Friday, February 23, 2018

School Discipline Has Gone to The Dogs

Monday, May 2, 2016, 11:33
This news item was posted in Education category.
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By The Rev. Dr. Joe Renfro

It is interesting that the spelling for the word “God”, when reversed spells “dog.”  But it is distressing that in America that what was once regarded and basic to education was the Bible, central to learning in the early days of this nation, since the church was basic in the founding of most all our universities and the first schools for early learning were part of the church. We, however, are witnessing a reversal away from God’s directives in education, just like the reversal of the word “God” to that of “dog,” – G-O-D to D-0-G, particularly in the past fifty years. School discipline has gone to the dogs!

Average SAT scores have been falling for years, and the level of education that our kids are receiving in most of our public schools is a total joke, as often it is mere programing for tests. At this point, fifteen-year-olds that attend U.S. public schools do not even rank in the top half of all industrialized nations when it comes to math or science literacy. For many, particularly blacks and Hispanics and increasingly the whites, discipline during their primary and secondary education educational discipline has collapsed, and even if they graduate it is from the school house to the jail house for masses of them!

We have seen school and student discipline crumble, starting to break apart from around 1965. We can observe that where our nation once led the world in education that we are now moving toward the bottom in academic achievement in respect to other nations in the industrial world. It can well be argued that in America school discipline has gone to the dogs, rather than moving upwards toward discipline that can come as a product of faith in God. Could it be that we have substituted the teaching of ever expanding civil rights for all types of minority groups and have discounted the guidance of God’s word, rights instead of righteousness, so this has had an adverse influence on discipline?

It is worthy of note that nearly in 2014 one-fifth or 20% of all U.S. adults have no religious affiliation whatsoever, (maybe more by now) whereas back in 1972, only seven percent of all U.S. adults had no religious affiliation. And even worse is it to see the escalation of the decline of religion in America that that just from 2008 to 2014, as the change from religious affiliation to no religious affiliation has exploded, and the number of Americans with no religious affiliation grew by twenty-five percent just over those five years, as the progressive morality has been stressed in schools—more clearly classified as progressive immorality.

The collapse of individual discipline, cell-phone obsession, the loose sexual discipline, confusion about sex roles and identity, drug abuse, and the decline in both the parental and institutional discipline in our public school have all combined to help create this moral collapse. It is impossible to address all these areas in this article, so only two will be addressed, sexual obsession and drug abuse.

Public education looks very much toward conditioning as basic to education. David Risselada in an article, “Deliberately Dumbing Us Down to Affect Social Change,” Freedom Outpost, February 5, 2016 points out conditioning is basic to our contemporary educational structure, and much of this is to condition the students to think so as to develop social change.

Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936) discovered that he could train his dog to salivate at the sound of the bell. Risselada mentions what “What many people don’t know is that Vladimir Lenin sought to use Pavlov’s conditioning methods against the Russian people during his Bolshevik revolution,” From the classical conditioning in respect to education, there developed operant conditioning, the use of reward and punishment, and this is more commonly applied in the classroom today. Operant conditioning was founded by B.F. Skinner, who believed that human behavior was directly related to the environment, and this is basic in the lesson plans of public school teachers. Learning is not focused on what we achieve by mental and moral self-discipline, but how the educational structures are able to program students It is costing a fortune, but it is no doing the job. And it can well be argued that it is deliberately dumbing down to affect social change.

At this particular time, we are very much concerned with education in respect to the political campaigning. However, getting the right politicians will not do the job, but we need to return to the fact our nation was founded on the Judeo-Christian foundation, written we are “endowed by Creator with certain inalienable rights” and one of those rights as founded in freedom is the right to learn, to think, and for us whom know God in Christ through whom we can perceive the great magnitude in God revealed as the Word, (the total of cognition). The miracle of the incarnation is that we can know God in Christ, as the Bible says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God,” something the progressive education of our day wishes to discount as something of the past.

But did you know that as you walk up the steps to the building which houses the U.S. Supreme Court you can see near the top of the building a row of the world’s law givers and each one is facing one in the middle who is facing forward with a full frontal view … It is Moses and he is holding the Ten Commandments!  As you enter the Supreme Court courtroom, the two huge oak doors have the Ten Commandments engraved on each lower portion of each door. As you sit inside the courtroom, you can see the wall, right above where the Supreme Court Judges sit, a display of the Ten Commandments. James Madison, the fourth president, known as ‘The Father of Our Constitution’ made the following statement: “We have staked the whole of all our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for Self-government, upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to The Ten Commandments of God.” Fifty-two of the fifty-five founders of the Constitution were members of the established Orthodox churches in the colonies.

We are observing a moral collapse much of it from the educational practices of our nation partly because we have discounted the teaching on which our nation was founded, so much so that many schools are called “War Zones.”  Michael Snyder (April 9, 2014) brought out in his article, “100 Facts About the Moral Collapse of America That Are Almost Too Crazy to Believe,” that there is: “A moral collapse is eating away at the foundations of our society like cancer. If it continues to go unchecked, it will inevitably destroy America. Unfortunately, fixing moral decay is far more difficult than switching our political parties, because it is in the hearts of hundreds of millions of individual Americans. And most people don’t want to hear anything about a ‘moral collapse’, because most people like to think that the United States is setting a ‘good example’ for the rest of the planet.”  But as you will see below, that is not the case at all, for how can one fail to see it.

I’ve selected three classifications of these–sex, drugs, and the families–, as they each relate very much to schooling. Should schools teach right and wrong, or are school perverting the teaching of right and wrong?  They do relate very much to the lack of positive disciple in our day. Much of this relates to the progressive attacks on morality in our public education, from the loose even destructive mores being increasingly promoted by our socio-political ethics in America and education in America.

First I want to focus on the facts relating to the obsession with sex. Approximately one-third of the entire population of the United States (110 million people) currently has a sexually transmitted disease according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Every single year, there are 20 million new STD cases in America. America has the highest STD infection rate in the entire industrialized world. Americans in the fifteen to twenty-four-year-old age group account for about fifty percent of all new STD cases each year. It costs our nation approximately 16 billion dollars a year to treat our sexually transmitted diseases. According to one survey, twenty-four percent of all U.S. teens that have STDs say that they still have unprotected sex. The United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the entire industrialized world. One out of every four teen girls in the U.S. has at least one sexually transmitted disease. An astounding thirty percent of all Internet traffic now goes to adult websites. Seventy percent of all men in the eighteen to twenty-four-year-old age bracket visit at least one adult website each month. The average high school boy spends two hours on adult websites every single week. At this point, one out of every four teen girls in the U.S. has at least one sexually transmitted disease. And think of the chaos developing as our schools teach homosexuality as expected normal behavior!

Secondly, there are those relating to drugs. There are 70 million Americans that are on mind-altering drugs of one form or another. In America today, there are 60 million people that abuse alcohol and there are 22 million people that use illegal drugs. Children in the United States are three times more likely to be prescribed antidepressants than children in Europe are. In the United States today, prescription painkillers kill more Americans than heroin and cocaine combined. America has the highest rate of illegal drug use on the entire planet. According to the federal government, the number of heroin addicts in the United States has more than doubled since 2002. And think about how the legalization of marihuana is going to make it even more a weapon to destroy disciple in learning in our land!

Looking to the scripture from II Peter 2:12-22 we can find guidance to address this moral collapse in contemporary American education. There is the “D” in both the word, “God” and the word, “dog.”   There is either DESTRUCTIVENESS or DEDICATION. “D” can stand for Destructiveness!  Verse 12 says, “These false teachers are like unthinking animals, creatures of instinct, born to be caught and destroyed. They scoff at things they do not understand, and like animals, they will be destroyed. Their destruction is their reward for the harm they have done… A dog returns to its vomit.”   Contrast this to the “D” in God, as it can point to the need for our Dedication…” Colossians 3:17 says: “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.”  Here is dedication in action. It develops discipline!

There is the middle letter in both words is the “O” which can point to the words OBSTINACY or OBEDIENCE. Verse 13 points to obstinacy, saying: “… “They love to indulge in evil pleasures in broad daylight. They are a disgrace and a stain among you. They delight in deception even as they eat with you in your fellowship meals…A dog returns to its vomit.”   Contrast this to obedience. Verse 22 points to obedience, speaking about “the command they were given to live a holy life.” Obedience develops discipline!

There is the “G”, and it can point to either GODLESSNESS or GODLINESS. Verses 18 and 19 state in respect to godlessness that: “… “With an appeal to twisted sexual desires, they lure back into sin those who have barely escaped from a lifestyle of deception… A dog returns to its vomit.”  Observe the contrast, as “G” as well can point to our need for Godliness. Romans 12:1 says, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service, and 1 Timothy 6:6 – But godliness with contentment is great gain.”  Education should be growth in godliness!

Wouldn’t it be great, that instead of saying, “School Discipline has gone to the dogs,” that we could say that “School Discipline has gone back to what it once was, where faith in God was very much an instrument in it?”


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