Two days into the start of my daughter’s 7th grade school year, she brought home a document that triggered a bit of an apoplectic, expletive-laden meltdown for me, and it was all centered around one word, Patriotism. The document was a form the school wanted me to sign acknowledging my receipt of something called the “Framework for Citizenship- The Student Code of Conduct.”
This document, to me, read like a badly written Sci Fi novel, only the Fi was missing, as in, this was a non-fiction declaration.
The document seemed, for the most part, to be quite innocuous but for a few key phrases that got my attention almost immediately. The first such phrase comes in the first paragraph of the document, where the school district explained they were striving to “promote good citizens.” Yes, schools have for a while entered into the business of making “good citizens” so that, while troubling to me, merely brought a bit of pink to my otherwise sun-deprived pallor.
I kept reading, and as I read I quickly came upon another phrase that converted my bit of pink to a persistent flush of gentle red. The document explained that the Framework for Citizenship was based on four components, with the first component being Universal Values.
I immediately recognized in that phrase a deliberate intent to shut off debate, to quiet dissent by framing their ‘values’ within the terminology of the universal. Who was I to deny what was simply known and appreciated and valued by all, universally?
Next, we got to the word that pushed my flush of gentle red to a beating crimson flame, patriotism. As part of the universal values, the document listed patriotism. Let’s be clear here, what this document purports to do is to express a program of Student Conduct that includes, as part of that program, patriotism.
While already preparing to engage in full froth, my eyes traversed the myriad of minefields set against one who held on to an individualistic worldview. Finally, I reached defcon EFFING HELZ when I read this sentence; ” All members of our community should be aware of those behaviors that are contrary to good student behavior and could lead to consequences as related to the Code of Conduct.”
As you read that sentence, I want you to travel with me, as I did this past Tuesday, August 29th, back to one of the “Universal” values listed in the beginning, patriotism. Have you coupled those two moments together, as I did? If so, did you proceed to mimic the flame, fury and explosion of what surely must be the Super volcano under Yellowstone the next time it lets loose its molten fists of doom?
Well, if you didn’t, don’t worry, I got this. I emoted plenty enough to cover the full rage of a thousand parents who fully understood what I understood about the role this school was presuming to take in my daughter’s life, the engineer of life, a life built for one purpose, to serve the state. If my daughter doesn’t demonstrate patriotism she could suffer consequences. This is LITERALLY the thought police. It’s the kind of code of conduct you’d expect from Kim Jung Un, not your local school principle.
At this point, if you’re conservative, perhaps you’re thinking I’m overreacting. I get it, you see value in patriotism, you see usefulness in nationalism. That’s fine, but please don’t advocate for my child to be “taught” to believe as you do. I prefer my child be equipped, rather than programmed, even if it means being programmed to think as you do.
But, if you ARE conservative, hold on kids. That patriotism stuff is just a backdoor that’s intended to take your kid on a journey that places their loyalty, their patriotism far beyond the border of your beloved America.
Read More at http://istate.tv/public-school-demands-patriotic-global-citizen-allegiance-from-kids/
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