In all this talk about the public schools — what some of us call the “government-run schools” — there is one salient fact that cannot be denied. They are, almost universally, a blazing and brilliant success.
You don’t believe me? You have doubts? You say to me, “But Michael, don’t you know that the history of the public schools has been a record of abject failure? Don’t you know that the schools have been steadily drugging and dumbing-down our children for generations until these united States are a laughing stock among civilized countries when it comes to the performance of our students? Don’t you know that instead of teaching Reading, Writing and Arithmetic our schools have been laboratories for all kinds of social experimentation and places where sexual perversion is encouraged and even demonstrated to the children? Don’t you know that our schools are physically-dangerous places to be, and that armed guards, special security procedures, and occasional lockdowns are becoming the norm? Aren’t you aware that schools are forever demanding more resources and producing more and more illiterate and otherwise unprepared young adults who cannot compete intellectually or culturally? Michael, you must be kidding —You’ve got to stop skipping your medication! Don’t you know that the public schools have been destroying America?”
Yes . . . I know. Let’s talk about it.
I present the argument that the public schools are a “success,” not because these things are NOT true, but precisely because they ARE true. My argument lies in the fact that these conditions were exactly what the public schools were designed to bring about.
Now, I know this may sound crazy to you — totally unbelievable! But in order to grasp what has occurred here in America since the time of our founding, in order to “get a grip” on the problem and the potential solution — your mind has to reach out and wrap around this inescapable reality. The public schools were designed to destroy America. If I can get you to accept this seemingly absurd proposition, the easy part will be to demonstrate that they have “succeeded” in this perverse and treasonous mission.
Most folks assume that the public schools were introduced and developed in order to ensure that the American populace could read and write and conduct business, but this is a myth. At the time of the “reform” movements of the 1830’s and 1840’s, which included a major push for state-supported (and state-controlled) school systems, the literacy rate was much higher in America than it is today. According to some experts, adult male literacy in the colonies ran from 70 to 100 percent (1). Since we are much worse off in 2008, from a literacy standpoint, than
we were before the government got into the education business, one would have to conclude that the public school system is more than a 150-year disaster, if examined from this standpoint alone.
In the next few paragraphs, I would like to present you with the harsh truth about the real purpose behind the public schools. But I don’t want you to take my word for it. I want you to see what the designers of these schools said and thought.
First you must know that many fine schools existed prior to the government school movement. There were many private schools which were under the authority of those who instituted them and were answerable to the families who sent students there. Many were associated with churches and there were even “charity schools” for the poor. All of this existed and thrived without government assistance. So why did there exist a desire for state-controlled schools?
Primarily there were two motivating factors. The first was the desire to destroy the Christian foundations of America. The second was the humanistic belief that salvation was attainable through education. In his book, A Basic History of the United States, Clarence B. Carson concluded, “The public school movement was always more than simply an effort to have schools provided at taxpayer’s expense. Nor was it simply an effort to have an educated electorate as the franchise (to vote) was extended to more people, as is sometimes alleged. The most zealous of the reformers were determined to use the power of the state by way of the schools to break the hold of religious tradition and the inherited culture and to change society through the child’s training.” (2)
Perhaps the best known of the reformers who pushed the agenda of the public schools was Robert Owen. Owen (sometimes called the father of modern socialism) denounced all religion as the chief cause of human misery. In 1830 he wrote, “Now, when the effects of religion, as it has been hitherto taught, and imposed upon the human race, shall be followed through all their ramifications, it will be discovered that the religion of the world is the sole cause of all the disunion, hatred, uncharitableness, and crime, which pervade the population of the earth . . . . ” (3)
The salvation of the world (according to Owen’s socialist mind) depended upon the eradication of Biblical education. In order for socialism to take hold in this country (as it now has by way of socialized medicine, Social Security, universal health care, elimination of private property rights, etc.) the populace had to be re-educated. That is, the children of the culture had to be taught to accept socialist principles and programs without seeing the inconsistency of these principles with the true American (Biblical) view. In other words, the children had to be “dumbed-down” so that they would not realize that they were being trained in an un-American view of law and economics and government. The public school movement was the perfect vehicle to accomplish this end.
Another well known proponent of the public schools was Horace Mann. Mann had been reared in Calvinism but rejected it as a young man. To Mann, inequality (not sin) was man’s great enemy. If true equality was to be achieved, he reasoned, there must be equality of education and character. This made public schools, with a common curriculum, an absolute necessity. Mann said, “The common school is the greatest discovery ever made by man . . . . Let the common school be expanded to its capabilities, let it be worked with the efficiency of which it is susceptible, and nine tenths of the crimes in the penal code would become obsolete . . . .” (4)
Contrary to Biblical teaching, Mann believed the state to be the true parent of the child. Thus it was the state that had the primary responsibility of providing education. Along with Mann and some of his followers including Abram Combe and his son Robert Dale Owen, Owen later formed a secret society to work toward attaining his goals. Orestes Brownson, one of the leaders of this society, later wrote about the work of the group:
“The great object was to get rid of Christianity, and to convert our churches into halls of science. The plan was not to make open attacks on religion, although we might belabor the clergy and bring them into contempt where we could; but to establish a system of state — we said national — schools, from which all religion was to be excluded, in which nothing was to be taught but such knowledge as is verifiable by the senses, and to which all parents were to be compelled by law to send their children.” (5)
There you have it quite clearly stated. The purpose and mission of the public schools, which were to be “free to everyone at the expense of everyone,” was to get rid of Christianity, to compel parents to give their children over to the state so that they could be trained to disrespect their parents and their Christian republic and its moral culture without parental interference. For over one hundred and fifty years now, this mission has proceeded apace. Beneath its vacuous rhetoric purporting to “care about the kids”, this is the current mission of the National Education Association. And they are doing it quite well, thank you very much.
Since the 1850s, this evil, public, government-run school system has become more and more entrenched and more and more expensive. Of course, no amount of money stolen from taxpayers to finance the stealing of their children’s minds can have any effect but to destroy the culture and the country. Unless and until education is done God’s way, under the influence, control and jurisdiction of the family, there is no hope for any improvement. This is why I believe that efforts (like “Exodus Mandate”) to encourage parents to remove their children from government schools are to be commended and supported.
Though it is a worthy discussion, it is not the purpose of this article to describe or recommend alternative solutions to this problem because it is first critically necessary to understand this history in order to take any right action. Efforts at reform of the current system will always be fruitless since the system itself is fundamentally flawed in its design and purpose. The point here is to encourage you to stop complaining that the public, government-run school system is a failure. This is a dangerous distraction and a waste of valuable time. Given their true mission, the public, government-run schools are a frightening, monstrous success! This fact must be faced and accepted as a first step or every other step is taken in vain.
(1) Blumenfeld, Dr. Samuel L., Is Public Education Necessary? (Old Greenwich, Connecticut: Devin-Adair Co., 1981), 20.
(2) Carson, Clarence, A Basic History of the United States: The Sections and the Civil War, 1826-1877 (Wadley, Alabama: American Textbook Committee, 1994), III: 90-91.
(3) Blumenfeld, 204.
(4) Carson, 91.
(5) Blumenfeld, 95-96.
For further research information, order Pastor Steve Wilkins’ tape series, “America: The First 350 Years,” Covenant Publications, 224 Auburn Ave., Monroe, LA 71201. Also see http://www.exodusbooks.com/author.aspx?id=382
More information on this topic is here.
Article posted with permission from Michael Peroutka.