This year is the 35th anniversary of the ground-breaking television miniseries, Roots. Based on Alex Haley’s wildly successful novel, Roots: The Saga of an American Family, the epic miniseries starred an ensemble cast — several members of which recently visited with Oprah Winfrey on her new network (OWN) to commemorate this occasion.
Remember in the classic movie Casablanca how Captain Louis Renault pretended to be amazed when he was informed that gambling took place at Rick’s Café Américain? With a wink and a smirk, Captain Renault said he was “shocked, shocked” at the revelation.
Sometimes secularism sounds legitimate.
One of the more thoughtful arguments used by proponents of a secular state, or of a state that mandates the removal of all religious and moral speech and symbols from public life, is Frenchman Frederic Bastiat's 1840 classic treatise, The Law.
It now costs over $10,000 a year to “educate,” or brainwash, a child in a public school, whereas it costs about $550 to $1,000 a year to homeschool a child. The taxpayer pays nothing for the education of a child at home. Yet, the homeschooling parent must continue to pay the taxes for the public schools. This is just one of the minor injustices that exist in our society in the interest of education.
Memo from the people of Afghanistan to the United States: Get out! Now!
The mass demonstrations in Afghanistan, punctuated by anti-American violence, carry a clear message: After more than a decade, the U.S. empire should pack up and leave. It’s long past time.
In my book, Is Public Education Necessary?, I pointed out how the public school movement was promoted in the 1830s and ‘40s by the Owenite communists, the Harvard Unitarians, and the Protestant evangelicals. The Owenites wanted to use the public schools as a means of turning young Americans into little communists who would as adults turn America into a communist or socialist society. The Harvard Unitarians wanted to use the government schools as the means of getting the Calvinist religion out of education. And the Protestant evangelicals, alarmed by heavy Catholic immigration, wanted to use the public schools as a means of turning Catholic children into Protestants and as a means of maintaining America’s basic Protestant culture.
Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax is a film about the disappearance of trees, which have since been replaced by imitations, and the pursuit of two teens anxious to get their hands on some real live greenery. Therefore, there is a predictable environmentalist undertone coupled with anti-capitalist sentiment. However, the film’s anti-tyrannical subtext and focus on friendship and peace may just redeem the movie for some audiences, and its innocence and entertainment value could make it a prime choice for this weekend’s family film.
The latest school shootings at Chardon High School in Chardon, Ohio, have reminded us that these school massacres did not end with the horrors of Columbine High School in Colorado on April 20, 1999, but have continued right up to the present. Some of these planned shootings have been nipped in the bud by students aware of what was about to happen. But the latest shooting simply indicates that as long as the public schools are the way they are, there will be no end to these killings.