Against the girls’ parents and in favor of the Swiss state, it established that “the interest of the children in a complete schooling, which allows successful social integration according to local customs and habits” justifies what they admit is an “interference with the freedom of religion” of the parents.

The Portuguese Example

Once upon a time, the Portuguese Bishops’ Conference – the country’s assembly of Catholic bishops – expressed its disagreement with a document from the Ministry of Education that constitutes a kind of indicative roadmap for schools, from pre-school to high school, on health education.

The bishops say that the document “does not respect the right of parents to their children’s education. And why is that? Because of “the inclusion of the topic of abortion in the tone that is given”. What tone the bishops’ spokesman does not explain; but he informs that they support an online petition.

It follows that the “tone” that unworthy of prelates is this: that of a sex education through abortion.

What the hell is that supposed to mean?

Unfortunately, without any mention of authorship, the text of the petition clarifies that it is about “presenting the concept of abortion and abortion techniques to young children” and “teaching children that it is legitimate and just to kill babies in the mother’s womb”, proclaiming: “There is no other intention but to indoctrinate from childhood, in an action equivalent to those of totalitarian regimes. The State cannot take the place of the educators!”

What is glimpsed in the document is that in 79 pages that deal with everything from mental health to food, additive behaviors, affections and education for sexuality, the only mention of the interruption of pregnancy is in the 77th chapter “Maternity and Responsible Parenthood”.

There, it is proposed that the distinction between involuntary and voluntary termination of pregnancy can be explained from the 2nd cycle of basic (more than 10 years). And that is all.

There is obviously no reason for hysteria – but what the bishops and their allied parents want, as they have always wanted since Portuguese law first spoke of sex education in schools in 1984, is to try to convince people that it is a question of getting the kids to have sex with each other “from an early age” and now also to have abortions (by the way).

Some people, like these people and the parents of the girls in Switzerland, show such an unhealthy obsession with all matters related to sex and such a fixation on controlling the information that children can have about them is the most eloquent defense of sex education and for gender equality in schools.

It is desirable that public schools clash with religious fundamentalism. It is part of its essential functions to ensure the free development of children’s personalities by encouraging them to think for themselves, to be autonomous, to understand the world and the principles of the state in which they live, and to decide what they believe on the basis of the widest and most accurate information available.

This is the most effective recipe against obscurantism; no one expects obscurantism to be happy.