Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Educational Values

Cal Thomas has an article worth considering this week. He covers the recent court case involving teaching Intelligent Design in the schools.
The decision by U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III to bar the teaching of "intelligent design" in the Dover, Pennsylvania public school district on grounds it is a thinly veiled effort to introduce a religious view of the world's origins is welcome . . .

. . . Judge Jones rebuked advocates of "intelligent design," saying they repeatedly lied about their true intentions. He noted many of them had said publicly that their intent was to introduce into the schools a biblical account of creation. Judge Jones properly wondered how people who claim to have such strong religious convictions could lie, thus violating prohibitions in the Book they proclaim as their source of truth and standard for living.
So that sounds pretty good, I guess. Cal Thomas seems to support a separation of Church and State. But then you read a little more.

It turns out that Thomas doesn't support a secular education program because he thinks it is a good idea; rather he thinks it's a waste of time to try to reform it. The rot is too deep in Thomas's mind; so rather than fixing the educational system, Thomas encourages his readers to remove their children from the school system, through Home Schooling and/or Private Schools (Thomas helpfully mocks those who would be worried about the cost of such options).

I don't really know what to make of this argument. If Thomas intended this as a "live and let live" argument, I could see it. Certainly I have nothing against taking kids out of the public schools if you choose to and can afford it. But given Thomas's comments on our society, I don't take him for a live and let live kind of guy; more of a live and let die kind of guy, I'd think (at least based on his comments on Islam).

So I'm not sure what this particular strategy would lead to.

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