(This reply partly paraphrases Larken Rose -- The Most Dangerous Superstition, pp. 59-60)
Government schools' primary purpose is to teach subservience and blind obedience to "authority." Kids are forced to spend their formative years in a world in which they receive approval, praise and reward for:
being where "authority" tells them to be, when they are told to be there.
doing what "authority" tells them to do.
speaking when and how "authority" tells them to speak.
parroting whatever ideas "authority" claims to be true and important.
immediately telling "authority" about any problems or personal conflicts they have.
complying with whatever rules, no matter how arbitrary, that "authority" imposes on them.
telling "authority" when another student has disobeyed "the rules."
They receive disapproval, reproach and punishment for failing to comply with any of these policies.
The world of "school" has two distinct classes of people: masters ("teachers") and subjects ("students"). Teachers do as they like and make the rules for the students; students do whatever they are told. The "grades" the student receives and the way he is treated depend upon one thing: his ability and willingness to unquestioningly subjugate his own desires, judgment and decisions to those of "authority."
After twelve years of this, the victims of such "education" have learned not to judge for themselves, but to obey "authority," in every aspect of their lives. They believe that their success in life, their very goodness as human beings, depends on how well they obey "authority."
The fact that they have been trained to obey any order, no matter how irrational or immoral, is what makes the vast majority of evil in our world possible. Government in itself could not control millions of people who believed that all men equally have inalienable rights to life, liberty and justly acquired property. That belief has to be trained out of them -- and the twelve year sentence to government schools is the means to that end. No bright kid can retain a belief that "it's a free country" after he's been forced to spend twelve years in a government obedience training program.
The Constitution provided for a separation of church and state. Not enough; it should have specifically provided a separation of school and state.
Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition, http://www.amazon.com/Most-Dangerous-Superstition-Larken-Ros...
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