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Malthusian humanism and death education, Part I

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“We ought to be trembling about the fact that the schools which have failed to teach academics are now presuming to teach matters of life and death.”

– Dr. William Coulson

“…I’ve sort of built my career in helping people try to die better,” explained California ICU physician Jessica Zitter during an NPR interview with host Michel Martin on February 25th of this year (NPR.org).  “I’ve also realized that this [death] is no different a taboo.” Recalling a recent visit to a high school classroom, Zitter philosophized the benefits of teaching children about death, emphasizing the possible impacts that the act of changing the attitudes of youngsters could have on society in the future. “And that’s the kind of thing that I think really starts to make change in our culture,” she said (emphasis mine). “I was once accused by a renowned professor of medicine of deceiving my ICU patients…” she wrote in a 2013, New York Times article entitled, They Call Me Dr. Kevorkian. Dr. Zitter’s presence in the classroom is evidence of a seldom-discussed, yet monumental effort to alter the thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors of Americans, specifically in regards to death. Predators always target the young.

Enter death education.

“Since death has been such a taboo topic, open and honest communication is essential. Such communication helps to desensitize students to anxiety-arousing items.”

– Death Educator Nina Rebak Rosenthal

Few times has something set off so many blaring warning bells in my mind as death education.  “No administrator should be surprised to find that his staff is afraid of handling this topic,” stated an article in Phi Delta Kappan (McLure).  Nevertheless, many educators – motivated by altruism and blinded by an unearned level of trust in the knowledge and intentions of the “experts” – willingly follow the leaders while remaining shamefully unaware of the harm that may result from their implementation of faulty, humanist eschatology and practices in their classrooms. I should know – I am a certified teacher.

I can hear the sales pitch now: First comes the generic, yet overreaching opening statement about “experts”: The experts all agree… blah, blah, blah…  Kids need this…  Blah, blah, blah… The opening remarks are usually designed to disarm teachers by appealing to the dutifully enforced, professional hierarchy. This is typically followed by two or three extremely brief arguments which appeal to educators’ rational thinking.  Brevity is key: if you give the teachers too much time to listen, they might start thinking for themselves… Finally, it is time for the kill shot. This is best described as the stress inducing bombardment of teachers with anecdotal language which directly plays upon their emotions and, thus, smothers all inclinations toward independent analysis or hesitation: Parents don’t talk to their kids anymore or teach them about death, and they are at a disadvantage in life. It’s such a tragedy in our society…. Kids will be confused by all of the misconceptions in the world around them… Do you want the kids to learn about it from their friends, or on the street? Or, don’t you think it’s better they learn about it at school? It might help prevent suicide! (Of course, “preventative education” hasn’t actually been successful at preventing much of anything.)It is actually pretty pathetic how easily we are tricked, how easily we are played.

Death education has been creeping into schools since the 1960’s/70’s, after the publication of Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’s “On Death and Dying” (Blumenfeld, Newman, 2014).  Kübler-Ross was the charismatic leader of a “New Age” death cult, spreading the message of a joyful acceptance of death. “The womb and the grave have been equated in mystery religions. … This is precisely the significance of Kübler-Ross’s choice of death and dying as her primary consideration as a charismatic leader” (Omega, 1985-86). Before long, the “progressive” teachers’ unions jumped into bed with the joyful death movement. We now have entire foundations dedicated to death education, such as the Association for Death Education and Counseling. Even Scholastic, Inc. is pushing death ed. Wolves travel in packs.

Thanatology (the study of death and dying) in the classroom can be summed up as the incorporation of death into the various academic areas of study. “Death by its very nature involves science and medicine, social studies and sociology, psychology, history, art, literature, music, insurance, and law,” wrote one death educator in the March 1973, NEA Journal (National Education Association). As death is so easily integrated into any subject, death education thus provides opportunities for classroom discussions on “the moral and ethical issues of abortion and euthanasia…” (emphasis mine).

Death education can take on two formats: didactic (lectures, videos, etc.) and experiential (simulation exercises). Twelfth graders may design their own headstones during art class or visit a funeral home to view a human cadaver as a science exercise on organ donation. After the suicide of a classmate – a “teachable moment” – eleventh graders may compose their own suicide notes. During a health and wellness class, ninth graders may be instructed to close their eyes and enter a deep trance in which they are to return to the moment that a loved one died. Seventh graders may add up the costs involved in planning their own funeral during math class or write their own wills in language arts. The words corpse, morgue, and cadaver may be added to the fifth grade’s spelling list. Third grade children may be asked to compose their own obituaries as a part of their creative writing unit. The kindergarten class may take a field trip to a mortuary or a cemetery while learning about communities. The preschool class may build caskets in the “blocks center” and take turns playing “the dead person” as a part of dramatic play.

“Class assignments were for students to write their own obituaries and suicide notes. They were told to trust their own judgment in choosing to live or die.”

– Jayne Schindler

Incorporating death and dying into curriculum requires teachers to abandon the role of instructor and, instead, assume the role of facilitator, quasi-therapist, and “reflective listener”; a reckless recipe for disaster. The classroom is transformed into a forum for group, pseudo-psychotherapeutic, “conversation circles.” Unfortunately, from these “’death and dying courses’, there are preliminary indications that this kind of education also leads to a greater likelihood of violence against self” (emphasis mine) (DiGirolamo). In fact, numerous educators have long acknowledged the harm that can be inflicted upon a student as a result of studying death in the classroom. There have even been several recorded suicide attempts by students which coincidentally followed periods of exposure to death education, such as in the case of Tara Becker who attended Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado in the 1980’s.

“Death arouses emotions. Some students may get depressed; others may get angry; many will ask questions or make statements that cause concern for the instructor… Students may discuss the fact that they are having nightmares or that the course is making them depressed or feeling morbid…”

– Death Educator Nina Rebak Rosenthal

Psychologist William Coulson, who was one of the innovators of the psychotherapeutic techniques most often used in death education and who can be credited with the overly-psychologizing of America’s schools, has emphatically spoken out against the techniques he once championed. As it turns out, facilitating value-clarification or being a “reflective listener,” also called “nondirective education,” has been found to actually cause harm rather than prevent it, especially in children. Rather than helping young people understand death, our atheistic classrooms, dripping in moral relativism, are causing young people to feel immense confusion and anxiety.  Teaching with ambivalence – failing to providing students with concrete knowledge of or a declarative sense of right and wrong – forces students to create their own set of values and ideas, regardless of how potentially dangerous or destructive those values and ideas may prove to be. As Teddy Roosevelt once said, “To educate a child in mind and not morals is to educate a menace to society.” Yet, in the secular, humanist classrooms of America’s schools that is precisely what is occurring.

Back in 1990, Dr. Coulson was interviewed for an episode of ABC’s 20/20, “Death in the Classroom,” during which host Tom Jerrial asked, “Aren’t kids seeing more of death these days on television and with crack and violence in the streets… Isn’t there a need to educate them younger about death?” “It sounds like one of those things, Tom, that would be a good idea, except apparently it’s just not working out that way,” Coulson explained. “See, these interventions aren’t powerful enough, if you will, to keep the troubled kids out of trouble, but they are powerful enough to draw the untroubled kids into becoming troubled… What makes us think that American education is going to do a good job teaching death education? We ought to be trembling about the fact that the schools which have failed to teach academics are now presuming to teach matters of life and death.”

Yet, the Malthusian humanists who live amongst us – and those who pull the purse strings from abroad – do not have time for reflection or evaluation; not when there is an entire culture that must be changed, a world population that must be decreased, taboos that need normalizing, and generations of children that need desensitizing. Their eyes are always fixed on the prize, the pot of gold at the bottom of the rainbow.

…Which brings us to the next problem of death education.

Enter George Soros, master puppeteer.

(…to be continued)

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Marc

    June 5, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    This is news to me and it’s scary. If it has got this far, God is the only one who can help us. God bless America….. again!

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Culture and Religion

The real story here is that a radical activist took on high school kids

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The real story here is that a radical activist took on high school kids

The Covington Catholic School story has taken on a life of its own. What started as an attack against MAGA hat-wearing teens who supposedly went after a Native American Vietnam War veteran has turned into a witch hunt by leftist mainstream media to prove their righteous indignation towards the kids was justified.

But at the core of the story is something that most seem to be missing. Nathan Phillips isn’t a random activist. He’s an outspoken radical who intentionally inserts himself into situations to draw attention to his cause. We saw this clearly the day after the viral video was shot (but before it went viral) when he tried to storm a Catholic church to disrupt worship services. Those are not the actions of a peace-seeking, mild-mannered activist for Native American rights. They’re the actions of someone seeking trouble for the sake of attention.

Then, there’s the question of claims that he was a combat veteran who fought during the Vietnam War. To be fair, these are not necessarily his assertions, though I haven’t read everything he’s said about that period in his life. But mainstream media has painted him on multiple occasions as essentially a war hero. His claims have been that he was a “Vietnam times veteran,” which is obviously meant to insinuate he participated.

Thankfully, many of the publications that painted this picture of Phillips have since started editing their stories. Nevertheless, the damage is done. His reputation as a Vietnam War hero is still prominent in the eyes of those who read the initial stories and haven’t gone back to reread them since the corrections were made. We can assume that means nearly none of them have learned of the correction. That’s why he’s still being widely labeled as such on social media.

One of his claims to fame is that he starred in a Skrillex video that depicted armed opposition against law enforcement as a potential solution for those who are being forced from their homes by a land developer.

The sum of the parts of this story paint a very strange picture of Phillips. There is absolutely nothing wrong with activism for the sake of Native American rights. The cause is a righteous one and most activists are doing their part to properly bring awareness to the American people while working with governments in their plight.

Phillips doesn’t fall into that category. His stories keep changing, but the truth is still a mystery.

As our EIC noted yesterday, he claims to be a hero but he’s not.

Nathan Phillips claims to be a hero, but he’s the reason “MAGA kids” are now being demonized

http://noqreport.com/2019/01/22/nathan-phillips-claims-hero-hes-reason-maga-kids-now-demonized/There have been multiple shifts of the narrative being pushed by mainstream media about the Covington Catholic School “MAGA kids” since it first went viral. Each shift further demonstrates the far-left’s unhinged nature and mainstream media’s desire to attack conservative Christians no matter what the facts of the matter say.

All of this goes back to Nathan Phillips, the Native American who sparked the incident by trying to march through the group of kids. It wasn’t necessarily his actions that should be condemned, but how he portrayed the whole situation and his role in it have perpetuated the falsehoods that are being reported by mainstream media even today.

This all brings us back to his “opposition,” or at least the people he apparently opposes. By no means do I believe these kids are innocent. They’re kids. They were thrown into a situation they didn’t know how to handle, but even in those circumstances they handled it fairly well. Nick Sandmann, the “smirking MAGA kid” who was literally at the center of the initial controversy, is having to go on air to defend himself, his school, and to try to prevent the threats that have hit their community.

It’s a disgrace that these kids couldn’t just go to the March for Life unscathed. The trashy people who continue to dig into their pasts, shame them, and threaten their lives are being driven by the progressive worldview that is intolerant of the hats they wore.


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Education

Tentative deal reached to end Los Angeles teachers strike

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Tentative deal reached to end Los Angeles teachers strike

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A crowd of teachers roared its approval after a tentative deal was announced Tuesday between Los Angeles school officials and the union that will allow educators to return to classrooms after a six-day strike in the nation’s second-largest district.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, accompanied by leaders of United Teachers Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Unified School District, announced the agreement at City Hall a few hours after a 21-hour bargaining session ended before dawn.

“I’m proud to announce that, pending approval by the teachers represented by UTLA and educational professionals and this Board of Education, we have an agreement that will allow our teachers to go back to work on their campuses tomorrow,” Garcetti said.

Union President Alex Caputo-Pearl said the 30,000 members would vote later Tuesday, and he expected approval. A union summary of the agreement called it “historic” and urged teachers to vote yes to ratify. Educators met with UTLA representatives to familiarize themselves with the details before casting ballots.

It wasn’t clear when the vote results would be known, but teachers were expected to be back at work on Wednesday.

The deal was broadly described by officials at the news conference as including a 6 percent pay hike and a commitment to reduce class sizes over four years.

Specifics provided later by the district and the union included the addition of more than 600 nursing positions over the next three school years. Additional counselors and librarians were also part of the increase in support staff.

Marianne O’Brien said the need for additional support staff was one of the main reasons she walked picket lines. “This is not just for teachers. It’s also for counselors, nurses, psychologists and social workers,” said O’Brien, who teaches 10th grade English.

The new contract also eliminates a longstanding clause that gave the district authority over class sizes, officials said. Grades 4 through 12 would be reduced by one student during each of the next two school years and two pupils in 2021-2022.

District Superintendent Austin Beutner said he was delighted the deal was reached. But he hinted that financial challenges remained.

“The issue has always been how do we pay for it?” Beutner said. “That issue does not go away now that we have a contract. We can’t solve 40 years of underinvestment in public education in just one week or just one contract.”

Under the tentative agreement, the district, the union and the mayor’s office will work jointly to “advocate for increasedcounty and state funding” for Los Angeles schools, according to the UTLA summary.

The Board of Education met in closed session on Tuesday and was expected to move quickly to ratify the deal, which would expire at the end of June 2022.

The deal came as teachers in Denver were finishing up a vote on whether to go on strike as soon as next Monday. The main sticking point is increasing base pay and lessening teachers’ reliance on one-time bonuses for having students with high test scores or working in a high-poverty school.

In Oakland, California, some teachers called in sick last week as part of an unofficial rally over their contract negotiations, which also hinge partly on a demand for smaller class sizes.

Thousands of boisterous educators, many wearing red, and their supporters gathered on the steps outside City Hall.

The crowd began cheering, blowing horns and chanting the initials of Caputo-Pearl as the smiling union leader emerged from the building and walked through the throng.

Joaquin Flores, a special education teacher, said he believed he would support the deal unless it weakened health care or didn’t go far enough to reduce class size.

“It’s almost like metaphoric,” Flores said. “The sun’s out. When we started, it was all rainy and cold. I feel like it’s a new day.”

Teacher Sharon Maloney said she was reluctant to support the deal without seeing the details. She was skeptical that the district had made enough concessions on class size, health care benefits for new teachers or that the superintendent would spend enough of about $2 billion in reserves.

“I suspect the motives of Beutner,” Maloney said. “If he doesn’t release some of that $2 billion and there’s no understanding for moving forward how he’s going to cut out this crap that we’re running at a deficit and yet our reserves are going up every year.”

Talks resumed Thursday at Garcetti’s urging. The mayor does not have authority over LAUSD, but he sought to help both sides reach an agreement after nearly two years of fruitless talks.

Clashes over pay, class sizes and support-staff levels in the district with 640,000 students led to its first strike in 30 years and prompted the staffing of classrooms with substitute teachers and administrators.

The district maintained that the union’s demands could bankrupt the school system, which is projecting a half-billion-dollar deficit this budget year and has billions obligated for pension payments and health coverage for retired teachers.

Teachers hoped to build on the “Red4Ed” movement that began last year in West Virginia and moved to Oklahoma, Kentucky, Arizona, Colorado and Washington state. It spread from conservative states with “right to work” laws that limit the ability to strike to the more liberal West Coast with strong unions.

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Associated Press writers John Antczak and John Rogers contributed to this report.

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Follow Weber at https://twitter.com/WeberCM .

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Culture and Religion

PragerU: Do college students support abortion or life?

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PragerU Do college students support abortion or life

Progressive indoctrination centers, better known as American universities, have been pushing students towards a leftist worldview for decades. One might start believing the mainstream media narrative that college students are overwhelmingly pro-abortion based solely on other things we’ve seen coming out of college campuses.

PragerU tackled the issue. While nothing in this video will shock anyone, it’s a good cross-section of perspectives that likely reflects what’s actually going on at universities like UCLA. Will Witt went there and found the standard answers on both sides of the board. While the majority were pro-abortion, two pro-life students were found. Their responses were clearly more thought through than the answers given by their pro-abortion counterparts.

This leads to my next article. I’m starting to believe that if people are given all the information about abortion, and more importantly about the life attributes of preborn babies, they’d be more willing to accept a pro-life perspective.

Of all the challenges facing America today, the abortion issue is the most directly tied to life and death, literally. A world without abortion can only be achieved when we’re willing to have the conversations with everyone regardless of their current stance.


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