RE: DSM: about Sudbury model

Joe Jackson (
Thu, 22 Mar 2001 22:29:32 -0500

John, I'd like to reply to you at the risk that you have, on the basis of
your silence to my last message to you, filtered out my posts...

I get the distinct impression that you have a different definition of the
word "norm" than many of the folks participating in this conversation do.

For instance, a norm is that someone can mention the Ten Commandments in a
message to a listserve without having a pipe bomb heaved through their
window. I daresay that this is a norm of which you would approve.

Given this, I'm still incredibly curious as to what you have read that gives
you the impression that freedoms which have limits can no longer be
considered freedom? In other words, in your world how can someone who
chafes violently at the very idea of the Old Testament, in your words, "be
themselves when constrained by [the] cultural norm" of not committing

And I continue to be entertained by your statements about democracy.
"[democracy] is... a dictatorship of the majority..."? You have to be
kidding. As opposed to a dictatorship of the minority, dare I say?



> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> []On Behalf Of John
> Axtell
> Sent: Thursday, March 22, 2001 9:11 PM
> To:
> Subject: Re: DSM: about Sudbury model
> May I ask why anyone who is attending a SVM school such as
> Marko's should have to
> conform to any norms? I thought the whole idea of a SV model is
> that children
> have the freedom to be themselves, how can a child be themselves
> when constrained
> by cultural norms. A democratic model is just a way to have a
> dictatorship of the
> majority if cultural norms are instituted.
> John
> Marko Koskinen wrote:
> > Joseph wrote:
> > > How about leaving people free to choose which norms they consider
> > > irrational, and to fight against them if and how they wish?
> Why should it be
> > > the staff's responsibility?
> >
> > I admit that it's not an easy and simple question. But as I've said IMO
> > everybody's responsible of practically everything. What I want to
> > accomplis with my school is to give as much freedom to the young people
> > that attend as possible. And because the cultural norms are usually
> > pretty strong and usually restrict the freedom of the people in certain
> > culture, I consider it rational to stand against all irrational cultural
> > norms as much as possible so that the young people could see that
> > alternatives are possible and could make those decisions more freely. Of
> > course everybody should be free to stand against whatever norms they
> > choose to stand against or be free not to. But I just consider this a
> > rational way of behavior in order to accomplis as much freedom as
> > possible.
> >
> > And it's not possible to stand visibly against some of the norms in
> > order to keep the school going. For example standing against the sexual
> > norms would probably provoce so much opposition that the school would be
> > closed. But there are means of reaching for more rational behavior
> > amongst a group of people and that is what I'm supposing.
> >
> > Marko

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