October 13, 2011
A reader has challenged me to drop “the Christian argument” against the public schools and find a more broad-based line of reasoning that “will prevail” in the debate.
Let me state her major points as clearly as I can. 1. “Those who oppose Christian ideas and views… control all of education.” 2. Most parents, including Christians, are convinced that receiving a public education is “the only way that their children can be successful.” 3. They represent “a huge segment of the population which prefers to keep religion and state totally separate.” 4. Because Christianity is divided into so many different sects, Christians can’t speak with a unified voice on any subject, including education. 5. Therefore, because “it’s a lose-lose situation,” the only thing for Christians to do is, first, “to convince many people that something is wrong,” and then to “work on a priority basis”—which I take to mean to try to reform or repair public education by addressing specific things that are wrong with it.
The reader is well informed on the history of public education. She understands how its founders and theorists turned schoolmarms into “change agents” aimed at de-Christianizing America. She quotes the most insidious agent of them all, John Dewey, who envisioned schools as playing the decisive role in “devising the social order of the future” under the direction of “experts” like himself. And you can see what kind of new social order they’re devising for us. They have replaced “the three Rs” with the three S’es—Socialism, Sodomy, and unearned Self-Esteem.
The results are plainly visible: a homosexual teacher in a Texas high school putting up a poster of two men kissing and telling students “you’d better learn to accept it,” and a “gender coach” in a California classroom telling very young children “you can be a girl one day and a boy the next, depending on how you feel,” and college students defecating on police cars in New York City while demanding that business “create jobs” for them, but not dare to make a profit.
So, yeah—something’s wrong, all right. The teachers’ unions who dominate public education are maniacally anti-Christian, anti-family, and anti-capitalist. Don’t take my word for it. Visit their websites and read the speeches and the resolutions that come out of their national conventions.
The parents don’t want to know. Public school is what they’re used to, and they fear change. They think the public schools are “free”—ignoring the massive impact on their tax bills—and they don’t want to pay for private school or homeschooling. They anesthetize themselves with the mantra, “Our schools are different,” consigning all the problems they hear about to the next township, county, or state. And if all else fails, they fall back on the bromide that their Christian children will be “salt and light” in the public schools—just as the early Christians were salt and light to the lions in the Coliseum.
It would be easier to restore the Titanic than it would be to reform public education. There is no argument that would “prevail” on the teachers’ unions and get them to change their ways. “Well, dog my cats! Why didn’t you say so earlier? But now that you’ve made it so clear to us, we’ll just disband that Gay-Straight Alliance we set up in your child’s middle school…”
Christian children are entitled to a Christian education. How else is a Christian culture to survive? What good can come of teaching Christian children not to be Christians?
We make “the Christian argument” because it’s true: the only way it can’t be true is for God Himself not to be true. God commands us to speak truth, whether it prevails or not. This is the prophetic function of the Church, a duty that cannot be evaded. Are we to stop telling the truth because people don’t want to hear it?
It’s a question of obedience. God commands us to “train up a child in the way that he should go.” (Proverbs 22:6) He commands us to teach our children His Word. (Deuteronomy 4:9, 6:7) We are not to jettison God’s Word as long as our children can learn chemistry or calculus—and the public schools are doing a lousy job of teaching those specialized subjects, anyhow.
What would God have said to the early Church, if they’d sent their children to the pagan school in Ephesus and they came out worshiping the Greco-Roman gods and goddesses? What excuse would have gotten those parents off the hook? “True, Lord, our son now chants ‘Great is Diana of the Ephesians,’ and worships idols. But look how good he is at long division!” Think that one would fly?
Technology has advanced to where homeschooling or church schooling in any subject is eminently practical. Homeschooled children routinely and dramatically outperform the public-schooled in every test devised by education analysts.
My reader remarks that public education has been enormously successful in its mission to change the culture. This is true—and all the more reason to take our Christian children out of there. We’ve had more than enough of the National Education Association’s brand of cultural change, thank you.
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Would it not be very “changing” to the culture, to liberate, say, 20 million Christian children from the public school indoctrination factories? Certainly radical politics could kiss a big chunk of that teacher union funding goodbye.
If the best the public schools and colleges can do is to produce mobs of defecating imbeciles who are unable to understand the relationship between making profits and hiring new employees, then we’re surely better off without them.
Public education is mis-education, pure and simple.
And disobeying God is no way to ensure the future of our country.
© 2011 Lee Duigon - All Rights Reserved
Lee Duigon, a contributing editor with the Chalcedon Foundation, is a former newspaper reporter and editor, small businessman, teacher, and horror novelist. He has been married to his wife, Patricia, for 34 years. See his new fantasy/adventure novels, Bell Mountain and The Cellar Beneath the Cellar, available on www.amazon.com