For an authoritarian regime to be successful, it must commandeer its country’s education system.
The government must shape the minds of children to mold them into pliable, group-thinking serfs of the state. “Good citizens,” you know. Freedom of thought and the wealth of real knowledge are anathema to authoritarians.
For those who are not low information or no information types, it is becoming increasingly apparent that the United States is very much on its way to becoming an authoritarian state, or worse. The establishment termites, the political elites, have been chewing away at the foundations of our once-free republic for decades.
Naturally, they don’t call themselves establishment authoritarians or political elites, but they are doing what authoritarians and political elitists do. I don’t think I need to list for you, educated reader, the laundry list of anti-freedom, anti-American lawlessness that has poured forth from Barack Obama, his administration and our worthless Congress, all of which has dragged America closer and closer to tyranny.
Centralized control of America’s education system is of paramount importance to these lawless “leaders.” From the beginning, the problem they have faced is that our nation, from its founding, has forbidden the federal government from dictating education standards and curriculum to the states, but now, the central planners have found a way around this.
Along comes the “Common Core ‘State’ Standards.” As centralists often do, they seek to mislead you with the name. Common Core is not a set of state-created standards. To the contrary, they were developed by a leftist, Washington-based think tank (“Achieve”), endorsed by two Washington-based trade groups, and funded, in part, with millions of dollars from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. And for good measure, throw in the Sandler Foundation. Herb and Marion Sandler are hard left allies of, among others, George Soros, ACORN, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Center for American Progress and MoveOn.org.
Common Core pushers have been very careful to create the illusion that this is a state-led effort. To this end, they partnered with Washington’s National Governors Assocation (which does not represent all the states) and Washington’s Council of Chief State School Officers. Neither of these groups was tasked by any state or state board of education to create the new standards. In fact, state legislators, teachers and parents were left out when the standards were developed.
In addition, Common Core proponents claim the standards are voluntary, which is also misleading. In 2009, the Obama administration created a funding carrot for the states—Race To The Top grants, as well as waivers for provisions of No Child Left Behind. States could apply for these, but in order to qualify, they were required to adopt the Common Core standards and related national tests, sight unseen. The standards were not even presented until 2010. Initially, The District of Columbia and 45 states took the bribes and adopted Common Core, although some of them are now trying to get rid of it.
At present, the standards only cover math and English language “arts.” Naturally, the central planners are not going to move too fast. History, science and social studies standards might reveal the left-leaning ideological agenda behind Common Core. But, science standards are on the way and the rest will almost certainly follow. A national curriculum based on Common Core will, I predict, soon come to a school near you.
Dr. Sandra Stotsky, Professor Emerita at the University of Arkansas, served on the Common Core Validation Committee and refused to sign off on the English language arts standards. She cited poor quality, empty skill sets, the de-emphasis on literature and low reading levels. She is concerned that the reading level will not make students “college ready.” Instead, they will be reading at a seventh grade level when it’s time to go to college.
But, the quality of the standards is not really the point, is it? No, this is about control of our country’s education system. This is about ripping authority from states, local communities, and most importantly, parents, who will have no say whatsoever when it comes to the standards. They will not be able to change them, even if they wanted to.
Common Core is also about tracking and data-mining our kids from cradle to career to grave. Indeed, tied to the adoption of the standards, states are required—in violation of privacy laws—to collect information on all students. This would be detailed, invasive information which would be shared with the federal government and other “interested” third parties. In a June 8, 2009, speech, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said, “Hopefully, someday, we can track children from pre-school to high school and from high school to college and college to career.” That should send a chill down your spine.
And, oh, by the way, don’t forget the predicted ghastly high price tag of Common Core. We can only guess at this point, but we know much of the cost will be borne by the states. A whole book could be written on the lefties who are behind the creation of Common Core and the billions, perhaps trillions, of dollars that companies stand to make off of it. Surprise, surprise, many of these companies are involved in Common Core’s funding and development and they are carrying the public relations water for the program.
This column has only scratched the surface when it comes to the authoritarians and their Common Core endgame. Fortunately, millions of Americans are wising up to the poison in this curriculum and are fighting back. Parents, it is essential for you to learn as much as you can about Common Core, then tell your family and friends about its dangers. You also need to let your elected representatives at the state level know that you want no part of this attempted unconstitutional takeover of your children’s education.
You can find a wealth of information about Common Core on the Internet to help you understand it and combat it. I highly recommend an excellent video series by Jane Robbins of the American Principles Project. The video is in five short parts and will give you a clear overview of the treachery of Common Core.
Parents, knowledge is power. Learn about Common Core, then fight it.
Ed Baswell pastors The Clarion Church and is the host of Crossfire Radio, weekdays from 7-9 am, on The Promise, 90.7 FM. The show is streamed live worldwide at promisetalkradio.org and at ktbs.com. It can be seen each day on the KTBS 24-hour, digital news channel.