A Modern Woman's Perspective On The Kingdom of God on Earth

Showing posts with label Education. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Education. Show all posts

October 30, 2023

"Whoever Controls the Schools Controls the World"

Like the rest of the world, we here in America find ourselves in a state of worry, fear, and anxiety over a possible global war. It's centered in the land of Israel; the Promised Land, as confirmed by God in His covenant with Abraham. In my Biblical worldview, God chose Israel to reconcile the rest of the nations to Him -- He chose one nation out of many, so that many nations could be blessed. 

At this point in historical time, that doesn't appear to be happening, does it? And there are lots of reasons that is so; some of which I have articulated in recent posts. The truth of God's desired reconciliation with mankind seems to have gotten bound up in sectarian and religious hate, becoming much broader than the Israel/Palestinian debate. It threatens to draw the entire world into the conflict, and protests are arising across the globe. 

Indeed, we find our college universities smoldering with anger and hate as so-called "politically woke" students take to the campuses in opposition to U.S. policy in the Middle East. They demonstrate against what they see as social injustice, racial inequality, and genocide against the Palestinians. Yet they are unable to see the same argument for American Jewish students, who say they feel unsafe in their own country and find themselves told to barricade in campus libraries, while Orthodox Jewish communities in Brooklyn are told to stay inside and avoid the area. But where did these ideas originate?

It seems to me, that a vocal [and dare I say less-than-compassionate] group of publicly-educated students have taken over social media and corporate news to declare that their viewpoint is the only one that matters. That brings me to a quote by Pastor Voddie Baucham, Jr., in a video from 2002, who says, "Don't be surprised when you send your kids off to Caesar, that they come back as Romans". Wow! What a profound statement!

This American pastor, author, and educator [who currently serves as Dean of Theology at African Christian University in Lusaka, Zambia] released a video 20 years ago on YouTube, titled "The Children of Caesar". He proceeds to speak about what God intended regarding the education of our children. He notes that American Christians can become divided over which version of the Bible we should be reading; or which denomination God prefers ... but 90% of American parents will agree on the same method of educating their children ... the public school system, which has, sadly, become a state-controlled propaganda machine, often teaching our children anti-God and anti-American philosophies.

And here's the point Pastor Baucham made that struck the deepest ... of the 90% of Christian parents who chose this method of educating their children, "no one can point to the chapter and verse in the Bible that justifies it".  Today, in 2023, the Barna Group (an Evangelical polling group) reports that anywhere from 70-80% of high school students who enter college as professing Christians will leave with little or no faith. But why should we be surprised? Look at who the teachers are, and look at their worldview. How many have a Biblical worldview, versus a secular or radical worldview? 

If as vigilant Christian parents, we had been paying attention to what God says on this subject, we would be able to discern what Luke 6:40 says: "A pupil is not above his teacher; but everyone, after he has been fully trained, will be like his teacher". We are certainly seeing that borne out today. It used to be only college graduates who portrayed their radical professors' points of view. Now, students in elementary school are being trained in the sexual and gender ideology of their teachers ... and we are seeing them become "like their teachers"!

I highly recommend that you take the time to listen to Pastor Voddie Baucham's presentation on "The Children of Caesar". He makes the very erudite statement that you can't separate education from discipleship and "whoever is teaching your children is discipling them". But here's what we've lost in this country ... Did you know that Christians in America initially fought against compulsory government education? Up until 1900, two-thirds of high school children were educated at home or in the Church. Why? Because Americans used to know that God has given us clear commands and principles for how He wants us to educate our children!

Consider Deuteronomy 6:6-7 ... And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. We are to be the teachers of our children! And when? All the time! Right now, government schooling involves 11 hours [of classroom time; to/from school time; and homework]. If you add in 8 hours for sleeping, 2 hours of eating/bathing, and at least 2 hours of social media, you're at 23 hours out of the day! Are we obeying Deuteronomy 6 from our God?

What about Romans 12:2 ... Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Our children's minds are not being renewed; they are not taught critical thinking -- they are being corrupted and programmed, unable to discern God's will because God has been removed from the education system.

Then there's 1 Timothy 6:20-21 ... Guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge, which some have professed and in so doing have departed from the faith. Again, we are to be the guardians of our children, NOT the State! Their education has been entrusted to us; we are to be their teachers, disciplers, and mentors. And what they are taught in the schools is certainly not God-based!

And, I'll leave you with Colossians 2:8 ... Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments [basic principles] of the world, and not after Christ. When you remove God and His Truth from the education of your children, you create a vacuum, and something  will replace Him. In this case, parents have allowed themselves to be hoodwinked by vain men who profess to know what's best for your children, and who convince you that you should leave their education up to "the professionals".

Well, we can see where that's led us! We've allowed a government-controlled curriculum to educate our children instead of who God gave that assignment to! Back in 2013, I wrote a post warning parents about the subterfuge that was the Common Core education initiative. I wrote: "Common Core is designed to push an education agenda that conforms to a Progressive ideology, and limits the individuality of our children's learning processes, but seeks to determine exactly what they are taught". I think the State has pretty much accomplished that goal; even moving from Progressive to Marxist ideology. 

Thankfully, we are beginning to see parents waking up to the reality that, as a country, we have relegated the education of our children to the government and teachers unions. And, therefore our government-controlled schools are incapable of training our children in those very things God commands. It is HIS principles that He wants US to train our children up in. Our kids were never meant to be given over to the power and influence of Caesar's educators. I pray it is not too late to transform and renew their minds to God's education system. I fear we're going to go through a difficult period of paying a heavy price for the re-education of our children away from godly principles. In recent years, participation in Home-schooling and Private Christian schools is on the increase, and with God's help, and our fervent prayers, we may yet save the futures of our nation's precious children. But the battle is on, and we have no time to waste! Get involved in educating your children!

Deuteronomy 4:6    Keep them and do them, for that will be your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples, who, when they hear all these statutes, will say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’  

January 21, 2022

God, Education, and Our Schools

This is a topic that has long been on my heart, and has been prominent in my thoughts. First, a little background ... I come from a family of teachers. My father and his siblings were all teachers. My cousin and my sister are teachers. My brother-in-law has had a long career in teaching and being a principal. My father served on our local School Board, years after he left the teaching profession, because he believed in the importance of a good education, and in serving the desires of the parents in their children's education.

Having come from that background, I have always been interested in the quality of education, what is being taught, and the level of knowledge being attained by students in our nation. As I've gotten older, I have also become aware of the history of education, and how it can become a weapon of indoctrination in the hands of despotic men. At this point, I want to make it clear that this is not meant to be a political post, but rather my own worldview -- both secular and Biblical -- about how education is an important influence in the culture of a people, and should therefore be safeguarded as a virtuous pursuit. 

We can go all the way back to the Garden of Eden to see how important the pursuit of knowledge is to God. He created a Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and warned our forefather, Adam, to refrain from eating the fruit of that specific tree. The Bible tells us that Satan was already in the Garden and Scripture tells us he was crafty [subtle, and skilled in deceit]. God knew that once Adam ate of that fruit, he would became conscious of a choice between good and evil and would be tempted to disobey this commandment, leading to his ultimate doom. We all know the consequences of Adam and Eve's choice... Knowledge of Evil was released on the earth. And the foundational definition of "knowledge" is this: facts, information, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.

Now we see that experience and education leads to knowledge. So, it stands to reason that the facts and the information we receive are important factors in how we are educated, as well as the substance and purpose of the education we receive. From the beginning of time, education, knowledge, and wisdom have been appreciated and sought after. The Bible recognizes that knowledge [coming from education and training] is important. But sadly, it can be subject to corruption. Paul exhorts Timothy regarding this very possibility: O, Timothy, guard and keep safe the deposit [of godly truth] entrusted to you, turn away from worldly and godless chatter [with its profane, empty words], and the contradictions of what is falsely called “knowledge” -- which some have professed and by doing so have erred (missed the mark) and strayed from the faith (1 Timothy 6:20-21).

It's apparent in today's world that having knowledge is simply not enough. There are countless people in the spheres of higher education, the media, science, and social philosophy who bear titles that allude to their possession of knowledge. But do they have Wisdom? Man can gain knowledge through his own efforts. But Wisdom comes from God alone. And when you receive Wisdom from God, you receive knowledge of His Truth, understand His Truth, and know how to apply His Truth. There is no greater example of the difference between having Knowledge alone, and having Knowledge plus Wisdom, than the story of Moses. 

Moses was raised as a son in the royal household of the King of Egypt. Along with his step-brothers, he would have been given a classical Egyptian education; taught reading, writing, mathematics, medicine, geography, history, music, and science. The brothers were all taught the same, yet only Moses received Wisdom from God and went on to lead God's people out of slavery and bondage and into the hope of freedom in a promised land. As simple as it may sound, Wisdom is a necessary component to receiving Godly knowledge in any education system, and it can have profound effects on entire peoples, cultures, and nations.

Which brings me [finally] to a good hard, look at our own education system. I can only imagine what God must think when He contemplates how far Wisdom has been removed from our education system, and what serves as Knowledge in our classrooms. There is not only concern regarding what is being taught, but what has been removed. In researching the classical education of children in colonial America, I discovered that the typical education of the time began at about age eight. Students who went to school were required to learn Latin and Greek grammar and to read the Roman historians Tacitus and Livy, the Greek historians Herodotus and Thucydides, and to translate the Latin poetry of Virgil and Horace. A formal education also stressed the seven liberal arts: grammar, logic, and rhetoric, as well as arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, and music. And, of course, the Bible.

Students were encouraged to debate ancient philosophies, and enjoyed the freedom to question dogmas in the pursuit of truth. For those who had little formal education (such as our first President George Washington), the personal study of classical thinkers was commonplace, as was a classical influence from the pulpits of Cotton Mather and Jonathan Edwards. In other words, intellectual curiosity and the pursuit of knowledge, infused with Wisdom from God and the Bible, was a guiding force in the founding and governing of this nation from the beginning. Benjamin Franklin said, "The Bible is the foundation of all education and development", and "The greatest education is the knowledge of God".

Virtue [showing and enacting high moral standards] was valued in our education system. Today, I fear that virtue has been replaced with what has become known as "virtue signaling", defined as showing support for a socially acceptable moral cause without actually doing anything to advance it; a false show of self-righteous behavior; placing more importance on the appearance of moral correctness, than acting morally. 

Instead of the Biblical character of empathy (the ability to understand and share the feelings of others), our children are now taught identity politics; it's all about me, which is the opposite of empathy. And just 60 years after Martin Luther King, Jr. shared his dream of a just nation, we find that we are still judged by the color of our skin, and not the content of our character. 

We may point out that our educational system began failing when God and prayer were removed from our schools by the Supreme Court in 1962. But the Enemy of God began invasively planting seeds of division long before that. At the turn of the 20th Century, our schools began to be infiltrated by Social Reconstructionists who believed that a
society could be reconstructed through the complete control of education. The objective was to change society to conform to the basic ideals of the political party or government in power or to create a utopian society through education. The result has been an increase in the transference of educational authority from the States to the Federal government. In addition, School Boards have become increasingly accountable to social and political causes and groups, rather than to parents who rightly hold them responsible for the education of their children. 

We have recently seen this growing national conflict between School Boards and parents in Loudoun County, Virginia. And I recently watched a live forum on Education in which educators, parents, and policy experts voiced their concerns over the manipulation and indoctrination of students in specific sociological and political ideology. Both parents and teachers voiced the harassment they have endured when they dared to question School Boards about their children's education. It was disturbing to hear how far our Educational system has veered from the standards and goals of a Godly education.

But perhaps the most alarming, yet hopeful, testimony came from a Loudoun County school teacher. She said she found herself cleaning out a classroom [before being moved to a new location] and she cried out to God, saying she was tired of fighting the system and didn't know how much longer she could continue teaching. She lamented how far we've fallen from presenting our children with a fair, true, equitable education that subscribes to Godly principles, and she repented for having failed the children. She admitted she was afraid to fight back against the School Board, having seen the personal attacks that came with that stance. And she told God she was sorry the American people had allowed Him to be removed from the classroom, but she wasn't sure how she could make a difference.

As she reached for the last book on the bookshelf, she saw that it was the Holy Bible. When she opened the flyleaf, it read, "Gifted to the Loudoun County Senior Class of 1955." And she heard the Lord say, "I did not leave. I survived the Supreme Court ban of 1962. I have not abandoned this school, and I have put you in this place for this time to represent Me in this battle for our schools". That teacher said she is no longer afraid to speak up and has joined with other concerned teachers and parents to take back the schools in Loudon County, Virginia. Indeed, that is the goal of the new governor of Virginia, Glenn Youngkin, and his amazing Lt. Governor, Winsome Sears.

I know that this post will have no great consequence in bringing the Mountain of Education under the influence of the Kingdom of God. But I just wanted to remind us all that we have a rich heritage of the pursuit of Knowledge and Godly Wisdom in this nation. It is well worth resurrecting and inviting the Creator of all knowledge to once again be the guiding Light of teaching and instruction for our generations. The road we have been going down has only served to divide us, which pleases God's enemies. Let us join together to preserve the minds and futures of our children. They are our hope. How they are educated will determine if this nation survives in freedom, or descends into oblivion.

Proverbs 4:13     Take hold of instruction; [actively seek it, grip it firmly and] do not let go. Guard her, for she is your life.


August 1, 2016

Satan Knows Us Better Than We Know Ourselves.

     I ran across an article in The Washington Post which took me on a bit of a crazy ride... from the After School Satan Club to Dr. Charles Kraft, the evangelical Christian apologist, anthropologist and linguist, with whom I received my first training in the work of inner healing and spiritual warfare.  Let me show you how I got from point A to point B...
     The article, titled An After-School Satan Club Could Be Coming To Your Kid’s Elementary School, was certainly alarming enough to catch my eye.  The article seemed to center around the conflict between the leaders of the Satanic Temple and those who they see as their primary foe, an evangelical Christian after-school program known as The Good News Club.  While I obviously knew that I didn't support the activities of the Satanic Temple's after-school program, I expected that I would naturally be drawn to the Christian-oriented curriculum.  But not so fast....
     At the foundation of the conflict is the First Amendment, which the Satanic Temple (ST) has used to their great advantage in recent years.  They point out that Christian evangelical groups already have infiltrated the lives of America’s children through after-school religious programming in public schools, and they appear determined to give young students a choice: Jesus or Satan.
     The current approach by the ST to introduce Satan as an after-school choice is the result of the 2001 Supreme Court case where The Good News Club was the plaintiff in Good News Club v. Milford Central School, 533 U.S. 98 (2001).  The plaintiff, represented by powerful legal advocacy groups on the religious right, including the Alliance Defending Freedom and the Liberty Counsel, held that the club was entitled to the same access as other groups, like the Boy Scouts, to provide after-school programs designed to promote "moral and character development" to Milford School's elementary children.
     Over the ensuing years, the ST has successfully fought for their First Amendment Rights, and in 2014, after the Supreme Court ruled that the regular recitation of prayers before town meetings did not violate the First Amendment (provided that towns do not discriminate among religions), the Temple decided to test just how much religious liberty towns would allow. They volunteered to perform a Satanic benediction in an Arizona town where the board had regularly opened with a Christian prayer. In that case, the town preferred to abolish the practice of opening prayers.
     That is how we got to the present conflict.  The ST maintains that if public schools can offer after-school programs in what they see as "indoctrination, [and] instilling children with a fear of hell and God’s wrath", then they are free to offer after-school programs that "focus on free inquiry and rationalism."  You see, here is what they want you to believe:  "the group’s plan for public schoolchildren isn’t actually about promoting worship of the devil. The Satanic Temple doesn’t espouse a belief in the existence of a supernatural being that other religions identify solemnly as Satan, or Lucifer, or Beelzebub. The Temple rejects all forms of supernaturalism and is committed to the view that scientific rationality provides the best measure of reality".
     So, that's what they say they believe.  But I am here to tell you that whether they believe in the devil or satan or Lucifer is not the primary point; there is a very real dark and demonic and powerful spirit behind the formation of such groups as The Satanic Temple.  They can say that  “Satan” is just a “metaphorical construct” intended to represent the rejection of all forms of tyranny over the human mind, and all they want is to promote the belief or theory that opinions and actions should be based on reason and knowledge rather than on religious belief or emotional response... scientific rationalism and "free inquiry".
     But all you have to do is watch this video at their website, and you will see the image and statue of Baphomet prominently displayed; (Baphomet is the goat-headed pagan deity most closely associated with occultism, ritual magic, witchcraft, Satanism and esoterica).  Appropriately enough for the After-School Satan Club, the video promotes the image of adoring children looking upon the goat god as he entices them to come under his influence.
     Also, I noticed that the video contained several frames of children and people running and walking backwards.  My spirit was not content to dismiss this as just a technique to enhance the video, so I did a little research.  It seems that this was a practice called The Law of Reversal, promoted by Aliester Crowley, the master occultist who lived from 1875-1947.  Crowley taught his students that those who want fame, power, spell-casting abilities, demons at their beck and call, and [the ability] to recognize the godhead within; as well as to know the past, present, and future, must consistently, with intensity, practice talking (reverse speech), walking, thinking, and playing phonograph records, backwards.  (Anybody of my generation remember the Beatles using this technique, or trying to play records backwards)? This is a form of divination, and we are warned against this in the Holy Bible.  So, so much for this not being about belief in satan.
     But I want to get back to their claim that this after-school program's agenda is all about rationalism instead of religion.  It is apparent to me that satan is after the next generation of kids.  My generation, and the one right after us, are quite possibly the last generations to be really schooled about Jesus.  The Millennials don't seem interested in Him, and seem to be buying into the devil's mantra of "Do as thy will", instead of "Do as God wills".  This ties right into the trend of our educational system and our growing cultural bias -- an aversion to critical thinking, or another way to put it: they object to a factual analysis and evaluation of an issue in order to form a judgment... it's all about the freedom of the individual to decide for themselves.  This all comes as a result of the breakdown in the family.  Our children should never have to stay after school to learn about Jesus.  It should be an important part of instruction received at home from their parents!
     That brings the After-School Satan Club in direct opposition to the Good News Club, which like I said, I thought would provide children with an age-appropriate education through their Bible lessons, songs, Scripture memory and discipleship training to build character and strengthen moral and spiritual growth.  All that sounds good and much more preferable to what the Satan Club is offering.  But then I began reading reviews and some concerns arose ... it is possible that the message is a little harsh for small children and children who are otherwise unschooled in the Bible; messages that promote ideas such as, "You deserve to die and be separated from Him forever because of your sin".  For example, in one of the books called Esther which is used as part of the lesson plan in The Good News Club, the teacher discusses that anytime the child disobeys their mom or dad, they are sinning; just having a bad attitude about something they have asked you to do is sinning ... this is followed up with the admonishment that "The punishment you and I deserve for our sin is destruction—separation from God forever in a terrible place called Hell... many people are on the road to destruction".  That's a little bit strong for an elementary student, don't you think?
     Then there's even another alternative called The Young Skeptics, which is sponsored by The Better News Club (BNC), which is in opposition to The Good News Clubs.  The BNC/Young Skeptics calls the Good News Club a form of child abuse, using fear tactics and Christian extremist tactics to get across their theology.  The goal of the Young Skeptics is to provide children with an alternative, and scientifically based, view of the natural world around them.  Religion is not discussed in Young Skeptics sessions, nor is atheism.  Young Skeptics' curriculum is based on scientific discovery and evidence-based decision-making.  
     So, while I am definitely against the Satan Club, I'm not enthusiastic about the Good News Club, and see the Young Skeptics as falling far short of Biblical knowledge and training.  They are all flawed systems, in my opinion.  So, here's the way I see it:  as rampant as rationalism and the occult is becoming in our culture, the Church is actually defeating itself.  By rejecting the supernatural aspects of God and the Bible, groups like The Satanic Temple are taking advantage of our ignorance; projecting rationalism in the natural world, and focusing on the universe and science.  And all the while, in the background they are applying principles "on earth as it is in Hell", and promoting spirit-led and supernatural rituals and exercises like those espoused by Aleister Crowley.
     If the Church doesn't learn how to fight in the spirit, and in the spiritual realm, then "on earth as it is in Heaven" becomes just "as it is on earth".  We see evidence of this in pastors who don't believe in the gift of healing or spiritual warfare because it's "too uncomfortable" for people.  And groups like the Young Skeptics are just adapting to become "of this world". The result: satan wins.
     This finally brings me to the thoughts and opinions of the venerable Dr. Charles Kraft.  He says that the Church is promoting a form of "Naturalistic Christianity" ... most of the answers to our questions are secular, and the Church promotes it's particular denominational doctrine and if a few people get saved along the way, that's OK.  Evangelical Christianity offers little discussion or practice of the miraculous dimensions that lead to a rediscovery of the ministry of Jesus.  Therefore, we have a knowledge-oriented Christianity in this country, but we don't know anything about the power of our faith.  We only have approval from society if we stay within the realm of providing knowledge and information... because society is knowledge/science oriented.  We are under pressure from society to conform to this position and to stay in line with the world.
     So, satan is working through groups like The Satanic Temple and programs like the After-School Satan Club because they feed into society's belief system about itself; i.e., that we are a science-oriented, knowledge-based society.  Where is the power of the Church?  And when will we learn who we really are ... created to display the power and authority of the Son of the One True God?  I, for one, am claiming my true identity!

1 Corinthians 1:18          "For the message of the cross is foolishness [absurd and illogical] to those who are perishing and spiritually dead [because they reject it], but to us who are being saved [by God’s grace] it is [the manifestation of] the power of God."

April 8, 2016

When Political Correctness Becomes Indoctrination

     You may, or may not be aware, but one week from today, April 15th, the welfare of our children will be under assault.  No, I'm not talking about Tax Day.  I'm talking about "The Day of Silence" that is being promoted by the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN).
     The professed purpose of the GLSEN Day of Silence is that it is "a student-led national event that brings attention to anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment in schools. Students from middle school to college take a vow of silence in an effort to encourage schools and classmates to address the problem of anti-LGBT behavior by illustrating the silencing effect of bullying and harassment on LGBT students and those perceived to be LGBT."
     First of all, I'm not sure that I believe this protest is "student-led" or even "student generated".  As with all social movements, you can usually find an instigator behind the scenes that is pulling the strings and pushing an agenda. In this case, as reported by Linda Harvey on Barbwire.com, The Day of Silence is meant to be "a day when students remain silent in sympathy for those who are born homosexual or born in the wrong sex body, who are victimized (so the narrative goes) by any message encouraging actual male/female biology, dating and marriage -- all scorned as hateful and homophobic."
     So, our children are being subjected to guilt and intimidation under the guise of an anti-bullying campaign, when in reality, it looks an awful lot like promotion of the homosexual and transgender lifestyle in our public schools.  Listen to the testimony of another writer at Barbwire, Linda Wall:  "It was several years after I was set free from homosexuality that I discovered the pushers of sexual perversion had made it into the public schools under the disguise of “diversity”. Imagine how horrified I was in 2000 to see that AT&T had sent pro-homosexual lesson plans to every middle school of America! These lesson plans presented the politically correct view of homosexuality."
     And as the title of my post indicates, this political correctness has crossed the line into indoctrination.  Ms. Harvey goes so far as to write, "The 'anti-bullying' scam is the cover used in many school districts to expose children to obscene, bigoted and pornographic presentations. If we object, it is alleged that more students may attempt suicide."  Students and teachers in Iowa have reported workshops filled with profanity; details about oral/anal sex; how gender-confused girls can bind their breasts and sew fake testicles into their underwear as pretend boys; and even a recommendation for reacting to a pro-marriage bumper sticker: “Slash the tires.”
     This event (which may be happening at your child's or grandchildren's school) is just the latest in homosexual activism.  By pointing this out, I'm sure that I will be labeled homophobic and a hater, but that is simply not the truth.  I have gay friends whom I love, and whom I know are every bit a child of God as I am. Would I rather they were living within the will of God?  You bet!  But I do not hate them, nor do I condemn them.  That is not my purpose on this earth.  But when I see gay activists who ridicule the dignity, innocence and modesty of children, while deliberately trying to coerce immoral behavior, then I will decry such actions -- no matter who or what they are promoting.
     In her article, Harvey goes on to report that our middle school kids are being taught CSE, “comprehensive sex education,” and how to put both male and female condoms on plastic models in mixed sex classes (female condoms are most often used by lesbians). It’s humiliating for 11- to 14- year-olds, and just another of the Saul Alinsky tactics designed to shock and assault innocence.
     Furthermore, these CSE classes are distorting the truth.  They teach that abstinence and protected sex are the same thing.  A program called Making Proud Choices, teaches that "To protect yourself and your partner from sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV infection, you should: Keep a supply of condoms on hand. Get used to condoms, so they are natural and fun. …” (p.92).
     While this indoctrination seems to be happening quickly and without opposition, I do want you to know that the ACLU has issued a statement emphasizing the limits of political activism during instructional class time: "You DO have a right to participate in Day of Silence and other expressions of your opinion at a public school during non-instructional time: the breaks between classes, before and after the school day, lunchtime, and any other free times during your day ... You do NOT have a right to remain silent during class time if a teacher asks you to speak."
     So, parents who are awake and aware of the cultural marxism/political correctness agenda being rammed down the throats of our kids in the public school system are being encouraged to call their kids out of school on April 15th.  They are being encouraged to stop the hijacking of our kids' education, and to actively oppose GLSEN's socio-political goals and its controversial, unproven, and destructive theories on the nature and morality of homosexuality.  The public school classroom should not be an arena for politicization of any kind of movement; especially for the mental, emotional, physical, spiritual, and sexual exploitation of our children.
     But one more word of caution ... lest you think the ACLU is on the side of families of faith, and the traditional sexual roles in society, be on your guard.  There is a paper called Schools In Transition: A Guide for Supporting Transgender Students in K-12 Schools, which is a first-of-its-kind publication for school administrations, teachers, and parents about how to provide safe and supportive environments for all transgender students, kindergarten through twelfth grade.  It was written by staffers from the ACLU, National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), Gender Spectrum, the National Education Association (NEA), and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC).
     With statement's like "A student’s age and maturity — or that of their peers —should never be a basis for denying a transgender student an opportunity to transition in a safe and supportive environment", it is not too hard to see that transitioning away from Biblical gender roles is not only supported, but subtly encouraged; and gender confusion is seen as viable in children as young as kindergarten!  What has this culture become?!?!
     This post has barely scratched the surface as far as the assault on our children and their education systems.  And sadly, I would surmise that very few parents are aware of the indoctrination of their children.  I can't help but feel that this is one more nail in the coffin of our nation.  We have legitimized child sacrifice through abortion, destroyed the Biblical model of family and creation; and are now subjecting our children to perversion and deviancy.  How much longer will our righteous and holy God restrain His wrath?

Matthew 18:6    "But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea."

March 4, 2016

The Loss Of Critical Thinking and What It Is Costing Us

     I recently read an excellent article by Daniel Juster, an author and Jewish religious leader.  His topic explored the state of our higher education and this generation's loss of real critical thinking skills.  Like him, I have often heard that college students of today are among the most educated in history.  But what are they educated in?  If it is how to navigate the latest in electronic devices, or complex technologies, then I would have to agree.  But are those the skills that will make them good citizens of the world, or productive and moral leaders of tomorrow?
     It seems to me that there has been a "dumbing down" of our cultural history.  The cultural knowledge has suffered from a lack of teaching on how, as a nation, we have arrived at who we are.  And the history part of that knowledge is appallingly deficient.  Juster points out that students cannot even find China on a globe. They cannot grasp many important aspects of World War II, and know barely anything about literature. One young graduate was asked if she knew about Martin Luther. She responded by asking, "You mean the civil rights leader?" He opines that the cultural deposit of the West is simply being squandered. Why?
     To begin with, educators like to discuss the differences between Objectivism and Relativism, and throw words like egocentric and sociocentric tendencies around -- highfalutin words that, to me, just mask the failure of our education system to teach old-fashioned critical thinking.
     And what exactly is Critical Thinking, and why would the lack of it harm our kids and the future of our nation?  The definition of critical thinking is as follows ... the objective analysis and evaluation of an issue in order to form a judgment.  There's that word objective, which is often disparaged in the halls of our universities.   To be objective is to believe that certain things (such as moral truths), exist independently of human knowledge or perception of them.  In other words, there are truths and values that are definite, unconditional, and unquestionable.
     But in this age of relativism, educators are more likely to teach a doctrine or philosophy that knowledge, truth, and morality exist in relation to culture, society, or historical context, and are not absolute.  What that means is that our kids are convinced that they should not judge any religion, culture, art or philosophy as superior to another.  They are taught a whole new set of values that have a sliding scale of relevance, depending on an individual's experience.  And depending on the religious, political, and social experience of a university professor, students may be taught a personally biased view of everything from the Founding Fathers as white male oppressors, to the nation of Israel as a colonial power who is oppressing Palestinians.  What is so hypocritical about these positions is that they will be defended as absolute truths, all in the name of relativism.  That reasoning is so contradictory as to be laughable! Do you see the lack of critical thinking?  The lack of any strict analysis or evaluation?
     As an example, feminist leaders of American universities will vote to boycott Israel, when Israel is the only country in the Middle East with full women's rights! Why? Their anti-colonialism simply blinds them to the women who are so oppressed in the Muslim world.  Furthermore, Christianity is despised as judgmental and restrictive, but Islam is to be embraced and respected!
     There is no effort made to study our cultural history and to discover that, yes, the Founding Fathers were slave owners.  But their writings disclose their desire to eliminate the abusive system.  Further study would reveal that they transcended the limits of their time and moved history toward greater human rights and freedom. It was a long historical process, and one that established this nation and its moral foundation.  Yes, at times it was rocky and ugly, but when carefully analyzed and studied, the bigger picture emerges and one sees a more balanced perspective.  But without the practice of critical thinking, and an established and accepted set of moral values, where does one find the real truth?  Isn't it then subject to one person's self-directed and self-monitored thinking?  Do you see that society could soon descend into a morass of confusing standards?
     But perhaps the saddest aspect of it all is that our kids are in danger of being unable to think for themselves and determine a distinction between good and evil.  They are being taught to submit to the herd; that they should not have an opinion that might offend someone else.  What is evil to one person, may be accepted by another, simply because he chooses to see it that way. After all, it's whatever is relevant to each individual, correct?  But here's the thing ... there IS a definite right and wrong in the world!  Not everything can be relegated to someone's self-determined set of moral codes (or lack thereof).  We must regain the ability to think for ourselves and to examine and compare our own decisions, and those of our leaders, to a high and uncompromising standard of righteous living.  I know just the place to start ....

Proverbs 1:7           “ The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. ”

February 3, 2016

I Warned You!

     There are times that things I see seem so clear and transparent, yet I have doubts that anyone ever reads what I write, or if they do, it is too difficult to take seriously.  Yet I know that I am not the only one who has been sounding the alarm.  Others have written of the covert efforts of the Muslim Brotherhood to infiltrate our country -- from the highest echelons of government, to our corporate board rooms, and our children's classrooms.
     In June, 2013 I wrote a detailed blog post about the clandestine endeavors surrounding the Brotherhood's endeavors to wage "a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within."  The idea of a Global Caliphate was new and, frankly, most people in the West sneered at the notion.
     Now, nearly two-and-a-half years later, we are focused on the beheadings and exterminations of Christians in the Middle East; the exponential growth in rapes of European women by Muslim immigrants; and the growing threat of terrorist plots on our own soil.  But while we are zeroing in on these atrocities, there has been a more subtle jihad being committed in the heartland.
     In 2013, I warned you about the Cosmos Foundation, a charter school operator founded a decade ago by a group of professors and businessmen from Turkey. The group, currently using the name Harmony Schools, has become the biggest charter operation in the state of Texas, promising American parents that they could increase their children's comprehension in math and the sciences.  What concerned me was the fact that the Cosmos Foundation had also forged ongoing relationships with a close-knit network of businesses and organizations run by Turkish immigrants. Some of those founders, as well as school operators, and many of their business suppliers, were followers of a man named Fethullah Gülen.
     Since I wrote that article, it has become apparent that Turkey has regressed from a secular democracy into an Islamic state, and Imam Fethullah Gülen and his Gülen Movement (GM) had an enormous influence in setting the increasingly Islamist agenda in Turkey.  In fact, in Turkey, 75 % of the nation’s two million preparatory school students are enrolled in Gülen institutions. In America, GM runs the largest charter school network in the nation.  In 2013, I asked the following question:  When you connect the dots, don't you think all this information is worthy of our scrutiny and our concern?  And in light of the connections between GM and the political campaign of a certain candidate for the President of the United States, I still stand by that astute question.

     And apparently, so does Ariel Cohen, a writer for The Blaze.  Mr. Cohen has written an excellent article, in which he points out that the myriad of organizations affiliated with the Gülen movement include banks, newspapers, universities, charities, research institutes, and the largest network of private Muslim schools in the world. The school curriculum is not "overtly" Islamist, and claims to focus on science, technology, engineering and math (also known as STEM).  Cohen alleges that the Gülen-affiliated net business worth exceeds $25 billion, and together, they receive approximately $150 million a year in U.S. tax breaks and subsidies -- all leading to an unhealthy mix of politics, education, and religion that is infecting our nation.
     Mr. Cohen is so bold as to suggest that the Gülen organization "appears to be busy buying, using and abusing political power.... The web reaches up to the corridors of the U.S. Congress and down to local schools from Texas to Tahoe. According to a USA TODAY investigation, over 200 trips for congressmen and congressional staff have been sponsored by Gülenist entities".
     And here is something that should concern us all ... According to the Clinton Foundation website, Recep Ozkan, former president of the Gülen-connected Turkish Cultural Center, contributed between $500,000 and $1 million. Unsurprisingly, former President Bill Clinton has appeared at Gülen movement events and praised the founder’s contributions to world peace and inter-religious understanding.
     But these "Turkish operatives" are not tied to just one party.  Both Democratic Representative Henry Cuellar of Texas, and Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte have been reported to be recipients of Gülen organizational donations (although Senator Ayotte returned funds, once she discovered their origin).  Currently, the FBI is engaged in a massive probe of Gülenist activities in this country. However, the investigation is limited to the Gülen-linked schools.
     But there is some hope ... It is the task of law enforcement to protect our politics, our country, and most importantly our children, from illicit external influences. Therefore, as the FBI investigates the network, it can also look into the political donations by the members of the movement.  I hope they do so.
     It is apparent in his home country of Turkey that Imam Gülen has an agenda ... to infiltrate all the business centers, re-educate the children, and obtain State power, and a warrant for his arrest has been issued.  Does it not seem plausible that he and his followers are trying to institute the same paradigm here in the U.S.?  We need to pray that the FBI will be allowed to conduct a thorough investigate; that Congress will weed out this invasive and subversive enemy of American sovereignty; and that God will shine His light upon the organization's false motives.  I know we have ignored this enemy for far too long, but I have faith that God can destroy their plans.

Job 5:12-13     "He frustrates the devices of the crafty, so that their hands cannot perform their enterprise or anything of [lasting] worth.  He catches the [so-called] wise in their own trickiness, and the counsel of the schemers is brought to a quick end."

November 18, 2015

WARNING! Beware of "Mindfulness" and "Mindful Intervention"!

     As usual, in the busyness and chaos of my life, I manage to hear snippets of the world's conversations all around me, and sometimes the Holy Spirit will "zing" me with a "Pay attention to this" summons.  Such was the case when I overhead a Fox News announcer commenting that the Department of Education is spending upwards of $2.5 million to bring a "mindfulness intervention" to kindergarteners in Chicago, where kids can go to “calm spots” in the corner to watch nature videos.
     What the 10-second sound bite did not tell the audience was that this government program is in conjunction with the National Institutes of Health, which has spent over $100 million studying this New Age meditation technique called "mindfulness".  What's more, The Education Department has introduced this “Calm Classroom” program into 3,000 schools through its Investing in Innovation Fund.  What?!?!  Exactly what are all these "government programs" that taxpayer dollars are funding, and what exactly is it that they are trying to accomplish??
     To begin with, Investing in Innovation Fund is "to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access."  And if you follow the rabbit trail, they propose that advancing student achievement can be accomplished through this theory based on "mindfulness intervention".  But what, precisely, is that?  According to the grant abstract, written to acquire funding, "Mindfulness is a secular, psychological mode involving non-judgmental focus on present-moment sensations, and has been shown to have a number of benefits to well-being.  Our project offers an innovative approach not only because mindfulness is unique relative to traditional social-emotional learning (SEL) programs, but also because of added elements designed to replenish children’s focus directly back into the content of school, including always-available ways to take very brief ‘brain breaks.' "  (Please pay attention to the words and phrases that I have underlined; you will see their significance shortly).
      So, if kindergartners in Chicago are the focus group for this grant, just what is the government hoping to accomplish or prove?  According to the written grant, the Chicago Public School System, along with various Institutes and a trademarked program called Calm Classroom, hope to employ a mindfulness-based intervention to increase the self-regulation and engagement in learning of young children in low-performing schools.  Furthermore, the grant states, "The need for this approach arises from two conditions. First, mastery of self-regulation skills during the early years of schooling has been shown to be as, if not more important to long-term academic competence than intelligence or domain-specific knowledge. Second, increasingly younger children are experiencing high levels of trauma, unpredictability, and toxic stress, thus arriving at school with tendencies to either act out or disengage, rather than being ready to participate productively in the classroom community and learn."
     That whole line about "increase self-regulation" says to me that they don't want any original thinkers, or kids who think outside the box, or who might challenge the teacher and other students with their uncontrolled imaginations.  What happened to the psychological motto of "not killing the child's spirit", that was so popular in the 60's?
     Besides sounding like a bunch of New Age hocus-pocus, it seems very clear to me that the public school systems have lost control of their students, and now need to engage in some kind of "brain games" to mollify and reduce classroom disruption.  I don't know about you, but a trip to the principal's office in my grade school days, was enough to keep me from acting up.  I knew that at the end of that hall might be the Athletic Coach with a paddle.
     But it's not enough to point out the lack of discipline in schools, or to lament the decidedly "secular", environmental, and mystical approach to maintaining classroom control.  You really need to know what is really behind this "mindfulness" movement.  Here it is:  The skill of mindfulness can be gradually developed using meditational practices that are described in detail in the Buddhist tradition. The Five-Aggregate Model, an ancient model of the mind and body, is a helpful theoretical resource that could guide mindfulness interventions.  The term "mindfulness" is derived from the Pali-term sati, which is an essential element of Buddhist practice, including vipassana, satipaṭṭhāna and anapanasati. It has been popularized in the West by Jon Kabat-Zinn with his mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) program.
     Now, here is where it gets frightening for me.... Did you know that in 2012,  Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio published A Mindful Nation, and has received a $1 million federal grant to teach mindfulness in schools in his home district?  Or, in 2000, The Inner Kids Program, a mindfulness-based program developed for children, was introduced into public and private school curricula in the greater Los Angeles area?  Or how about the fact that The Holistic Life Foundation, a non-profit organization that created an in-school mindfulness program called Mindful Moment, is currently serving almost 350 students daily at Robert W. Coleman Elementary School and approximately 1300 students at Patterson Park High School in Baltimore, Maryland? At Patterson High School, the Mindful Moment program engages the school's faculty along with the students during a 15-minute mindfulness practice at the beginning and end of each school day.  They are allowed to practice an element of Buddhist meditation, but a prayer to the One True God of the Universe is illegal?
     And just to top off the widespread use of the Mindfulness Movement, consider this: One study involved enrolling college students in a course about mindfulness that included guided mindfulness meditation as part of the curriculum. After the semester, pre- and post-levels for different aspects of mental health were compared and students were found to have more non-judgmental stances towards their thoughts and feelings. This is believed to result in better stress-coping skills, improved academic performance and quality of life.  Furthermore, scores continued to improve for the weeks following the end of the course, demonstrating the long-lasting effects of mindfulness meditation.
     Do you see what I'm trying to show you?  For years now, our public schools and universities have been preparing our kids to become robots!  Let's not teach them critical thinking skills!  No!  Let's teach them all to hum a mantra and dull their minds so they are easily contained and mastered.  And it is now instituted from kindergarten to college!  If you really want to see the full scope of what I believe is a harmful movement to capture and control the minds of our kids, read the Wikipedia entry. I know not everyone thinks Wikipedia falls under the banner of incontrovertible truth, but if even a fraction of what they report is true, it should frighten all parents.  Don't be fooled by the claims that  "calm spots" and "brain breaks" are needed elements to help your kids learn better.  Just teach them Readin', Writin', and Arithmetic, and how to think for themselves!

Go to the article at The Free Beacon website for more information on what the Department of Education has in store for your kids.  
2 Corinthians 11:3    "But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ."

November 17, 2015

Modern Educayshun

      Although I do not wish to minimize the ongoing situation in France or the world's need for security, I thought you might need a break.  So, this is a little bit of entertainment for your morning.  Actually, nothing much needs to be said about it.  It's a masterful commentary on the current state of our Education System in this country -- Cultural Marxism, Political Correctness, Neo-Progressivism, Social Justice, and feminism all rolled into one.
     Sadly, although it was created by Australian comic genius Neel Kolhatkar, the underlying truth in the short video is anything but funny.  It is pretty much the average college student's experience in a Liberal Arts class here in the good ol' USA.  And if you combined George Orwell's Animal Farm and his 1984 into one book on social engineering, then this video would come awfully close to that horrifying collaboration.
     And if you have been paying attention to my rants on Common Core, then this is what your college-age kids are facing.  It is not parody or satire, it is fast becoming reality.  So please take a moment and watch this amazing YouTube video.  At only 21 years old, Mr. Kolhatkar, is wise beyond his years, and he says it better than I can.  I applaud his talent and ability to show us the truth in a serious, yet mocking manner.  Sit up and take notice, parents and grandparents!

Proverbs 4:13   "Keep hold of instruction; do not let go; guard her, for she is your life."

October 29, 2015

Seventh-Grader Stands For God

     I know I shouldn't be surprised; but I am still in shock after reading a story printed on the Education Action Group website.  Before I relate the story, I want you to understand exactly who EAG is, and their perspective.  They are a foundation based on the desire to "shine a spotlight on the leftist agenda and activists and their mission to “fundamentally transform” the United States of America through the government education system."
     The perspective of EAG is very well-stated in this mission statement:  When the government took upon itself the obligation of educating America’s youth, it undertook a serious responsibility that demanded results. In far too many communities across America, the government is woefully failing in that responsibility.  Dismal test scores, out-of-control unsustainable spending, and the ardent defense of adults’ rights have all pushed the government education system to the brink of irrelevance. And worse yet, it’s all having a direct impact on our future ability to compete in the world.
     EAG believes the one-size-fits-all, assembly line government school system requires serious reform.  It is their desire to see that 1) the needs of the students are put first;  2) the needs of adults are second;  3) Parents are empowered to seek the best education options for their children;  and 4)  State governments should enact reforms to give schools more control over their budgets and personnel decisions.
     OK, now that you know who EAG is and why they felt it was important to report this story, let's get to the facts of what happened to seventh-grader, Jordan Wooley, of Katy, Texas.  Jordan took the brave step of appearing before a school board meeting to testify about her allegations that a teacher was attempting to force atheist indoctrination upon her classroom.  “Today I was given an assignment in school that questioned my faith and told me that God was not real. Our teacher had started off saying that the assignment had been giving problems all day. We were asked to take a poll to say whether God is fact, opinion or a myth; and she told anyone who said fact or opinion was wrong and God was only a myth,” Wooley told board members.  (See YouTube video of her presentation here).
     The teacher, “started telling kids they were completely wrong and that when kids argued we were told we would get in trouble. When I tried to argue, she told me to prove it, and I tried to reference things such as the Bible and stories I have read before from people who have died and went to heaven but came back and told their stories, and she told me both were just things people were doing to get attention."
     Here is where I can get personally involved.  If you have been reading my blog from the beginning post in December, 2011, then you know my personal history with a young man named Ben Breedlove.  Ben only lived for 18 years, but he left a legacy that will impact his generation for years to come.  You see, Ben had a heavenly experience just weeks before his final death from Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy.  You can read my post about the night he died here, and click on the links to the 2-part video he left behind to attest to his faith and intimate knowledge of God and Heaven.
     Although no one in his family knew he had recorded his experience in heaven, Ben knew what he was doing.  Somehow, with his vast knowledge of the internet and social media, he planned for the videos to be released after his death.  To this date, nearly 4 years later, it is impossible to know the exact number who have witnessed Ben's videos. Two years ago YouTube reported over 12 million people had received Ben's testimony of his heavenly experience, and you can read my post on his sister's 2013 book about the incredible influence Ben has had on people, both young and old, as he shared his hope that is Heaven.  I can only imagine that millions more have heard his story.
     So, I can personally tell that 7th-grade teacher that Ben's experience in Heaven had nothing to do with getting attention.  The attention didn't come until after he died.  And it was real.  Just as real as the God in whom Ben and Jordan Wooley have faith.  But here is what really worries me.... Jordan explained [to the School Board] that she spoke with other students in the class who were marked down because they believe God is real, as well as [hearing] compromises proposed by students to avoid rejecting their faith.
     Did you get that?  While some students were unwilling to say that God was a myth, others were already trying to figure out how to "compromise" their faith -- trying to figure out ways in which they didn't outright reject their faith, but would still enable them to pass the class.  That is dangerous ground upon which to tread!
     But Jordan remained steadfast.  “Another student asked the teacher if we could put what we believe in the paper, and she said we could … but you would fail the paper if you do,” Wooley told the board. “I had known before that our schools aren’t really supposed to teach us much about religion or question religion. When I asked my teacher about it she said it doesn’t have anything to do with religion because the problem is just saying there is no God.”  But Jordan could not deny her faith.  When texting her mother about the assignment, she said, "We had to deny God is real. Yeah, we had to say he was just a myth... I said he is real and she said that can’t be proven; I still put fact on my paper."
     So this brave seventh-grade student appeared at the podium alone as she faced the Katy Independent School District Board.  When asked how the exchange with the teacher made her feel, Jordan replied, "Like she was taking away my religion, what I believe is true."  And that, sadly, is exactly what I fear that teacher, and the government education system, is trying to do.  It wasn't enough to take God out of the classroom in the manner of prayer; now they want to destroy each individual child's choice to believe that He is real.
     While this may be an isolated incident in Texas, you better believe that it will soon be an issue in every classroom across this nation.  As Texas education activist Alice Linahan told EAG News, the incident, and how district officials respond, could be an especially important indicator of things to come in the Lone Star state.  “Will Texas students get a good job when they grow up because they can read well, write well, do math and know history?” Linahan questioned. “Or, will they get a good job, without strong academics, but an emotional attachment and classroom experience to save the world on a global level from a humanist viewpoint, without a belief in God?"
     What do you think?  I think we all see the handwriting on the wall, and what the intentions are; but I pray that God will raise up a generation of Ben Breedloves and Jordan Wooleys to stand in the gap and declare His authenticity and His glory.  We adults have not done a good job of it, but with the faith of a child, mountains can be moved.

Matthew 21:16     And they said to him, “Do you hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, “ ‘Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies you have prepared praise’? ”

March 3, 2015

The History of American Education: From Classical Learning to Moral Relevancy

     I am often dumbfounded when I stop to consider the difference in my own middle and high school education as compared to what's taught these 35-40 years later.  I can remember studying and memorizing Lincoln's Gettysburg address.  I loved the long and exhaustive studies of Alfred, Lord Tennyson's Idylls of the King -- the epic twelve poems that retold the tales of the legendary King Arthur, his knights, his love for Guinevere and her tragic betrayal of him, and the rise and fall of Arthur's kingdom.
     But the terms of my education were nothing compared to the studies during the generation of our Founding Fathers.   As the website, Memoria Press, recounts ... Thomas Jefferson received early training in Latin, Greek, and French from Reverend William Douglas, a Scottish clergyman.  At the age of fourteen, Jefferson’s father died, and, at the express wish of his father, he continued his education with the Reverend James Maury, who ran a classical academy. After leaving Douglas’ academy, Jefferson attended the College of William and Mary, where his classical education continued along with his study of law.
     When Alexander Hamilton entered King’s College (now Columbia University) in 1773, he was expected to have a mastery of Greek and Latin grammar, be able to read three orations from Cicero and Virgil’s Aeneid in the original Latin, and be able to translate the first ten chapters of the Gospel of John from Greek into Latin.
      When James Madison applied at the College of New Jersey (now Princeton), he was expected to be able to “write Latin prose, translate Virgil, Cicero, and the Greek gospels and [to have] a commensurate knowledge of Latin and Greek grammar.” Even before he entered, however, he had already read Virgil, Horace, Justinian, Nepos, Caesar, Tacitus, Lucretius, Eutropius, Phaedrus, Herodotus, Thucydides, and Plato.
     So, what exactly is a "classical education"?  Historically, it was a course of study that was to develop exemplary citizens equipped with analytical thinking skills, virtuous character, and a passion for learning, all built upon a solid foundation of knowledge.  Sadly, these characteristics are disappearing from our modern educational system; especially as our kids are being threatened with the Common Core curriculum.
     Consider this op-ed in The New York Times by philosopher Justin McBrayer.  He states that he already knew that many of his college-age students did not believe in moral facts.  He says, "Philosophy professors with whom I have spoken suggest that the overwhelming majority of college freshman in their classrooms view moral claims as mere opinions that are not true or are true only relative to a culture"; the culture of Christianity, for instance.  Subsequently, this has led to an abiding belief in moral relativism, which is a philosophy that asserts there is no global, absolute moral law that applies to all people, for all time, and in all places. 
     You should know that Mr. McBrayer is an associate professor of philosophy at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado, where he works in ethics and philosophy of religion.  So this is naturally an ideology that interests him and which he has seen often among his students.  But he wasn't prepared to see its tenets being conveyed in his son's second-grade classroom!  During the schools open house he "found a troubling pair of signs hanging over the bulletin board. They read:

Fact: Something that is true about a subject and can be tested or proven.

Opinion: What someone thinks, feels, or believes.

     So, what's the big deal, you might ask?  To cut to the chase, students are taught that claims are either facts or opinions.  And Professor McBrayer says that's a dangerous road that leads to moral relativism.  There are instances in which a person's opinion (or belief) is also a fact for him; his ideology can't be divided into fact OR opinion; it's both.  He prove's his point in this conversation with his young son:

Father: “I believe that George Washington was the first president. Is that a fact or an opinion?”

Son: “It’s a fact.”

Father: “But I believe it, and you said that what someone believes is an opinion.”

Son: “Yeah, but it’s true.”

Father: “So it’s both a fact and an opinion?”  The blank look on his son's face told the story.

     Do you see where he is going with this?  Can you see how the effort to separate a belief from a fact, could affect morality?  Every thought (or belief) that has some kind of value attached to it, could only be an opinion, never a fact.
     Now consider this Common Core worksheet, in which students were asked to label the following claims as either FACT or OPINION:
                                                •  Copying homework assignments is wrong.
                                                •  Cursing in school is inappropriate behavior.
                                                •  All men are created equal.
                                                •  It is wrong for people under 21 to drink alcohol.
                                                •  Drug dealers belong in prison.
     The answers?  Each one of these was labeled an opinion.  Since none of these could be tested or proven, then they must be subject to opinion only, and there is no truth in any of them.  Do you see the danger in this?  Ultimately, this is teaching our kids that anything that can be labeled good, bad, wrong, or right is not a fact.  Think how this mode of thinking affects our society.  When there is no consistency between what people decide is good or moral -- that it is all subject to one person's opinion versus another -- how do we ever raise children into moral citizens with critical analyzing skills and virtuous character?  If there is no moral standard that can be declared a fact for all, then anything goes, and there is no acceptable code of honor or behavior among a community.  Not only does the quality of living in that community subside, but chaos and confusion are the natural result.
     Just take a moment and consider that our Founding Fathers were fluent in Latin and Greek, could translate Books of the Bible, and were capable of defending themselves in a spirited debate.  Now realize that our public school systems are on the brink of failing our children.  They can hardly spell; their reading skills are poor; they can't divide or subtract without a computer; and they are lacking important critical thinking skills.  You might think that this is a different time, and the education that our Founding Fathers undertook does not relate to these times.  But it was the education they received that reinforced the knowledge, the skills, and the courage they would need to create this great nation. Are we giving our kids the education to carry on their moral values and traditions, and preserve the country?

1 Timothy 4:12   "Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity."

February 14, 2015

Warning: Your Child's Education Is Under Attack!

     I have been shouting from the rooftops for nearly two years now that there is a threat to our national education system in the form of academic standards known as Common Core.  I know that the difficult economic issues in our country have us all scrambling to make ends meet, but I implore parents to take the time and pay attention to the homework being foisted upon your children.
     One father in Seminole County, Florida, was dismayed to find a text message on his 10th-grade son's phone from his History teacher, in which the teacher sent "a reminder to complete his prayer rug assignment and study an assigned packet on Islam."  Now, this assignment was part of a class on World History, so you might think that it is appropriate to present information on Islam, the world's second largest religion with a following of over one billion people—one-fifth of humanity.
      But how do you feel when you discover that the pages in that same history book that provided instruction on Christianity and Judaism had been removed?  How do you feel about the fact that the study of the Five Pillars of Islam was mandatory in that class?  The father also claimed that students were told to “recite this prayer as the first Pillar of Islam, off of the board at the teacher’s instruction.”
     I do not have a problem with students in high school studying the impact of different religions on the events in world history.  After all, religion has played a huge part in all the major wars throughout time.  But when it becomes part of a high school curriculum to involve the students in the practices of one religion and in reciting the tenets of one religion -- to the exclusion of other major religions -- then that becomes a matter of indoctrination, in my book.
     However, if parents are unaware of what's being included in their children's assignments -- and what is being ignored or purposely excluded -- that indoctrination and propagandizing is tantamount to re-education of our children.  But that's not how the Executive Director of Seminole County High School Administration, Dr. Michael Blasewitz, sees it:  "... the Pillars of Islam are benchmarks (a standard, criteria) in the state curriculum", and "If anything, [the curriculum] is a little imbalanced toward Christianity and Judaism."
     If that statement doesn't show you the direction in which our kids' education is going, consider this statement by the Florida branch of the Council on American-Islamic Affairs (CAIR):  "In a diverse society, young people should be taught about a wide variety of beliefs, cultures and faiths, and particularly about a faith practiced by millions of Americans and more than one fifth of the world's population.  Denying all students access to vital information based on the biased political or religious agenda of Islam phobic groups or a handful of misinformed parents does a disservice to our school system, our state and our nation. History is not kind to those who censor information or ban books."
     So, where's the "wide variety", when entire sections on Christianity and Judaism are removed from school textbooks?  Why don't they talk about the Christian-phobic groups?  And I don't know if that last statement was a veiled threat or not, but suffice it to say that they have set their sights on changing our education system and influencing our kids -- and much of their activity is done through the auspices of Common Core, and without parents' knowledge or consent.  You must get involved in your children's education!
     And lest you think that there is not a war on Christianity in our nation's schools, a high school in Nassau County, Florida (Florida seems to be ground zero for the attack on our schools) was warned about a student who, selected to read the morning announcements over the loudspeaker system, chose to end his recitation with "God bless America, keep us safe."
     This time it is a Humanist/Atheist organization that is complaining "that allowing the statement favors 'God-belief' and 'validates a theistic worldview' that alienates atheists and non-believers."  Why aren't they complaining about the "theistic worldview" being presented in 10th-grade World History classes in Seminole County?  Does anybody else see a glaring bias against the Christian faith?
     I can't help but believe that both the atheists and CAIR do not want students in World History classes -- or any classes -- to understand that the United States was founded by Christian believers, and became a haven for religious freedom for all faiths... that would not suit either of their agendas.  Dr. Blazewitz may promote Islam as a benchmark of his curriculum, but I will declare Christianity as the bedrock of this nation.  And, parents, if you want your children to have any chance of enjoying the America you grew up in, you better start getting yourself elected to school boards and supervising your child's education.
      I will leave you with these thoughts from Benjamin Rush, known as SIGNER OF THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE; SURGEON GENERAL OF THE CONTINENTAL ARMY; RATIFIER OF THE U. S. CONSTITUTION; “FATHER OF AMERICAN MEDICINE”; TREASURER OF THE U. S. MINT; “FATHER OF PUBLIC SCHOOLS UNDER THE CONSTITUTION”: "The great enemy of the salvation of man, in my opinion, never invented a more effective means of limiting Christianity from the world than by persuading mankind that it was improper to read the Bible at schools."

Click here for WFTV's report on the Seminole County, Florida Common Core curriculum. 

Click here for interview with concerned father of Florida student.  

Click here for story on atheist's protest over "God Bless America".

2 Timothy 3:16-17   "All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work."