While opponents may express concern over public funding being put into a school without council oversight, there's one key to this bill: it's about the safety of children, first and foremost.
This bill protects the most vulnerable members of our society and it's the city's duty, regardless of race, creed or religion, to protect its people, especially its children. We don't tell police officers not to respond to a church if there's an incident, because os some sort of notion of separation between church and state or because its teachings are considered radical to some.
Obviously, in a perfect world, there would be some sort of formal oversight of the money is spent, and no religion would preach or teach hate for any members of our society, but that's still unrealistic at this point. But at the same time, safety should be a basic human right, denied to nobody.
Also remember, the children in these schools don't always have a choice where they go or what they're taught. Just because their parents picked a school for them doesn't mean they should not be protected.
There's also an obvious state shortfall in funding for public schools that desperately need money, but irresponsible spending in other areas of government should not trickle down to the safety of New York City's students. The general lack of funding for education is entirely a separate issue.
While the likelihood of such an attack happening at a New York City religious school is statistically very low, a lot of terror-related attacks can be religiously motivated, making faith-based schools a potential target. This bill is proactive, which, in all cases, is better than being reactive, especially in today's society.
When the bill comes to Mayor Bill de Blasio's desk for a signature, he should remember that the only beneficiaries of the $20 million are the city's children.