I have been reading Dumbing Us Downby John Taylor Gatto, an excellent book written by a former public school teacher for 30 years and New York State teacher of the year.
One of the “lessons” Mr. Gatto claims schools teach is something I had recently noticed is a prevalent attitude these days. I even pointed this out on my Facebook fan page, and then I read about it in his book. (Isn’t it funny how you think a new thought and then you see evidence of that thought in various places?)
The lesson I am talking about is never, no never, trust your own instincts or research. ALWAYS rely on what the experts tell you should be done.
There is never really even a need to think anything through for yourself, because there is someone (probably paid by your tax dollars) who has done studies, and made charts, and drawn all the right conclusions for you.
Never mind that they get end of the year bonuses if they can convince you to agree with their conclusions. Just do what the experts say and don’t rock the boat. Okay, dear?
Even if that means we let the government tell us what to eat and drink.
“But it’s for our own good!” I can hear someone crying.
The thing is, I would like to decide for myself what is my own good and the good of my children.
I don’t want to let someone else decide that I can’t take my perfectly healthy newborn home from the hospital or that I should vaccinate my daughters against sexually transmitted diseases. I can do the research, consider the facts, weigh the risks, and make the decision for myself.
Now, certainly I am not saying that I have no need for experts. When my daughter needs an emergency appendectomy, I am all for the experts stepping in and doing what they have trained for. When the family goes to our favorite dentist, I want her to use her expertise in treating us.
What I don’t want is for my right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness to be infringed upon by “experts” who believe I am too obtuse to consider a thing and decide for myself which course to take.