Is Common Core a socialist program?
Central to the meaning of socialism is common ownership of resources, free access to services/goods, and little or no personal property ownership. Common Core is a national movement toward a single, collective set of common academic standards, common access to the academic standards and tests, and little or no unique or diverse education nationally; so yes, it’s a socialist program.
Upon acceptance, it forced top level states’ standards down, and forced low-level states’ standards up, to a middling standard that is mediocre at best: it’s common. Common Core has even changed the definition of “college ready” to something more common; it now means anything from 4-year to 2-year, to vocational school-ready. And Common Core has been adopted by each of the United States, except Texas and Virginia.
And, is socialism essentially the same thing as collectivism and communism?
Yes. Ezra Taft Benson, two-term U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said:
“We must keep the people informed that collectivism, another word for socialism, is a part of the communist strategy. Communism is essentially socialism.” (This Nation Shall Endure, p. 90)
Common Core adoption by states was incentivized by federally held monies and by the federal bait of letting states acquire a waiver from No Child Left Behind mandates by implementing Common Core. So the federal government pushes it and controls it, tax dollars support it, and it’s a collective. http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop-assessment/sbac-cooperative-agreement.pdf
Sound socialist enough?
But what’s wrong with socialism/collectivism? Isn’t is what the purple dinosaur Barney sings about: getting along, giving, sharing?
What Barney, Thomas Jefferson and every righteous prophet of God have promoted is voluntary and heart-based giving. Socialism/collectivism/communism is the exact opposite.
In socialism, you give because the government pressures or forces you to share. Give, or you’ll be severely punished. A simple test that President Benson suggested to judge the rightness or wrongness of a government program is to think of it in terms of one individual’s choice, rather than many.
“If it were up to me as an individual to punish my neighbor for violating a given law, would it offend my conscience to do so? Since my conscience will never permit me to physically punish my fellow man unless he has done something evil, or unless he has failed to do something which I have a moral right to require of him to do, I will never knowingly authorize my agent, the government to do this on my behalf… when I give my consent to the adoption of a law, I specifically instruct the police – the government – to take either the life, liberty, or property of anyone who disobeys that law. Furthermore, I tell them that if anyone resists the enforcement of the law, they are to use any means necessary – yes, even putting the lawbreaker to death or putting him in jail – to overcome such resistance. These are extreme measures but unless laws are enforced, anarchy results… John Locke explained many years ago: ‘The end of law is not to abolish or restrain, but to preserve and enlarge freedom.’ ” -Ezra Taft Benson
Would you, as an individual, bribe your neighbor to adopt your educational standards and refuse to allow your neighbor to even ask for an amendment process or a voice in changing the standards? Would it matter whether his standards were much lower or much higher already? Or would the idea of imposing standards offend you?
Governmental oppression of education via Common Core socialism is already happening now, even though Common Core’s standards and testing implementation period is not complete until 2015. Sure, the state school board will tell you it was a state-initiated, voluntary program. And that is technically true. But do states control it? No. Is it under copyright? Yes. Can states amend it? No. Can states refuse to share testing data collected via Common Core tests, with the feds? Nope.
For example, when a state refuses to adopt Common Core, they are ineligible for big federal grants, ineligible for a ESEA flexibility request (No Child Left Behind waiver), and when they reject or try to back out of the adoption of Common Core, they may be mocked or abused by the federal Dept. of Education. (See Secretary Duncan downtalking and lying about Texas’ education, for Texas’ rejection of Common Core, here: http://bloom.bg/pqFOxp and see Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott’s rebuttal of Duncan’s lies, here:http://dallasmorningviewsblog.dallasnews.com/2011/08/robert-scott-fi.html/
See Secretary Duncan berating South Carolina for trying to flee Common Core here: http://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/statement-us-secretary-education-arne-duncan-1 .
Many states cannot dream of fleeing Common Core because they won Race to the Top grant funds and if they were to withdraw from Common Core now, they’d have to return the money –a virtual impossibility for most states. Fortunately, Utah received no Race to the Top grant money directly, so if we dump Common Core, as we should, we’ll receive nothing but name-calling from Sec. Arne Duncan. Hooray!
What’s stopping us? Nothing but a lack of political will. Write your senators and legislators and the Governor. Tell your neighbors and friends, especially teachers. Educational standards are meaningless without political freedom.
Let’s run far and fast from nationalized collective education standards, Utah.