I took a break from working on Monster Hunter Nemesis to check Facebook, and of course I found a link to something so astoundingly dumb that it demanded an immediate fisking. It is such a jaw dropping level of stupid that my first thought was that it was a brilliant piece of satire by a free market libertarian who really hates collective do gooders, but the article is from Slate, and I don’t think anybody over there is clever enough to pull off something like that.
The article itself is your typical white guilt liberal pontificating on topics they don’t quite grasp and lecturing everyone about how to live in a manner that best assuages their white liberal guilt. This article is dumb, even by Slate standards, and that is saying something, but there is some value to be taken from it as it is an excellent look into the thought process of ass kissing statists. If it was satire by somebody who has run into all of these same arguments before (I’ve seen all of these points pop up in various school choice arguments, only I’ve never seen them bundled so completely) then high five. Good work. If this author actually believes this tripe, then I’m amazed she figured out how to turn on her computer to type it.
As usual the original article is in italics. My comments are in bold.
If You Send Your Kid to Private School, You Are a Bad Person
No kidding. It is actually subtitled “A Manifesto”. We’re off to a great start.
By Allison Benedikt
You are a bad person if you send your children to private school. Not bad like murderer bad—
Wait… Are we talking actual bad murderer bad, or murderers that liberals have the hots for bad, like Che Guevara? Or murderers that liberals don’t like to own up to like Kermit Gosnell bad? Because you know, liberals are into nuance and stuff.
but bad like ruining-one-of-our-nation’s-most-essential-institutions-in-order-to-get-what’s-best-for-your-kid bad.
So using a lot of unnecessary hyphens bad.
So, pretty bad.
Apparently. But please, Allison, educate us poor knuckle draggers why we should put the future of failing liberal institutions based on outdated philosophies dating back to the industrial revolution over the welfare of our children.
I am not an education policy wonk: I’m just judgmental.
Well you’re a liberal, so that goes without saying.
But it seems to me that if every single parent sent every single child to public school, public schools would improve.
And I can’t wait to hear how you figured this part out. Especially since everybody is always whining about overcrowded classrooms, so when a kid gets pulled out and sent to private school, you just freed up more public school resources, and *gasp* the parent paying for private school is still paying taxes which pay for the dumpy public school… but hey, I’m getting ahead of myself.
This would not happen immediately. It could take generations. Your children and grandchildren might get mediocre educations in the meantime, but it will be worth it, for the eventual common good.
Wait… Let me get this right… I need to needlessly screw up my children and grandchildren’s chances in the hope that maybe, just maybe, our shitty public schools might be decent in forty or fifty years. And this is the high note she picked to open her essay with. Holy shit.
Yes, comrades, sacrifice your offspring for the common good… Sure, that sounds bug nuts to most parents who don’t routinely put cigarette butts out on their children’s skin, but don’t worry, folks. Allison is just getting warmed up.
(Yes, rich people might cluster. But rich people will always find a way to game the system:
That’s correct, Allison. The reason people like me are “rich” is because we “game the system”. If by “game the system” you mean that I see to the well-being of myself and my family rather than meddling in other people’s business with utopian nonsense, then I totally agree.
That shouldn’t be an argument against an all-in approach to public education any more than it is a case against single-payer health care.)
Well, obviously Allison is in favor of single-payer health care (in the same essay where she talks about another government run system being hopelessly broken) because this time it will totally be better.
So, how would this work exactly? It’s simple!
A magical leprechaun will ride a unicorn down a rainbow and shoot awesome free healthcare out of its ass? Oh wait, we’ve moved back to the subject of how she wants to screw over decent parents again. Sorry.
Everyone needs to be invested in our public schools in order for them to get better. Not just lip-service investment, or property tax investment, but real flesh-and-blood-offspring investment.
Uh… What about all of the people who went to crappy public schools or whose kids already were in crappy public schools who fled to the private sector, or who would if they could afford to? And I can only imagine how much you despise those wretched home schoolers. Oh yeah, they’re murderer bad too, but not groovy Che murderer bad, just to be clear.
Your local school stinks but you don’t send your child there?
Hell lady, I actually MOVED because of how mediocre the local schools were. I could see they were sucking the life out of my children. I’ve got brilliant, imaginative kids with genius level IQs, and they were sullenly getting terrible grades and hating education because they were trapped in a dreary prison cell of a room dominated by mentally imbalanced rage monkeys and pill popping zombies, all under the supervision of a lazy ass, phoning it in until she could retire, teacher’s union parasite who thought the best way to deal with gifted kids was to give them tons and tons of useless brain dead busy work.
And that crappy school was fantastic compared to the junior gladiatorial academy I got to attend in California.
Then its badness is just something you deplore in the abstract.
Liberals are totally against deploring things in the abstract! (except global warming obviously, or other people’s healthcare, or other people’s wages, or other people’s business, or other people’s choices).
Your local school stinks and you do send your child there? I bet you are going to do everything within your power to make it better.
Yes, because caring parents have proven so capable of taking on entrenched teacher’s unions. I forgot that to liberals, everything in the world can be solved if you just CARE HARD ENOUGH, unless of course you care against something that favors democrats, because then you can go screw yourself.
And parents have a lot of power. In many underresourced schools, it’s the aggressive PTAs that raise the money for enrichment programs
Wait… If I’m going to have to pay for this out of my own pocket after I’ve already been taxed for it, why don’t I pay for something actually GOOD instead?
and willful parents who get in the administration’s face when a teacher is falling down on the job.
BWA HA HA HAW! Snort. Yes, folks, that’s a liberal lecturing us on how easy it is to fix union employees when they screw up.
Everyone, all in. (By the way: Banning private schools isn’t the answer. We need a moral adjustment, not a legislative one.)
Sure… Because you meddling busybodies have such an amazing track record of never ever legislating against things based on your feelings.
There are a lot of reasons why bad people send their kids to private school. Yes, some do it for prestige or out of loyalty to a long-standing family tradition or because they want their children to eventually work at Slate.
Oh horseshit, lady. I’ve seen more profound writing on the placemats at Denny’s.
But many others go private for religious reasons, or because their kids have behavioral or learning issues, or simply because the public school in their district is not so hot.
Sounds good to me.
None of these are compelling reasons.
I missed the part of the Constitution where it said that my freedom was limited to things that brain damaged collectivists found compelling.
Or, rather, the compelling ones (behavioral or learning issues, wanting a not-subpar school for your child) are exactly why we should all opt in, not out.
Did you actually just write that none of those were compelling except for the ones that are? (and remember kids, you need a super good education to write for Slate!)
I believe in public education, but my district school really isn’t good! you might say.
Yes. I did just say that.
No. You don’t. If you did understand you wouldn’t be trying to guilt trip caring parents for doing what was best for the interests of their children.
You want the best for your child, but your child doesn’t need it.
Liberal Slate links to the liberal NYT to prove a liberal point. If there’s a stat in there provided by the DNC it is like Ouroboros eating its tail.
If you can afford private school (even if affording means scrimping and saving, or taking out loans),
Because apparently scrimping and saving are bad words now. (except us “rich” folks who “game the system” that consider that kind of thing normal behavior) And taking out loans is bad, unless you are taking out a loan to pay for your Gender Studies degree from a university because then the government should like totally bail you out.
chances are that your spawn will be perfectly fine at a crappy public school.
Unless they get shot by gang bangers in one of those gun free zones you guys love so much.
She will have support at home (that’s you!) and all the advantages that go along with being a person whose family can pay for and cares about superior education—the exact kind of family that can help your crappy public school become less crappy.
Funny. I can also choose to send my kid to a good school where she’s not miserable all day, AND still have all this awesome stuff at home too!
She may not learn as much or be as challenged, but take a deep breath and live with that.
How about you take a deep breath and live with the fact that your existing system is a complete train wreck and people who love their children don’t want to participate in your continuing failure?
Oh, but she’s gifted? Well, then, she’ll really be fine.
No. Actually she wasn’t. But what do I know? I’m just the loving and involved parent. It takes a village of white guilt suffering elitist liberals to tell us how to live.
I went K–12 to a terrible public school.
I went K-8 in a public school that probably made yours look like Harvard. My graduating class had 20 kids. Half of us could speak English. Of those, half could read. My town was half illegal immigrant. Our principal was a drunk. We had a handful of decent teachers but most sucked. Because I was bored out of my mind and unruly, my 4th grade teacher declared that I was retarded and recommended that I be medicated. Nope, turned out I was gifted and just bored out of my mind, but she was too lazy and apathetic to even try. She became principal after the drunk retired.
My high school didn’t offer AP classes, and in four years, I only had to read one book.
The Good Earth? My condolences. And also, bullshit. I don’t care if you went to the Central Detroit Penal Academy for Gifted Drive-By Shooters, there would have been more than one book on the curriculum.
There wasn’t even soccer.
Only a liberal would cite a lack of soccer as a hardship.
This is not a humblebrag!
Yes it is, you pretentious liar. White guilt liberals always do this thing where they have to cite their suffering to show solidarity. Look at me! I’m a victim too! I understand your plight! Sure, your kids in the hood can’t read, and they’re getting shot at by gangbangers, and they’re getting beaten on the bus, and they have to put up with coke heads and rapists, and they’re pregnant at 14, but I understand because my white suburban school didn’t have FUCKING SOCCER!
And since I’m a right winger, I don’t “humblebrag”. I straight up brag about my achievements and I OWN THEM. I had a shitty education. I had a poor upbringing. The high light of my high school education was getting my face beaten in by four gang bangers because I was in the wrong place at the wrong time and looked at somebody funny. Despite being a product of shitty to mediocre public schools, I worked my ass off. I’ve gone through multiple careers and tried and failed and then tried again. I grew up with a functionally illiterate father but I’m a bestselling novelist.
I’m not a whiny ass victim, so of course I brag because I’ve lived the American dream and succeeded. Now I’m going to continue the American Dream and GIVE MY KIDS A SHOT AT A BETTER LIFE THAN I WAS GIVEN. That’s sort of the idea. My grandparents immigrated here so they could have a better life than their parents, and my parents had a better life than their parents, and I’ve had a better life than my parents, because we’ve all started out standing on the shoulders of those that came before us, and now I’m blessed to help my kids. I did that hard stuff so now my kids don’t have to. They have a head start and I’m excited to see what they accomplish with their lives. That’s how the American Dream works.
Allison, you’ve got the American Dream exactly ass backwards. Your kids shouldn’t suffer to assuage your pathetic hang ups. It is your duty to suffer in order to give your kids more opportunities, you selfish imbecile.
I left home woefully unprepared for college,
By how woefully unprepared you were to write this essay, I’m not surprised.
and without that preparation, I left college without having learned much there either.
Yeah, you certainly sound like a winner. An ignorant drop out? Why yes. That’s exactly who I want to take parenting advice from!
You know all those important novels that everyone’s read? I haven’t.
And even though you’ve been out of school for how long, you’ve been too busy watching episodes of Honey Boo Boo and laughing at how obviously dumb all the rednecks must be in flyover country, that you’ve been too damned lazy and apathetic to read any books during that period. I’ve written more books than you’ve read.
I know nothing about poetry, very little about art, and please don’t quiz me on the dates of the Civil War.
Holy shit, Allison! They’ve got the internet on computers now! I’m assuming you typed this screed on a computer. Fucking go to Wikipedia already! (Though I guess that would explain why so many modern democrats don’t know that they were the slavery party…)
I’m not proud of my ignorance.
Of course you’re not, which is why you just bragged about it in a self-righteous essay while you told people smarter than you about how they should live their lives.
But guess what the horrible result is? I’m doing fine.
Bitch please. You write for Slate because you couldn’t master a fry cooker.
I’m not saying it’s a good thing that I got a lame education.
Oh, I’m sorry. Is that not what I just read? When Slate’s editor gets back from working his shift at Starbucks you may want to talk to him about message clarity.
I’m saying that I survived it, and so will your child,
Unless they get beaten to death by the local drug dealers, or they get hooked on drugs, or they get shot by a gang, or they get raped in the bathroom, or they drop out because their school absolutely sucks, or they graduate totally ignorant and unemployable and go on to utterly fail at life, because oh, I’m sorry, Allison the fucking suburbanite is on the internet lecturing people who deal with actual shitty public schools in inner city hell holes about how they should just suck it up like she did. I mean come on, she didn’t even have soccer.
who must endure having no AP calculus so that in 25 years there will be AP calculus for all.
You don’t read books, you don’t know when the Civil War happened, and you write for Slate. I’m not taking any bets on your mad calculus skillz.
By the way: My parents didn’t send me to this shoddy school because they believed in public ed. They sent me there because that’s where we lived, and they weren’t too worried about it. (Can you imagine?)
Seeing how apathetic and lazy you are about your profound ignorance, yes, I can imagine that rather easily.
Take two things from this on your quest to become a better person: 1) Your child will probably do just fine without “the best,” so don’t freak out too much, but 2) do freak out a little more than my parents did—enough to get involved.
You’re like a fortune cookie, only with more self-loathing.
Also remember that there’s more to education than what’s taught. As rotten as my school’s English, history, science, social studies, math, art, music, and language programs were, going to school with poor kids and rich kids, black kids and brown kids, smart kids and not-so-smart ones, kids with superconservative Christian parents and other upper-middle-class Jews like me was its own education and life preparation.
She’s an upper-middle class suburbanite. This is my shocked face. But don’t worry. She went to school with people who looked different. Yay! Sure, she’s dumber than pencil shavings, but diversity!
Reading Walt Whitman in ninth grade changed the way you see the world? Well, getting drunk before basketball games with kids who lived at the trailer park near my house did the same for me. In fact it’s part of the reason I feel so strongly about public schools.
What the fucking fuck? That’s your best defense of public school? Getting wasted at the trailer park? Okay, that does explain a lot, but why didn’t you just skip that whole go to class part and cook meth all day instead? At least then you would have learned some basic chemistry. “Well class, today we’re going to learn how to huff paint so that you can have well rounded life experiences.”
Many of my (morally bankrupt) colleagues send their children to private schools.
Let’s see, you want to sacrifice your children’s well-being for political correctness, and you’re a spoiled, ignorant, stuck up suburbanite trying to display street cred solidarity with people who are actually suffering, and you’re calling your colleagues morally bankrupt?
I asked them to tell me why. Here is the response that most stuck with me: “In our upper-middle-class world, it is hard not to pay for something if you can and you think it will be good for your kid.”
Nobody ever told you that. Nobody actually talks like that outside of anonymous Slate, Salon, or Mother Jones straw man quotes. But then again, I don’t hang out with a bunch of white guilt ridden pseudo-journalists so maybe you guys do, but just in case you need a future quote, let me rephrase that response into Normal American for you: “They’re my kids and I’ll do what I think is best for them, so fuck off, you nosy busybody.”
I get it: You want an exceptional arts program and computer animation and maybe even Mandarin. You want a cohesive educational philosophy. You want creativity, not teaching to the test. You want great outdoor space and small classrooms and personal attention. You know who else wants those things? Everyone.
Why don’t you go ask some parents in Washington DC what they wanted before Obama screwed them over on school choice? It probably wouldn’t be arts and computers and Mandarin. It would be I don’t want my daughter pregnant and hooked on crack at 12.
Whatever you think your children need—deserve—from their school experience,
They need—deserve—you to pull your head out of your ass and allow people to exercise their personal freedom in how they live their lives.
assume that the parents at the nearby public housing complex want the same.
Good. I’m all in favor of school choice.
No, don’t just assume it. Do something about it. Send your kids to school with their kids.
Oh look. It’s the soft racism of the left again. People in “public housing complex” don’t want what’s best for their kids, so it is up to suburbanites like Allison (or her poor kids, if she actually has any) to fall on the sword to lift them up. Oh whatever would we do without you, noble majestic liberal?
Use the energy you have otherwise directed at fighting to get your daughter a slot at the competitive private school to fight for more computers at the public school. Use your connections to power and money and innovation to make your local school—the one you are now sending your child to—better.
Do you sleep in a helmet?
Don’t just acknowledge your liberal guilt—listen to it.
Sorry, since I’m not a fucking idiot I don’t have any liberal guilt. If you actually admit to having liberal guilt, it is because you suck and are a complete failure at life. Cowboy up. Take responsibility for yourself and your family and quit listening to rudderless losers like Allison.
So after reading all of that dreck, if you want to watch something actually interesting about the issues of failing schools, check out Waiting for Superman. http://rcm-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=000000&IS2=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=monshuntnati-20&o=1&p=8&l=as4&m=amazon&f=ifr&ref=ss_til&asins=B003Q6D28C