucher plan in the 1990s and its replacement by American-style religiously neutral public schools.
Americans for Religious Liberty
Silver Spring, Md.