Amerika

The kindergarten teacher

everyone_must_get_along

Most of us experience our first introduction to the adult world on the first day of school. They usher us into a big room, collect supplies that they will redistribute to others, and teach us the fundamental principle of adulthood: everyone must all get along.

This mentality — unassailable because it means well — shows us where adult life goes wrong. As children, we do not want to all get along. We see where others are wrong according to us and seek to avoid them. That approach is honest. Adults substitute dishonesty for this honesty and insist that, for the sake of those who are in charge, we must see ourselves as a big group and include everyone. And if any child deviates, retaliation occurs quickly with the intent to humiliate, subjugate and re-shape the personality of that child.

“We all must get along” says to us that as individuals, our choices do not matter; what matters is our ability to compromise. This eliminates strong belief and shapes children like putty into a mass of averages which are easy for teachers to control. Further, this takes social focus away from “what is the right answer” to “what answer will keep everyone pacified.” The process from there becomes systematic: punish the outliers, bribe everyone else, keep order so that if the principal goes by, it looks like this teacher has a handle on things.

Sure, an exceptional teacher could try another method. But if that method is not the official one, and something goes wrong, that teacher is sunk. Destroyed. Whereas a teacher who conforms, goes by the book, and eliminates dissent will be rewarded. Humanity in this view resembles a giant mountain of clay men, each trying to pound others down so that he may gain a few feet of vertical space.

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