I have kept lots of articles in a queue trying to get to them and this one in particular has been sitting there for a week and when I read it, it was one of THE best columns of the year. I recommend everyone take a couple minutes to read Christopher Hedges explain why we are destroying the education system in our country. In light of the “tea party” gathering in Madison yesterday it is especially relevant. Here are some highlights (with commentary)
* A nation that destroys its systems of education, degrades its public information, guts its public libraries and turns its airwaves into vehicles for cheap, mindless amusement becomes deaf, dumb and blind.( He must have read Walker’s budget.)
* The (standardized) tests elevate those with the financial means to prepare for them. They reward those who obey the rules, memorize the formulas and pay deference to authority. Rebels, artists, independent thinkers, eccentrics and iconoclasts—those who march to the beat of their own drum—are weeded out.(which would have eliminated most anyone who shaped our history enough to be included in our history books. We are suppressing a whole generation of leaders.)
*Teachers, under assault from every direction, are fleeing the profession. Even before the “reform” blitzkrieg we were losing half of all teachers within five years after they started work—and these were people who spent years in school and many thousands of dollars to become teachers. How does the country expect to retain dignified, trained professionals under the hostility of current conditions? I suspect that the hedge fund managers behind our charter schools system—whose primary concern is certainly not with education—are delighted to replace real teachers with nonunionized, poorly trained instructors.( the better to control them).
Finally the best 6 sentences I have read this year!!!
*The truly educated become conscious. They become self-aware. They do not lie to themselves. They do not pretend that fraud is moral or that corporate greed is good. They do not claim that the demands of the marketplace can morally justify the hunger of children or denial of medical care to the sick. They do not throw 6 million families from their homes as the cost of doing business.