I am a runner and have loved to run all of my life, but I also realize that it is healthy for me to run. I know many people who do not run; some of them hate running. The objective fact that exercise is essential to good health does not seem to matter to them. I know people who are excessively overweight - they're fat - yet they know the difference between eating healthy and not eating healthy, and they'll argue that they still prefer to eat whatever they like and don't care to eat something that may be healthy for them if they don't like it. It's like the mother who feeds her children boxed snacks or takes them out for fast food because she doesn't like to cook. It doesn't seem to have occurred to her that she has a duty to feed her children healthy food. These people reject the idea that there is any sort of objective standard by which one should use as a guide in making important choices. And this group of people, with this mind-set, seem to be in the majority of the American population these days. They make up most of the teachers in our schools and perhaps most of the leaders in our government. The majority of people today seem to see no reason why they should set anything above their own feelings, likes, or dislikes.
We currently live in an Age of Existentialism and Pragmatism, and have since the late nineteenth century. Western Civilization has not always been the way it is today. It was founded under a completely different standard, one still followed only by a shrinking minority in this country. Upon the founding of this country we lived in an Age of Faith in which it was believed that there was an objective reality with clear truths, as defined mostly by the Bible. In the early nineteenth century we moved into an Age of Enlightenment in which an objective reality and truth were still recognized, however they were only to be realized through the use of reason. This was followed by the Age of Romanticism in which it was believed that truth could only to be known through one's own emotions and feelings. In contrast, today the majority believe that there is no objective reality at all and that truth is merely a relative concept which has no absolute meaning; there are no fixed principles anymore, there is only opinion and one person’s opinion is as good as another’s.
The way we think today originated with the pragmatic philosophies of William James and John Dewey in the late 1800's. They rejected the concept of an objective reality with timeless truths. Instead of concerning oneself with the question of whether something is true, the pragmatist asks, “What difference will it make in my life whether I believe it or don’t believe it?” So one looks to usefulness as the standard of believing something or not believing it at all. If something is good for the believer, it is considered to be true. If it is not good, then it is not true. My truth may be different than your truth, so any idea can be true for some and not true for others. And what is true for me today, furthermore, may not be true for me tomorrow - the truth can change.
Pragmatism evolved into the Existentialism of the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre, which rejects an objective basis for life in favor of complete subjectivity. Sartre proposed that we are merely biological organisms living meaningless lives, making choices on the basis of no criteria whatsoever other than their own likes or dislikes. Since there is no basis for any external standards to which we must conform, people are free to do whatever they want.
It is by and large the elite or illumined members of any civilization that guide the thinking of an entire culture. Any shift of thinking is propagated by the government through the public school system in this country. For this reason government should neither own nor operate any centrally control schools. The central control becomes a tempting target for social engineers of any variant mode of thinking. Government monopolization of education is the most abominable of propaganda channels because it is aimed at citizens who are not yet equipped to question it. The only way to defuse the problem is to diffuse the system. Government schools need to be replaced with non-government learning arrangements.
It has been the colleges of education and the public schools which are the vehicles for dumbing down the public, conditioning them to reject the philosophy of our founders, and to accept the pragmatist and existentialist mind-set. It is the teachers who indoctrinate students into rejecting the concept of an objective reality and fixed standards, and accepting a subjective worldview devoid of objective meaning. Most teachers likely have no idea that they are facilitating a system of government-controlled propaganda - they are merely following what they have been taught, without question. They thus join the ranks of countless useful idiots who graduate from college only to continue assisting in the destruction of the minds and morals of their students.
Most Americans, though they have never read John-Paul Sartre, are existentialists and pragmatists. Likes, dislikes, and feelings are the only standard that matters. We do whatever we want if it feels good. That our personal likes and dislikes are irrelevant when they conflict with objective standards of morality is beyond most people's imagination. There is no black or white, there is only gray. What’s true for me may not be true for you. If it works, it’s right. What does it mean to you? And when one is facing a moral decision, one is asked, “How do you feel about it?” One’s feelings are set up as the criterion for making moral decisions! There is no appeal to objective standards of right and wrong anymore. That was ripped out of the public schools by the progressives.
This has even become the philosophical basis for some of the justices on the Supreme Court who continue to toss out the Federalist Papers as the objective standard of the meaning of the Constitution, substituting their own "educated" opinions. When they were in school, they were conditioned to reject the concept of objective reality and any fixed standards, and to accept pragmatism and existentialism. Despite their intelligence and judicial responsibility it is unlikely that many of them even think the matter through, refusing to go against their conditioning as instilled through the propaganda of their educational/mentor manipulators.
What can one do if not possessed of the degenerate thinking of this ilk? We live in selfishly dangerous times. The posterity of this great nation directly depends upon each of us repudiating the destructive philosophies we have been conditioned to believe through propaganda foisted upon us by the public schools. It is high time to reclaim the rational Enlightenment philosophy and Judeo-Christian morality of our founders. We can not save our country or our children until we close the public schools. Education must be privatized, and it must be done now.