Wednesday, March 15, 2006

And They're Teaching Our Kids?

In South Carolina, there has been a school choice movement underway called "Put Parents In Charge" (PPiC). There are pros and cons with it, but the information is at their website. This past January, John Stossel had an ABC 20/20 special titled "Stupid in America". During this special, he highlighted the abysmal state of the education system in South Carolina and made points that school choice has tremendous value in many situations.

Today I received an email from PPiC and it contained a statement that continually grates on my nerves and is a pet peeve - especially when I hear an educator use the term! The statement was directed at John Stossel from an educator.

"Public schools are what distinguish democracies from every other system in the world," and a country without strong public schools "lends itself to authoritarian thinking."

I've also heard other "educators" describe America as a Democracy. But we're not a Democracy - we're a Republic and the US Constitution makes that clear in Article IV, Section 4: "The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence."

In Webster's first dictionary in 1828, he defines "Republic" as follows: (it's useful to use this situation to use this definition as it would be closest to what the framers meant by the term).

A commonwealth; a state in which the exercise of the sovereign power is lodged in representatives elected by the people. In modern usage, it differs from a democracy or democratic state, in which the people exercise the powers of sovereignty in person. Yet the democracies of Greece are often called republics.

OK, enough of the rant on my pet peeve... Please note that Webster (and the framers) knew the difference between a Democracy and a Republic even if some in our current culture and education system do not know the difference.

Now Playing: "Once Upon A Time" by Arwen

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