11/24/1851 -- Horace Greeley's editorial in the New York Tribune when the Catholic Church wanted religion (Catholicism) taught in public schools
That we differ with the bishop on different points of religious faith is quite true. But we have no wish to abridge his liberty on that account. We hold his right to to civil and religious freedom as precious as our own. He would have religion form a part of every child's education. Very good. We concur in that view.
But it is one thing to assume that each child should be taught religion and quite another to maintain that religious dogma should be taught in common schools. We desire and content that our own children should be taught religion. We do not desire that it should be taught them in common schools. For this we shall take them to church, to Sunday school, to bible class, or wherever else they may be taught by those we believe will teach them divine truth and its purity, while for the acquisition of reading, writing, arithmetic, etc., we shall send them to common schools.
Why is not this distinction a natural and just one? How can a man so wise as the archbishop speak of the common school system as "not calculated to meet the requirements which Catholic parents, at least, are bound to fulfill toward their Catholic offspring"? Why, Reverend Sir, it never pretended to do any such thing! You might as well object that it doesn't not wash, dress, and vaccinate them!
Why should you find fault with the schools for doing their own proper work and not attempting yours?