I only refer to this because of the reference to Keynes. The rest is just Mark Latham discussing the “Safe Schools” program which may be of interest to others.
WHEN John Maynard Keynes declared “Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler a few years back”, he knew what he was talking about.
The craziest trend in Australian politics is to teach Neo-Marxist genderless programs in our schools through the Orwellian-named Safe Schools and Building Respectful Relationships (BRR) curriculum.
Even though Australian students are falling down the international league tables in maths, science and English, teachers are devoting class-time to the mechanics of breast-binding and penis-tucking.
As Keynes envisaged, the thinking behind this madness is distilled from an academic scribbler a few years back. BRR’s author, Debbie Ollis from Deakin University, has attributed the intellectual inspiration for the program to a “post-structural understanding of gender construction”, drawing on the work of a Welsh academic Christine Weedon in her book Feminist Practice and Poststructuralist Theory.
To understand what’s happening in today’s Labor Party and its attitude to education, Weedon’s tome is compulsory reading. I got my copy last week from the NSW State Library and was spellbound by its contents.
Parents deserve to know where the Safe Schools and BRR philosophy comes from, and Weedon brazenly sets out the ideology behind these new teaching materials.
Post-structuralism argues for a different way of looking at society, especially in understanding the nature of knowledge and learning.
Since the rise of the 18th century Age of Enlightenment, people have applied reason, rationality and observable truths in trying to build a better life. Weedon regards this process as inherently misleading.
She thinks that from our first moments alive, we are brainwashed into accepting the social order around us.
Governments, schools, churches, the media, popular culture and even fashion trends combine to reinforce the “power relations” and dominance of capitalism.
The things we know from observing nature and studying science are dismissed as “biological determinism”.
So too notions of truth, commonsense and life-experience are disparaged as “historical constructs” — delivering “false consciousness” and tricking people into a misunderstanding of their best interests. For Weedon, the process of social conditioning denies its “own partiality”.
“It fails to acknowledge that it is but one possible version of meaning, rather than ‘truth’ itself and that it represents particular (political) interests.”
For instance, growing up with two straight parents is said to “lead to the acquisition by children of a heterosexual gendered identity”. Weedon writes of how: “For young girls, the acquisition of femininity involves a recognition that they are already castrated like their mother”, forcing them to submit to patriarchy, or male dominance. No one is immune from the process of false gender identity.
Individuals are said to be “sexual beings from birth”, reflected in the “initial bisexuality of the child”.
This is the kind of thinking behind the Start Early program developed by Early Childhood Australia (ECA), which teaches childcare and preschool infants about sexuality, cross-dressing and the opposite sex’s toilets.
An ECA spokeswoman has said that, “(young) children are sexual beings, it’s a strong part of their identity’’.
Most parents would be horrified by this stance but it’s become commonplace in the Australian education system.
Having lost the battle for economic and foreign policy in the 1980s, Neo-Marxists embarked on a long march through the institutions of the public sector, especially universities and schools.
Indoctrination programs like Safe Schools, BRR and Start Early are the inevitable result. This breaks the longstanding, bipartisan practice in Australian politics of keeping ideology out of schools.
The purpose of a quality education has been to equip young people with the knowledge and vocational skills of a civilised society. If graduating students wish to pursue social and political change, they can do so through the democratic process in their adult years.
Education has been relatively free from ideological indoctrination. But this is not the view of the new curriculum designers, with Ollis depicting schools as “in a unique position to educate for social change”.
Weedon also said she wants to engineer an androgynous “ungendered” society through classroom tutoring. The other key Leftist battleground is for the control of language.
Inspired by French post-structuralist Michel Foucault, Weedon writes, “If language is the site where meaningful experience is constituted (in capitalist societies) then language also determines how we perceive possibilities of change”.
This is why Safe Schools seeks to eradicate the use of terms like “his and her” and “boys and girls”.
It believes genderless language will produce a genderless generation of young Australians, self-selecting their sexuality as a fluid identity.
Political correctness is not an accident, a random form of censorship. It’s a carefully targeted campaign designed to outlaw the language of observable facts in the discussion of race, gender and sexuality.
For every commonsense aspect of life, there’s a PC push to eliminate identity differences. Weedon writes of how the “dominant meanings of language” force boys and girls “to differentiate between pink and blue and to understand their social connotations”.
“Little girls should look pretty and be compliant and helpful, while boys should be adventurous, assertive and tough … (shaping) their future social destinations within a patriarchal society”.
This pink/blue phobia is the basis of the Leftist ‘‘No Gender December’’ campaign, trying to outlaw gender-specific toys each year at Christmas.
The more I research the BRR and Safe Schools programs, the more bewildered I am as to how Labor leaders like Bill Shorten and Daniel Andrews endorsed this rubbish. Gough Whitlam must be turning in his grave.
The Great Man dedicated his life to the principles of the Age of Enlightenment: that rational, evidence-based argument could create a better and fairer society. Not only is the post-structuralist agenda anti-reason, anti-science and anti-family, it is also anti-education.
It wants to abandon the conventional process of learning through known facts and universally established truths, creating a borderless world of genderless individuals.
Australia’s political leaders are sleepwalking into an educational disaster.
As parents we need to make our views known to election candidates and school leaders alike. Anyone who has researched this issue will know we are fighting for the future of our civilisation.
Come to think of it, when I was growing up, “safe” was the word we used for condoms. Seems quite appropriate for the safe school program as now conceived.