The Schoolroom Seducers (by Israel Wayne)
John Dewey (1859–1952) The man with the greatest influence in the history of American education is almost assuredly John Dewey. Dewey was a socialist, a pragmatist, a signer of the First Humanist Manifesto, a founding member and president of the NEA, a president of the American Psychological Society, and an ardent atheist. Dewey was not the founder of the Dewey Decimal System (that was a different Dewey), although he is often credited with that achievement. He was a teacher of teachers at Columbia University and wrote many books targeted to teachers and educational professionals. He was a big fan of the Soviet educational system, and he wanted the United States to emulate the Soviet model. His desire was to see America embrace economic socialism as a worldview. In 1927, he traveled to the USSR with 24 other educators to learn from the Russians how to better teach economic socialism in the American classroom.
There was such a synergy between the NEA and the Soviet Union at that time that the NEA invited the USSR to have a booth at their convention. The purpose was to invite U.S. teachers to travel to Russia to learn how to better teach a Marxist worldview in the American schools. Dewey decided to focus on the methodology, structure, and pedagogy of the school system, and he commissioned a couple of his colleagues at Teacher’s College at Columbia University — James E. Mendenhall and Dr. Harold Rugg — to change the textbooks and curriculum. They removed three subjects that had always been taught independently (history, civics, and geography), and replaced them with a brand-new subject that had never been heard of before: social studies. This new curriculum was socialistic at its core. It is estimated that approximately five million American students used this curriculum between 1930–1950 (before parents protested and it was eventually removed, for a time, from the curriculum).
Dewey’s goal was to replace Christianity with humanism as the dominant force in American culture. He spoke of his agenda with a religious fervor: “Every teacher should realize he is a social servant set apart for the maintenance of the proper social order and the securing of the right social growth. In this way, the teacher is always the prophet of the true God and the usherer in of the true kingdom of heaven.” As an atheist, Dewey didn’t believe in the true God of the Bible; instead, he believed in a humanistic utopia, in which humankind was the ultimate source of everything. Dewey was not alone in expressing these thoughts about humanism as a religion. Joel R. Burnett, another signer of the first Humanist Manifesto and an architect of the modern American educational system, wrote this in the humanist publication he edited: “Public education is the parochial education for scientific humanism.”
Dewey confessed that the schools were being (and should be) used as machines of propaganda, promoting a radical new Marxist worldview to children. He saw no problem with this, because, as a pragmatist, he believed that any method was valid as long as it brought about the desired result. In his mind, collectivism and socialism were in the best interests of society, so propaganda targeted to young children was perfectly acceptable. He admitted: “[The] propaganda . . . employed is not a private or even a class gain, but is [for] the universal good of universal humanity. In consequence, propaganda is education and education is propaganda.”15 Further, he wrote: The mass of the people is to learn the meaning of Communism not so much by induction into Marxian doctrines — although there is plenty of that in the schools — but by what is done for the mass in freeing their life, in giving them a sense of security, safety, in opening to them access to recreation, leisure, new enjoyments and new cultivations of all sorts.
The most effective propaganda, as the most effective education, is found to be that of deeds which raise the level of popular life, making it fuller and richer, while associating the gains as indissolubly as possible with a “collective” mentality. Dewey was praising Lenin and Stalin’s schools, which were supposed to be the great “Messiah” that would rescue our world from hunger, forced labor, and inequality. Dewey saw Russia’s model as the hope for our future in America. In truth, Marxism provided nothing of the sort. There was no “classless society.” What emerged from Stalin were the executions of untold millions of his own people, slave labor, and indoctrination of the masses into a system that produced poverty and economic collapse. Dewey recognized that three elements shaped people toward individualistic thinking and away from collectivist thinking: private property ownership, the home, and the church. He saw the schools as a mechanism to destroy these institutions and replace them with a brave new world of socialistic government control. What he proposed is nothing less than social engineering: Hence the great task of the school is to counteract and transform those domestic and neighborhood tendencies that are still so strong, even in a nominally collectivistic régime. In order to accomplish this end, the teachers must in the first place know with great detail and accuracy just what the conditions are to which pupils are subject in the home, and thus be able to interpret the habits and acts of the pupil in the school in the light of his environing conditions — and this, not just in some general way, but as definitely as a skilled physician diagnoses in the light of their causes the diseased conditions with which he is dealing.17 The Soviet schools advocated monitoring the views and beliefs of parents through spying and reporting of parents, by their own children, to school officials.
Dewey was quite comfortable with this approach, as he felt it pragmatically necessary to know what students were learning at home, so it could be counteracted by teachers in the schools. He continued: The knowledge thus gained of home conditions and their effect upon behavior (and I may say in passing that this social behaviorism seems to me much more promising intellectually than any exclusively physiological behaviorism can ever prove to be) is preliminary to the development of methods which will enable schools to react favorably upon the undesirable conditions discovered, and to reinforce such desirable agencies as exist. Here, of course, is the point at which the socially constructive work of the school comes in. By “physiological behaviorism,” Dewey was talking about the kind of research that was done by people like Ivan Pavlov and, later, B.F. Skinner (1904–1990). Their research demonstrated how to condition students and change their behavior to desired outcomes. Dewey believed these more direct and forthright
methods of dividing children and parents and pitting children against their parents would yield faster social engineering results. Religiously Neutral Schools? There is a great myth, embraced by many, that public schools are religiously neutral. It is believed that they teach neutral facts and information and simply encourage students to make up their own minds based on those facts. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. Vladimir Lenin reportedly used the term “useful idiot” to refer to people who would be used in the great struggle for collective change. Many would have no idea what part they played in the social revolution. Lenin made no pretense about government-controlled schools being neutral in any way: The school, apart from life, apart from politics, is a lie, a hypocrisy. Bourgeois society indulged in this lie, covering up the fact that it was using the schools as a means of domination, by declaring that the school was politically neutral, and in the service of all. We must declare openly what it concealed, namely, the political function of the school. While the object of our previous struggle was to overthrow the bourgeoisie, the aim of the new generation is much more complex: It is to construct communist society. He also stated: We say that our work in the sphere of education is part of the struggle for the overthrow of the bourgeoisie. We publicly declare that education divorced
divorced from life and politics is a lie and hypocrisy.20 Adolf Hitler also saw government-controlled schools as a necessary component in his goal to reorient society to his socialist dream. The following is from William L. Shirer’s The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: [H]e had stressed in his book the importance of winning over and then training the youth in the service “of a new national state” — a subject he returned to often after he became the German dictator. “When an opponent declares, ‘I will not come over to your side,’ [Adolf Hitler] said in a speech on November 6, 1933, I calmly say, ‘Your child belongs to us already. . . . What are you? You will pass on. Your descendants, however, now stand in the new camp. In a short time they will know nothing else but this new community.’ ” And on May 1, 1937, [Hitler] declared, “This new Reich will give its youth to no one, but will itself take youth and give to youth its own education and its own upbringing.” It was not an idle boast; that was precisely what was happening. The German schools, from first grade through the universities, were quickly Nazified. Peer Pressure and Herds Why do you think the Hitler Youth committed the atrocities they did? Are Germans inherently more evil than other people groups? To agree with that statement would be to promote the very bigotry we denounce when we condemn the so-called racial profiling of ethnic groups by the Nazis.
I don’t think they are any different than anyone else. Their educational system was extremely effective in reorienting them into a total commitment to the desires of the Reich. Why is it that youth go along with the crowd and refuse to say no? I’ve heard it said that children’s sense of self-worth is determined by what the most important and most influential people in their lives think of them. If those people are the parents, the children will be inclined to do what the parents want. If it is their peer group, they will be inclined to do what the peer group wants them to do. Danish existentialist philosopher Søren Kierkegaard observed: Man is a social animal; only in the herd is he happy. It is all one to him whether it is the profoundest nonsense or the greatest villainy — he feels completely at ease with it — so long as it is the view of the herd, and he is able to join the herd. Influence is gained through two primary means: time and affirmation. For the most part, whoever spends the most time with a child and encourages or affirms him or her the most has the most influence in that child’s life. Unfortunately, most parents do not have this influence. They give it away to others and assume that those who have accepted that position have no agenda. Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias insightfully notes: The whole point of state-controlled education is that it gives to the government the power to shape the souls and write on the fresh slates of young hearts. This empowerment is the most important trust given to elected officers and to assume that they accept that responsibility from a posture of neutrality is to live under the most destructive of illusions.
The very creation of the age-segregated classroom, with 30 to 40 students all the same age, was designed to create peer pressure and cultivate an environment in which it would be very difficult for children to go against the views of the herd. Teachers are even encouraged, in their training, to cultivate and encourage this peer pressure. From a popular textbook used in teaching colleges in 2008: “The more learners want to be accepted and respected by peers, the more they will value membership in the ‘in’ group and be distressed by the ridicule of the classroom.”24 Peer pressure is a tool to create conformity in the classroom. In 1951, a researcher named Solomon Asch began conducting “conformity experiments” that were later referred to as the “Asch Paradigm.” He would create a “control group” in a classroom, where one student did not know that he was part of a research experiment. The students in the class were told to intentionally give the wrong answer to an obvious question to see if the test student would give a false answer (that he knew to be false) just to conform to the views of the group. It was found that the answers of a peer group were, indeed, very powerful in swaying the student’s answers (and the larger the classroom, the more controlling the influence). Those experiments were conducted on college students, who believed their grade was dependent on giving the correct answer! How much more influence does the peer group classroom model have on creating conformity for elementary and junior high students, who so desperately want to be accepted by their friends? Globalism As time has gone on, modern classroom education has become a recruiting ground for teaching young impressionable minds the doctrines of socialism and globalism. From “America 2000” to “Goals 2000” to “Outcome-Based Education” to “No Child Left Behind” to “Common Core” and beyond, the American government school system is increasingly pushing a globalist agenda. “Agenda 21” and other U.N. programs are progressively being touted in government schools. Control over the schools is shifting from parents to community to county to state to federal to international. The globalist vision promoted through government schools is not new. Consider what Mr. Joy Elmer Morgan, a former editor for the NEA Journal, wrote in a civics book he authored (published by the NEA) in 1941: “The future of America depends simply on . . . building up our schools . . . and on taking our part among the peoples of the world to build an effective world government”25 (emphasis added). He also published an essay in the NEA Journal in January of 1946 entitled, “The Teacher and World Government,” in which he proclaimed: In the struggle to establish an adequate world government, the teacher . . .
can do much to prepare the hearts and minds of children for global understanding and cooperation. . . . At the very top of all the agencies which will assure the coming of world government must stand the school, the teacher, and the organized profession.26 In October of 1947, the NEA Journal published “On the Waging of Peace” by NEA official William Carr, who stated: As you teach about the United Nations, lay ground for a stronger United Nations by developing in your students a sense of world community. The United Nations should be transformed into a limited world government. The psychological foundations for wider loyalties must be laid. . . . Teach about the various proposals that have been made for strengthening the United Nations and the establishment of world law. Teach those attitudes which will result ultimately in the creation of a world citizenship and world government. . . . We cannot directly teach loyalty to a society that does not yet exist, but we can and should teach those skills and attitudes which will help create a society in which world citizenship is possible. Also consider what Charles B. Pierce, a professor of education at Harvard, told a conference of school teachers in 1972: Every child in America entering school at the age of five is mentally ill because he comes to school with certain allegiances to our Founding Fathers, toward our elected officials, toward his parents, toward a belief in a supernatural
supernatural being, and toward the sovereignty of this nation as a separate entity. It’s up to you as teachers to make all these sick children well — by creating the international child of the future.28 The leftist, socialist, globalist agenda of the American government school system has only worsened in recent decades. My intent in giving you the history, prior to 1972, is that most Christians think the schools only started to take a liberal bent in the late 1960s. Nothing could be further from the truth. By the 1970s, the proverbial frog had already been boiled slowly. Now we are dealing with LGBT pride months being promoted in schools, transgender bathroom issues, and much more. These issues are merely the tip of the iceberg that lies beneath the surface. The real issue is humanism and the desire of our government educational system to create an environment where humans, not their Creator, are ultimately the final arbiters of right and wrong. It goes all the way back to the original deception in the Garden of Eden, when the serpent told Adam and Eve they could become like God. It is my sincere hope that Christian parents will seek an education for their children that is rooted in the fear of the Lord (the beginning of wisdom) rather than in the shifting sands of cultural relativism and man’s opinions.
James, Terry . Deceivers: Exposing Evil Seducers & Their Last Days Deception