‘It’s what they get taught at school’

I’ll give you an excerpt from an article in the latest Campus Review, which is sent out to all of us teaching in higher education. This is the least worst part of the story but read it all, and then you can tell me how true this is or isn’t: When did human rights become racist? A reflection on relativism in Australian education.

I had always assumed that most humanities teachers in this country, regardless of political leanings, were on the same boat.

The first signs that this was not the case, and that something was seriously amiss, came some years ago, when I began lecturing in Australian history. My 17 and 18-year-old students, most of whom were studying to become teachers, were arguing in their essays that Hitler should not be judged, and that we should always uphold a balanced view about history. Judging Hitler (yes, Hitler) was unbalanced. Paper after paper argued that there was no truth, just perspectives, all of which were equally valid or equally questionable. The sheer amount of teenagers upholding this hollow and extreme cultural and moral relativist credo alarmed me. I made it a point to clarify the distinction between historical ‘balance’ and ‘genocidal leaders’, but the same argument kept coming up, essay after essay. I mentioned this to a senior colleague, who shrugged her shoulders and exclaimed ‘it’s what they get taught at school’.

From there on it gets only worse. But that, of course, is only my view. That these people are moral monsters is also my view as well.

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33 Responses to ‘It’s what they get taught at school’

  1. thefrolickingmole

    Paywalled for me.

  2. Tim Neilson

    Judging Hitler (yes, Hitler) was unbalanced

    Do they take the same view about Tony Abbott, Cory Bernardi or Andrew Bolt?

  3. Bela Bartok

    Mission Accomplished, say the Safe Schools designers and Teachers Union and fellow travellers.
    When great evil cannot be criticised, nothing can be criticised.
    And when nothing’s criticised, the Travellers can do whatever they like…
    First, make everyone compliant, then force them to comply.
    Pretty simple strategy. I’m sure Education Minister Birmingham is all over this… Oh…

  4. Post Modernism. It’s been white-anting Western Culture for 80 years.

    As I said in another post, I used to think first we kill all the lawyers, but now I’m convinced first we kill all the humanities professors and kill them slowly in excruciating pain.

  5. Turtle of WA

    Those who claim to not judge others have already judged those with judgement to be morally wrong.

  6. cuckoo

    Don’t judge Hitler, but feel free to headbutt Tony Abbott.

  7. cuckoo

    Or: Don’t judge Hitler, but Trump is literally Hitler, dude!

  8. mh

    Don’t forget John Howard is also Hitler.

  9. Jo Smyth

    The point is what are we going to do about it. – Oh, that’s right. Nothing.

  10. struth

    It all starts in the schools.
    All of it.

    MSM, the lot.

    Marxist Indoctrination System.
    There’s no education.

  11. struth

    Jo, I am somewhat humourless and repetitive here, because I make comment especially hoping it helps someone just lurking , that never posts, or is brand new.

    Just to get the points out there.
    and get beaten mercilessly if they don’t stand up to scrutiny!

    I hope you see that as doing something.

    My arguments and ability to hit really good home runs against lefties in the real world , and not be wishing later “why didn’t I say that” has come directly from interaction with this blog.

    We have lives outside of the blog and many have or are, quite active in the fight.

  12. Jo Smyth

    It does all start in the Schools. Indoctrination in the Senior schools and Universities has been achieved. That is why the Safe Schools programme is now in full flow in Primary Education. The Believers have realised they need to start with the little kids because once the left wing ideas are lodged at an early age, it’s there for life.

  13. Jo Smyth

    And struth I do agree it’s important to speak your mind and get your views out there. My point is, fewer and fewer people are listening or are being allowed to listen because the education system, by design, is stifling debate or freedom of thought.

  14. Mother Lode

    Relativism of this sort, and Post Modernism as a theory, has always struck me to be a lamentably defeatist creed.

    They feel no entitlement, much less duty, to uphold values or beliefs.

    Post Modernism is based on a logical trap, and the fact that logic can’t prove logic means we may believe in nothing. Anything which occurs to an individual or resonates with them may not be assumed of others because logic (something abstracted from experience rather than the basis of it) does not describe how empathy, intuition, instinct – all that stuff, can work.

    In actuality Post Modernism is used by some people to argue that their opponents are not entitled to their views, but then at the same time insist that their opinions be given absolute credence.

    When they say that whitey should shut up about racism because there is no way they can understand it, they continue by telling them that they are guilty (even when not aware of it) and that they only way of addressing it is through various penances that will continue forever.

  15. PoliticoNT

    It’s not all doom and gloom. My kids are 9 & 11. They’re at a public school in the ACT at the moment, and with that comes all the usual bullshit. But, their mum has a habit of complaining about power and water bills and I’ve started explaining. ‘Well kids, it’s due Greens and Labor ideology. They hate people like us so they push up the power of utilities for no good reason.’ You’d be surprised how easy it is to influence the minds of our young in a healthy direction.

    Heard my daughter describe the Greens as ‘evil‘ the other day to a friend. Very proud moment.

  16. duncanm

    .. so if Abbott, Trump and Howard are literally Hitler, then they cannot be judged.

    See how that works, dumbasses?

  17. Diogenes

    I had a “meadowbank” taking a colleagues Society & Culture class. Very earnest class of trainee SJWs.

    Had a similar Hitler discussion in terms of culture & got the same sort of stuff quoted back at me – balance, different times etc etc even after pointing out the Holocaust, killing of of the QWERTY people and the disabled etc etc. I said “OK hands up! Who thinks Trump is Hitler ?’, all hands go up . Ok so if we we can’t judge Hitler as being evil, or just bad , why is this comparison supposed to make Trump evil, and is unfair on Hitler to make the comparison ?”

    The looks of confusion then head explosion as they “got” what I was driving at was almost as good as watching the light go on when the kids understand a complex topic.

  18. jrm

    If there is no absolute truth then it can’t be absolutely true that there is no absolute truth.

  19. Tekweni

    My father was with front line American troops who over ran a concentration camp in the last days of the war in Germany. He saw first hand what wonderful policies Hitler had. He made his own judgement and my brother and our kids were left in no doubt about judging Hitler. His graphic description of the inmates so covered in lice that it looked like they had living clothes still turns my stomach.

  20. Ellen of Tasmania

    It does all start in the Schools.

    Ask parents, “Is there anything that they could do or teach in the school that would make you take your kids out of it?”

    I’m staggered by parental inertia. Either because they don’t care, it’s too hard or ‘we compensate for all that at home’.

    You should care, alternatives are not that hard (and often far more rewarding) and you may or may not be able to compensate. You’re sitting them in a bath of red dye for a lot of hours a day and then working to wash it out in the evening. It would be better to spend all that time dying them a deep, dark blue.

  21. the sting

    For those students saying ”there is no truth ”, is that statement true ?

  22. Confused Old Misfit

    If there is no absolute truth then it can’t be absolutely true that there is no absolute truth.

    jrm: That brings back memories of late night, smoky, boozy discussions at my fraternity house. Back about 55 years ago. La plus ça change, la plus c’est la même chose!

  23. Dave

    Jo, I am somewhat humourless and repetitive here, because I make comment especially hoping it helps someone just lurking , that never posts, or is brand new.

    Just to get the points out there.
    and get beaten mercilessly if they don’t stand up to scrutiny!

    I hope you see that as doing something.

    My arguments and ability to hit really good home runs against lefties in the real world , and not be wishing later “why didn’t I say that” has come directly from interaction with this blog.

    We have lives outside of the blog and many have or are, quite active in the fight.

    Struth. I am a long time lurker. I agree with the bulk of what you say and its often entertaining and funny. I get what Jo is saying- its not incorrect because we do need to push back in the real world – but this forum and one’s like it hone our skills in the outside world. Debating people online or in person, its good to have such a wealth of knowledge that this site brings. Especially for Australian content, as I live overseas. The comments section of the Australian and this website are an oasis in a MSM propaganda desert.

    We always have the edge in debates because our side in logical. Its correct, and backed up by facts not feelings. Plus of course, they are so used to the echo chamber, that when challenged on various topics they literally have heard it for the first time and have no clue how to respond. I love that expression. That utter bewilderment. Whereas we are exposed to their talking points every time we turn on the tv , pick up a newspaper etc.

    From personal experience, I call upon comments or insights from this forum to knock down opponents on a regular basis. I hold my own in general, but the posters here teach me new things all the time. Most of you are on another level entirely. Its fantastic. You definitely stand out here and help teach others.

    You are a good man.

  24. Rebel with cause

    Teachers can only do so much. I’d say it all starts at home.

    And moral relativism is an easy position for lazy parents, lazy students and lazy teachers to hold. If there’s nothing special or sacred then no need to learn about anything specific.

    I’d say they all use Hitler as an example not because they really believe he shouldn’t be judged, but because they would be hard pressed to name any other historical figures.

  25. Shy Ted

    Kids these days think the Holocost is an Adi rival.

  26. Sunni Bakchat

    Brilliant Steve. Excellent comment from mother lode.

  27. JohnA

    Home education!

    Get them out of the schools – which are primarily time- and money-wasting prisons masquerading as institutions of “learning”.

  28. struth

    Thanks Dave.

    There are lots of good people on this blog.
    And then there is Monty.

  29. kae

    “And then there’s Monty.”

    Bahahaha.

  30. StraightShooter

    There are many absolute truths:

    If you jump out of an airborne plane unassisted you will fall to the ground.
    If you breathe in water while submerged you will drown.
    The Earth circles the sun.
    The moon circles the Earth.

    These are all absolute truths.
    Perhaps someone could provide a logical counter to this?

  31. Tel

    If you jump out of an airborne plane unassisted you will fall to the ground.

    Don’t tell me you are measuring your altitude RELATIVE to where the ground is?

    Oh no no no, that’s no good.

    Next thing I’m going to be hearing that distance is measured RELATIVE to some standard like the King’s foot or something. What is this, the middle ages?

  32. OneWorldGovernment

    Baa Humbug
    #2548791, posted on November 10, 2017 at 1:37 pm

    Post Modernism. It’s been white-anting Western Culture for 80 years.

    As I said in another post, I used to think first we kill all the lawyers, but now I’m convinced first we kill all the humanities professors and kill them slowly in excruciating pain.

    Ah, c’mon Baa Humbug.

    Can’t we do both at the same time?

  33. cuckoo #2548800, posted on November 10, 2017 at 1:48 pm
    Or: Don’t judge Hitler, but Trump is literally Hitler, dude!

    mh #2548805, posted on November 10, 2017 at 1:52 pm
    Don’t forget John Howard is also Hitler.

    So many impersonators.
    Hitler was President Bush.

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