Jennifer Aniston’s Heartless Media Crucifixion. A Bipartisan Case for School Choice. Most of the policy goals that President Donald Trump outlined in his address to Congress are subjects of heated public controversy—many for good reason. But one proposal that should not be controversial is the expansion of school choice programs for low-income families. This proposal should be supported by concerned politicians and citizens across the political spectrum.
For conservatives and libertarians, school choice programs are an obvious improvement over a situation in which government-run schools have a monopoly on public educational funding, despite the fact that, on average, private and religious schools consistently outperform public schools on all measures. If private and religious schools serve the public interest in educating children better than public schools do, it is unjust not to allow parents to use public educational funds at those schools. Liberals should also support school choice for a deeper reason. There is no such thing as a completely value-neutral education. Ex-offenders need jobs, not handouts. But there are too many regulatory barriers. There’s a tragic irony at the heart of American criminal-justice policy. While we invest billions of dollars each year to house inmates in state and federal correctional facilities, our collective willingness to invest falters when it comes to ensuring the formerly incarcerated don’t reoffend.
Of the more than 600,000 Americans released from custody every year, two-thirds will be rearrested within three years. What most ex-offenders need isn’t a handout, but a job. Alas, landing a job is no easy feat for those with a criminal record. And to at least some extent, bad public policy is to blame. Study after study have demonstrated that, when the formerly incarcerated can receive training and find work, they are far less likely to reoffend. Take fingerprinting for one example. Proponents of fingerprinting tout it as a way to get the ironclad protection of an FBI cross-referenced background check. Image by Studio Romantic Link. 'Gap yah' backpackers begging for money should be ashamed of themselves.