Have a ringside seat for the predictable smear job they’ll try on Kenney’s education minister[Ted Byfield Blog] When Premier Jason Kenney unveiled the list of his new cabinet last week, something of a slight gasp went through the media group when he named the new education minister. It was to be Adriana LaGrange. The contrast with David Eggen, education minister in the outgoing NDP government, could hardly have been greater. Hence the gasp.
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The differences include, but also go far beyond the political. Mr. Eggen is a thorough- going socialist who saw the central ministerial role as essentially ideological, bringing about a socialist paradise converting other people’s children into leftwing demagogues like himself. In contrast, Mrs. LaGrange and her husband are business people, running a trucking company and a sizeable farm operation.
Then too, Mr. Eggen insists that Christian schools should be forced under threat of de-funding to teach his government’s everything-goes attitude on sex. Mrs. LaGrange, as a practicing Catholic Christian, thinks Christian schools exist to preserve Christian teaching. on sex and on everything else. Beyond this, Mr. Eggen thinks the government has the right to propagate its political ideas through the school system. Mrs. LaGrange (one assumes) thinks that the government does not have that right.
The divide between them grows wider still on the issue of abortion. M. Eggen, one can safely surmise, is like nearly all the left strictly pro-choice. Mrs. LaGrange is a top leader of the pro-life cause in Red Deer, at one point organizing and sustaining a protest at a local hospital. It was for this that she was best known. Thence the gasp when she was appointed education minister.
But the gulf between them is sharper still on the Eggen administration’s dangerous intervention into the natural autonomy and authority of the family. Mr. Eggen sees the government as the true friend of children with a duty to protect them against what it considers incompetent parenthood. Mrs. LaGrange sees the parent, not the government, as the primary friend and guardian of the child. She and her husband have raised seven children and have three grandchildren. “Well, what do you know?” said one wag last week. “The socialist NDP takes office, throws out the parent, and empowers the bureaucracy. The Tories take over, empower the parent, and throw out the bureaucracy.”
Such a conclusion is unfortunately far from true. The educational bureaucracy is a long way from being thrown out. Adriana LaGrange has won two key battles by getting elected and becoming minister. But that’s as nothing when compared to the gargantuan tasks that now confront her.
This article continues at [Ted Byfield Blog] Dad’s doing a column on Adriana Lagrange, the new Minister of Education for Alberta