Monday, April 03, 2017

Who is evil and who is nice?

By Václav Klaus Jr, a son of the ex-president and a Czech shadow minister of education, from Czech
Schools should primarily teach. Their purpose is to transfer knowledge. They may try to cultivate as well [the English word "education" unfortunately covers both meanings, the Czech language tends to differentiate, LM] but it shouldn't be done within standard subjects or in campaigns. However, to indoctrinate the children in topics where one half of the nation disagrees with the other half – please, don't do that. NO.
It is normal that people have different opinions about the government/state and the public affairs. Even Plato and Aristotle saw the society differently. However, schools should transfer knowledge. They may teach what Aristotle or Plato were writing. To hope that several top pupils read the original essays in Greek would probably be too much to ask (even though the students at gymnasiums 130 years ago were often able to do it) but it shouldn't be taught that Aristotle was a cretin who didn't understand the interests of the whole while Plato was progressive.

During my childhood [he was born in 1969], there was ideology at schools (although it was somewhat flat, stale, or scalded), then the schools were peaceful for a while but the ideology is back at schools again. No? Unfortunately Yes.

These efforts have even been given a pretty Bolshevik acronym: GRT/GDT. Globally developing themes: Multicultural education, Sustainable development and the environmentally-ecological something, and The education towards the thinking in the European and global context.

According to directions from above, schools are hiring the so-called coordinators. Coordinators for the European or global thinking and similar issues who will be checking whether these themes are being properly incorporated into assorted subjects and communicated vigorously and socially consciously. [Marx's adjective "socially conscious" is expressed by one Czech word, it was widely used during communism, and became one of the most discredited adjectives in the language, note by LM.] When the teachers turn out to be insufficiently fervent, the active NGOs will do the job for them.

We already have the first victims. A daddy in Brno ([a businessman named] Mr Charous) didn't want his daughter to undergo "the non-profit multi-culti education" or he wanted her to hear the opposite opinions as well during an event.

Miss or mistress teacher – a local politician from the Christian Democratic/People's party – threatened the father by contacting the social workers [the idea was that the daughter could have been taken from him] while the daughter was officially reprimanded by her class teacher. He's tilting at windmills – he has obviously gotten the short end of the stick. The NGO has been accredited to work at schools. And what? Anyone has yet another problem?

Yesterday, I received a letter from the student of a Prague gymnasium [liberal-arts-style high schools in Central Europe]. "At school, we were obliged to attend the One World festival organized by the People In Need [a top Czech NGO]. We had to watch a documentary about young European people who went to fight for the Islamic State. In my eyes, it looked more like a recruitment film than a documentary. After the movie, a speaker came who was a Muslim convert. He was telling us that Islam was a modern religion. Some of us began to ask him why he wasn't mentioning the negatives as well. I may have been unnecessarily aggressive in my statements – at any rate, I was subsequently officially reprimanded for my behavior. Please don't mention my name. My mom is working at the ministry of agriculture and I am pretty sure she wouldn't be happy..."

You know, these cases wouldn't be too interesting by themselves but a problem is that the ministry of education (and the European Union) is really totally unambiguously performing and planning this ideological pressure exerted on the young generation. And it isn't even hiding that in any way.

One-half of my teachers at the gymnasium were normal people who were just teaching their mathematics, geography, or gyms [I would say the same, LM]. After all, I met my chemistry teacher Mr George Fork during our [student] rally on November 17th, 1989 [which started the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia] when we managed to penetrate the police cordon on our way from the National Avenue to the Mikuland Street. And the students knew very well whom they should have been careful about and, on the contrary, in front of what adults they had the freedom to speak. But the decent teachers couldn't really actively oppose the ideologies, otherwise they would be fired. [I've actually had numerous teachers in the mid 1980s – including our class and history teacher, and the teacher of Czech and literature – who were bravely trashing communism very often, LM.] They had to be careful in front of some of their colleagues.

Today, we also have lots of teachers who are fed up with all these campaigns and they are just teaching their mathematics, geography, or visual arts. But to actively oppose the ideological indoctrination – they have to be careful about some of their colleagues, just like 30 years ago. And the principal must be particularly careful, unless he or she is safely enough "insured" in some way at the regional political level [unless he or she is close to someone like a "governor"]. The principal may easily be fired if he doesn't understand the benefits of the "globally developing themes" in the contemporary education process or if he dares to think that the students should undergo a written physics exam.

Who is evil and who is nice? Who is progressive and who is reactionary or a xenophobe or "a Czech-are-Czech" [basically a little/petty Czech, a Czech slur for Czechs themselves, implying some national inferiority]. Which opinions are acceptable even though 50% of the people reject them – and which opinions are unacceptable even though only 20% of the people reject them?

Regardless of your political opinions, ideology at schools is pure evil and every decent human being should defend himself or herself against it. Before it will be too late.