Santorum rails against Maher on 'Christian madrassa' comment
Rick Santorum fired back against comedian Bill Maher who said Santorum's children attended a 'Christian madrassa.'
March 13th, 2012
11:09 AM ET

Santorum rails against Maher on 'Christian madrassa' comment

By Ashley Killough, CNN

(CNN)– Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum hit back against Bill Maher Monday night after the liberal talk show host criticized Santorum for home-schooling his children, calling his home a "Christian madrassa."

Responding to his comments, Santorum, a devout Catholic, said on Fox News that "folks on the left" are out there "trashing anybody who stands up for Christian conservative values, anybody who dares to actually teach their children faith in their home."

Maher made the remarks on his show Friday, saying that Santorum was sheltering his children and educating them in the home rather than in public out of fear they "could be infected by the virus of reason."

Read the full story on CNN's Political Ticker.
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Politics

soundoff (466 Responses)
  1. Pierre Alexes - Westmount, Qc

    Santorium sounds more like the reincarnated spanish Grand Inquisitor.

    April 6, 2012 at 11:04 am |
  2. Shakira

    So its ok for Christians to homeschool their kids but if a Muslim does it they are teaching hate ect. Love the double standard here in America.

    April 5, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  3. AC in DC

    See the movie "Dogtooth".

    April 3, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  4. John

    Duh, atheists do not have any proof of their story anymore than believers do. The cold fact is, scientists still have no idea or clue where or how life started. And Nonimus, of course, "created by God" is not a scientific theory. Most Christians will agree to that. But considering how the entire cosmos is fine-tuned for life on earth, a concept that even scientists have acknowledged, and considering how the earth's exact location and specific atmosphere make it suitable for life and considering how a noted mathematician calculated that the chances of natural selection occurring through random mutation in the evolutionary process are 1 over 1 with 40,000 zeros after it, you'd have to be brain dead to not recognize that something weird is going on here.

    March 23, 2012 at 2:54 am |
    • Hootin Thenews

      atheists don't have a "story" – we just don't believe yours. @hootinthenews

      March 27, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • TheSchmaltz

      Every puddle looks at the hole it's in and thinks "Wow, look at this little space. Perfectly shaped to fit me. I'm so blessed."

      April 10, 2012 at 8:14 am |
  5. BoldGeorge

    Just when I thought I had forgotten about this topic (my earlier comments are back on page 1 or 2), I just finished reading this opinion article about home-schooling published today here on CNN:


    Very insightful and right on. I agree, home-schooling may not be for everyone, but everyone should look into it.

    March 15, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
  6. Rynomite

    Why oh why does the Republican party have to contain wingnut fundamentalists like Santorum? Those idiots make the rest of the party platform look bad.

    Why can't we just be a compassionless party filled with people who don't like to share their hard earned money with freeloaders? A party that believes that government should have minimal encroachment into every day life and business?

    Just shows the two party system is broken.

    March 15, 2012 at 10:13 am |
    • bismarket

      A voice of reason? I'm from & live in the UK & all we see of the Republican party over here are the fundamentalists like Santorum/Bachman et al & their ridiculous & heartless comments on Abortion/Womens rights Gay marriage & anything that seems to try & control or place restrictions on individuals. Then they say say their for tiny Gov', i don't understand, why all the hate for minorities. Since religion has become such a big part of politics in the US everything seems to have gone loopy!

      March 19, 2012 at 5:31 am |
    • John

      Bismarket, the UK is a left-of-the-center country so it's no wonder they bash Republicans in their media. Contrary to the lies you hear from the left, Republicans don't hate women and minorities. Republicans and most reasonable people do not believe they should fit the bill for somebody else's contraceptives anymore than I feel that the American taxpayer should pony up for my hog wild spending while I'm out on government business trips. It's not a question of hating women but of reasonable spending. Why liberals cannot get that in their thick skulls is beyond me!

      March 23, 2012 at 3:10 am |
    • GodPot

      "compassionless party filled with people who don't like to share " lol

      March 27, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • Secular Nation


      If it's just about reasonable spending, then you should be in favor of ending tax exemptions for churches, no?

      March 27, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
  7. Stuck in the Middle

    truth hurts eh Rick?

    March 15, 2012 at 8:01 am |
    • Steve in Seattle

      Mr. Maher is just another "comedian" that makes a living off of spewing his hatred for anyone or any group not aligned with his moral compass, or lack there-of. It's amazing how similar Mr. Maher and Mr. Limbaugh are. I'm happy to say that I choose not to tune into either one of these entertainers. No wonder the viewing and listening audience for these hate mongers spiked up when the Jerry Springer show went off the air.

      March 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
  8. jdun

    Way to go Maher, start another religious war and then stand back and laugh at us. But, in my experience you are right. Most of the home schoolers I know are trying to keep ideas like reason and humanistic values away from their kids. Sometimes it works and you create blind zealots, sometimes it fails and the kids get free and go wild.

    March 15, 2012 at 7:41 am |
  9. Reality

    For Rick's kids,

    Free Will and Future are inherent to all the thinking beings in the Universe. This being the case, it is not possible to alter life with prayers. Statistically, your request might come true but it is simply the result of the variability/randomness of Nature..

    So put down your rosaries and prayer beads and stop worshiping/revering cows or bowing to Mecca five times a day. Instead work hard at your job, take care of aging parents, volunteer at a soup kitchen, donate to charities and the poor and continue to follow the proper rules of your religion or any good rules of living as gracious and good human beings making this Earth a better place to live.

    March 15, 2012 at 12:27 am |
  10. bl4ck0utsUn

    Freedom of speech, First Amendment, the one you would in another universe or by a cataclismic miricle be sworn to uphold! Santorum is a twit, and not good for children or other living beings!

    March 14, 2012 at 11:36 pm |
  11. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    March 14, 2012 at 9:52 pm |
    • Tom Paine

      So does evolution.

      March 15, 2012 at 7:47 am |
    • Meanwhile in the real world

      Not my kid's diaper. I have to do that myself. I shudder to think what would happen if I relied on praying for that one . . .

      March 15, 2012 at 7:49 am |
    • Jesus

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!!!~ ....

      March 15, 2012 at 10:40 am |
    • Jim

      As long as that pleases you, go right ahead and believe it; makes no difference to me.

      March 16, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • bismarket

      It's worked for me & just about everybody else i know over here in "Godless" Britain.

      March 19, 2012 at 5:34 am |
  12. The Only One

    My neighbors home schooled their kid, teaching him to be a preacher, one day the parents, both suffering from the effects of Chemo due to cancer treatment, where out side mowing they lawn while that very kid 1(6 at the time) was watching them while sitting on the porch drinking tea. You reap what you sow and they made a weed.

    March 14, 2012 at 9:01 pm |
    • JackoB

      Cool story, bro.

      March 18, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  13. mrklrsn

    the last home school family I visited spent a big portion of the evening explaining to me how the solar system is traveling into a new zone that vibrates on a different wavelength and that this new wavelength will raise a new consciousness in humanity creating a form of heaven on earth. The problem however is that there are aliens who are controlling the govt. via the liberal media and chem-trails. Unless we consciously reject the influence of these aliens, they will remove us to a hell on Marz the moment before the earth enters the new zone.

    I couldn't make this up. I'm not saying all homeschoolers are so out there, but this is a real life example of the possibilities.

    March 14, 2012 at 8:19 pm |
    • mrklrsn

      I should add that they are actually really nice people, their kids are very well behaved and polite, they are creative and active and hardworking. I enjoy visiting their farm and discussing the wide realm of possibilities in an infinite universe, but sometimes I can't quite follow their logic.

      March 14, 2012 at 8:31 pm |
  14. Sam Yaza

    do you know who else was bashed for speaking up for conservative values the Pharisees
    yup JC always bashed the Pharisees for be conservative in there values

    March 14, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  15. JustIn

    I'd like to get behind Rick Santorum and give him my solid support, but until he's more open about all the stimulus that has gone into his package, we won't know for sure that he's a real Republican and a true evangelical Christian like the rest of them. No matter how oral he gets on Romney, Romney is still getting a head.

    The messy climax is not far off in this erection campaign and you can learn about it here

    March 14, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • Jim

      Nicely put.

      March 16, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
  16. MFB

    The ones who do not believe direct all their time an effort in ignoring God and His Creation of course we all know is an exersice in futility but they persist in their diatribes.. Thanks God faith is a gift that money can not buy.

    March 14, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • Del

      So, MFB, which one of the thousands of gods that man has created do you have "faith" in? And why do you think people in another place on the planet have "faith" in a wildly different god?

      March 14, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • jimtanker

      I spend very little of my time thinking about how delusional that religious people are. I just come on here to pass the time during work.

      March 14, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • Stuck in the Middle

      The only time I spend thinking about god is the time I spend giggling at some of the bronze age notions so many insist we all shouuld live by.
      Wake up and smell the con. You and those like you are being manipulated by powerful men to further their agenda. There is no god, just wealthy men gettting wealthier on your labor.

      March 15, 2012 at 8:06 am |
    • Jim

      Why would I spend any time at all ignoring that which does not exist?
      And it seems to me that religions have gotten quite rich peddling a gift that money cannot buy, eh?

      March 16, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
  17. Pete

    Bill Maher says on his show that MOST REPUBLICANS are in a vacuum,a bubble of sorts.Santorum is living proof that you can grow crap in a vacuum aided bubble,just like Bill said.Republicans in the bubble hear nothing ,see nothing ,just that little person in their head sayin Pres Obamas got 4 more years,4 more years idiot,yea you....LOL...

    March 14, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  18. Roberto

    This piece spins maher's comments out of orbit. Maher was saying that home schoolers (santorum among them) are doing a diservice to their children by sheltering them from the real world in order to indoctrinate them. There is nothing wrong with transfering one's values to children... all parents do that, religious and secular. What's sort of pathetic is that people like santorum feel like they have to shelter and hide their children from secular values 'just in case an innovative idea' tries to compete with their middle age mythology-driven belief system. If you don't see the difference between this and what this article says maher meant, then you should probably not watch maher. It's too much for you, you need to practice some logic and then try again.

    March 14, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
    • Ross

      Excellent comment ..........finally 🙂

      March 19, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
  19. stevie68a

    Santorum's problem is that he's a little boy, and doesn't know it. He accepts christian brainwashing form his youth, and now lays
    it on his children. Aside from the church, he's being manipulated by his wife and, likely, his mother.
    Someone tell him we're in a New Age, and that his church represents the old.

    March 14, 2012 at 11:06 am |
  20. Jacob

    I agree. I think religion is far less whacky than "rational" atheism in which you believe you're a self created man god who made himself forget his own self creation or, as BG elegantly puts it, you believe you popped up out of nowhere, POOF! Now that is definitely the real magical fantasy story. A creator God is quite rational because we have no evidence of any animals or human beings appearing out of thin air, none whatsoever!

    March 14, 2012 at 10:45 am |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by Jacob presents instances of a Straw Man argument, the Appeal to Ignorance fallacy, and the Argumentum Ad Consequentiam fallacy.


      March 14, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • Nonimus

      "A creator God is quite rational because we have no evidence of any animals or human beings appearing out of thin air, none whatsoever!"
      But, Jacob, wouldn't special creation by God require animals and human beings appearing out of thin air, by the word of God, for which you say there is no evidence - none whatsoever?

      Incidentally, evolution does not claim animals and humans appeared out of thin air; we evolved from common ancestors.

      March 14, 2012 at 11:36 am |
    • StevenR

      Check you physics textbook. Particles are being created and destroyed all the time. There is observable proof of this. To extend this to the universe itself is far more logical and understandable than some Magic Guy In The Sky.

      Just because you and the entire right wing of the gay old party do not understand it does not mean that people with brains don't get it.

      March 14, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      Nonimus – I prefer the created by God out of thin air theory than evolving from apes theory. Somehow being a son of God appeals to me more than being a son of King Kong.

      March 14, 2012 at 12:05 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      SteveR – Does your physics textbook say where the "particles" came from.

      March 14, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @SPA Knight,
      First, what you prefer has no bearing on reality.

      Second, in speaking about scientific theories, created by God is not one. There is no scientific theory of creationism or intelligent design, it is a religious concept.

      March 14, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
    • Duh

      "as BG elegantly puts it, you believe you popped up out of nowhere, POOF! Now that is definitely the real magical fantasy story"

      Uh...Duh....your god "Poofed" out of nowhere too then so guess you have a ream magical fantasy story too. The only difference is atheists actually have proof of their theory – you DON"T!

      March 14, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Stuck in the Middle

      Stick with religion because you obviously know nothing about atheism. If ignorance is bliss you must be one happy dude.

      March 15, 2012 at 8:09 am |
    • CEW

      If you've got a problem with people or animals appearing out of thin air (which is in itself a problem, as you clearly don't understand the concept of evolution), then let me ask you this: Who (or what) created the Creator God? Is it rational to assume that SOMETHING created God?

      March 27, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
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