Are revisionist textbook writers who advocate for open-mindedness in matters of moral pollution responsible for misleading tens of millions of students? “Many parents view the public schools as ineffective and dangerous, and are exploring the other options before it is too late (U.S. News & World Report, 9 December, 1991). Also, the Forbes magazine published well-documented reports by teachers and former union leadership in How the National Education Association Corrupts Our Public Schools (Brimelow, P. and L. Spencer, Forbes magazine, June 7, 1993).
Immigrants to America have personally experienced the coercion of force and what Thomas Jefferson called tyranny of the mind. The rejection of government-established religion and education monopolies is the reason that millions of immigrants from different ethnic and religious backgrounds came to America. This is validated by the USA Today/Gallup Poll, May, 2017: Eighty-seven percent of Americans say they believe in God.
Schools belonging to and funded by Americans have become captive to leftist teacher union monopolies in three ways:
- The legislator candidates who promote the unions’ political agenda are advantaged over non-union candidates because of large campaign gifts received from unions. This allows union bosses to control legislation for teacher union contract negotiations and to impose heavy dues on teachers.
- School board representatives elected by the people to serve family and community interests complain that they are unable to do so, because local citizen control has been taken away from the citizens. They are correct in making that charge. (Ames, Iowa Tribune, January 18, 2009).
- The teacher majority is also captive to the liberal legislator-union boss combination. The fear of union power among school superintendents and the good teacher majority is a factor. This fear may cause former teachers who understand what is wrong, but they may remain quiet or even disassociate from concerned citizens. There are union retirement plans after all.
President Washington insisted that religion and morality were integral to education. A well-educated citizenry is absolutely essential to maintain both law and liberty and in having the ability to distinguish between liberty and license. Human dignity and civil community are not possible if the people are ignorant (Peter A. Lillback, George Washington’s Sacred Fire, Providence Forum Press, 2006, p. 479).
Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked: Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation deserts the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice?” (George Washington’s Farewell Address, 1796).
~ D. Norris