In order to make an industrious people dependent on government and persuade a free people to enslave themselves — with the proud histories one would expect such societies to have — you have to make sure they’re poorly educated about the past. The progressives who run teachers unions and have spent generations taking over higher education, publishing, and news and entertainment media know that. At the very least, they know they have to do the things that bring that outcome about.
One piece of evidence comes via a story about which I’d thought I’d written, but had apparently not. A college professor, Duke Pesta, made a practice of surveying his incoming students to assess their cultural understanding, and here’s one of his most striking findings:
“Most of my students could not tell me anything meaningful about slavery outside of America,” Pesta told The College Fix. “They are convinced that slavery was an American problem that more or less ended with the Civil War, and they are very fuzzy about the history of slavery prior to the Colonial era. Their entire education about slavery was confined to America.”
No doubt most of them also wouldn’t know, as Nick Sorrentino points out (via Instapundit), that the much-maligned Western World is almost unique in the world in having an unmeasurable amount of slavery even today.
We can (should and will) keep a careful eye on public schools’ ability to teach students practical knowledge they’ll utilize in their professional lives as adults, but what conceivable justification can there be for publicly funding a majority-government education system if it doesn’t convey to young Americans the basic understanding that their cultural tradition has proven itself to be amazingly conducive to human freedom and flourishing and is worth strengthening?
That America’s students seem to be learning almost the opposite lesson — that their country and culture are uniquely bad and should be weakened and “fundamentally transformed” — is a good indication that the mal-education is deliberate.
Sorrentino relates an anecdote from his personal experience of a family with a slave of its own:
… My friend later told me that the woman who had served us all day was in fact originally bought by his family back when they lived in the Middle East. Since the day she was bought, as a young girl, she had been with the family. She had been, and really still was, a slave. …
My friend’s family of course treated this woman with respect. But even still, even though the family was “liberal” and generally good natured it was clear where her place was. But also it must be said that this woman’s fate had she not been bought so many years ago would likely have been really terrible. Which is sad to write but it is likely very true. Life is often brutal.
Now consider the rationale for liberal/progressive economic and social policies imposed through government. Without them, their supporters say, our lives will be “really terrible,” and while of course they’ll generally treat us with respect, they leave no doubt what our place is — a principle that is amply proven in the negative with treatment of conservatives, especially conservatives whose skin color or sex is supposed to be evidence that they’re property of progressives.