“For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.” – Carl Sagan
Most of us who are sending our children back to school this fall are probably worried about having the right classroom supplies, about having appropriate clothing for our children, shoes, a book bag, a lunch box. If you’re like me, you might also be worried about bullying, or making certain your child understands how to behave in the classroom. You know, being respectful to teachers and to his classmates.
Not Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council. Rather than worrying about whether or not your child has the right pencils, Tony Perkins wants you to worry about your child being brainwashed by the “radical teachers” that “infest” our public schools.
You know the type: the teachers that teach reading, writing, mathematics, history, science. The type that don’t teach the Bible.
The message from Tony Perkins to parents is FEAR. Fear public schools, or what he calls “government-run schools” (he makes them sound like internment camps):
Beginning THIS MONTH…they don’t want any American child to escape. Read how we can STOP them
If a foreign enemy had plotted to infiltrate America, I’m not sure an army of undercover subversives could have done more damage than our government-run schools….
Leftists don’t want a single American child to escape their thought control. And they are crowding out true education.
Thought control, for Tony Perkins, is what the rest of us call The World of Facts, or, looked at another way, our Shared Reality. You know, the world where physics work the same way for everybody. A world where Facts Do Matter.
Perkins hates that. He doesn’t want kids anywhere near it, because facts are to the Religious Right what daylight is to vampires (unless you’re one of those “sparkly” vampires but that’s a whole ‘nother story).
In Perkins’ fantasy universe, cave men would pal around with their pet velociraptors and ride to work on a brachiosaurus. You know, like in the Flintstones, that well-known ABC documentary from the ’60s.
Perkins may or may not know this is bad science, and it’s dangerous to underestimate the stupidity of your opponent. Either way, Perkins claims to be championing science, which means what scientists are doing is NOT science, because who knows science better than a guy who thinks Fred Flintstone was real?
Today’s science classes often feature big-government political propaganda, taking time and focus away from true science. Not to mention attacks on the Bible and arrogant censoring of any theories like intelligent design that challenge their Darwinism.
So science is arrogant because it insists on verifiable facts. How dare they? Since when do facts have anything to do with science?
But parents can protect themselves and their children from exposure to our shared reality and insidious facts! As Peter Montgomery at Right Wing Watch reports,
Accompanying Perkins’ letter is a “Protect America’s Children Survey” which asks whether their local schools are experiencing a range of problems, including “Positive portrayals of homosexuality or negative portrayals of those who don’t affirm homosexuality,” “Not enough teaching of the Christian roots of America,” “Absence of presentation of intelligent design theory,” and “Not enough teaching on the virtues of limited government and free enterprise.”
It is impossible not to fear for America’s future when you see such an influential group so determined to destroy America’s children by skipping over all the advances of the 20th century.
Kids in other countries are actually learning how the world works. Perkins wants to sequester them in the 13th century, where witches need to be hunted down before they’ll steal children, where gay animal demons inhabit animals and fool people into thinking homosexuality is natural, and where the worst thing anyone can do is thumb their noses at god by looking at any alternative to prayer. You know, like medicine or science.
It doesn’t take a genius to look at America a hundred years from now and see the ruination that will result. Of course, by then if they get their way, there won’t be any air to breathe or water to drink or food to eat and the world’s coastlines will be under water, so maybe education will be the least of our worries. But science won’t explain any of that either: that will all be God’s doing in punishment of us letting people think for themselves.
The rest of the world will be alternately laughing at us and cursing us, not that any of that will matter much, because our kids won’t be able to read and so won’t know what’s being said. They’ll be busy playing with their Man and His Dino Friends play sets and watching the latest Flintstones documentary.
Edit [8.8.13 11:19 am]: Carl Sagan quote added
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.