March 7, 2004
The sick behavior of some of our military at the Abu Ghraib prison outside of Baghdad has left an everlasting blot on America's reputation as a world leader. How sad that the behavior of the majority of fine young people in the services will now be questioned. One can only wonder how prevalent this sort of behavior is, and how long it has been going on. One should ask oneself if this type of behavior took place in WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, or Gulf War I. Very unlikely or else it would, over the years, have been reported. This writer worked overseas with the American Red Cross during the Korean War, without ever seeing or hearing any reports of such behavior.
This sick behavior is a reflection of our culture which has bumper stickers saying "Love", "Peace", "Tolerance", "Choice", and all the semantics which are nothing but Orwellian conditioning words, without benefit of input from the mind, the conscience, and the soul. The schools have since 1965 been involved in teaching all subjects without reference to religion (values clarification, survival games which call for the children to decide who will live and who will die, etc.) The teaching of evolution has succeeded in convincing our children that they are nothing but animals, to be trained, not educated.
One example follows: In 1984 Missouri's Educational Objectives, Grade Twelve, contained the following performance indicator to assess whether students were becoming adequately "tolerant": "Given a description of an individual with a debased character, such as a child murderer or a person who has set fire to an inhabited building, students should reject suggestions for punishment which would detract from the dignity of the prisoner..." Is it a stretch of the imagination to suggest that this stupid/sick exercise might result in the student concluding that such criminal behavior might be acceptable? "Back to Basics Reform or OBE...Skinnerian International Curriculum", Iserbyt, 1985.
More recently this writer had an article entitled "The Columbine Tragedy" published in Education Week, May 5, 1999, in which I asked "What was going on inside the brains of the two boys who committed this terrible crime?" After a lengthy and critical discussion regarding the use of video games outside of school and operant conditioning (Pavlovian dog training) in the classrooms of America, I asked "Is it too far-fetched to assume that he who is trained like an animal may just end up behaving like one? Operant conditioning bypasses the brain with all the important functions which distinguish man from an animal: memory, conscience, imagination, insight, and intuition, functions by which human beings know absolutes and truths and are able to know God. "
One might ask if the young soldiers who perpetrated these crimes had not only been victims of the public school system, but also had undergone military training using video games (virtual reality/operant conditioning machines) which carried out in a real situation resulted in their mindlessly carrying out acts of torture? One might also move closer to home for equally shocking behavior carried out by some American policemen.
In Josephine County, Oregon, angry church-attending sheriff's deputies arrested a man at 1:30 in the (read Silence Equals Consent) morning over a wet shivering chicken, took him to jail naked, then asked him if he had any weapons on him, and, in Portland, hate-filled cops pepper sprayed a 71-year old blind woman, knocked her down with a stun gun and not one of them got fired.
A society which considers itself religious and is tolerant at best of foul language, pornography, abortion, euthanasia, homosexuality, torture, etc. can be expected to turn out young people who see nothing wrong with immoral acts, including torture. (I was astounded by a CNN Poll taken May 2 reporting 44% of Americans approve of torture ( under certain conditions, I would hope!) while 56% do not approve of torture under any conditions.) If this is the case, Americans will have no problem whatsoever living under a totalitarian form of government being implemented as I write.
A wonderful book was written in 1971 by an Englishman, Professor Duncan Williams, entitled "Trousered Apes...Sick Literature in a Sick Society", Arlington House. Williams had been a visiting professor at U.S. colleges during the Vietnam War, and he gave many speeches and was shocked by college students' unruly behavior (their reaction to what he had to say to them). He returned to England and wrote "Trousered Apes" which was boycotted by the UK establishment until Malcolm Muggeridge wrote a Preface to it and all of a sudden it took off.
Book is still available by going to ABE Books.com or Alibris.com. It's the kind of book that one starts underlining important ideas and then stops due to fact every sentence would have to be underlined. This remarkable book is of vital importance to Americans right now!
Contemporary problems facing Americans at home and abroad will never, repeat never be solved until Americans live their lives, no matter in the school house, on the battlefield, or at the dinner table by the very simple Biblical injunction: " All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye so to them; for this is the law and the prophets." Matthew, 7:1.
Hopefully this tragic incident will be a wakeup call for Americans who believe the universities, teachers colleges, public schools, police and now the military should be free to conduct any and all kinds of sick training "in the name of education." Chickens do have a way of coming home to roost.