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home : opinions : columns September 15, 2014

4/2/2014 6:00:00 AM
COLUMN: More controversy
Bob Weete, columnist
Bob Weete, columnist
Bob Weete

Everywhere you look today, you will run into controversy. I'm not exactly sure why this has happened, but, like everybody else, I have my theories. Frankly, I tend to think that one of our most cherished rights as Americans has been misinterpreted. Maybe even with malicious intent.

Please understand that I said, "Maybe with malicious intent".  Freedom of speech was very important to our founding fathers. That is clearly evident. However, I'm of the opinion that many people have forgotten why freedom of speech was so desired at that time.

The Pilgrims and their followers had no freedom of speech in their homelands. They could not disagree orally or in written form with the government or the wealthy and powerful. There were severe penalties for expressing opinions that didn't follow the "accepted" line of thinking.

The government systems prevented the lower classes from rising, from advancing, from "being the best that they could be." The exchange of ideas that were not deemed "acceptable" by those in the upper class could wind a person up in jail.

Education of the masses was also a top-ranked ideal brought to America. Lower classes were not allowed the education that the upper class children had. So, the early leaders in this new land took steps to make this land the "Land of Opportunity". If one wanted to get ahead, then education was the highway to success.

Success did not mean that you would become "rich". It wasn't about money. It was about being able to go as far as you wanted to go, with earnest work and perseverance. People in the early days of America already had it better than their relatives back home. They were allowed, even encouraged, to get as much education as possible, guaranteeing them success on their own terms.

Widespread education given to the masses resulted in people using their God-given talents in creative ways never before within their reach. America grew and prospered because its people were guaranteed freedom.

Now, we all know that this was not completely true. There was slavery. It took a Civil War to correct that major error of America.

Freedom of speech continued on, and, with time, things changed. One of the more recent "issues" in America has become what has been called the Core Curriculum. And with it, a major controversy, with two sides freely speaking their minds either for or against it.

From what I have read about it, it was originally supposed to be a "voluntary" program; then "somebody" decided to make it mandatory. It was not even field-tested, to see if it actually resulted in the benefits it purported to provide.

And, as a result, we have "pro" and "con" positions. Some states have adopted it, and, we find, there is a money component involved. Surprised? Not really, I'm afraid. If they adopted the un-tested program, it made the states eligible for big bucks. Hmmm. The love of money raises its ugly head - again.

So, the real bottom line, in a way, is that the love of money determines how our children's education will be run. Seems to me that the priorities are a bit messed up here. In fact, I see a few similarities between the Core Curriculum program and the "Affordable Care" fiasco, which we had to pass in order to see what was in it.

So, with yet another American issue, we have one side that wants to "progress", and the other side that "doesn't have an open mind". And we're forced into yet another situation where there will be no debate, no negotiations, no transparency. And our kids, and ultimately, our country, lose out - again.

I am finding through all of this clap-trap, that I fall in with those who would say we should get the federal government out of education, period. Get the bureaucrats out of education. I believe the States should take over the education of their own kids. The old "one size fits all" simply does not work in this area.

I believe that this philosophy does not work well for the teachers, either, as it cuts into the vast amount of creativity the teachers themselves bring to education. Put education into the free market, with a kind of school spirit pride among the States. That will allow creativity that can exchange ideas that work, and provide enthusiasm that the robot style of Big Brother education does not.

I don't really "know" what's in the Core Curriculum, but, based on the procedure that was - and is being used - to "glamorize" the Obamacare monstrosity, I do, indeed, smell something fishy and controlling. I would suggest strongly that all parents with kids at all grade levels educate yourselves as to what is truly being pandered here. YOU have no control on this. These are your kids. Find out what is really under all the fancy icing that looks and sounds inviting. I suspect a huge cow pie is the core of the Core Curriculum. Don't fall prey to government sleight of hand. Speak out.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Article comment by: No child Left behind

...left most of them behind. Common core may be no better. Somewhere a long the way we have lost the ability to think critically, think for ourselves. There is so much garbage media out there you have to make the effort to dig for the truth,and make your own decisions rather than just following some ranting or uninformed talking head on the radio or tv or newspaper.

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