Tag Archives: Education

Alex Newman: School: Individualism and Objectivity Are “White Supremacy” 4 (1)

by Alex Newman

Elementary school children in at least one government school in Virginia were taught the outrageously racist lie that “objectivity,” “perfectionism,” “individualism,” and a dozen or so other traits are actually characteristics of “white supremacy.” Parents were outraged. But this is just the tip of the iceberg.

In the real world, of course, countless people of all “races” believe in those values. Anyone who implies that those characteristics and values are inherently tied to European and Western peoples would be a racist by definition, more than a few critics observed in response to the scandal.

Prominent India-born writer Asra Nomani, for instance, slammed the dangerous propaganda, calling it “political corruption at its most lethal — for the soul of our kids.” She also ridiculed the silly narrative that proper punctuation and grammar are racist.

Other critics were even more forceful. “Ironically, this type of ‘anti-racism’ indoctrination is alarmingly racist and ignorant,” observed Rita Panahi, a prominent Australian columnist of Iranian origin, in commenting on the toxic propaganda being force-fed to captive children in America.

And yet, students ages 6 through 11 at the Belvedere Elementary School in Virginia were subjected to this and more. And children all over the nation and beyond are stewing in this sort of ignorant racism being peddled by government schools, evidence available all over the Internet shows.

This particular bit of propaganda originated in the 2001 “Dismantling Racism Workbook.” It was produced by fringe leftwing extremists Kenneth Jackson Jones and Tema Okun, a vocal self-declared supporter of proud communist terrorist Bill Ayers of the Weather Underground. There is a method to the apparent communist madness.

Other traits and values that are listed in the program as characteristics of “white supremacy” include having a “sense of urgency,” “defensiveness,” “quantity over quality,” “worship of the written word,” “only one right way,” “either / or thinking,” “power hoarding,” “fear of conflict,” “progress is bigger, more,” and “right to comfort.”

Of course, these ramblings are so idiotic and racist that they would normally just be laughed off by normal people as the product of a pathetic lunatic with too much time on their hands and hatred in their heart. Unfortunately, the lunacy is being forced on gullible, naive children without any context or reference for them to understand just how absurd it is. That makes it extremely dangerous.

Consider the almost comical levels of idiocy here. Objectivity, for instance, is defined in the dictionary as a “lack of judgment, bias, or prejudice.” Do only white supremacists lack bias, judgment, or prejudice? The irony is off the charts, though it was not immediately clear if perceiving irony was also a white-supremacist trait.

Individualism, meanwhile, is defined in the dictionary as “belief in the primary importance of the individual and in the virtues of self-reliance and personal independence.” Do only white supremacists believe in self-reliance and personal independence? If a fair-skinned person said something so dumb, they’d be slammed as a racist — and rightfully so. And yet children are being taught this garbage as truth.

The latest scandal comes as Americans nationwide recoil in horror in response to revelations that “Critical Race Theory” was being forced on federal employees thanks to the Obama administration. President Trump promptly rescinded the Obama-era measure. But massive damage has already been done. And in public schools, it continues uninterrupted.

THE TAKEAWAY

This clown-world level absurdity in “education” is only possible in an absurd system such as the tax-funded public-school monopoly that exists today. In a free market, no sensible parent would ever pay anything to have their child indoctrinated with hateful, racist, and ridiculous propaganda such as the garbage described above.

If parents do not wake up, it will be their children and their nation who will pay the enormous price.

 

FPM: https://freedomproject.com/blog/2020/10/13/school-individualism-and-objectivity-are-white-supremacy


Alex Newman is a correspondent for The New American, covering economics, education, politics, and more. He can be reached at anewman@thenewamerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook

Kathleen Marquardt: Cancelling Western Culture Without Guns 4 (1)

by Kathleen Marquardt

I know that I am not the only one feeling like I fell down a rabbit hole without taking the appropriate drugs to enjoy it. We don’t realize it, but we are now living in a world that has fallen apart. Our culture has collapsed while we were trying to understand what was happening.

Our leaders are inviting/allowing the destruction — not only of statues, thus our history – but of cities (and then asking the national taxpayers to cover the expense of rebuilding). We are told that healthy people must wear masks and practice social distancing, while the leaders are insisting on putting Wuhan Flu infected patients into nursing homes where the most vulnerable dwell. Mayors are allowing outlaw gangs to destroy their cities, deface property, and threaten citizens – without lifting a finger or speaking out against the illegal acts. People who do protect their property with guns (brandishing, not firing), are raided, their guns are confiscated, and they are being brought up on charges. Most tellingly, very few of our government officials are showing outrage over these actions and fewer (like one, so far) are doing anything to stop the lawlessness. It is as if our so-called leaders are tacitly approving of the mayhem; if not, it doesn’t show.

But, in my humble opinion, one of the most evil things is the ‘cancel culture’. What someone said 30 years ago, is now judged by the most extreme political correctness. So, 30 years ago, a man said he didn’t think women should be in the military. A comment, nothing more. He had no authority to make it an edict. So what? We all have opinions and speak them. But now, he has resigned his position because the cancel culture crew (ccc) attacked him via his employer. Cancel culture threatens the businesses that employ the ‘attackee’ with boycotting and more. Cancel culture is the modus operandi of political correctness. It is insidious. It is like a deadly virus living in your body that you don’t know about until some progressive woke snowflake decides to announce to the world that something you did decades ago is now verboten. Not only is it verboten, but because you committed the thought crime, and even spoke it, years ago you are now to be vilified, unemployed, and you need to kiss (or is it wash) the feet of those who have destroyed your life. And, as it is so much fun for evil people to watch this behavior, they will perpetrate it, too.

Understand that something that was not at all politically incorrect 10, 20, 30, 50 years ago, can now be used against a person. Instead of destroying statues of those who built the Great American Experiment, the ccc (who are by far more vile and dangerous than the KKK) are destroying living beings – for the fun of it. This is ex post facto without law. And political correctness is NOT the law. Being politically correct is supposedly protected by the First Amendment. I have a right to say something that makes you angry; and you have a right to be offended by it. But, so what?

We’ve seen political correctness mowing down businesses, people, statues, and more. Mostly with lies! An early example that crossed my mind is when Greenpeace hired a man to club a baby seal to death while they filmed it and blamed the Inuit sealers. While it was exposed as a ‘hit job’ and even taken to court in Germany, the lie remains in the minds of many. This was cancel culture before it had a name, and it was one of the most egregious examples. But it has been used to destroy so many businesses, people (the ccc love it when humans are destroyed by their actions), and now our culture.

Understand that political correctness is anti-Western culture. The purpose of political correctness is to attack Western culture ideas and ideals. What ideals are those? Individual freedom is the key one. With individual freedom, we are free to think, say, and act as we desire – as long as we do not infringe on others’ freedoms. Political correctness will make us all atomata. We will all wear Mao jackets and pajama pants, believe in the collective will, and have no free will or be allowed to think for ourselves.

First, our culture had to be eroded. Our schools brainwashed our children with lies – yes, lies. Lies about the hole in the ozone, global warming, gender, meat eating, COVID, individual freedom – a whole gamut of issues. Our government has been a major aider and abettor in many of the lies promulgated through the schools, and through the medical societies, courts, and Congress. The scientific community is no exception. Neither are the churches. We are being undermined from every side.

Western Culture is being taken down without a shot being fired. It is being canceled. And most of us don’t even see or understand what is happening. By the time we can comprehend it, it will be far too late.

APC: https://americanpolicy.org/2020/08/03/cancelling-western-culture-without-guns/


Kathleen Marquardt has been an advocate for property rights and freedom for decades. While not intending to be an activist, she has become a leader and an avid supporter of constitutional rights, promoter of civility, sound science, and reason. She serves as Vice President of American Policy Center. Kathleen now writes and speaks on Agenda21/2030, and its threat to our culture and our system of representative government.

Alex Newman: TN to Parents-Do NOT Watch Kids’ Online Classes 4 (1)

by Alex Newman

Government education bureaucrats in Tennessee are under fire again after asking parents to sign a form pledging not to watch their children’s online public-school classes, drawing suspicion and criticism from across America. When outrage ensued, officials backed down, but still asked parents not to record or share the lessons.

The nationwide scandal over the requests comes as multiple government-school teachers have been publicly fretting on social media about parents finding potentially out what their children are being exposed to amid virtual classes. It also comes right after Tennessee officials were forced to walk back a plan to send swarms of government agents to perform “wellbeing” checks on every child in the state.

The form in question attempts to justify the bizarre request that parents stay away by claiming that it was about protecting “student privacy” to “the greatest extent possible.” However, with government schools deliberately obliterating privacy rights of children for data-mining and other purposes, and sharing that data with practically anyone, few analysts believe the dubious excuse.

“RCS strongly discourages non student observation of online meetings due to the potential of confidential information about a student being revealed,” explained the form sent home by the Rutherford County Schools district that was obtained by The Tennessee Star. “Violation of this agreement may result in RCS removing my child from the virtual meeting.”

In short, if a parent decided to check on what their child was being taught, that child could be removed from the virtual classroom. According to “educators” who have expressed concerns about parents seeing what is going on, major concerns are that parents might disagree with or even interfere with the indoctrination on gender, sexuality, LGBT, race-mongering, history, and other controversial subjects.

Philadelphia teacher Matthew Kay, for instance, publicly expressed a common concern among teachers recently. “So, this fall, virtual class discussions will have many potential spectators — parents, siblings, etc. — in the same room. We’ll never be quite sure who is overhearing the discourse. What does this do for our equity/inclusion work?” he wondered without explaining why he was doing “equity/inclusion work.”

“I am most intrigued by the damage that ‘helicopter/snowplow’ parents can do in honest conversations about gender/sexuality,” he continued after saying race “conversations” are in his “wheelhouse,” even worrying about leftist parents being upset. “If we are engaged in the messy work of destabilizing  a kids [sic] racism or homophobia or transphobia — how much do we want their classmates’ parents piling on?”

Naturally, parents and citizens were incensed at the form in Tennessee asking them to stay out. The outrage forced the school district to walk back the demands, but officials still insisted that parents would not be allowed to record or share the content. “We are aware of the concern that has been raised about this distance-learning letter that was sent to parents,” district spokesman James Evans told the media.

Claiming that the intent was not to prevent parents from being involved with their children but to “protect” supposed “academic privacy,” Evans said the district has now shifted its policy. “We have issued new guidance to principals that parents can assist their children during virtual group lessons with permission of the instructor but should refrain from sharing or recording any information about other students in the classroom,” he said.

The bizarre request is especially ironic considering that just last week, Tennessee parents were boiling over a plot to send government agents into every family home to check on the “wellbeing” of every child in the state, including homeschoolers. The plan called for the agents to try to speak with the children without parents to check on whether their “needs” were being “met.” Parents who resist would have their information placed in a database.

Apparently phony Republican leaders in the state of Tennessee believe they have a right to propagandize “our” children without interference from parents. Parents, by contrast, have no right to raise their own children without interference from government. Only a massive, nationwide outrage campaign that included furious legislators speaking out forced Governor Bill Lee and “Education” Commissioner Penny Schwinn to go back to the drawing board.

THE TAKEAWAY

Government is growing increasingly arrogant in its war against families and parents over control of the raising and upbringing of children. Because molding the minds of the next generation is such an awesome power, tyrants everywhere have desperately sought it out. Only educated and active parents will be capable of pushing the tyrants back. They must. Liberty literally depends on it.

TNR: https://freedomproject.com/the-newman-report/1527-tn-to-parents-do-not-watch-kids-online-classes


Alex Newman is a correspondent for The New American, covering economics, education, politics, and more. He can be reached at anewman@thenewamerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook

Bill Lockwood: Multiculturalism Destroys America 0 (0)

by Bill Lockwood

First century Israel was a mixing pot of a variety of cultures. Ever since the fourth century B.C. the nation had been engulfed by Hellenization brought about by the Macedonian general, Alexander the Great. This western culture was completely different from the Asian world.

One of the most shocking elements of that Greek culture was the building of a gymnasium in Jerusalem where athletes would perform in the nude. “So they built a gymnasium in Jerusalem according to Gentile custom … They joined with the Gentiles and sold themselves to do evil.” So wrote the Maccabees (1 Macc. 1:14-15).

Rome
Then in 63 B.C. the Roman general Pompey took over the old Seleucid Empire of Syria. He defeated the forces of Antioch and stormed down toward Jerusalem. Thus began the turbulent rule of Rome over Judea.

The Romans appointed John Hyrcanus II as High Priest—a sacrilege to the Old Testament that mandated a son of Aaron to be priest for life. They also confirmed Antipater, an Idumean, to be the royal official representing Rome. It was his son, Herod the Great, who killed all the babes of Bethlehem at the birth of Christ.

With an Idumean line of kings ruling over the nation and its lands; and Hellenization of customs, language, habits, foods, and entertainment; and Rome overseeing the entire with its standing army stationed throughout Israel, which was deeply resented by the Jews; the stage was set for a huge conflict of cultures.

The chaos that ensued is well-known. Wracked by differences so wide as to never hope for healing, the Jews themselves were practically exterminated by Rome at the holocaust of 70 A.D. Rome was tired of the constant inner struggles and civil unrest that seemed to be the hallmark of Israel.

America
Rick Santorum, former candidate for president of the United States, related that his grandfather came from Fascist Italy to come to America to work in the coalmines of western Pennsylvania. Like most immigrants, he believed in the American ideal; that all men were created equal.

However, Santorum warns, “as a result of multicultural relativism, we fear seeing the American aspiration eroded, our common purpose lost, and the ‘re-appearing of tyranny and oppression’ that is not only poised against us abroad but is also pointing its dagger at us here at home.”

The real culprit here is the philosophy of multiculturalism. It threatens to destroy our once solid nation, just as it did Israel of old.

“The Master Principle” of our nation, as Dan Smoot wrote in 1994, is Christianity. The organic documents of our government—the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, are based upon its presuppositions. Assimilation to these fundamental principles proved to be the glue that held diverse peoples and groups together.

Multiculturalism, however, which is being drummed into our students from elementary school through collegiate training, seeks to dissolve this glue by its flagrant teaching of relativism.

Charles A. Tesconi, dean of the College of Education at the University of Vermont, relates the following. “As a descriptor, multiculturalism points to a condition of numerous life-styles, values, and belief systems. By treating diverse cultural groups and ways of life as equally legitimate, by teaching about them in positive ways, legitimizing differences through various education policies and practices, self-understanding, self-esteem, intergroup understanding and harmony, and equal opportunity are promoted.”

As Alex Newman and Samuel Blumenfeld remark here, this “multicultural education embraces much more than mere cultural pluralism or ethnic diversity. It legitimizes different lifestyles and values systems, thereby legitimizing moral diversity—which is simply moral anarchy” (Crimes of the Educators, p. 229).

The concept of moral diversity “directly contradicts the biblical concept of moral absolutes based on the Ten Commandments, on which this nation was founded.”

Anarchy
As Newman and Blumenfeld state above, multiculturalism has led to anarchy. Lawlessness. And this itself, as if it is a legitimate philosophy, is being peddled in the university classroom. Liberal professorships across academia have routinely churned out young radical revolutionaries ready to revamp America.

Dr. Nathan Jun, for example, professor of Philosophy at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, TX, has specialized in Anarchist Studies. He has published numerous articles in Anarchist journals. Anarchist Studies, Radical Philosophy Review, and The Journal of Political Ideologies included among them. He is author of Anarchy and Political Modernity (2011).

He has written that “classical anarchism is arguably the first political postmodernism.” Postmodernism, of course, completely severs the concept of values and morality from any eternal standard. Nothing is right; nothing is wrong.
If one thinks this is simply an esoteric academic teaching that has no relevance to the current troubled America, Dr. Jun’s Facebook page features an “Abolish the Police” poster.

Christopher F. Rufo, a contributing editor of City Journal, writes that “The latest call to action from some criminal-justice activists: ‘Abolish the Police.’” Advocates and activists press not just to reform the police, but to do away with it altogether. It is a “concrete policy goal” of anarchists that has infected mainstream American radicals from Seattle to Boston.

“Police abolitionists believe that they stand at the vanguard of a new idea, but this strain of thought dates to the eighteenth-century philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who believed that stripping away the corruptions of civilization would liberate the goodness of man.”

This, of course, is nonsense. As Jun himself demonstrates, when anyone, even with legitimate questions on his Facebook thread asks why, in these days of violence, should we “abolish the police,” he tells them to “F____ off.” So much for “liberating the goodness of man.”

Alex Newman: Good Public-School Teachers Under Siege 0 (0)

by Alex Newman

Public schools do hold good teachers who want to follow the best education practices and who object to the indoctrination of the LBGTQ agenda, but they are being penalized.

When the National Education Association (NEA) partnered with a radical homosexual and transgender group known as the “Human Rights Campaign” to create “welcoming schools,” a lot of public-school teachers felt uncomfortable, if not outraged. But when the groups sent out a mass e-mail encouraging teachers to ask young children what “pronouns” they prefer — he, she, they, z, tree, and so on — that was a bridge too far for many.

In a video produced as part of the campaign, two transgender children discuss their preferred pronouns with each other. One of the children prefers the plural pronoun “they,” while the other, who claims not to be a boy or a girl, prefers “zee.” Seriously. After that, the two children discuss the alleged need to “educate” their own teachers, especially substitutes, on the supposed importance of using the newly invented pronouns that students choose for themselves.

If that all sounds crazy, that’s because it is. Teachers are already finding themselves in hot water for refusing to play along with the madness. Indeed, teachers such as Peter Vlaming at West Point High School in Virginia have already been fired from their jobs for refusing to refer to girls using male pronouns, and vice-versa. In California, teachers say they are required to submit to the gender madness or be fired, too.

Polling data reveal that the number of Americans who recognize that children are being harmed by the government-school system is growing. Indeed, about seven out of 10 parents would prefer not to send their children to government schools at all. But it is important to recognize that it’s not just children who are victims of the education establishment. Increasingly, public-school teachers are being ordered to tolerate, aid, or perpetrate evil — or leave. And many good teachers are being driven out.

In interviews with The New American, almost a dozen current and former public-school teachers expressed serious concerns about the changes taking place in “education.” Some had already been ordered by superiors to violate their conscience and common sense in order to comply with outlandish statutes, regulations, or policies. Others know full well that the day is fast approaching when they will have to choose: Obey the system, or obey God and their conscience.

Transgender Locker Rooms

At Chasco Middle School in Pasco County, Florida, it was a day just like any other day for physical education teacher Rob Oppedisano — at least until his principal walked into the locker room, shut the door, and asked to have a chat. “There is a girl identifying as a boy who is going to be in here, changing and showering,” Oppedisano recalls the principal saying, adding that he was told he would have to be in there supervising it all.

Naturally, Oppedisano, a Christian, told his boss that there was no way he could stand in there and watch a minor girl get undressed. He explained that it would be inappropriate to subject the boys in his class to that, too — especially without even notifying their parents. “I told him, ‘I just can’t do that,’” Oppedisano told The New American in a phone interview. “He came back and said to me, ‘Rob, I don’t want you to lose your job over this. Why don’t you just think about it, and we can talk later.’”

Still, Oppedisano resisted, noting that there was no written policy on this, while asking that the school district get involved. Eventually, the district sent over an attorney, who held a two-hour meeting advising Oppedisano to comply — or else. The lawyer also claimed, falsely, that Oppedisano was the only one who had a problem with the idea of a girl changing and showering in the boys’ locker room.

The attorney said parents would not be notified and that the district was not at all concerned about lawsuits, Oppedisano recalled. “He said we are the largest employer in Pasco County and that we get sued all the time anyway,” the PE teacher said.

Then, the lawyer from the district offered a transfer, which Oppedisano declined. “What good would that do if the policy is the same?” he asked. The district operative then warned Oppedisano that he could lose his job and even his teaching certificate, meaning “I would never be able teach in Florida again,” Oppedisano recalled about that meeting. “I said ‘No, I don’t want to lose my job, but I’m not going to quit on these kids, and their parents need to know.’” The union representative, instead of standing up for teachers, also urged Oppedisano to surrender.

Then, the big day came. “She came in, just walked right by us, and the boys ran out half dressed, and said, ‘Coach, we have a problem, there’s a girl in the boys’ locker room!’” Oppedisano recalled about that day. “But there was nothing we could do. After that, throughout the whole semester, my principal or assistant principal would take the girl in the locker room with the boys, and I’d just sit in the hallway.”

Obeying God, or Men

And now, that is one of the issues the superintendent is upset about — he felt Oppedisano’s job duties required him to watch the underage girl undress, something that just a few years ago would have landed him in prison, and for good reason. Without the non-profit Christian legal group Liberty Counsel representing him, Oppedisano believes he already would have been fired.

While that gender-confused student has moved on, the unwritten “policy” remains firmly in place. So Oppedisano is just waiting until the next “transgender” student comes along to make similar demands, and for the administration to retaliate. He does not hold it against his boss, though, knowing full well that the demands came not from the school administration, but from “above their heads.” There have been claims of “federal mandates,” but Obama’s bizarre and flagrantly unconstitutional rules on the subject were promptly repealed when President Trump took office.

Either way, Oppedisano cannot watch a girl undress. “Between the morals and the safety issues, being a follower of Jesus Christ — and remember, innocent kids are being put in a really bad situation here — I wanted no part of that,” Oppedisano said, getting emotional. “I fought for the parents too. They should have been involved. This is a serious situation. And it wasn’t just the boys. What about the girl, being put in there with a bunch of boys? It is bad for the staff too. Any way you look at it it’s a bad situation. It’s just terrible policy.”

And girls in the boys’ locker rooms is just one part of the problem. “It’s all coming in,” he said. “More and more of the LGBT agenda is being put out there. I also teach a health class, and they are starting to present the LGBT stuff in a positive manner. It’s definitely coming. I don’t know why it’s happening or where it’s coming from or how it got started. All I know is these policies — we’re supposed to call children by the name they prefer, then we are supposed to try to hide it when their parents come in. It’s happening here, and in other places.” Most parents still have no idea, Oppedisano added.

For Christians and other faculty members of faith, the situation is looking increasingly grim. “If a policy is going to force you to go against what you believe in, you’re not going to have too many choices,” he said. “They wanted to put me out of work and they refused to tolerate my beliefs. If you’re a Christian and you stand up for something, you can rest assured that that would be looked upon as behavior that’s not going to be tolerated. That puts a lot of pressure on us — either we suppress our faith and give in, or we stand up and live by what we believe.”

Blatant Discrimination Against Christian Teachers

The hostility and discrimination against teachers in public schools is now a nationwide problem. When teacher Roxie Hunter decided to become the sponsor for the Christian club at her public school in Phoenix, Arizona, for instance, she never could have imagined the persecution that would be unleashed against her and her students. From trying to prevent them from wearing Christian T-shirts to seeking to ban Bibles on campus, government education officials went wild in the effort to suppress the Christian student club.

“We were discriminated against in many instances,” Hunter told The New American in Phoenix in an on-camera interview about the group, known as “Lions for Christ.” While teachers could actively participate in other student groups, including highly controversial ones, Hunter was barred from doing anything at all with her Christian students. “They said it was against the Constitution,” Hunter explained when asked what the school administration used as a pretext to persecute the Christian club.

Hunter was not buying it. “I explained to them that it was against the Constitution in the USSR, but not in the United States of America,” she said. “They also said the courts had ruled that we couldn’t do certain things. So I had to do the research, and I found that many of the things that were said were basically rumors that had been passed along.”

In reality, courts have consistently upheld the right of students and teachers to do precisely what Lions for Christ was trying to do. “Students have the right to assemble, they have the right to pray, and they have the right to bring their Bibles to school,” she said, adding that many of her students had been told they were not allowed to do those things by school officials.

Quackery Must Be Used, or Else

Aside from ordering teachers to violate their conscience, the education establishment is also forcing teachers to teach in ways that go against what they know is best for their students. In interviews with The New American, numerous teachers expressed serious concerns. Some left the public-school system altogether to avoid becoming complicit in harming children, while others are still fighting.

Kim Pendleton, who has been involved in education for over 15 years, saw firsthand the carnage being unleashed on children and educators by the Obama-backed national standards known as Common Core. “Many teachers feel the creators of Common Core were idiots who knew nothing about education and child development,” she told The New American, giving examples of the wildly inappropriate standards used to ensure that children fail to learn properly. “I know in my heart this is not true. The powers that be knew everything about child development and created a system for failure, frustration and illiteracy.”

After seeing firsthand the damage being wrought on children, Pendleton knew she had to get out. She now teaches at Freedom Project Academy. “The only reason that public education has not completely crumbled yet is one thing: educators who know better,” Pendleton explained. “I am acquainted with many of them, and they are priceless. However, they are leaving, either through retirement or abandonment. Their mental health is taking a toll. I am not sure how long it will be before it all collapses, but if we continue on this path, it will happen.”

Pendleton often felt conflicted between doing what was right, and doing what the system demanded — especially in reading and writing. The curriculum used for reading and writing, for instance, was a disaster. “The lessons were convoluted and were more akin to pep talks as opposed to actually teaching good writing and reading,” she explained, adding that Common Core and the dysfunctional sex-ed were not helping children at all. “The ones who did well usually had an educated family and had been ‘taught’ fundamentals long before they arrived at school.” Even experts involved in the writing of Common Core have warned that it does not reflect reality in terms of how students learn to read.

The modern classroom environment is also totally out of control, Pendleton explained, noting that student misbehavior consumes an enormous amount of classroom time and is getting worse. “I was often dealing with that as opposed to teaching,” she recalled. “I was sworn at by third and fourth graders and punched one year. There were little consequences for students, and when they figured that out, the behavior escalated.”

And when teachers go against the harmful system, they face retaliation, Pendleton said. Among other tactics, such teachers are given poor evaluations. Many of them are scared to speak out, too, because their salary and their retirement is at stake, forcing many teachers to remain silent even though they know all of this is wrong.

Getting Worse

Aaron Potsick has been teaching for almost two decades. During that time, he has seen things go downhill, fast. “There is much less value placed on quality teaching and more value placed on the newest pedagogy put forth by the state and curriculum companies — and it changes every year,” he told The New American. “It’s more of how well can you parrot what you’re told. Each year the newest ‘best practice’ is shown, and countless professional developments are given on how to teach better. Everything from the last month or year’s ‘best practice’ is thrown out the window. Teachers are constantly having to learn new curriculum and teaching strategies and leave behind proven models.”

Even the teaching of actual subjects is low on the priority list unless it is being tested, Potsick said. “The way to ‘perform’ is to get the testing topics covered and adhere strictly to those topics,” he explained, adding that which material is taught or not taught is controlled in this way. “Any additional information that the district or the state doesn’t deem as ‘important’ is not taught. To teach outside the guidelines means you are falling behind the others you are ‘competing’ against and then your class will not perform as well.”

“This all clearly leads to all of our students’ learning being a ‘mile wide and an inch deep,’” continued Potsick, who taught middle-school history in his final years in a public school before going on to teach through private alternatives, mostly online. “As you know, teaching something as intricate and important as Civics without context is to not really teach it at all. If there is no foundation for why, then there is no understanding, which leads to our students being easily politically misled and influenced — just what our country needs!”

The teacher training was often suspect, too. “There was always the underlying liberal mindset that was encouraged,” he explained. “The underlying idea of America as being characterized by slavery and Native American devastation was regularly covered as an underlying element of lesson ideas. This was clearly accepted by the vast majority…. At my school, we regularly had teachers telling the students how horrible Trump was and condemning his actions without anything close to the full story.”

Potsick also noted that there have been a number of things he was ordered to teach and do that made him uncomfortable. In history, for instance, he had a mandated textbook that included an entire factually challenged chapter on supposed “American Imperialism,” demonizing America and Americanism.

And then more recently, the system began pushing “Social and Emotional Learning” (SEL) that really made him uncomfortable. During his last two years, it even had “mandated SEL time in all classrooms,” he explained. “It started innocent enough: learning conflict resolution skills, dealing with anger, being a good friend, and so on. But then, it began overtly pushing ideology.” Indeed, teachers were even ordered to show videos glorifying homosexuality, transgenderism, bisexuality, and more. As a Christian, Potsick refused, but the school had not yet worked out a system to check on every class to ensure the LGBT propaganda was being foisted on students.

Even though he has witnessed the rapid deterioration of education since the beginning of the 21st century, Potsick also said very few teachers are willing to go against the status quo in a meaningful way. “The whole system from college classes in education to get your degree, to teacher training, to many administrators’ expectations; it’s such a monolith that not many challengers get through,” he said. “When they do, they usually just leave because they get worn down.”

Eventually, Potsick left, too. “I left because teaching became less about what I could bring to the table as a teacher and more about the extra stuff that was meaningless to a real education,” he said. Other concerns included not being able to give children the failing grades they deserved, having to deal with outrageous behavior including threats and flagrant disobedience only to have children lie about the teacher, and so on.

“Schools are developing more and more mindless, entitled future citizens that expect to get things their way, without any hard work, because that’s what they get at public schools!” he continued.

Teachers Not Valued, Scared to Speak Out

As an elected member of his local school board, teacher Ted Lamb has a unique vantage point from which to consider the “many problems” he sees plaguing the government education system. Being a teacher today “can be very challenging,” he told The New American after attending a “Rescuing Our Children” talk by this writer this summer. “The bureaucracy of mandates, policy, and standardized curriculum with assessments has destroyed many things in education.”

Like Potsick, Lamb has felt conflicted between doing what is right — and doing what the system demands. “Giving grades that students did not deserve has been the big one,” he said, pointing to decisions made by administrators that he knew would cause “significant issues.” Other problems include “the lack of teaching critical skills,” the “overkill of bureaucracy,” and the endless “unnecessary mandates” that represent an enormous burden. Another concern is Common Core and controversial sex-education programs, which Lamb said “absolutely” do not benefit students.

Teachers and their knowledge and experience are not valued by the system, either. “We are not asked about key and important policies,” he said. “Many times teachers are treated as though they are replaceable.”

But again, echoing a constant theme heard throughout The New American’s conversations with teachers across America, Lamb said teachers were scared to speak out about all the problems they see. “Teachers are scared to speak out across the nation because of perception of what has happened to their colleagues,” he said, noting that there can be “retaliation” when a teacher goes against or even questions certain policies. “If you do not agree with the policy of the district or division then you are ‘blackballed’ many times.”

Teachers Under Siege

Despite several generations of indoctrination and dumbing down — especially in colleges of education across America — there is still a large number of amazing teachers and administrators working in the public-school system. There are, for instance, still teachers who risk the ire of the education establishment or worse by ignoring Common Core mandates and secretly teaching children how to read using systematic, intensive phonics instruction. There are also those who ignore the mandates and teach their students real American history, including the Christian history of the United States and the fact that America’s Founders were fighting for God-given rights.

Unfortunately, the system is increasingly turning against those great educators, working to force them into submission or early retirement. Countless teachers, faced with those grim alternatives, have already left the system. Many more will be leaving in the years ahead as the system gets better at weeding out dissenters. While it is indeed true that there are still great men and women inside the system, it is also true that they are severely limited in what they can do.

Americans should encourage and pray for the brave teachers who are still holding the line, but no more children should be sacrificed to the false idol of government schools. To survive as a free society over the long term, the rest of America should follow the lead of public-school teachers who are far more likely than parents as a whole to educate their children in private schools or at home, according to a 2015 survey conducted by Knowledge Networks for the journal Education Next. That is because they know what is going on.

TNA: https://www.thenewamerican.com/print-magazine/item/34254-good-public-school-teachers-under-siege


Alex Newman is a correspondent for The New American, covering economics, education, politics, and more. He can be reached at anewman@thenewamerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook

Bill Lockwood: The American War on God & the First Amendment 0 (0)

by Bill Lockwood

American leaders have been hostile to God for over a century. Our cultural landscape has been re-shaped because of it. One of the most recent battles involves a High School in West Virginia.

The Rutherford Institute, led by John Whitehead, has a press release this week which once again shows the depth and nature of this war against Christianity. A high school student-led club called Youth Alive in Weston, West Virginia has practiced posting sticky notes with inspirational messages to encourage each other on a bulletin board in one of the hallways. It is student-led, featuring Young Republicans, Young Democrats, Youth Alive, and other groups–all which use the board.

The trouble apparently came when students began posting Bible verses of a self-help nature on the board. That was too much for the Lewis County High School administration, which promptly shut down the bulletin board completely. No Bible allowed. It probably would have still been in use had students posted a quote from Karl Marx such as “Workers of the World, Unite!”

The nature of the America’s struggle is here seen. It is The Bible that is under assault. With concerns over a non-constitutional measure called “Separation of church and state,” the Lewis County High School actually has capitulated to the onslaught of secular forces in America.

John Whitehead, a constitutional attorney, comments, “What a missed opportunity to support young people in their efforts to find positive, constructive methods of engaging with fellow students who might be struggling with feelings of depression, unhappiness and stress.”

Whitehead has been fighting this secular onslaught for forty years. “Not only is the removal of these inspirational notes a clear act of censorship that violates the First Amendment,” he said, “but it also sends the disheartening message to young people that school officials care more about doing what is politically correct than doing what is right.”

The Rutherford Institute is leading the legal fight for liberty in Lewis County, demanding the Youth Alive be allowed to re-post inspirational notes, including selections from Bible verses. Students need faith, encouragement and forgiveness in a world where people are broken-hearted, alone, insecure, stressed and confused. The Lewis County High School has actually violated the First Amendment and the Equal Access Act, a federal statute that guarantees religious and political clubs equal rights in public schools.

First Amendment?

Two things here. One, the First Amendment is designed to forbid government from endorsing or supporting one particular church in the Christian world—nothing to do with removing Bible, Christianity, or godly principles from the public square. The forbidding of “establishment of religion” in the First Amendment simply refers to a “National Denomination” in the sense that America was to have a State Church supported by public taxes.

As a matter of fact, Fisher Ames was the Founding Father who offered the final wording of the First Amendment. From his own writing it is clear that “religion” means “single Christian denomination.” The original version of the amendment, proposed in the Senate on Sep. 3, 1789, stated, “Congress will not make any law establishing any religious denomination.” The second version read, “Congress shall make no law establishing any particular denomination.” The third version reads similarly.

Note that the word “religion” is interchangeable with “denomination.” The founders were unanimous that the First Amendment merely forbade the establishment of a National Church. It had nothing to do with excluding God from the public square, least of all from schools. But what do secularists care about original intent?

Second, Dr. Samuel Mitcham, Jr., a military historian who has authored the recent It Wasn’t About Slavery: Exposing the Great Lie of the Civil War, stated in a recent interview on the American Liberty with Bill Lockwood radio show, that which we term “political correctness” is actually nothing less than Cultural Marxism. Everything has a place in the market-place of ideas—except the Bible.

Dr. Mitcham knows whereof he speaks. A college professor for over twenty years and author of more than 40 books on military history and the culture, Dr. Mitcham is right on target. Who would have guessed that none the less than Karl Marx would have been the dominant force in American political “correctness” within two hundred-fifty years of his Manifesto?

 

Alex Newman: Democrats Propose Keeping Kids at School Until 6pm 0 (0)

by Alex Newman

Parents should be able to hand the government even more responsibility for raising their children, Democrat U.S. Senator Kamala Harris of California believes. To help make that a reality, she introduced an unconstitutional bill that would keep school doors open until 6 PM or later, as well as during the summer months.

Dubbed the “Family Friendly Schools Act,” Harris’ bill would help further obliterate the family, replacing parents with government school officials for almost the entire life of a child. Under the plan, American taxpayers would be forced to provide even more tax money to government “education” so that parents could spend even less time with their children.

If approved, the legislation would start by bribing 500 government schools across America into creating “activities” for children from 8 AM or before until 6 PM or later. The schools, part of a pilot program, would be required to provide “high-quality, culturally relevant, linguistically accessible, developmentally appropriate academic, athletic, or enrichment opportunities” during that time.

That means millions of children would be eating three government-provided meals per day at their government schools, further cementing the government’s role as provider in the child’s mind. Next up: Bed-time stories and goodnight hugs for children from government bureaucrats, so that parents do not have to worry about those parental duties, either.

The Orwellian scheme would also plow over $1 billion — to start with — into creating “21st Century Community Learning Centers” at public schools across America. These institutions would subject some 2 million American children to what Harris’ press release described as “summer programming,” thereby eliminating summer vacation.

While parents typically spend an hour or two with their children on an average day, government has them captive for about eight hours per day, five days a week, for at least 14 years. In total, children who start school in Kindergarten will spend over 20,000 waking hours in government care, compared to around one fourth that much time with their parents.

Harris pointed to her mother working “long hours” as a reason why America needs children to be in government schools for more hours. Apparently “juggling” school schedules and work is a “common cause of stress and financial hardship,” said Harris, who is descended from slave owners and whose own father has lambasted her disgusting “identity politics.”

“But, this does not have to be the case,” Harris continued, because apparently Uncle Sam is going to make it all better by taking even more money from people to somehow help them deal with their “financial hardship.” Proving that she would destroy a proper understanding of justice if elected in her long-shot bid for the presidency, Harris added: “Justice for students and working families is on the ballot.”

Of course, totalitarians have long believed that government ought to play a much larger role in the raising of children. Indeed, Hitler, Stalin, Lenin, Mao, Castro, and countless other socialist and communist tyrants throughout the 20th century sought to usurp the role of parents in raising the next generation, always with horrific results.

In America, Big Government mongers have similar dreams. Obama’s Education Secretary Arne Duncan, for instance, openly called for government boarding schools that would have some children 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Hillary Clinton argued two decades ago that it takes a (government) “village” to raise a child. And the Obama administration released a policy document seeking home visits that referred to parents as “equal partners” in the raising of children.

THE TAKEAWAY

As American children get dumber and dumber — not to mention more immoral — with each passing year in public school, it is incredible that somebody could seriously propose increasing  the amount of time spent there. What U.S. children need is more time with their parents and less time as inmates in the government’s indoctrination centers. Harris should be ashamed of herself.


Alex Newman is a correspondent for The New American, covering economics, education, politics, and more. He can be reached at anewman@thenewamerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook

Ryan T. Anderson: Transgender Ideology Is Riddled With Contradictions. Here Are the Big Ones. 0 (0)

by Ryan T. Anderson Ph.D.

People say that we live in a postmodern age that has rejected metaphysics. That’s not quite true.

We live in a postmodern age that promotes an alternative metaphysics. As I explain in “When Harry Became Sally,” at the heart of the transgender moment are radical ideas about the human person—in particular, that people are what they claim to be, regardless of contrary evidence. A transgender boy is a boy, not merely a girl who identifies as a boy.

It’s understandable why activists make these claims. An argument about transgender identities will be much more persuasive if it concerns who someone is, not merely how someone identifies. And so the rhetoric of the transgender moment drips with ontological assertions: People are the gender they prefer to be. That’s the claim.

Transgender activists don’t admit that this is a metaphysical claim. They don’t want to have the debate on the level of philosophy, so they dress it up as a scientific and medical claim. And they’ve co-opted many professional associations for their cause.

Thus the American Psychological Association, in a pamphlet titled “Answers to Your Questions about Transgender People, Gender Identity, and Gender Expression,” tells us, “Transgender is an umbrella term for persons whose gender identity, gender expression, or behavior does not conform to that typically associated with the sex to which they were assigned at birth.”

Notice the politicized language: A person’s sex is “assigned at birth.” Back in 2005, even the Human Rights Campaign referred instead to “birth sex” and “physical sex.”

The phrase “sex assigned at birth” is now favored because it makes room for “gender identity” as the real basis of a person’s sex.

In an expert declaration to a federal district court in North Carolina concerning H.B. 2, Dr. Deanna Adkins stated, “From a medical perspective, the appropriate determinant of sex is gender identity.” Adkins is a professor at Duke University School of Medicine and the director of the Duke Center for Child and Adolescent Gender Care (which opened in 2015).

Adkins argues that gender identity is not only the preferred basis for determining sex, but “the only medically supported determinant of sex.” Every other method is bad science, she claims: “It is counter to medical science to use chromosomes, hormones, internal reproductive organs, external genitalia, or secondary sex characteristics to override gender identity for purposes of classifying someone as male or female.”

This is a remarkable claim, not least because the argument recently was that gender is only a social construct, while sex is a biological reality. Now, activists claim that gender identity is destiny, while biological sex is the social construct.

Adkins doesn’t say if she would apply this rule to all mammalian species. But why should sex be determined differently in humans than in other mammals? And if medical science holds that gender identity determines sex in humans, what does this mean for the use of medicinal agents that have different effects on males and females? Does the proper dosage of medicine depend on the patient’s sex or gender identity?

But what exactly is this “gender identity” that is supposed to be the true medical determinant of sex? Adkins defines it as “a person’s inner sense of belonging to a particular gender, such as male or female.”

Note that little phrase “such as,” implying that the options are not necessarily limited to male or female. Other activists are more forthcoming in admitting that gender identity need not be restricted to the binary choice of male or female, but can include both or neither. The American Psychological Association, for example, defines “gender identity” as “a person’s internal sense of being male, female, or something else.”

Adkins asserts that being transgender is not a mental disorder, but simply “a normal developmental variation.” And she claims, further, that medical and mental health professionals who specialize in the treatment of gender dysphoria are in agreement with this view.

Transgender Catechism

These notions about sex and gender are now being taught to young children. Activists have created child-friendly graphics for this purpose, such as the “Genderbread Person Graph.” The Genderbread Person teaches that when it comes to sexuality and gender, people have five different characteristics, each of them falling along a spectrum.

There’s “gender identity,” which is “how you, in your head, define your gender, based on how much you align (or don’t align) with what you understand to be the options for gender.” The graphic lists “4 (of infinite)” possibilities for gender identity: “woman-ness,” “man-ness,” “two-spirit,” or “genderqueer.”

The second characteristic is “gender expression,” which is “the way you present gender, through your actions, dress, and demeanor.” In addition to “feminine” or “masculine,” the options are “butch,” “femme,” “androgynous,” or “gender neutral.”

Third is “biological sex,” defined as “the physical sex characteristics you’re born with and develop, including genitalia, body shape, voice pitch, body hair, hormones, chromosomes, etc.”

The final two characteristics concern sexual orientation: “sexually attracted to” and “romantically attracted to.” The options include “Women/Females/Femininity” and “Men/Males/Masculinity.” Which seems rather binary.

The Genderbread Person tries to localize these five characteristics on the body: gender identity in the brain, sexual and romantic attraction in the heart, biological sex in the pelvis, and gender expression everywhere.

The Genderbread Person presented here is version 3.3, incorporating adjustments made in response to criticism of earlier versions. But even this one violates current dogma. Some activists have complained that the Genderbread Person looks overly male.

A more serious fault in the eyes of many activists is the use of the term “biological sex.” Time magazine drew criticism for the same transgression in 2014 after publishing a profile of Laverne Cox, the “first out trans person” to be featured on the cover.

At least the folks at Time got credit for trying to be “good allies, explaining what many see as a complicated issue,” wrote Mey Rude in an article titled “It’s Time for People to Stop Using the Social Construct of ‘Biological Sex’ to Defend Their Transmisogyny.” (It’s hard to keep up with the transgender moment.)

But Time was judged guilty of using “a simplistic and outdated understanding of biology to perpetuate some very dangerous ideas about trans women,” and failing to acknowledge that biological sex “isn’t something we’re actually born with, it’s something that doctors or our parents assign us at birth.”

Today, transgender “allies” in good standing don’t use the Genderbread Person in their classrooms, but opt for the “Gender Unicorn Graph,” which was created by Trans Student Educational Resources. It has a body shape that doesn’t appear either male or female, and instead of a “biological sex” it has a “sex assigned at birth.”

Those are the significant changes to the Genderbread Person, and they were made so that the new graphic would “more accurately portray the distinction between gender, sex assigned at birth, and sexuality.”

According to Trans Student Education Resources, “Biological sex is an ambiguous word that has no scale and no meaning besides that it is related to some sex characteristics. It is also harmful to trans people. Instead, we prefer ‘sex assigned at birth’ which provides a more accurate description of what biological sex may be trying to communicate.”

The Gender Unicorn is the graphic that children are likely to encounter in school. These are the dogmas they are likely to be catechized to profess.

While activists claim that the possibilities for gender identity are rather expansive—man, woman, both, neither—they also insist that gender identity is innate, or established at a very young age, and thereafter immutable.

Dr. George Brown, a professor of psychiatry and a three-time board member of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, stated in his declaration to the federal court in North Carolina that gender identity “is usually established early in life, by the age of 2 to 3 years old.”

Addressing the same court, Adkins asserted that “evidence strongly suggests that gender identity is innate or fixed at a young age and that gender identity has a strong biological basis.” (At no point in her expert declaration did she cite any sources for any of her claims.)

Transgender Contradictions

If the claims presented in this essay strike you as confusing, you’re not alone. The thinking of transgender activists is inherently confused and filled with internal contradictions. Activists never acknowledge those contradictions. Instead, they opportunistically rely on whichever claim is useful at any given moment.

Here I’m talking about transgender activists. Most people who suffer from gender dysphoria are not activists, and many of them reject the activists’ claims. Many of them may be regarded as victims of the activists, as I show in my book.

Many of those who feel distress over their bodily sex know that they aren’t really the opposite sex, and do not wish to “transition.” They wish to receive help in coming to identify with and accept their bodily self. They don’t think their feelings of gender dysphoria define reality.

But transgender activists do. Regardless of whether they identify as “cisgender” or “transgender,” the activists promote a highly subjective and incoherent worldview.

On the one hand, they claim that the real self is something other than the physical body, in a new form of Gnostic dualism, yet at the same time they embrace a materialist philosophy in which only the material world exists. They say that gender is purely a social construct, while asserting that a person can be “trapped” in the wrong gender.

They say there are no meaningful differences between man and woman, yet they rely on rigid sex stereotypes to argue that “gender identity” is real, while human embodiment is not. They claim that truth is whatever a person says it is, yet they believe there’s a real self to be discovered inside that person.

They promote a radical expressive individualism in which people are free to do whatever they want and define the truth however they wish, yet they try ruthlessly to enforce acceptance of transgender ideology.

It’s hard to see how these contradictory positions can be combined. If you pull too hard on any one thread of transgender ideology, the whole tapestry comes unraveled. But here are some questions we can pose:

If gender is a social construct, how can gender identity be innate and immutable? How can one’s identity with respect to a social construct be determined by biology in the womb? How can one’s identity be unchangeable (immutable) with respect to an ever-changing social construct? And if gender identity is innate, how can it be “fluid”?

The challenge for activists is to offer a plausible definition of gender and gender identity that is independent of bodily sex.

Is there a gender binary or not? Somehow, it both does and does not exist, according to transgender activists. If the categories of “man” and “woman” are objective enough that people can identify as, and bemen and women, how can gender also be a spectrum, where people can identify as, and be, both, or neither, or somewhere in between?

What does it even mean to have an internal sense of gender? What does gender feel like? What meaning can we give to the concept of sex or gender—and thus what internal “sense” can we have of gender—apart from having a body of a particular sex?

Apart from having a male body, what does it “feel like” to be a man? Apart from having a female body, what does it “feel like” to be a woman? What does it feel like to be both a man and a woman, or to be neither?

The challenge for the transgender activist is to explain what these feelings are like, and how someone could know if he or she “feels like” the opposite sex, or neither, or both.

Even if trans activists could answer these questions about feelings, that still wouldn’t address the matter of reality. Why should feeling like a man—whatever that means—make someone a man? Why do our feelings determine reality on the question of sex, but on little else? Our feelings don’t determine our age or our height. And few people buy into Rachel Dolezal’s claim to identify as a black woman, since she is clearly not.

If those who identify as transgender are the sex with which they identify, why doesn’t that apply to other attributes or categories of being? What about people who identify as animals, or able-bodied people who identify as disabled? Do all of these self-professed identities determine reality? If not, why not?

And should these people receive medical treatment to transform their bodies to accord with their minds? Why accept transgender “reality,” but not trans-racial, trans-species, and trans-abled reality?

The challenge for activists is to explain why a person’s “real” sex is determined by an inner “gender identity,” but age and height and race and species are not determined by an inner sense of identity.

Of course, a transgender activist could reply that an “identity” is, by definition, just an inner sense of self. But if that’s the case, gender identity is merely a disclosure of how one feels. Saying that someone is transgender, then, says only that the person has feelings that he or she is the opposite sex.

Gender identity, so understood, has no bearing at all on the meaning of “sex” or anything else. But transgender activists claim that a person’s self-professed “gender identity” is that person’s “sex.”

The challenge for activists is to explain why the mere feeling of being male or female (or both or neither) makes someone male or female (or both or neither).

Gender identity can sound a lot like religious identity, which is determined by beliefs. But those beliefs don’t determine reality. Someone who identifies as a Christian believes that Jesus is the Christ. Someone who identifies as a Muslim believes that Muhammad is the final prophet. But Jesus either is or is not the Christ, and Muhammad either is or is not the final prophet, regardless of what anyone happens to believe.

So, too, a person either is or is not a man, regardless of what anyone—including that person—happens to believe. The challenge for transgender activists is to present an argument for why transgender beliefs determine reality.

Determining reality is the heart of the matter, and here too we find contradictions.

On the one hand, transgender activists want the authority of science as they make metaphysical claims, saying that science reveals gender identity to be innate and unchanging. On the other hand, they deny that biology is destiny, insisting that people are free to be who they want to be.

Which is it? Is our gender identity biologically determined and immutable, or self-created and changeable? If the former, how do we account for people whose gender identity changes over time? Do these people have the wrong sense of gender at some time or other?

And if gender identity is self-created, why must other people accept it as reality? If we should be free to choose our own gender reality, why can some people impose their idea of reality on others just because they identify as transgender?

The challenge for the transgender activist is to articulate some conception of truth as the basis for how we understand the common good and how society should be ordered.

As I document in depth in “When Harry Became Sally,” the claims of transgender activists are confusing because they are philosophically incoherent. Activists rely on contradictory claims as needed to advance their position, but their ideology keeps evolving, so that even allies and LGBT organizations can get left behind as “progress” marches on.

At the core of the ideology is the radical claim that feelings determine reality. From this idea come extreme demands for society to play along with subjective reality claims. Trans ideologues ignore contrary evidence and competing interests, they disparage alternative practices, and they aim to muffle skeptical voices and shut down any disagreement.

The movement has to keep patching and shoring up its beliefs, policing the faithful, coercing the heretics, and punishing apostates, because as soon as its furious efforts flag for a moment or someone successfully stands up to it, the whole charade is exposed. That’s what happens when your dogmas are so contrary to obvious, basic, everyday truths.

A transgender future is not the “right side of history,” yet activists have convinced the most powerful sectors of our society to acquiesce to their demands. While the claims they make are manifestly false, it will take real work to prevent the spread of these harmful ideas.

This piece originally appeared in The Daily Signal

THF: https://www.heritage.org/gender/commentary/transgender-ideology-riddled-contradictions-here-are-the-big-ones


Ryan T. Anderson, Ph.D., is the William E. Simon Senior Research Fellow in American Principles and Public Policy at The Heritage Foundation, where he researches and writes about marriage, bioethics, religious liberty and political philosophy. Anderson is the author of several books and his research has been cited by two U.S. Supreme Court justices in two separate cases. Read his Heritage research.

Alex Newman: Buddhist Indoctrination Invades Public Schools Across America   0 (0)

by Alex Newman

Buddhist indoctrination and meditation techniques are being forced on government-school children across America under the harmless-sounding term “mindfulness,” sparking a growing wave of opposition and legal challenges. Critics said imposing it in public education is not just wrong, but illegal as well. Children as young as 5 are being ordered to participate.

While the controversial program claims to be a “secularized” version of Buddhist practices that have traditionally been viewed as occult and dangerous by Christians, critics are nevertheless sounding the alarm. And despite claims of being “secular,” it does not take much digging beneath the surface to detect the obvious anti-Christian nature of the “mindfulness education” schemes.

In America, the ideas were pioneered by Jon Kabat-Zinn, who established a “Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction” program at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in the late 1970s. Since then, “mindfulness” educators boast of reaching hundreds of thousands of American school children. Millions in taxpayer funding from local, state, and even federal governments have been spent on “mindfulness” education, too.

But the religious and spiritual overtones are hard to ignore. In a video on “Mindfulness in Education” by expert Amy Burke, the very first quote comes from an Indian guru and so-called “World Teacher” by the name of “Jiddu Krishnamurti,” from his book “Education and the Significance of Life.” The decision to quote this particular character guru offers significant insight into what this is all about.

This guru, who was adopted and trained by the head of a Luciferian cult known as the “Theosophical Society,” was blunt about his pagan agenda. “You want to have your own gods – new gods instead of the old, new religions instead of the old, new forms instead of the old – all equally valueless, all barriers, all limitations, all crutches,” Krishnamurti explained.

“Instead of old spiritual distinctions you have new spiritual distinctions; instead of the old worships you have new worships,” the guru said. “You are all depending for your spirituality on someone else, for your happiness on someone else, for enlightenment on someone else; … you must put them all away and look within yourselves for the enlightenment, for the glory, for the purification, and for the incorruptibility of the self.”

Burke, a “mindfulness” advocate and educator, also promoted the idea that children must be taught to listen to their “heart.” But for Christians, that is more than a little problematic. In Jeremiah 17:9, the Bible warns that the heart is “deceitful above all things” and “desperately wicked.” In the New Testament, Mark 7:21 warns that “out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders.”

But Burke insists it is needed. “The fact is that listening to our heart … is the key to living a fulfilled life,” she claimed, completely disregarding the biblical view on the issue. “It’s what helps, makes us, more authentically ourselves. And it’s hard to do. But mindfulness is a practical tool that can help students cultivate this inner understanding.”

Alarmed by all this occult indoctrination at odds with Christianity, a coalition of teachers and students is working with the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) to fight a legal battle against it. According to the group, government schools are not allowed to mandate participation in these “mindfulness” curricula without violating the law.

The ACLJ noted that Buddhist principles are “clearly” embedded in the mindfulness programs being imposed on school children — principles such as the “observance of all thoughts and feelings without judgment; the belief that life is cyclical and humans are inherently good; and the idea that we are magnificent and all happiness can be achieved through self-discovery and self-reliance.”

Critics lashed out. “Whatever happened to the separation of church and state that liberals scream about when the mere mention of God is made in schools?” wondered author and commentator Dr. Ileana Johnson. “Why are we allowing Far East mystical practices to come into our public schools under the guise of stress management? Why are our children being constantly experimented on by the latest fad pushed by liberals/progressives who view the classroom and our children’s minds and future as their laboratory?”

Another prominent critic, education researcher Debbie DeGroff, exposed the “mindfulness” program in 2014. “These practices are harmful to our children,” she warned. “What other programs, curriculums, and practices are you unaware of?… The time is now to get your children out of these government experimental laboratories.”

The Takeaway

As The Newman Report has documented for years, it seems every religion in the world is not only welcomed in American government schools, but encouraged with tax money — every religion, that is, except Christianity, the foundation upon which America and Western civilization were built. Unless Americans put an end to this tax-funded anti-Christian indoctrination of children, it will eventually put an end to America.


Alex Newman is a correspondent for The New American, covering economics, education, politics, and more. He can be reached at anewman@thenewamerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook

 

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