FFRF to air TV ads against Wis. voucher expansion

FFRF has produced two 30-second TV ads to air in Madison, Eau Claire-La Crosse and a few other Wisconsin markets, raising the alarm on Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s unprecedented bid to expand vouchers to send children to religious schools at public expense.

“We have a sense of urgency to inform the public about the disastrous consequences, if Walker’s voucher expansion is adopted,” said FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor. “We must end Wisconsin’s failed voucher experiment, not expand it.”

The first spot explains: “Our public schools are under attack by Governor Walker. He wants to take money from our public schools and use it to support someone else’s religion. Your tax dollars shouldn’t fund religiously segregated schools. Nearly half of our state’s students would be eligible for vouchers under Walker’s scheme. Vouchers are bad for children and bad for education. Help us stop Walker’s brazen attack on our public schools.”

The second ad (quoting a Wisconsin Supreme Court decision) says: “There is no such source and cause of strife, quarrel, fights, malignant opposition, persecution, and war, and all evil in the state, as religion. Let it once enter our civil affairs, our government would soon be destroyed. Let it once enter our common schools, they would be destroyed.” It concludes, “Stop Governor Walker’s disastrous proposal to expand vouchers for religiously segregated schools.”

The ads started airing April 6 on the 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. news broadcasts for two weeks on WISC-TV, the Madison-area CBS affiliate. FFRF also scheduled them locally during CBS “Sunday Morning” and a few other news programs for two weeks.

The ad takes viewers to ffrf.org/stopvouchers to encourage them to contact legislators using information from the Web page.

FFRF notes that Walker’s recently expanded statewide voucher system has resulted in a system where 100% of the state-funded schools are Christian, and 73% of students attend Catholic schools.

Freedom From Religion Foundation