Germany: A Ministry against the Crucifix in Schools

Source: FSSPX News

“Christian symbols have no place in public schools”.  By this statement that appeared in the weekly newspaper Focus, the new Ministry of Social Affairs in Basse-Saxe, in northwest Germany, provoked an outcry on all that side of the Rhine, including its own party, the CDU (Christian-democratic).  “The school should be a neutral place”, claims Aygül Özkan, a 38 year old who recently became the first woman of Turkish origin to occupy such a position, adding that the veil had “no business” in the classroom either.

The President-Minister of Basse-Saxe, Christian Wulff reacted quickly, pointing out that “religious symbols, especially the cross, are considered by the regional executive to be the sign of an education marked by tolerance, based on Christian values.” (sic) Other reactions were much more virulent.  Stefan Müller, who is in charge of the questions on integration in the Parliamentary Group of Christian Unions, and comes from the CSU, the Bavarian and conservative fringe of the CDU, qualified Aygül Özkan's position as “so absurd that it is alarming”.  He especially maintained that “the politicians in charge who want to banish the crucifix from schools should think about whether they really belong in a Christian democratic party”. (Sources: AT/Euronews – DICI n°216, June 5, 2010)