Just a Little More on This Case in Belgium...a Letter to the Editor
Yesterday, I took a little field trip to Belgium to finally join the discussion about Paul Belien after long consideration of whether I indeed had anything new to offer. Wading through that much Dutch was kind of fun, but time consuming and tedious.

Today, I, stumbled accross an interesting letter to the editor which originally appeared in The Standard. I am not sure all that is being talked about as I'm not sure what money is being talked about. It appears as if Belgian parents recieve some sort of reimbursement from the state by their child's attendance, or their normal social services monies are dependent on the education of their children. At any rate, he contrasts the situtions of two cases which have made the news. One in which parents do not follow up with their children and have a blatant disregard for their children's truancy continue to gain this funding (whatever its source.) He transistions by stating that by his experience, the laws are only held against conscientious parents.

He reports having some personal contact with Paul Belien regarding a book he worked on and was hoping to gain some assistance from Dr. Belien who felt at ease among conservative and catholic groups. The dates couldn't be held due to upcoming state examinations for his children.

While Eddy Daniels clearly does not agree with Dr. Belien's politics, he seems to respect him as a conscientious parent and wonders why the state pursues him and not these other parents. He has successfully homeschooled three children who passes their exams and moved on to the University. And he questions why the press is so festive.

And the reaction?

Commentor number one cites how we see this every day. Those with blatant disrespect for the rules and the law get away with it. Those who attempt to follow it are penalized on the minutest of details. She broadens the observations of Mr. Daniels to other areas of Belgian law, not just education.

Commentor number two responds, "Beautiful letter." This person also points to the fact that indoctrination present in Belgian schools has already spread to all facets of life, including the media, the professional world and all of public life.

Commentor number three picks up on a comparison. I'm not sure what he is referencing. Something about paramilitary terror schools? He makes clear that this is not the case with Belien (thankfully). He then talks about violence he knows of in "Koran schools."

Commentor number four makes a minor correction to the text...

Commentor number five is speaking Greek. Not really, but her Dutch escapes me. I only gather that she is criticising the article in Knack for adding scandal to the case without taking a position. She then goes on to talk about Galileo...that's where I got lost.

It is interesting. As Daryl in a comment to Spunky asks why we as Americans care about this case which Belgians do not care about, I still wonder how we can ascertain such a thing. If you check the blogs regarding last week's ruling in Germany to fine a homeschooling family 2,000 Euros, you will find next to nothing. One blog talks about something related, and finds that the religious organization to which this family belongs and the state have found a mutually agreeable solution in the founding of a private school which will be overseen by the state. So are we to infer from that that homeschoolers in Germany are in support of this? Or that they don't care so why should we? Or perhaps that they would prefer to remain as invisible to the authorities as possible? Blogs over there are censored, after all. Hence the removal of at least one of Mr. Belien's posts by the state.

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