Sunday, March 15, 2009

They really do want your children

Most of you will have seen this post of mine already at W4, but for anyone who hasn't...My husband found an incredible, amazing quote from the well-known (now late) philosopher Richard Rorty openly bragging about discrediting Christian parents in their children's eyes, about reprograming them, and the like. I want to point out for those of you who are (understandably) hesitant about quoting what you see on the web that Tim verified this quotation from the "look inside" function for the book itself on Amazon. It's legit, and in fact the full version is even more shocking than the portion quoted on Wikipedia. Here's a teaser to get you to go to W4 if you aren't a regular W4 reader:

The fundamentalist parents of our fundamentalist students think that the entire “American liberal establishment” is engaged in a conspiracy. Had they read Habermas, these people would say that the typical communication situation in American college classrooms is no more herrschaftsfrei [domination free] than that in the Hitler Youth camps.

These parents have a point. Their point is that we liberal teachers no more feel in a symmetrical communication situation when we talk with bigots than do kindergarten teachers talking with their students....When we American college teachers encounter religious fundamentalists, we do not consider the possibility of reformulating our own practices of justification so as to give more weight to the authority of the Christian scriptures. Instead, we do our best to convince these students of the benefits of secularization. We assign first-person accounts of growing up homosexual to our homophobic students for the same reasons that German schoolteachers in the postwar period assigned The Diary of Anne Frank....I think those students are lucky to find themselves under the benevolent Herrschaft [domination] of people like me, and to have escaped the grip of their frightening, vicious, dangerous parents.

And there's more, here.

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