With news this week that “only 1 of 2 students graduate high school in US cities,” we’re now contending with States that are doing their damnedest to keep parents from homeschooling their children. No matter how badly government schools fail, the government wants to force parents to imprison their children in these abysmal “schools.”
If the education of students was the goal, surely government would encourage homeschooling instead of opposing it because the results are indisputable. The flaw in that logic, however, is assuming that the goal of government schools is education. John Stossel has the real story in his article, Threat to Homeschooling:
The cat is finally out of the bag. A California appellate court, ruling that parents have no constitutional right to homeschool their children, pinned its decision on this ominous quotation from a 47-year-old case, “A primary purpose of the educational system is to train schoolchildren in good citizenship, patriotism and loyalty to the state and the nation as a means of protecting the public welfare.”
There you have it; a primary purpose of government schools is to train schoolchildren “in loyalty to the state.” Somehow that protects “the public welfare” more than allowing parents to homeschool their children, even though homeschooled kids routinely outperform government-schooled kids academically. In 2006, homeschooled students had an average ACT composite score of 22.4. The national average was 21.1.
Stossel the points out the backwards logic the California Courts have utilized.
The California Constitution says, “A general diffusion of knowledge and intelligence being essential to the preservation of the rights and liberties of the people, the Legislature shall encourage by all suitable means the promotion of intellectual, scientific, moral, and agricultural improvement.”
That doesn’t appear to rule out homeschooling, unless you read it as a grant of absolute power to politicians. …
I think the state court is looking at the state Constitution upside down. The court finds no constitutional right to homeschool one’s children. But in a free country, people are free to do anything not expressly prohibited by law. If the Constitution is silent about homeschooling, then the right is reserved to the people. That’s how the Framers of the U.S. Constitution said things are supposed to work.
It is a sad and pathetic testimony on the complete failure of government schools that citizens in general, and judges in particular, are so ignorant about the Constitution that they could possess such a mistaken interpretation. Ayn Rand warned us about this error long ago, as we’ve noted before. She said,
Now consider the extent of the moral and political inversion in todayâ€™s prevalent view of government. Instead of being a protector of manâ€™s rights, the government is becoming their most dangerous violator; instead of guarding freedom, the government is establishing slavery; instead of protecting men from the initiators of physical force, the government is initiating physical force and coercion in any manner and issue it pleases; instead of serving as the instrument of objectivity in human relationships, the government is creating a deadly, subterranean reign of uncertainty and fear, by means of nonobjective laws whose interpretation is left to the arbitrary decisions of random bureaucrats; instead of protecting men from injury by whim, the government is arrogating to itself the power of unlimited whim â€” so that we are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force.
Rand’s “ultimate inversion” is perhaps the single most unknown fact responsible for robbing the American people of their liberty through the creation of a totalitarian state. Does anyone think government schools will ever teach this? Our ignorance is relegating our progeny to lives of slavery. Shame, shame on us.