DSM: Assuming that which is yet to be proven is not logically valid

From: Ardeshir Mehta, N.D. (ardeshir@sympatico.ca)
Date: Thu Jan 31 2002 - 17:49:38 EST

Hi Travis,

To Bill's comments, starting with the words:

> > Here is the reasoning for how Sudbury is not education ...

you replied,

> To apply the values of total indifference in Sudbury Valley that
> you speak of, well, that would require changing society as a whole.
> Please do not misinterpret; I do not necessarily disagree with those
> required changes, but it is a separate issue.
> I grant you, it is complicated, and hence it is easy to get tied up in
> both issues at the same time. That is something that is crucial to
> understand. Do not interpret Sudbury Valley as a societal
> movement. It is a place that was created because, along with other
> reasons pertaining to children's inherent rights, the founders said
> "what is the best way to prepare children to live in a democracy?"
> Sure! Some of them might have had values that postulated: "I don't
> think its right to judge. If a kid wants to sit in the Parking Lot all
> day, violate rules, even skip school, etc., then what do I care? What
> do I even care if he is responsible or not? Who am I to say?
> Essentially, it is not my place, because children's rights negate the
> preparatory measures."
> All well and good, except that it is a _societal_ issue, not an
> educational one. As long as we speak in the context of our society,
> our country, our government, we look for the best solution. By
> wary of the proactive to interweave the arguments of pro/con
> society, politics, etc., into educational philosophy.

Your mistake lies in assuming in advance that which you want to
prove. You cannot prove that Sudbury is (or even should be) an
educational institution by merely *assuming* that it is. That's not
a valid logical method.

The whole argument is *about* whether or not Sudbury is education.
If it is not, as Bill claims -- or even if it *should* not be if it is, as I
claim -- then it is *not* an educational issue at all; and then Sud-
bury does *not* fit into educational philosophy either.

If on the other hand it *is* an educational institution, as you claim,
then it certainly does: but you have *yet* to show that it *is* an edu-
cational institution -- or even that it *should* be one.

Your view is that it *is* an educational institution, and therefore
should not be discussed in a societal context (as opposed to an edu-
cational one.)

You'd only be right if your *assumption* is in fact correct. But what
if it's not?


Ardeshir <http://homepage.mac.com/ardeshir/AllMyFiles.html>.


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