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Public Education Has Always Been About Indoctrination
It didn’t start with CRT and transgenderism.
By Don Feder
Glenn Youngkin’s upset victory in the Virginia governor’s race shows the power of parents who are furious about public school indoctrination.
Education became a central part of Youngkin’s campaign. Without it, he would not have mobilized millions of concerned parents across the Commonwealth and sailed to victory against an ex-governor in a blue state.
Election night coverage included an interview with a woman who survived Mao’s Cultural Revolution, who said she stood in a cold rain for 8 hours that day handing out ballots. With laser-like focus, Xi Van Fleet said the contest in Virginia came down to Marxism versus Americanism.
The most important part of Youngkin’s victory speech was when he emphatically voiced his commitment to choice in education. Ban Critical Race theory? Absolutely. Listen to families? Of course. But, ultimately, public education can’t be reformed.
Public schools were created not to educate, but to indoctrinate. From Marx to Dewey to the current leadership of the Democrat Party and the National Education Association and American Federation of Teachers, revolutionaries have always targeted youth and seen schools as the spearhead of the revolution.
When he was governor of Virginia in 2015, Terry McAuliffe (who was deservedly defeated in this election) was pushing Critical Race Theory in the schools, something he claimed did not exist in his 2021 campaign for governor.
When McAuliffe said, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what to teach,” he was articulating a first principle of public education going back to its beginnings in the early 19th century: “Give us your money. Give us your kids. Then close your eyes. Shut your mouth. And let us do our job of transforming society.”
Today, the cutting edge is Critical Race Theory (whites are inherently evil), the 1619 Project (America is inherently evil) and what one proponent called the Queering Up of public education.
A Kansas school apologized for handing out a “Gender Unicorn” worksheet which asked students, “Do you know your identity or are you still in identity confusion stage?” In Broward County, Florida, an elementary school class went on a field trip to a gay bar. (“Mommy, what’s fisting?”)
But these are just the latest mutations. Sex education, which started in the 1940s, quickly devolved into sexuality education – where students learned a variety of perversions in the name of disease prevention and birth control. Anti-Americanism in the schools has a long pedigree.
Recall the title of then-First Lady Hillary Clinton’s 1996 book, “It Takes a Village” to Raise a Child …. She didn’t mean neighborhoods or local communities, but government in general and government schools specifically.
The typical child spends 15,000 hours in a classroom in grades K through 12. Instead of wasting it on science, reading and math, the curriculum increasingly looks like it was designed by Commissar AOC and Professor Sanders,
The seeds of today’s horror show were planted at the outset.
In his book, “American Marxism” (published in July), Mark R. Levin writes: “It is academia and its rule over the education of generations of students that serves as the most potent force for Marxist indoctrination and advocacy, and the most powerful impetus for its acceptance and spread.”
In “The Communist Manifesto,” Karl Marx decreed, “The education of all children from the moment that they can get along without their mother’s care, shall be in state institutions at state expense.” When the workers’ revolt failed to materialize, state education became the engine of revolution.
Writing in the 1920s, Antonio Gramsci said, “Socialism will triumph by first capturing the culture via infiltration of schools, universities, churches, and media (and then) by transforming the consciousness of society.” Hence the long march through the institutions.
Hillary was a disciple of Saul Alinsky (“Rules for Radicals”), who was influenced by Herbert Marcuse (repressive tolerance), who was a leader of the Frankfurt School (whose ideology he brought to America), which was established to build on the teachings of Gramsci. The Democrat Party’s 2016 nominee was a link in a chain that stretched back to an Italian Marxist almost 100 years earlier.
While Europeans Marx and Gramsci preached the importance of education to the coming revolution, Horace Mann and John Dewey laid the foundation for public education in America.
Generally acknowledged to be the father of state schools, Mann was a utopian and an admirer of the collectivist communities established by industrialist Robert Owen (the George Soros of his age) in the Northeast and Indiana.
In the 1830s, Mann pioneered the first public school system in America in Massachusetts (supported by Unitarians), by setting up the first State Board of Education and becoming its first secretary. Mann later went to Prussia (then the cradle of statism) to learn how government schools could mold impressionable minds.
John Dewey (the father of so-called Progressive education) carried Mann’s work into the 20th. century. As Mann looked to Prussia for inspiration, Dewey made his pilgrimage to the USSR.
Levin notes: “Dewey was an early fan of the Soviet Union and its ‘educational system’ – or, more precisely, its massive propaganda effort where obedience and conformity were contorted into a new unity.”
A signer of the 1933 Humanist Manifesto (“a socialist cooperative economic order must be established”), Dewey admitted: “You can’t make socialists out of individualists. Children who know how to think for themselves spoil the harmony of the collective society which is coming, where everyone is interdependent.” Indeed.
In the 21st century, Marx and Dewey’s work of social transformation is carried on by the teachers’ unions and their auxiliary, the Democrat Party.
CRT is the Marxist model of oppressor and oppressed applied to race. Queering Up applies it to gender.
Again, it’s not about teaching children how to think but what to think. That’s why the fight over CRT and mask mandates has turned so vicious, with Attorney General Merrick Garland threatening to treat unruly parents as domestic terrorists.
And it’s why the 2.3-million-member National Education Association, at its annual convention in July, voted to increase its support of CRT and work to publicize “an already-created, in-depth study that critiques white supremacy, anti-Blackness, anti-Indigeneity, racism, patriarchy … capitalism… and other forms of power and oppression” that are said to animate opposition to CRT. (It’s also why the NEA gives 94% of its campaign contributions to the party which is its BF4L.)
These are the leftwing loonies who get to spend an average of 15,000 hours per student indoctrinating the captives of America’s public school system.
The answer is to help the prisoners escape on an underground railroad which will lead them to educational choice and the beginning of knowledge and wisdom. The Virginia campaign was the first stop on that exhilarating train ride.
Image Credit: © Eli Wilson