Re: DSM: Re: Re: Re: Television

From: Warren McMillan (warren@bmts.com)
Date: Thu Dec 06 2001 - 10:49:12 EST


If you have a problem with traditional schooling, surely one of the reasons
is that its mandate is to 'shape' or condition children according to an
agenda predetermined by some anonymous bureaucrats in a department of
education somewhere. You reject traditional schooling in response and remove
your child from this harmful conditioning and send him/her to a place that
is free of this kind of manipulation ie. a SV school. Yet, you allow your
child to be influenced by the equally manipulative environment of the
television. TV is not benign. Every image and every word is carefully
crafted or filtered by anonymous agents in order to condition your needs,
wants, opinions, preferences and attitudes to match their own political or
commercial agendas.
If you would send you children to a SVschool, surely one of the reasons is
so that they can come to know themselves; to find out who they are and what
is their purpose. You reject traditional schooling because it distracts
them from this quest with its overloaded timetable and forced learning.
Television is the master of distraction. It can literally keep your
children from themselves for hours at a time, day after day. As a
distraction, television easily outperforms schooling.
If you would send you children to a SVschool, surely one of the reasons is
so that they are free to pursue their own interests. You reject traditional
schooling because of its mandated curriculum. Television has its own
curriculum; its own mass messages that we all get, and get continuously
again and again in multiple contexts. We eventually internalize these
messages and they come to shape us in subtle ways no school curriculum
designer could ever dream of. What is the TV curriculum? Seeking pleasure
is the meaning of life; accumulation is the way to happiness; respect and
courtesy are uncool; information is knowledge; violence works.
While we worry about schooling and make sacrifices to ensure our children
are safe from its detrimental affects, the real monster sits smug in our own
livingrooms working its magic on our unsuspecting kids.
Television is, pound for pound, far more toxic for children than schooling.

Warren

----- Original Message -----
From: <Evfocus@aol.com>
To: <discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org>
Sent: Wednesday, December 05, 2001 6:04 PM
Subject: Re: DSM: Re: Re: Re: Television

> There is a huge difference between college and TV. College is interested
in
> giving people what they "should want" just like schools. TV has no agenda
> about what people should want. They spend millions finding out what people
> really want.
> In a way they are similiar to Sudbury in that way, there is no value
> judgement placed on what people want. It doesn't matter whether they want
> mud wrestling or politcal discussion they give them whatever they want to
> watch.
> I actually make a point of trying not to be to judgmental about my
daughters
> TV watching because I think all I end up doing is communicating that their
> judgement is flawed.
> If schools had to hold interest the way television does, they would be
much
> better places. Right now we have a vicious cycle. Schools say to kids "We
> don't care what you think or feel this education is good for you"
> Television listens to what they want, and that includes antischool,
> antiauthority programming which may be caused by a society that refuses to
> respect their wishes.
> Imagine if schools had to get the Neilson ratings shows do?
> Evelyn Hardesty
> DVS Parent
>
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