DEFINING EDUCATION DOWN by Bruce Dietrich Price at American Thinker:
“In 1993, Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan published a famous article titled “Defining Deviancy Down,” where he argued that behavior once considered indefensible is now mainstream.
His subtitle was “How We’ve Become Accustomed To Alarming Levels Of Crime And Destructive Behavior.” Moynihan put forward the thesis that “we have been redefining deviancy so as to exempt much conduct previously stigmatized, and also quietly raising the ‘normal’ level in categories where behavior is now abnormal by any earlier standard.”
A perfect example, inconceivable until it happened, was Anthony Weiner sending erotic pictures of himself to women he didn’t know, and shortly thereafter running for mayor of New York City. In earlier years, he would have been locked in a stockade and ostracized by the community. But there he was in 2013, an acceptable Democrat candidate. That’s a huge shift.
Clearly, the public has been indoctrinated to be more permissive. Liberals want Americans to feel guilty for preferring traditional standards. The most obvious examples, as Moynihan noted, are in the fields of crime and punishment. (Rape and murder used to be capital crimes, almost always. Now we hear about people spending five or ten years in jail for even the most serious crimes.)
The next most blatant examples occur in our public school system. Education goals once considered reasonable are now scorned as overly ambitious. Conversely, levels of failure once viewed as unacceptable are now embraced as good enough. Education has been defined downward.
Instead of improving K-12 education, our Education Establishment came up with a different kind of cure: ridicule standards and then eliminate them. Improvement, although endlessly discussed, no longer seems a serious goal. Mediocrity is good enough for the land of the free and the home of the brave.
Kids can’t read? So what’s the problem? They can go on welfare. Kids don’t know basic science, geography, or history? Never mind: the old standards were totally unrealistic. Kids cannot do simple arithmetic? So what? Everybody’s got a calculator. Kids don’t know anything at all? No biggie. Everything is on the internet. Punch some buttons.
From one end of K-12 to the other, standards have been redefined toward dumb. Levels that schools used to try to reach by middle school are now targets for the end of high school. Goals for high school have now been deferred to college.
Too often, K-12 is a charade. The Education Establishment is engaged in spending nearly $700 billion a year, but insiders seem to have privately agreed that not much education need occur. Take it easy. Run in place. Instead of educating children, award everyone a participation trophy and send them…..” Please read on:
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