Seemingly overnight, a large segment of America has gone insane. We’re not talking about the culture of paranoia and safety that has metastasized in the wake of COVID-19 hysteria. We’re talking about the ideological shift, particularly on cultural issues, that has occurred since the start of the Obama Administration.
To pick an easy example, it would have been fairly uncontroversial even five years ago to say that men should not be allowed to compete in women’s sports, regardless of what they might subjectively “identify as.” And yet, this is now a subject contention across a number of sports, including mixed martial arts and powerlifting. What’s more, having the wrong opinion and expressing it publicly might make you the subject of a public shaming, up to and including losing your job and being de facto blacklisted from your industry.
The point isn’t to litigate the specific topic of trans identified men competing in women’s sports. We use this only as one example of a broader cultural shift. Another, far more troubling development, is how quickly a significant and powerful minority of Americans grew to believe that America is a fundamentally racist country and that white Americans are somehow uniquely evil by virtue of their birth.
Both of the above are extreme viewpoints and would have been recognized as such even five years ago. Now, one can have one’s name blackened for taking the wrong viewpoint.
But this change did not come out of nowhere. In fact, it’s the product of decades of indoctrination of generations of Americans through what is called “education.” We use scare quotes here, because there is little evidence that American schools educate their students anymore – if, by education, we mean imparting knowledge rather than ideology.
This isn’t simply something to handwave away as “those crazy kids on college campuses and their left-wing professors.” Generations of far-left indoctrination have created a critical mass of Americans openly hostile toward American values and the very notion of liberty itself. If one is looking for an explanation for how we got to this point, a deep and critical view of education – from kindergarten through post-graduate – is in order.
The punchline? You’re paying for it in the form of America’s student loan program, which is little more than a massive welfare program for universities with multi-billion dollar endowments.
When discussing any subject, it’s important to define terms. So when we say “indoctrination,” what is it that we’re talking about? What do we mean by that?
We mean it in the ordinary sense of being taught to think in terms of a specific ideology, rather than being taught how to think critically. What’s more, it is worth looking at the ideological bedrock on which the indoctrination exists. Not only are students not taught to think critically, but the first premises of the ideology they are indoctrinated in are rooted in hostility toward Western civilization.
We have written about this with regard to the Frankfurt School in another article, which explores the ideological underpinnings of America’s indoctrination of youth. The short version is that American youth, since at least the 1960s, with significant acceleration in the 1980s, have been indoctrinated with hostility toward Western civilization in general, with the obvious corollaries of hostility toward whites, the nuclear family, Christianity, private property and men. Perhaps most troubling is the view that Western civilization and the aforementioned categories are uniquely evil and responsible for the lion’s share – if not all – of the world’s evil.
This indoctrination has active elements, but primarily relies upon passive elements to do its heavy lifting. While one might immediately balk at a narrative being forced onto them, one is much less likely to resist the imposition of a narrative delivered passively, in the background, as if it weren’t a narrative at all, but simply a basic truth that is beyond questioning. This is precisely how the leftist worldview is presented to children as young as five; not merely actively pushing the narrative that the world prior to 1965 – or 2015 – was a hellscape of white, cisheteronormative patriarchal oppression and exploitation, but using this narrative as the background that permeates all other truths.
One example of how this works in practice is an AP history curriculum that relentlessly mentions race. But it is how race is mentioned that is the key takeaway. Rather than a balanced, nuanced and exploratory discussion of America’s complicated racial history, the curriculum simply notes when there are too many white men in a president’s cabinet, presenting it as a given that there are a certain threshold of minority members to be met so that the cabinet would not be considered “racist.”
There is also the reductive nature of indoctrination. That is to say, concealing truths that contradict the narrative being pushed. Children are not taught certain things, or they are simply not mentioned, such as the fact that the United States didn’t invent slavery, but it did fight one of the bloodiest wars in human history to end it. These “lies by omission” are, much like the passive narrative, arguably a much more potent means of indoctrinating children than beating them over the head with modified slogans presented as “knowledge.”
We will get into the specifics of how this indoctrination works as we move through this article. However, what we mean by indoctrination is a substitution of ideological conformity training for critical thinking skills, with a basis in the Western tradition.
As we dive into specific examples of how schools indoctrinate, keep in mind that indoctrination is not limited to these ideologies.
This indoctrination is not occurring by accident. It is a concerted agenda of the far left under the rubric of what is known as “critical pedagogy.” One should immediately take pause whenever something includes the word “critical.”
The urtext of critical pedagogy is Pedagogy of the Oppressed, a book by Brazilian Marxist educator Paulo Freire. Critical pedagogy believes that the purpose of education is not to educate, but to “help students question and challenge domination, and the beliefs and practices that dominate.” These are, of course, leftist code words for indoctrinating children into a radical left-wing world view. Far from a marginal ideology, it is the prevailing educational philosophy of the 21st century. If you’re looking for a clearinghouse of articles about how it works from the perspective of educational proponents, you need look no further than a teachers’ union magazine – the articles are almost universally dripping with critical pedagogy. We strongly urge you to head down to the library and pick up a physical copy of an issue. It will be very eye opening.
In the following text, we will explore what critical pedagogy looks like in practice. But also the various specific iterations it takes, such as critical race theory and “gender” ideology. We believe this will shed a great deal of light on how children are being indoctrinated in the public schools.
Continue reading American Education: Child Indoctrination, Struggle Sessions and Debt Slavery at Ammo.com.