Three potential 2012 Republican presidential candidates expressed hostility toward the public school system at a home schooling rally on Wednesday in the early presidential caucus state of Iowa.
Texas Congressman Ron Paul told the crowd government wants “absolute control” of the “indoctrination” of children. Paul spoke along with Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and Georgia businessman Herman Cain.
“The public school system now is a propaganda machine,” Paul said, prompting applause from the crowd of hundreds of home schooling families. “They start with our kids even in kindergarten, teaching them about family values, sexual education, gun rights, environmentalism – and they condition them to believe in so much which is totally un-American.”
Bachmann said home schooling is the “essence” of freedom and liberty. “It’s about knowing our children better than the state knows our children,” she said.
“It is not up to a bureaucrat to decide what is best for your children,” Bachmann said, drawing cheers from the crowd. “I am so tired of the establishment telling us that they know best. We know best…”
Cain, former chief executive of Godfather’s Pizza and another prospective Republican candidate, denounced government involvement in education at all levels.
“That’s all we want is for government to get out of the way so we can educate ourselves and our children the old-fashioned way,” Cain said.
Justin LaVan of the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators said it was encouraging to see potential presidential candidates talking about the home-schooling movement.
“More importantly, talking about our Creator – our rights that came from our Creator, acknowledging that and giving him the glory, folks,” said LaVan, who served as master of ceremonies at the rally.
Hallelujah – have a snake!
I should say “seriously – something or other” right now; but, these retrograde demagogues can’t be taken seriously except as a threat to the Bill of Rights and the American Constitution.
We are a nation that has grown on the ethic of individual freedoms. Something these jokers include in every speech – while they advocate government control to prevent choice, government control to halt negotiated contracts between workers and employers, government control to monitor individuals who feel they have the freedom to choose family planning over mindless procreation – and if the government won’t step in and mandate allegiance to whichever religion is in favor this week among bible-thumping Republicans – well, then, they advocate crushing what opportunity there is in this land to provide free public education.
By the way, our rights came from the struggles of ordinary people who fought against reactionaries like this for decades to achieve what we have. Not from Charlton Heston marching down a movie mountainside. Even the freedom to be a religious nutcase came from political battles against oppressors ranging from Kings to Klan members.
Disclaimer: it makes me a bit sad even to call these fools Republicans. I grew up with traditional North American conservatives. People who cared for the dignity of those they disagreed with as strongly as their arguments. People who cared for the land and nature and the freedom of the ocean and prairie – as much as their pride in invention.
These people calling themselves Republicans, today, are less Republican than George Wallace, David Duke, Father Coughlin and all the bigots who tried previously to take over that once-principled party.