North Carolina teacher Ray Fournier is belatedly learning that concentration camp metaphors are usually rapidly followed by apologies. He teaches biology at Fuquay-Varina High, is a self-styled "local evangelist and public school missionary," and wrote an article featuring the following condemnation of public schools: "Walking through the gates of the public high-school where I teach feels as if I were walking into a concentration camp dedicated to the spiritual death of those imprisoned behind these walls." The district is investigating the article (printed in Christian mag No Greater Joy), which has been replaced online with an apology, and parents want him fired to "find a job at a fundamentalist Christian college or school,” one parent tells the News & Observer.
Fournier's point was to encourage Christian parents to home-school their children, since he claims secular curricula and student culture are like a "spiritual gas chamber." He says this "poison" even turned a home-schooled teen from his church into a lesbian. Angry at the article's content, Fuquay-Varina senior Lauren Foster promptly shared it with 1,000 Twitter followers, saying "anyone who talks so poorly of my school, compares it to a concentration camp, blames the public school system for 'turning people lesbian,' and [says public education] makes teenagers lose their morals is outright ridiculous." In his apology, Fournier says his comparison was unwise, but he stresses that the "spiritual destruction of our children" is serious. (Last month, a teacher got in hot water after having her 6th-graders re-enact the Ferguson shooting.)