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  1. #21  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Odysseus View Post
    I wish that I was. I'd had a similar conversation with a high school graduate who also didn't know Churchill, and whose knowledge of WWII was limited to the Holocaust, who didn't know who Jefferson Davis or William T. Sherman were, but correctly identified Harriet Tubman, and who thought that the Pilgrims had come from Spain. Other conversations with recent graduates are similarly disturbing. My older daughter is in third grade, and even her teacher hates the new math curriculum, which seems to obscure knowledge more than it imparts it. Somehow, she's been inculcated with a revulsion to tobacco (my admission that I used to smoke the occasional cigar shocked her) while we weren't looking, which means that we have to really hit home with the civics lessons. Lord only knows what else they're teaching her.
    As a parent of a school-aged child, you must read this book: The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America. It's the only defense you have against what's going on in the school system.

    What has happened is that academic content has been either replaced by or couched in "values education"--in other words, propaganda. This is why your daughter knows all about the dangers of tobacco but her teacher can't give her a straightforward lesson in math. (You should see some of the new math books--they read like social studies books and water down the math.)

    The ultimate goal is to reduce the number of Americans who can do advanced work and go on to very high paying jobs. Remember that we are in a service economy now and that the middle class is shrinking. The American economy doesn't need for most people to actually think: the machines do that. The computerized registers tell the human checker how much money to give back, computerized tests can tell students when their answers are wrong, a computer can tell a mechanic what is wrong with a car engine, etc. The brave new generation doesn't need to know how to think, but they will need the "right" values so that the low-paid service industry flows smoothly and everyone feels good about the person they are interfacing with. Think of it as the McDonald's economy--your daughter won't need to know a damned thing about cooking or chemistry or even making change to work at McDonald's, but she will need to smile, be tolerant of all people, and know how to make customers feel good. Shared values are necessary for commerce based on feelings.

    That's where our education is going.

    The only defense you have as a parent is to either home school or supplement your child's education at home. The teachers are being made more and more powerless, and no good comes of harassing them. Their jobs are on the line over test scores--and the tests include all this "values" education. It is necessary to know who Rosa Parks is for these tests; not so much Winston Churchill. You can, of course, go to school board meetings. By yourself you might not be able to do much, but a group of like-minded parents might get the board a little scared. However, the boards are even limited and are usually packed full of these "values" education types. As long as your school takes Federal money--and all public schools do--"values" education is being forced by mandate from the Department of Education, a misnamed department if I ever heard one.

    When a friend of mine in Virginia realized that her 2nd grader could tell her all about Rosa Parks being tired and wanting to sit at the front of the bus but couldn't do addition for 2 and 3-digit numbers, my friend started working with her daughter at night, after work, and got her math up to level. The teacher was no help and, it turned out, wasn't very good at math. The teacher also wasn't very good at Rosa Parks, neglecting to mention that the woman belonged to the NAACP (secretary of the Montgomery Alabama chapter) and that her action was planned in advance:

    ...NAACP organizers believed that Parks was the best candidate for seeing through a court challenge after her arrest for civil disobedience in violating Alabama segregation laws though eventually her case became bogged down in the state courts...

    At the time, Parks was secretary of the Montgomery chapter of the NAACP. She had recently attended the Highlander Folk School, a Tennessee center for training activists for workers' rights and racial equality....

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosa_Parks
    The teacher had just told the students that Rosa Parks was just some ordinary woman who was tired and wanted to sit down on the bus. Of course my friend couldn't point that fact out to the teacher without seeming "racist". But even when the teachers are good and enthusiastic, they are limited by the "values" curriculum they are forced to teach because this curriculum is what the students will be tested on and these scores will determine which schools get much needed Federal money, which ones get put on probation, and which ones are packed off and sold to private education companies, like Edison or Green Dot, which actually do worse by children while costing more.
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  2. #22  
    Power CUer noonwitch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Odysseus View Post
    Vassar? Seriously?

    Talk about PC lemmings. Vassar has become an intellectual sinkhole of leftist indoctrination. Here's part of guest column about it from the campus newspaper:

    http://newspaperarchives.vassar.edu/...LETTER%2c-----
    The recurring theme here is diversity, diversity and more diversity. But, is Vassar’s culture truly this open-minded? Is Vassar College actually some sort of utopian society in which tolerance is exhibited toward all of its residents?

    To answer these questions, let’s consider an average Political Science course in Rockefeller Hall which discusses certain aspects of domestic policy in the United States and the nature of political differences between Democrats and Republicans, particularly contemporary politicians at the federal level (say, Barack Obama or Mitt Romney). Oftentimes, a class on Monday will kick off with a recap of political events and news from the weekend, which can include a statement released by the Romney campaign or a policy proposal by the Obama administration. It’s up to the professor and students to collectively analyze these happenings. As the professor opens up the floor, students exhibit their eagerness to weigh in on the day-to-day back-and-forth between Democrats and Republicans, quickly pointing out a gaffe by Mitt Romney’s campaign team or divulging a snideremark about something that Paul Ryan said three weeks ago to an insignificant news station. The classroom, or at least the resounding liberal majority, then erupts in laughter. In response to the students’ jabs at the Republican Party, the professor follows up with a sarcastic comment of his or her own, revealing a deep urge to lash out at “misguided” conservatives nationwide.

    Laughing and snickering is soon compounded by more and more laughing and snickering.

    With the perfect storm of criticism by the participation-happy students and all-too-eager professor, the classroom transforms into a house of jibes and taunts at the expense of Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan, Newt Gingrich, their families, Ronald Reagan’s policies from 1980, and some random Republican candidate from 1916. In extreme cases, the students begin to resemble a pack of wolves, lunging at the first sight of Republican weakness. When a conservative falters, they are always there to pounce with their words.

    If you knew nothing about the United States’ political history since the 18th century and attended the start of one of these Political Science classes, you would be led to believe that almost everyone in the U.S. is a registered Democrat.

    If the average Political Science course at Vassar served as a model of the nation’s electoral landscape as a whole, you would assume that almost every American leans to the left when it comes to social issues and economic policy. According to Vassar’s model, an overwhelming majority of Americans support gay marriage, abortion, and expansionary fiscal policies. Using the typical professor and batch of students in a Rocky classroom as the adequate sample size, American society becomes one in which conservatives are ridiculed and shunned. Anything right of center is construed as fundamentally wrong and inexplicable.

    So, does this fit the definition of diversity?

    Diversity, diversity, and more diversity should be Vassar’s motto by now, but this perception of Vassar College as some sort of utopian society is just that. It is merely perception, falling far short of reality.

    If you take into consideration the fact that the average Political Science course described above may contain a conservative or three (that’s probably a reach), any notions of open-mindedness, tolerance, and diversity seem downright absurd. If a registered Republican is confronted with a classroom full of liberal college students, potentially ranging from left-leaning centrists to passionate Marxists, all of whom impatiently wait in line to criticize the “other,” then Vassar College seems to failin its promotion of diversity. A student like this looks more like a bullied non-athlete being hounded by a rowdy group of high school football players than an enthusiastic learner in an accepting, tolerant academic setting.

    In truth, the Political Science department may very well be home to some of the most blatant acts of closed-mindedness on Vassar College’s historic campus. Conservatives are often alienated and made to feel like unintelligent nobodies, with the attacks being led by professors and students in unison. If you are in any way leaning to the right,socially or fiscally, and would consider voting for a candidate like Mitt Romney, then you will find yourself on the fringes of the bubble.

    For the Vassar conservative, the phrases “being included” or “being a part of” often seem foreign and unfamiliar.

    What will other students even think of me after reading this piece? It’s funny that I have to ponder this question at an academic institution that prides itself on the diversity of its student body and the open-mindedness at the core of its social makeup. Where’s the diversity in Rockefeller Hall? Forgive me, but I can’t seem to find it.

    Would you send a kid into that kind of environment? The only differences between what's described there and the Vietnamese reeducation camps are the tuition and the barbed wire.

    I went to a second tier state university, where I had a prof who taught a radical feminist interpretation of The Odyssey, where I could take a class called "Landscapes of National Parks" in lieu of taking college algebra, and where I had a business major friend who flunked accounting 3 times, but was not booted from school or from the business program basically because she is black. It cost a lot less than Vassar, though, and I probably had a lot more fun in Kalamazoo than I would have in Poughkeepsie, or wherever the hell Vassar is.
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  3. #23  
    LTC Member Odysseus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonwitch View Post
    I went to a second tier state university, where I had a prof who taught a radical feminist interpretation of The Odyssey, where I could take a class called "Landscapes of National Parks" in lieu of taking college algebra, and where I had a business major friend who flunked accounting 3 times, but was not booted from school or from the business program basically because she is black. It cost a lot less than Vassar, though, and I probably had a lot more fun in Kalamazoo than I would have in Poughkeepsie, or wherever the hell Vassar is.
    I can imagine a radical feminist interpretation of the Odyssey, complete with the patriarchal subjugation of Penelope and the empowerment of Circe, while the Sirens would represent male fears of female empowerment, and the symbolism of the Trojan Horse would entail all manner of parody potential. Landscapes of National Parks sounds like something for biology or geology majors, and anyone who flunked accounting ought to have been booted after the second attempt.

    Vassar is close enough to NYC for the students to get down to Manhattan on weekends, which is really all that the city can take of them. The best parody of the Vassar mindset was the all-girl school in Animal House, where a co-ed was killed in a kiln accident.
    --Odysseus
    Sic Hacer Pace, Para Bellum.

    Before you can do things for people, you must be the kind of man who can get things done. But to get things done, you must love the doing, not the people!
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  4. #24  
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    Isn't Vassar co-ed now?
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