Monthly Archives: February 2008

School Days, Golden Rule Days (Issue 22)

“School days, school days, dear ole golden rule days, reading, writing and arithmetic, taught to the tune of a hickory stick.”
 
When I hear about what is going on in schools today, it’s shocking to me. They have become killing fields, full of graduating students that can’t read and vaccinating with poisonous substances. Plus a laundry list of other shock and awes going on. In the tax-supported system, it’s more about indoctrination than education. Sometimes when I’m around young students in middle school or high school, I play a little game by asking them if they bought a dozen oranges for 50 cents and sold them for $1.00 a dozen, would they be making 100% or 50% profit? They invariably say 50%.
 
Several years ago I had a nephew attending a state university. I happened to answer the phone one day when he called his mother. She couldn’t come to the phone so I asked him if I could help with anything. He said he just want to know how to put a quarter in the washing machine. I said, “oh my God, they have educated you beyond the capacity to think!”
 
I grew up in a different era, a time when so much was different than it is today. Living in red clay  country in Northeast Georgia, I rode a bus to a county school. Everyone in the county attended the same school. It was a rather large building of 3 stories, where students started in first grade and attended through high school. It has a large playground area with a gymnasium in one corner and a cute little cottage in another, where we learned home economics.

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Anonymous And Overt Authority (Issue 21)

In this election year, we hear, read and see more news reports, headlines, and articles about the economy. A sort of mantra, “it’s about the economy, stupid.”

Definitely, the state of our economic position plays a major role in what is happening in this country. Yet actually, our current plight is freedom versus a totalitarian state—freedom of the individual versus the controls of a centralized power of political government.
 
In the Soviet Union where methods of authoritarianism were used to teach children—instead of allowing one the freedom to think—the method was indoctrination into what to think in order to remain submissive to an authoritarian regime.
 
In this country, we started out with an emphasis on freedom of thought, reflected in the way children were educated. However, today, just over 200 years later, the education of our children has become a sort of forced feeding of information, slanted away from freedom of thought and individual freedom of self-control and self-responsibility…a perversion of the idea of freedom.

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Abysmal Mediocrity (Issue 20)

In the course of the lengthy political campaign, there have been periods when it was quite interesting, to say the least. The media bat around verbiage and polling stats, while candidates flail around on a podium making all kinds of promises to the American people.

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California Home Schooling (Issue 19)

It seems to me that so much of what impacts our lives starts in California, a state that borders the Pacific Ocean. Living on the east side of the United States in Georgia, with parts of it bordering the Atlantic Ocean, we are over a thousand miles apart. I used to think that we were so far apart that what happened there did not affect us here. Needless to say, I was a bit naive to ignore the happenings in California.
 
The good, the bad and the beautiful all affects us here. Whether its fashion, politics, crime, education, medicine, hair styles or whatever, if it starts in California we are usually impacted in some way by the happenings there.
 
The latest is the uproar over home schooling. There are over 150,000 children home schooled in California and over a million nationwide. As I understand it, the judicial supremacy of the California court system has ruled, “parents do not have a RIGHT to home school their children.”
 
California, like most, if not all other states, has a compulsory attendance law but with provisions for home schooling under certain conditions. The guidelines are outlined in each state law. Some of the requirements include the parents having a high school education to be eligible to teach their children, filing reports for things like the number of hours spent teaching and records of student progress, in addition to the requirement of certain subjects that must be taught.

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