Skip to comments."Just Kindly Nod," Diane Alden Examines the Failure of American Education
Posted on 09/19/2003 6:22:50 AM PDT by Theodore R.
Just Kindly Nod Diane Alden Thursday, Sept. 18, 2003
Since I have been away for a while, my column for the next four weeks will be a review of some extensive research, insight and observations of the American scene. For the past couple of months I have been hunkered down researching a book. Some of the things I have discovered are wonderful, but much is not so wonderful. This particular column is on education. Others will be on immigration, life and death in America, culture, Middle America, history and the ways in which we have been betrayed by political and economic ideologues on the left, right and libertarian.
Not long ago I was on a local talk show in Georgia. I debated a liberal professor about the War on Terror and other national issues. Luckily we were close in age. We understood the old-time rules of college debate. That meant there was no yelling, screaming or talking over each other. What a concept. It also meant a certain amount of civility was exhibited by each of us as we listened to what the other had to say instead of thinking of some clever riposte.
In some respects the professor was typical of the liberal/leftist faculty mindset and quite predictable. Of course he was against Israel and for the Palestinians. Palestinians, as it happens, have achieved nirvana among the intellectual left. They have become members of the victim class. The Israelis, on the other hand, have simply been too successful to be seen as victims any longer. One must be of the victim class to be acceptable to the upright brigades of the intellectual left.
We did agree that Yasser Arafat was a murderous, lying pirate who used his status as Nobel Prize-winning terrorist to crank money out of the West, to get involved in the Oslo Accords, and to kill Israelis and Americans while screaming foul when they fight back.
We even agreed that Jesse Jackson iss an American pirate, not as violent as Yasser, but a person who milked the system, played the race card, suckered corporations, dodged the IRS bullet and counted on white guilt for the betterment of Jesse and his boys and their liquor operation in Chicago.
We also agreed on the profoundly negative impact of multiculturalism and diversity training in U.S. schools, from kindergarten through grad school. He was appalled by how rapidly the system was turning out a pathetic and inferior scholar, student and citizen.
The professor informed me that he was retiring because he couldn't take the undereducated, whining, poorly informed product of the public schools. As an English professor, he noted that a good half of his students are forced to take remedial English and the rest are ill prepared to write expository or analytical pieces of any substance.
Furthermore, as a bonified non-racist liberal, he stated that African-Americans had been duped by the nihilism of the 60s counterculture. He hated that so many African-American students had adopted a disregard for the importance of education and doing things "by the book, " or had no interest in studying Western or American history or civilization.
While we disagreed on much, we did agree on the fact that education, by and large, has been taken over by the psychosocial engineers, multiculturalists and diversity crowd and run into the ground. We agreed that the establishment left, right and libertarian could take a share of the blame for the mess. When a liberal professor despises what has become known as multiculturalism and diversity training, things must be pretty bad.
Education is a mess. So what else is new?
Not long ago an American-born and -trained engineer gave me his observations of the last 40 years and how badly served children and young people are by the system.
"Bill" had been an engineer in the early space program, including Mercury and Apollo. He maintained that if a president like John F. Kennedy came along today and challenged the nation to a race for space, the U.S. would be hard pressed to come up with the engineers, scientists and non-bureaucrats to accomplish that end.
Ironically, most of those involved in the early space program weren't bureaucrats, nor did they have an advanced degree in their specialty. They were hands-on performers. The vast majority were simply grads of American engineering schools and held a B.S. degree and had an immense amount of creative ability and imagination with a dose of common sense.
How much has changed since that era when JFK challenged America to reach for the moon and the stars.
These days, thanks to the dumbed-down educational system and lazy bureaucratic-corporate marriage of government, science and business, we now rely heavily on foreign engineers. We don't have the will, the manufacturing infrastructure or the educational system that a major effort to conquer space would require. Those American engineers and scientists we do produce we punish by importing foreign competition to keep wages down and corporate America happy.
Through mergers and acquisitions by foreign entities, our hard-won science and technology and critical manufacturing have been handed over to potential enemies for the investor class and the corporate and globalist bottom line.
We are losing our edge in every area because left, right and libertarian have adopted knee-jerk ideology and allowed it to triumph over their love and concern for this nation, its economy and its people.
Teaching in the Twilight Zone
Meanwhile, I received a couple of interesting stories from teachers in the trenches in the Heartland. These stories indicate that we are in a heap of trouble and the current "road map" to educational excellence known as "No Child Left Behind" will not work. It will not work because the bureaucrats and social engineers do not care about excellence in education or educating a superior student. Legislation does not address our REAL problems in education, which are cultural and bureaucratic in nature.
Before returning to regular classroom duty, teachers put in a week or so of prep work. In addition they are often forced to sit in on training by the educrats' multicultural and diversity police. This fall it was in the form of a Hmong guy with a newly minted degree in political science paid for by the U.S. taxpayer.
For two hours Mr. Hmong hectored the group about how lousy the United States is toward immigrants. He demanded special treatment for these kids. He didn't have to worry special treatment abounds aplenty in the LaLa Land of the educational-multicultural twilight zone of public education.
By the way, Hmongs continue the practice of marriage of young girls at 13 to 17 on a wide scale. After 20 years in the United States they also have the highest rate of those still on some form of welfare and about 80 percent still do not speak English.
After the training session was over, the teacher, a mild-mannered person, was ready to kill the State Department or INS bureaucrats who decided to allow ungrateful refugees with American-paid-for degrees to lecture teachers on how to teach, treat students and be American.
This same teacher, working in one of the BETTER systems in the Midwest, related other horror stories.
On the first day of school this particular teacher proceeded to the eighth-grade special ed classroom when a young Mexican student came tearing in. He proudly announced that he didn't know a word of English. Teacher replied, "porque?" (why) and then he rattled off something beyond her basic Spanish. She replied "vamanos" and pointed in the direction of the English Language Learners classroom, formerly the English as a Second Language classroom.
That is where the young man joined about two-thirds of the special education children, 80 percent immigrants, legal and illegal. That is where approximately two-thirds of the special education budget for that school system goes these days.
She stated, "I have nothing against them as individual kids, but they are one reason other special ed kids are no longer well served." A majority of the budget is geared to take care of needs of immigrant children.
At this particular school, in a very wealthy suburban area, special needs for immigrants or refugees also includes a separate bus for Somali boys. The boys require special transportation because they do not play well with others. In fact the bus also requires specific security in the person of a guard hired to make sure no major fights break out or the driver is not torn limb from limb.
The teacher sadly related that in her classes, Somali boys are extremely disrespectful to female teachers and particularly to Somali girls. She said, "All this is a giant black hole and my physically disabled kids and slower learners are getting the fuzzy end of the lollipop."
Meanwhile, at the same school, the math teacher asked the students if she was giving them too much homework. She wanted to know if they are "comfortable" with it. To add to the educational misery index, one of the politically correct special ed teachers maintained that the foul-mouthed African-American child who routinely uses the "F" word in his interactions with students and teachers was merely exhibiting a "cultural thing."
Furthermore, she said, "we have to accept this kind of diversity as a gift." The teacher, who has not yet been dumbed down or numbed by diversity training and the goofy pedagogues of PC, couldn't believe she was hearing correctly. She informed me, "That is the first time I ever heard being called a F-----g bitch is one of the gifts of diversity."
On the second day of school the geography teacher talked incessantly about the redistribution of wealth and how the U.S. government spends "four billion a week" in Iraq. Furthermore, he went on, millions of kids are starving to death in the U.S. Then he told the students about the thousands of immigrants from Central America who are forced into slavery in the U.S.
That must be why so many are burrowing into the U.S. from Mexico because they want the good life "slavery" in the U.S. will bring them.
Mr. Geography Teacher also tells his students that Liberia was a former U.S. "colony" that we are trying to take back.
I would ask, where are the parents in this school system that allow this rubbish to exist in a rich suburb of a major American city?
In the end it is up to the parents, voters and those who care about the direction of this country to know what is going on in their school systems. Obviously, in even "rich" districts many parents are either clueless or in agreement with the manipulation and intellectual abuse and decline of their children. If that is the case, then they and their children will live with the consequences for decades to come.
When we as a culture and nation no longer believe in ourselves, in our basic standards and guides, then we have surrendered to the intellectual barbarians. When we truly believe the specious notion that all cultures are equal regardless of how badly some cultures treat people or what kinds of barbarism they produce, then we are doomed.
America is becoming a nation of idle participants in the destruction of our own country and civilization.
In his essay "How Civilizations Fall," writer Kenneth Monogue offers this insight into how terribly easy it is to succumb to the acceptance of our murder and death until it is too late.
"There has been a revolution, then, but a silent one. It has taken place with such stealth, and so gradually, that people have become accustomed to it little by little. I am reminded of the famous Chinese executioner whose ambition it was to be able to cut off a head so that the victim would not realize what had happened. For years he worked on his skill, and one day he cut off a head so perfectly that the victim said: Well, when are you going to do it? The executioner gave a beatific smile and said: Just kindly nod.
Next time: Go, Arnold: Arnold S. speaks the taboo words on THE taboo subject immigration. Also next time: Pandering Conservatives: Mad Hatter Orrin Hatch and the Nightmare on H-1B Street. Check in as the visa from hell returns from the dead, brought back to life by Dr. Franken-Hatch and his Senate committee composed of men and women sucking up to the cheap labor lobby at the expense of jobless American citizens.
Please contact Diane Alden at email@example.com.
True, and pouring money into schools doesn't mean children will learn. It usually means there will be more administrators, more technological bells and whistles in the classrooms, fancier cafeterias (excuse me, dining commons or foodcourts), but the kids still won't be able to write a coherent paragraph.
Just babysit them for us and give us a sports team to relive our youth thru seems all most require of the system.
I'm soooo glad to be within a month of 59 and will, hopefully, not have to put up with the coming worst of this.
I really feel sorry for people younger than me. As Diane said, you're being beheaded without even noticing it.