Defenders of the status quo in educations can oft paint truly horrific scenes of children being harmed, brainwashed, or left behind due to “evil” “Reich-wing” conservatives; typically the proffered villains are the evil “corporations” since that is what corporations do, right?
This, of course, ignores the fact that in many of the large and urban districts where the extreme left has a deathgrip on education, students are failing to learn, and many don’t even graduate at all. Rather than accept that the problems are with bad teachers, failed teaching methods, or bad curricula, the modern day Kinderführeren end up blaming private schools and even homeschoolers. The true target of their ire, though, is the great leftist boogie-man, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).
An article over at the extreme leftist blog “Common Dreams” blames ALEC for pushing vouchers that allow poor and minority students to break from a failed system, for pushing testing to objectively find out if students are even learning in the classroom, or allowing schools to outsource some services in order to not waste money on unionized public employees. But above all else, the Edu-crat establishment is fearful that by loosing their monopoly on our children, they will not longer be able to warp and manipulate their young minds. Their honest claim can be summed up as “All Your Children Are Belong To Us”
They are quite correct when they argue that “public schools are not merely schools for the public, but schools of publicness: institutions where we learn what it means to be a public and start down the road toward common national and civic identity.” Ultimately, they see schools as not a way in which we communicate and further our own civilization and culture, but as a tool to overthrow it and impose their own delusions. As the venerable Thomas Sowell pointed out:
“Schools were once thought of as places where a society’s knowledge and experience were passed on to the younger generation. But, about a hundred years ago, Professor John Dewey of Columbia University came up with a very different conception of education — one that has spread through American schools of education, and even influenced education in countries overseas.
“John Dewey saw the role of the teacher, not as a transmitter of a society’s culture to the young, but as an agent of change — someone strategically placed, with an opportunity to condition students to want a different kind of society.
“A century later, we are seeing schools across America indoctrinating students to believe in all sorts of politically correct notions. The history that is taught in too many of our schools is a history that emphasizes everything that has gone bad, or can be made to look bad, in America — and that gives little, if any, attention to the great achievements of this country.”
And just what does the left think learning “what it means to be a public” entails? Desecrating the American flag during class by throwing it down and stomping on it in order to teach a “lesson” is but one of the more explicit egregious recent examples.
Ultimately, it is the job of parents to be responsible for teaching and raising their children, and be the primary means by which our civilization and customs are transmitted to the next generation. Public schools indeed have a place: They ought to serve to insure that children are not punished by parents who don’t have the opportunity of means to teaching their children themselves. Public schools are not a monopoly that ought to be used to indoctrinate students. The far left wants to “mould” the “Public Citizen” in their own deluded image, and hold the view that a state monopoly on education is necessary to ensure that education is a “democratic” institution. The Progressive left truly believes that unless public schools force “diversity” on students, then students will grow up in a racist/sexist/homophobic environment; a commenter at the Common Dreams blog sums op their own stereotyping view succinctly:
“Schools are not just about learning. They also have to do with socialization, cooperation, and working towards shared goals. Take a high school drama production: All students involved learn to work together, set high standards for themselves, and perform in front of the entire community. What better way to learn what it is like to be a functioning member of a community! Schools bring students together, students from different backgrounds and holding different values. Homeschoolers are, well, naive in that they imagine everybody is like their parents and siblings. I would argue it is better that they are exposed to people of different races, religions, political orientation, sexual orientation than it is to be schooled in a homogeneous environment. Not all home schools create that sort of environment, but many of them do. The same with private, some charters, and some parochial schools.”
And what are those “evil” values that the Kinderführeren want to protect children from? such evil “corporate” schemes as requiring “high school students to take ‘a semester-long course on the philosophical understandings and the founders’ principles.'” If the Progressive left believe that to be a paragon of evil, then what do they believe ought to be taught? Quite simply, that America is evil racist, of course! Indeed, their curricula can make the Soviet Encyclopedia seem almost pro-American in contrast!
A Wisconsin high school is teaching about “white privilege” as if it were an absolute and unequivocal truth. “White privilege” is discribed as “a set of advantages that are believed to be enjoyed by white people beyond those commonly experienced by non-white people in the same social, political, and economic spaces (nation, community, workplace, income, etc.” The lessons include declaring that white people are oppressors even if they don’t discriminate or otherwise think of people as being different at all! The left equates American civilization and society with, invariably, “Whiteness,” and that this “Whiteness” is a special evil that must be eradicated in order for “persons of color” to live without oppression. In effect, it denigrates some people because of their race; as one parent put it:
“[T]o have a teacher tell you that you have these unearned privileges – that because you are white somehow you infringe on other people’s rights. It’s really just awful.”
The use of “examples” of “white privilege” vary from the ridiculous to the assumption that “whiteness” is inexorably and exclusively identified with racism and oppression; such examples are often either loaded, or perceived to be racist even if they are not.
This is just another case of blame being shifted to the “kyriarchy,” where straight white males are necessarily the “oppressors” and that even they must be “saved” from their own whiteness, straightness, and maleness. Minnesota brings a startling case of the public schools being used to destroy American values and society in the name of fighting “oppression.”
A proposal bill in Minnisota would mandate: “‘[M]ulti-cultural/anti-bias” education for all pre-K-12 students and annual training in antibullying strategies for all teachers, school staff and volunteers; the promotion of ‘values, attitudes and behaviors’ that ‘understand the nature of human sexuality,’ and a new ‘school climate center’ at the Minnesota Department of Education.”
Rather than promote true tolerance, these advocates of “diversity” aim to crush traditional American values and customs and force their new morality of America via their de facto monopolistic power over the education of the young. Under the guise of stopping bullying and the ever hypocritical call for “equality,” the schools will further treat children unequally and promote inequality as societiy’s new norms:
“[T]he task force’s proposed new antibullying regime would not treat all children equally, despite lip service to this goal. Instead, it focuses on students in ‘protected classes,’ including sexual orientation and ‘gender identity or expression.’
“Under the task force’s vague and overbroad definitions of bullying and harassment, students could be punished for ‘direct or indirect interactions’ that other students –especially those in protected groups — claim to find ‘humiliating’ or ‘offensive,’ that have a ‘detrimental effect’ on their ‘social or emotional health,’ or even that promote a ‘perceived imbalance of power.’
“By this standard, a student who voices reservations about same-sex marriage could be accused of bullying LGBT students.”
This is just another attack on dissent. It is also another attack on “gender stereotypes” by those who believe that “gender” is but a “social construct” that is evil and must be replaced by enlightened gender-neutral norms and values:
“The curriculum advised teachers not to call students ‘boys and girls,’ on grounds this can create ‘internal dissonance’ in some children. It called for students to read books like ‘Sissy Duckling,’ and to be evaluated on ‘whether or not [they] feel comfortable making choices outside gender expectations.’ Kids in grades three to five “acted out” being members of nontraditional families, including same-sex-headed families.
“In lesson after lesson, teachers were instructed to urge their students — ages 5 to 11 — to reject traditional views on sexuality and family structure as hurtful ‘stereotypes,’ and to use group exercises and classic indoctrination techniques to pressure them to adopt the curriculum designers’ attitudes and beliefs.
“At Hale, parent concerns prompted removal of some of the curriculum’s most controversial aspects.
“The governor’s task force recommendations could entail serious consequences for dissenting students. The report includes language suggesting that students who express views that others consider offensive could be referred for ‘counseling’ or ‘mental health needs.'”
These Kinderführeren are demanding a monopoly on children so as to replace American society, and impose their own pseudo-egalitarian ideals, even to the point of declaring dissenters to be mentally ill! Sowells point has become frighteningly true, the Edu-crats have created a system that acts “not as a transmitter of a society’s culture to the young, but as an agent of change.”