Re: DSM: Majority Rule vs. Consensus

Melissa Tyson (
Thu, 27 Jan 2000 19:10:13 GMT

vehemently opposed

>From: "Melissa Tyson" <>
>Subject: Re: DSM: Majority Rule vs. Consensus
>Date: Thu, 27 Jan 2000 18:49:06 GMT
>Does anyone know of any essays or the like expounding upon the idea that
>neither our democratic government nor its citizens should object so
>vehemently to a school based on freedom and democratic principles?
>You know --specifically.
>>From: Joseph Roach <>
>>Subject: Re: DSM: Majority Rule vs. Consensus
>>Date: Sun, 23 Jan 2000 04:57:56 -0800 (PST)
>>Greetings Martin,
>>Joe Roach from The New School in Delaware here.
>>Consensus always sound benign, doesn't it?
>>Personally, I find consensus to be a very subtle,
>>insidious form of coersion. Children often disagree
>>with each other -- sometimes for personal reasons,
>>sometimes for reasons of principle... I want a child
>>to be free to disagree.
>>In any democratic organization, a great weakness can
>>the unfettered rule of the majority. Good
>>organization building means ensuring the rights of
>>people who may find themselves in a minority. Such
>>rights can be guarded through the charter or by-laws
>>of the school. Consensus-building can be every bit as
>>unfair as majority rule.
>>Good luck and best regards,
>>Joe Roach
>>The New School
>>Newark, Delaware
>>--- Martin Wilke <> wrote:
>> > Hi all,
>> >
>> > I and three parents are going to (try to) start a
>> > non-coercive school in
>> > Berlin. On our first informal meeting we found that
>> > we have quite
>> > different ideas of how decisions should be made in a
>> > non-coercive
>> > school.
>> > While I think majority should decide they insist on
>> > consensus. Their
>> > main argument is that the majority would oppress the
>> > minority. That
>> > discussions would be ended as soon as it is clear
>> > that a motion will get
>> > a majority, and thus the minority would simply be
>> > ignored. What
>> > experience do you have in School Meetings or
>> > Assemblies with this point?
>> >
>> > Martin Wilke
>> >
>> >
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