Over my lifetime, I have seen and heard countless opinions expressed on how the United States Education System is broken, how it is a drain on the coffers of government, and how we need to privatize the schools.
When I was a child, I dreamed of joining that most noble of professions: Teacher. I loved how determined and patient my teachers were with every one of my classmates. I wanted to share the experience of bringing joy to the mind of a child who just did not understand – and then suddenly had that revelatory thought that connected the means to the end. I wanted to work in a world where children grew, their minds and bodies trained to be better people when they left the classroom than those whom entered an hour prior.
My dreams of becoming a teacher were dashed when I discovered how little the community around me respected these loving, well-intentioned individuals who held the essence of a human mind in the palm of their hands every moment of the school day. I learned how little income they received. I discovered how much they spent of that income to supplement the loss of financial support the school provided for supplies and essential materials (like books, air conditioning, office supplies, etc.). Then I decided perhaps that becoming an educator was not in my best interests after all.
The public school system in the United States is so underfunded, that my childhood now seems like a fantasy – with classrooms that once held 18-20 students now stuffing 40-50 kids elbow to elbow, hip to hip in a room with an exhausted and overwhelmed human being.
Political bickering and reduction of taxes on business and corporations has led to the downfall of the school system. Instead of investing in a vastly underfunded program that is essential to the heart of childhood growth, they have cut, slashed, and torn at the foundations.
It’s no wonder crime has exploded around the nation, mass shootings are occurring at an insane rate, and people are starving, dying, and grasping at any opportunity to be happy, healthy, hopeful, and have a home…
By far, the best way Government could invest money to reduce crime, violence, and gun deaths is EDUCATION.
In every location where the shooter lived for every mass shooting, public school education has been underfunded, cut down to a single underpaid teacher babysitting 40-50 children, teaching them how to pass the national standards testing.
As education funding decreases, less focus is paid to the children. The ones who need the most attention get left to their own inadequate devices and turn to acting out, feeling unworthy, feeling afraid to speak up, feeling defensive and taking offense at the slightest tiny insignificant thing that sets them off.
These are generalizations, but the math is there. The statistics prove that where education is bare bones, prison populations and violence surge exponentially.
Having a well-informed human populace is not what the wealthy elite corporatist tycoons want. So they push their billion-dollar think-tanks to come up with slogans and schemes that influence the under-informed, under-educated adults who take what they hear to heart, without ever considering how it will inevitably destroy the world around them.
These think-tanks use religion, loyalty to out-dated ideals, grandfathered systems of belief to manipulate everyone who is working day in and day out to keep food on their tables, power in their homes, and gas in their cars. We don’t have energy or short-term memory to pull up some data and look for the truth behind the cliches and deceptions.
But some people have begun to wake up, to speak out, to fight back. Unfortunately, these struggles are in vain at this point, because there are only 6 human beings on this planet – all wealthy corporatist, plutocratic tycoons interested in securing their own wealth apart from the rest of the world – only 6 human beings who own and control every aspect of what is broadcast on television and in the newspapers.
The way we, the common folk, fight back, is through electing the fresh politicians who have experience in the fields of education, public service, non-profit, and community organization. If none of these people exist, find someone or become that person yourself. Do the research, find out the regulations, and gather support (moral and financial). Run for office and make these proposals, create the policies you see missing in the world, and demand they be voted upon. When they are voted down, revise, craft new versions, take a step back and come at this from a new angle, then resubmit it for vote.
Education counters violence. The more we cut education, the more we fuel violence.
It’s time to stop cutting, because the schools are laying gasping for breath in the morgue, waiting to die. We need a surgeon to save them, but all we have is a mortician standing in the corner with bated breath, giggling maniacally as he stares greedily at the remains of the core of our society.
We need a turn around agenda, and if the person saying they will fix everything is beholden to any corporation, then they are UNELECTABLE!