The following comes from a Nov. 20 story by Anne Hendershott on Catholic World Report.
The war over the Common Core—the new federal standards imposed upon public schools in 45 states as well as in more than 100 Catholic dioceses— escalated last week when a beleaguered Education Secretary Arne Duncan launched a personal attack on “white suburban moms who—all of a sudden—their child isn’t as brilliant as they thought they were, and their school isn’t as good as they thought…and that’s pretty scary.”
Defending (poorly) the Common Core at a meeting for state school superintendents, Duncan believed he was among friends since these school officials have been the biggest beneficiaries of federal largesse and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation money. But these same superintendents have been the target of a strong grass-roots protest over the Common Core standards. In fact, superintendents have been on the front lines battling with both parents and teachers over the implementation of the Common Core.
For the teachers who have been struggling with the overwhelming demands of the Common Core, there has been little help from their unions. In fact, Randi Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers, has been one of the country’s biggest cheerleaders for what some teachers are derisively calling ObamaCore.
Penning op-eds for the New York Times and Huffington Post lauding the “tremendous potential” of the federal standards, Weingarten has attempted to ignore teachers’ concerns. Of course it might be easier for her to support the Common Core when her organization has been given more than $11 million to do so. Since January, 2009, the American Federation of Teachers has received $11.3 million—with $5.4 million specifically targeted toward the Common Core—from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the co-creators of the private-public partnership that developed the federal standards for local school districts.
Teachers are beginning to fight back. Creating dozens of state-based Facebook groups, teachers are mobilizing to challenge their unions and their state education officials. One group which calls itself the Badass Teachers Association, has more than 25,000 members. Bonnie Cunard, a teacher who manages the Facebook page for the 1,200 Florida BATs told a reporter for the Tampa Bay Times on August 26, 2013 that “It’s not just the Tea Party that’s skeptical of the Common Core … We on the left, like the folks on the right, are saying we want local control.”
Teachers and parents remain bewildered about how they lost control of the standards in their own schools. The federal takeover involved no teacher or parent input, and little involvement by elected representatives. It had to be done covertly because there are indeed laws protecting states against unwanted federal intrusion into the educational curriculum of local school districts. The General Education Provisions Act, the Department of Education Organization Act, and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act all protect states against such federalization. The problem is that the “intrusion” has not been entirely “unwanted” by state political leaders—especially the governors and district superintendents of each state. Enlisting the state governors and school superintendents as allies in the creation of the curriculum through the National Governor’s Association, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation used the lure of more than $150 million in grant money—and the promise of future federal funds—to convince the leaders of budget-strapped states to support the federal standards.
So far, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $335 million to promote effective teaching and raise student achievement—both laudable goals—but much of that money is going to create the Common Core standards and develop new rating systems for teachers. And, although teachers and parents might have expected some help from conservatives, the Gates Foundation has been buying some of their support also. Awarding $959,116 to the right-leaning Thomas Fordham Institute, led by respected educator, Chester Finn, “to review the common core standards and develop supportive materials,” Finn has gone out of his way to laud the Common Core.
The Gates Foundation seems to have thought of everything. If teachers and parents thought they had allies in their local and national Parent Teacher Association, they would be wrong. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation awarded $1 million to the PTA to “Mobilize Parents for Common Core.”
But, this battle is not over. An open letter to Weingarten from Mercedes Schneider, a member of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers accuses the union boss of misrepresenting teacher support for the Common Core, and “selling off” teachers: “I am asking you to halt the chummy alliance with Gates and other philanthropic reformers bent upon selling off my profession.”
Undeterred, Weingarten responded to Schneider with continued support for the “potential” of the Common Core—pledging “our solidarity with the teachers and parents who are disgusted and demoralized by the botched implementation and ongoing testing fixation” that accompanied the Common Core. Like the botched roll-out of the ObamaCare, Weingarten is blaming proper “implementation” as the problem with ObamaCore.
While Duncan has apologized for his impolitic remarks, the truth is that blaming “white people” for opposition to President Obama’s attempts to federalize health care and education is a recurring theme of the President’s administration. Just a few days ago, Oprah Winfrey blamed racism for the criticism of the President and his policies. The truth is that many parents—not just white parents—and teachers know that the flaws in the federal standards are flaws at the Core—they see them as unworkable—and they are just beginning to fight.
To read original story, click here.
If our President initiated a program to help every family in the country achieve greatness, half the people in the country would be upset because it happened on his watch. But hey…. The Common Core outlines what a person should learn at each grade level and in each subject. It, in an effort to help teachers, outlines new ways of teaching various subject matter. That means that teachers and schools will have to change the way they teach and their expectations. It is easy to understand how a teacher who has been teaching a while would resist having to change pedagogy and try something new. But, the truth is that with a few notable exceptions, our current local “control” of curriculum and teaching methods and outcomes has been failing the country. We no longer have the advantages of past years. Other countries are developing more educated and better trained people than we are. We rank way below other countries in science, engineering, and math. Parents are trying to get their kids out of public schools because they are failing. Catholic schools have generally had a reputation for excellent educational programs. Why would they oppose the common core when they supposedly surpass them already? This is national issue, not a local issue. Think of the consequences of our having a “good enough” K-12 school system. The top 10% of students in India out number all of the students in this country. We are in a global economy and our schools are not keeping up. We need a sea change in what we expect from the schools, how we manage them, and how students perform. Common Core may not be the total answer, but it is a start. Why not give it a try?
As a stubborn old-time Catholic school teacher (33 years) I can give you many reasons, one of which is that once control is surrendered it will never return to us. Another is that education is primarily a family and not a state responsibility, and we in Catholic education have no reason to give any state education officer the time of day. Contrary to what Horace Mann envisioned, America is not Prussia (and how did that turn out?) We’ve had calls for “sea change” so many times in my career I’m getting sea-sick. The problem for the public schools is that public education is Progressive in philosophy, which means it has no sense of any enduring purpose for human life on earth and just jumps with the times (as it perceives the times jumping). We Catholics are Realists (Essentialists) and have as our “common core” the goal of following Christ on this earth and saving our souls for the next. We don’t need anti-Catholic state agents to tell us what to do!
Thank you Professor Byrne
“Keeping up with global neighbors” is another tiring song. I suppose it began with the propaganda for daylight savings time around World War I: we had to get up earlier than those German farmers or by golly, we’d lose the dang war! Then it was beat the Soviets to the moon, then beat the Japanese economy. Now it’s beat the Chinese economy (which is run as a slave state). It’s a pile of half-truths and plain garbage. The American worker is one to the best in the world and needs better pay, not false charges of incompetence thrown at him. The problems of education relate to collapsing family structures, the incompetent Progressive philosophy itself, and the insistence since the 1960s that every kid get an academic college prep education whether he wants it or can even benefit from it. Common Core is just snake-oil.
That is very well said! I would go further and say families are responsible for the education of their offspring. Making sure homework is completed, making sure reading is comprehended, etc. all should be a priority of parents!
Bob One only a liberal like you could actually believe that this government could produce a plan that would achieve positive results. The Problem with our public school system is its bloated bureaucracy. I know you detest high salaries, the local school administrator in my district makes $325,000 a year the teachers average over $100,000. I am not surprised someone like you would approve of command and control of local school from Washington DC, but then again you just admitted you believe in man made global warming (currently where I sit its 19 degrees on November 24 in NYC) The Obama administration is a total and complete failure in almost everything it has attempted to do, yet people like you will never admit to it and insist on more bites at the apple so to say.. You want to know how much of failure this administration is, it recently took over the Cadillac ranch in Nevada due to the owner owing back taxes. It is now out of business, only the government could drive a business to shut its doors whose main products were sex and booze.
Let me suggest that you visit this web site: https://www.corestandards.org/resources/frequently-asked-questions. It is a clear presentation of what the common core is and is not. Most importantly, it is not a program developed by the Federal government. It was developed by the states and endorsed by the governors and other educational specialist. It was designed by teachers and based in part on international standards of achievement. It is not in any way a program to brainwash our students. Currently it is developed for English and Math only. It doesn’t create the top standards for our students to attain, but sets a base from which to build. When I taught Jr. High and High School in public schools years ago our middle level students could outshine most of today’s students. Although, the AP courses are really difficult but only available to a small percentage of students. Common Core simply asks all states to bring their standards up to the level of our superior schools and the level expected in the international arena. Here in California the percent of students entering college who have to take remedial courses is crazy. In the 40s and 50s, these kids would not have been accepted at colleges and universities.
I’d like to see an economic analysis of why the Cadillac Ranch failed under government management. However, the government got it due to un-paid taxes, indicating that the pimp…er, “entrepreneur” was having cash flow problems as well.
My guess is that the government didn’t extort as much from the women as pimps customarily do, they didn’t skim from the bar till as much as they might of, and – oh yeah – their business model of a fixed-site brothel miles from anything couldn’t compete with the “unfettered” competition provided from the illegal prostitution in Las Vegas.
If you know, please explain how the curriculum has changed from the 40’s and 50’s until now. We used to turn out engineers and mathematicians like crazy. We were responsible for most modern inventions. So again I ask, what has happened with the curriculum? Why can’t we relook at those standards? Does the breakdown of the American family have something to do with it?
One of the main reasons for the breakdown of our education system is allowing the legal system to interfere and second guess almost every decision made by administrators and teachers in the classroom.
We also opened our universities up to any rich foreigner who could afford to pay full price for their kid – American kids were pre-empted.
The whole business of teaching was formalized to a point that common sense, knowing the subject and an ability to teach became inconsequential to degrees and where one went to school.
Administrators became more numerous as government requirements multiplied.
Catholic schools suffered from most of these same factors, but included a fundamental lack of knowledge (or concern) for the Faith.
Common Core requires indoctrination of values contrary to the Catholic Faith. That’s the simple reason for Catholic schools to not “give it a try.”
The States have the Right to Control Education…NOT THE DICTATOR PRESIDENT HUESEIN OBAMA!
Perhaps, use the Common Core as a Guideline to Amend and Improve current methods in each State, and Each Community!
Unfortunately Obama is a complete screw up in everything he attempts or touches!
Thank GOD he can only serve 2 terms as President of the UNITED STATES of America!
Obama will go, then they will usher in Hillary. So what? It’s not just the President. Our whole government has been taken over. Wake up people. Take over the government, healthcare and education……done….goodbye liberty.
It is my understanding that many dioceses in the US are contemplating the adoption of these new federal standards, presumably for the purpose of making it easier for Catholic students to pass certain mandatory standardized tests. While this may be a laudable goal, the end result may not be so desirable. Math and grammar standards carry no overt moral, cultural or political baggage; history and literature, on the other hand, are subjects I would never entrust to the tender mercies of a totally secularized government such as ours. If our Catholic schools adopt these new standards, they might as well stop calling their product “Catholic Education”.
helloooo…..Its already in our Catholic schools.
SandraD, I concur with your frustration. This song about Catholic Education being different and better than Public education belongs on the Oldies-But-Goodies station.
“If our President initiated a program to help every family in the country achieve greatness, ” LOL Bob One.. this is your problem governments do not achieve greatness…I guess $17 Trillion debt is not enough for you to get that message
Obama has lied to the American people, beginning when he started his campaign to become president. He continues his lies today: “If you like your health plan, you can keep your health plan.” “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.” The entire Obama regime is evil, and only evil fruit comes from the evil tree. The individual states are the best judge of what is needed for the education of their students. The federal government should keep out of education. The U.S. Dept. of Education has not benefitted school districts or students; it has only cost billions of dollars and provided employment for bureaucrats. Common Core is more evil from the evil tree. That’s why no details are given. As for Bill and Melinda Gates, they are the same philanthropists who are subsidizing the promotion of contraception, abortion and sterilization around the world.
The only person I know locally to head up organized resistance to Common Core is a brilliant scientist who, despite being a liberal, is a friend of mine, and he is organizing people of every political leaning to resist Common Core. In our area, we are blessed with many Blue Ribbon and other award-winning schools, and I don’t know anyone who wants Common Core here.
Bill and Melinda Gates’ support says it all, folks. Common Core goes directly against subsidiarity. What business has the federal government, arguably one of the most rotten-to-the-core, corrupt groups of America, in dictating standards for your kids’ education ? NONE !!!
Public schools inevitably mean corruption of the educational process. Every “public” cent that goes to schools has strings attached. It has become nothing more than a laboratory for mad scientists who want to develop children into slaves to the state, compliant and complaisant. And that pretty well describes the American electorate now. Common Core is doubling down on corruption. We get the government we deserve, and it’s a fine example.
The answer to failed curriculums and teaching methods is not government controlled propaganda to feed liberal ideologies to our children. Catholic schools (were?) doing fine without the government intrusion and in fact had the best traditional teaching methods until educational outsiders with a lesser allegiance to Catholic education were allowed to infiltrate Catholic schools with their own distorted, illogical, and deceptive liberal ideologies. The Core Curriculum will now corrupt the Core Catholic Curriculum which has been eroding over the years, and now has easily succumb to relinquishing itself to the liberal thought and ideology of the government instead of using common sense and Catholic formation. A good universal Catholic education is being reduced to the poor levels of American public schools. Sounds like the communistic, “leveling the playing field” idea at work.
Other countries are supplying the global market with “More educated and better trained people?” One should ask, better educated and trained in what? Utilitarian ethics? Degenerate life styles? Socialist doctrines? Big brother government? Common core means what, exactly? Bob One says our schools are failing but he provides no information as to what is missing or when it started being eliminated. Are the students trained in what they want to become or are the students of these other more enlightened countries merely human resources for a government determined sustainable community market? Americans schools are failing the intelligence levels of our students because they have for years been using dumbed down standards for students. Its only now that many people are beginning to wake up to this truth
Camille you are precisely right when you say “Americans schools are failing the intelligence levels of our students because they have for years been using dumbed down standards for students. ” Rectifying this is the whole point of “ObamaCore”. We as far less of our students than do the Chinese, the Europeans, and those in India. Our students are a laughing stock compared to these countries.
YFC, may I use a Common Core exercise with you? You said the following; “We as far less of our students than do the Chinese, the Europeans, and those in India.” Please explain to me why you structured that sentence the way you did.
Our educational model is inherently flawed, based as it is on regimentation and materialistic “usefullness”. Common Core simply promises more of each.
Meanwhile, comparing our expectations to those we perceive of parents in China, Europe, and India demonstrates our own cultural centeredness more than a realistic understanding of the educational opportunities and accomplishments there. They too have their good and bad schools, students who are accomplished, and those that are drop-outs.
More relevant to improvement is the archetonic framework under which education proceeds and to assume that the materialists engaged in this enterprise have the proper framework should be scandalous.
Yes, that is why Common Core Standard were designed and implemented.
Anonymous, we are BEING TOLD that this “is why Common Core Standard was designed and implemented”. We are also TOLD that the “Obama-don’t-care Careless Act” was implemented to improve health care for everyone.
Sounds to me as if you choose to follow the teachings of the Magisterium of the Government!
Cammile, you are mostly correct. The curriculum for a large part of our students has been simplified to the point where our kids are not getting a great education like we use to have. That is the whole point of the common core – to raise the standards across the country. Yet, even when the statistics are presented about how we have failed our students, many do not want to change anything. If we don’t change the way we educated our students we will continue to get the same results, which is failure when compared to the rest of the world. The federal government didn’t create common core. The Governors of our states initiated the program because they knew their schools were failing the kids. This is not some communist/socialist conspiracy. It is simply an effort to raise the math skills of students and improve the reading and comprehension of our students. Is it wrong to want to improve?
Bob One, you are sorely mistaken if you think that Common Core is positive change. You are sorely mistaken if you think taking British Literature out of High School curriculum is positive change. I could go on but I think you get my point. Doesn’t the fact, that both parents and teachers alike are saying this curriculum is horrible, raise even a single red flag with you?
Isn’t the failing curriculum you rightly identify as needing change, a change from the curriculums which preceded it? The mantra “Hope and Change” can just as easily be “Change for the Worse”. Change for the sake of change is not necessary improvement.
Having taught high school math, the CC method that was REQUIRED to be taught consisted of: showing a video; explaining the problem and working a few problems; working a few more problems with the class; give the homework (with answers!); quiz the next day after going over homework; and you had better stay on-schedule! The quiz consisted of a three questions in which the student picks ONLY ONE (basically, easy, medium and hard). Grading was “different” – try a little and you get 50%; try a little bit more, 60%; more than one error, 70%; one calculation error (but still wrong answer), 85%.
As math is part of a STEM program, as well, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that: the students are getting short-changed because there is NO depth of knowledge; that colleges will get a big surprise after they look at students grades, accept them and then find out that it’s even worse than before the CC nonsense was imposed; and that bringing this to the attention of the powers that be in a career changer (even in Catholic schools).
Improving education in the U.S. is imperative. Go to the Broad Foundation web site and you will see the problem. One short list of statistics may help bring the issue into focus: After World War II, the United States had the #1 high school graduation rate in the world. Today, we have dropped to # 22 among 27 industrialized nations. (OECD, 2012)
American students rank 25th in math, 17th in science and 14th in reading compared to students in 27 industrialized countries.(OECD, 2012)
By the end of the eighth grade, U.S. students are two years behind in math compared to their peers in other countries. (OECD, 2009) (Many people don’t realize that Algebra is now required in 8th grade)
The U.S. ranks behind 13 other countries in terms of the percentage of 25- to 34-year-olds who have completed some college coursework. (OECD, 2012)
American students tend to perform worse in math and science as they age, according to recent studies measuring fourth- and eighth-graders’ academic achievement against other industrialized nations. Gaps with high performing countries like South Korea and Singapore are widening. (TIMSS, 2012) We are failing our children and too many of us don’t know it or we don’t consider it a serious matter. As a result, jobs that require at least high school engineering skills are going to other countries. The data suggest to me that we need to change. I think that we can forget the conspiracy to socialize the society and treat it as a red herring. But we cant forget the fact that we parents and grand-parents are doing a pretty lousy job in the education arena.
Childhood education in this country basically stinks, Bob One, but it doesn’t stink equally, everywhere. A sensible approach would be to examine the differing reasons why that is so and devise problem-specific solutions.
Unfortunately for the rhetorical stink-bomb thrown out by Secretary Duncan, the schools attended by the children of the white, surburban moms he vilified are some of the better ones. My own in-laws – both excellent, hard-working, and dedicated teachers in a city school district – now commute from the suburbs to which they moved when their children reached school age.
Other than being a big production with a slick website, what is this brainchild of the same educrats that have brought us to a position we agree is untenable, how is “Common Core” is going to help? What, other than grade-by-grade uniformity, does “Common Core” present?
All I see in their presentation is the same old psuedo-intellectual posing I’ve seen before, designed to convince the unwary that teaching must be some dark art of Secrets Entrusted to a Chosen Few. That is simply nonsense, as any parent knows.
Finally, “Common Core” is simply a commercial venture undertaken for the private interests of its owners, as a review of its own website should make obvious to anyone. https://www.corestandards.org/terms-of-use
Bob One, you point out that “after World War II, the United States had the #1 high school graduation rate in the world. Today, we have dropped to # 22 among 27 industrialized nations. (OECD, 2012).” When we had the #1 graduation rate did we also have the highest scores in math, science, and reading? Are we currently (not including Common Core) using the same curriculum in educating our children as we were after WWII? If not, why not? Have you considered the percentage of children living today in homes without their fathers in comparison to the percentage of children who lived in homes with their fathers after WWII? Might this be what is really contributing to our current high school drop out rate? What other factors have you considered?
Bob One, Common Core is unpopular for a reason! Are you positive that this IS the answer to our current educational challenges? Once this experiment fails will you be eager to hop onto the next “Change Wagon” our government bureaucrats offer us?
Tracy, there is no one answer. We need to simply recognize that, for the most part, what we are doing isn’t good enough. Ergo, we have to think of other ways to get better results. Some things will work some will not, then we try something else. The better the data we use to decide which options to implement, the more likely we will pick the better option. We can then evaluate if it is working and try something else if it is not. We just can’t stand still! Imagine if we had said, fifty years ago, there is no way to get to the moon, and stopped there. We have to keep trying. Now we need to put people, where?, on Mars? We need to teach better, evaluate better and compete better. The quality of our schools will determine our quality of life fifty years down the road. We have to be convinced that it can be better than today!
Bob One, I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but your answer sounds like the answer Nancy Pelosi gave when she was asked for the details of the “Obama-don’t-care-Unafordable-careless-act”. She said that we would have to “pass the bill in order to find out”! She said that the problem with healthcare in our nation was so grave that we had to do something!
Change for the better?
Change for the worst?
Just hop into the boat and see where the river takes you!
If you don’t like your destination, just continue on down the river, down the river, down the river,……..
Bob One, do you insist on cultural diversity in the United States? Do you believe that each culture has a right to establish their own ways of doing things? How about the diversity of families? How about towns, how about large metropolitan cities, or States? On what basis do you make the huge leap of FAITH that the Almighty Federal Government Bureaucracy knows best how to educate such a diverse group of children, by forcing each one to be molded from a “Common Core”? Do you ever wonder why God even came up with the concept of family?
By the way the first attempts to go into outer space were done with machines, then machines with animals, lastly with men. They did not simply put a man in the first rocket ship and launch him into the sky hoping for the best, repeating the process until they got it right. Yet, you seem to be comfortable with doing just that with our children!
Bob One, disregard everything I posted above. You were right all along! “WE HAVE to be CONVINCED that it CAN be BETTER than today!”
Thank you, Bob One, for this very effective positive mantra! I sure am going to sleep soundly tonight!
First the end of local control for health care, now the end of local control for education. Obama doesn’t trust the people of this country to make their decisions at the local level. Like most neo-Socialists, THEY have all the pure Truth and we country bumpkins that live in this country just don’t get it so we need the “reeducation police” in Washington to get it right. Just another snide policy from a White House that is convinced they are smarter than the rest of us.
good cause, I agree with most of what you say here. I do not draw the same conclusion when you say that Obama doesn’t “trust” the people of this country. Obama has demonstrated time and again that he has the mind of a dictator. Dictators care about one thing and one thing only, which is having absolute power and control. Dictators never live in the ghettos of the populous. What he does not “trust” is that the American people will willingly give him the absolute power he desires.
Gosh, Bob One – “why not give it a try”? Do you think that is a rhetorical question? Do you insist on trying every idea anyone promotes? Door-to-door hucksters must love to find your house.
“Common Core” shouldn’t be implemented because it will produce bored and even less-productive students than the stupefyingly awful “standards” and testing regimes that are currently in place and which were placed there by the centralized-controlling meat-heads trying to sell you this new nonsense.
I can hardly list all the reasons here, and in any case wouldn’t do it as well as the 132 Catholic educators who wrote this letter the each bishop. If you are interested in a real answer to your question, you should check it out
This is an impressive list of professors who are opposed to the common core program. The letter is well written and has much for us to think about. But, I am not totally convinced of their position. I would like to see/hear/read more before I change my views. Thanks for providing this link.
Bob One, you said; “I would like to see/hear/read more before I change my views.” Does this mean that you ARE going to do more research on this issue? Or might this statement more likely mean something like the following: “I am COMFORTABLE with the sound bites and comments I have received so far from the talking heads on the evening news. The professors have a right to their opinions and I have a right to mine. Both of us have our own FEELINGS about how to best resolve the CURRENT educational CRISIS. I am more COMFORTABLE with our elected governmental officials and their political appointees making the HARD CHOICES about our children’s education than I am with the “impressive” professors who have not been OFFICIALLY asked to offer their advise.”
CalCatholic has been sabotaged, both links come back to this same “ObamaCore” story!
The “The CCHD, Wendy Davis, and the Obama connection” brings you right back to this story! Is it just my computer or what?
May God have mercy on an amoral Amerika!
Viva Cristo Rey!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher, Founding Director
Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.
The link takes me to Catholic World Report.
It isn’t too hard to imagine that, sometime after Rotten Core has been implemented, that all teachers will have to be certified by the U.S. government. A teacher will be checked for political correctness, as well as having gone through an “approved” teaching curriculum and will have to become mandatory reporters of anyone who deviates or disapproves (and the Religious Ed. Congress will be mandatory for all non-government schools, which will be taught by government clergy).
Ah, Nazi Germany, 1936.
Bob, they say, even when German citizens were living in their Dystopia during Nazi rule, the populous was not aware of it. I have a friend who grew up in Nazi Germany and moved here around age 25. She has always said that “we didn’t know such atrocities were going on.” We in the United States, who can see the writing on the wall, have a hard time understanding how it is that others, who otherwise seem to have perfect vision, can’t see it also.
I have spent over eight years in Germany and it is an era not talked about very much at all by Germans. For example, we went to Dachau with our landlord’s daughter back in 1976 or so. She said little during the time there in the camp, but spent two hours talking with her parents after we returned.
Since cursive seems to be a thing of the past, the writing will certainly be block letters on a computer screen that has been censored heavily by the NSA, FBI, and Obama’s other government agencies that aren’t supposed to spy on Americans.
The distrust of government, particularly at the federal level has never been higher, since the federalist period. It didn’t start with President Obama or President Bush. It started years ago. Somehow, and I don’t know the answer, we as a nation have got to come to a realization that government, per se, is not bad. It’s a question of what and how. Our nation will never go forward again as long as we are divided 50/50 along party lines, etc. There was a time when the Senators and Representatives fought like cats and dogs over policies and issues, and then went out and had dinner and played cards. The spouses served on the same PTA committees, served as Scout leaders together, etc. Today, they all fly home for the weekend. It is hard to trust people you don’t know. But, no matter how hard I try, I can’t believe that the folks on either end of the political spectrum are out to ruin our country or to bring it down or make it weaker. But I do know that they are unwilling to govern if they don’t their own way. Progress begins with trust.
Bob One, You really do not like conflict do you? Would I be jumping to a false conclusion to suggest that you probably avoid those Gospel narratives which make you uncomfortable? “Woe to you……..”! “Get behind me Satan……..”! “When the Son of Man returns……..”!
Bob: You mention Germany 1936. This happens to be the year I entered first grade in Germany. We were taught an amazingly traditional curriculum: language arts, arithmetic, geography, history, drawing, music and, since I lived in predominantly Catholic city, bible studies and the catechism in preparation for first communion. Religious instructions were given us by Capuchin monks who lived at a nearby abbey. The Hitlerite content in our education was barely discernible. I recall but one story about Hitler and that was his experiences in WW-One when he was blinded in a gas attack on the western front. While recovering in a hospital (run probably by Catholic nuns) he made the fatal decision to enter politics. Compared to the multi-cultural left-wing indoctrination our present school generation is exposed to I think I got the better education.
I suggest that we should not forget that the government, local, state and federal, has always, since the start of the republic, determined what would be taught in the schools. When the local school board selects textbooks, or the states determine what the minimum levels of education should be, that is the state leading education. The common core is just another prong in this two hundred plus year old American tradition. The state has always determined what we learn. Why is this so different?