It is wrong to teach kids that censorship is OK
THE DOVER LEGACY --
THE TEACHER'S TURN TO STAY AFTER SCHOOL
Cartoon is courtesy of Uncommon Descent. This is not a legacy that Judge Jones should be proud of, but he has been criss-crossing the country giving speeches that brag about it. He now claims that his speeches are not about the Dover decision itself but are in support of judicial independence and "the rule of law," but the fact is that he would have no audience were he not well known for having made that decision.
It just struck me that one very important factor that has not been considered in monkey trials is the effect of teaching kids that it is OK to arbitrarily censor even the mere mention of ideas that we disagree with. The same impressionability that makes kids susceptible to believing pseudoscience -- or even believing religion -- also makes them susceptible to accepting the idea that such arbitrary censorship is OK, which IMO is by far the worst of these susceptibilities in potential for long-term deleterious consequences -- it would give people tendencies to be intolerant and accept a fascist government. I am really kicking myself for not seeing this angle before. We should oppose arbitrary censorship wherever it raises its ugly head. Also, I am wondering why we have been hearing little or nothing from the people who are most affected by the censorship of criticism of Darwinism in the public schools -- the students themselves.
A Georgetown Law Journal article by Kevin Trowel says,
The challenge of education in a democracy is to balance individuality and autonomy with the needs of the state. The state requires that students become members of society, and it serves this goal by "encourag[ing] the political virtues so that [children] want to honor the fair terms of social cooperation in relation with the rest of society." To avoid homogenization, the "political virtues" must include "toleration and mutual respect, and a sense of fairness and civility" . . . .
. . . Civic education, therefore, must provide students with the tools to be active, critical, political, but tolerant citizens. This will sometimes put the goals of a system of civic education in conflict with the desires of individual groups or communities. (page 882 of journal, page 28 of pdf file)