Just when it appears modern educators have reached the limit of their bizarre doctrines, they always seem to find something new. The latest trend is banning best friends at school. Even these most personal relationships must be controlled.
It was bad enough when enlightened educators turned childhood relationships upside down with their attack on “stereotypes.” Indeed, boys cannot be boys with other boys anymore. The boy stereotype is too aggressive and assertive for a snowflake world. Girls also cannot be girls with other girls anymore. The girl stereotype is considered too subdued.
Children are further encouraged to break free from any pre-established order. They can now self-identify and fantasize as any real or imagined pronoun. At precisely the time when children are seeking certainties, they are taught there are none.
Targeting Best Friends
Best friends and bosom buddies are now targets. Such policies ignore the fact that in the search for affection and validation, the child needs strong peer friendships that extend beyond the family.
Intimate friends are needed to help children confide in others. Best friends build self-esteem and certainties; they do not harm development.
However, the equality police have now decreed that all bonds be made equal. The more progressive schools with no-best-friend policies seek to avoid feelings of exclusion. Ironically, such policies have emerged in very exclusive schools.
Thomas’s Battersea, the school of 4-year-old Prince George in England, for example, will discourage the prince from having best friends. Banning best friends has been a growing trend both in Europe and America.
Avoiding Negative Feelings and Resentments
These educators argue that larger friend groups avoid negative feelings associated with the perception that one was left out. When every child is equally every other child’s friend, everyone supposedly feels equally happy. When a child celebrates a birthday, for example, he or she must invite everyone in the class or have no party at all.
Education becomes a matter of feelings and emotion. Everyone is encouraged to be artificially kind and inclusive. Any unequal treatment triggers feelings of resentment. This feel-good educational approach discourages preparation for dealing with the real world, which is not always kind and inclusive. It becomes the stage of a fantasy world that does not correspond to reality. No wonder college students now demand safe spaces and coloring books to cope with stressful university life.
This is a case of childhood’s end. Usually, the educational establishment has tightly controlled curricula or more general things involving childhood development. Control now extends to a child’s choice of friends. It becomes child abuse of the worst sort.
Sanctity and Building Character: True Aim of Education
People forget that education involves not only the imparting of knowledge to children. Education above all consists of the building of character that will prepare children for the hardships of life.
The time in school should be spent helping the boy develop the certainties that will guide him for his whole life. The girl develops those qualities and charms that will be with her for her lifetime. Childhood games teach valuable social and negotiating skills to the young. Forming friendships of all intensities is part of the learning process.
Youth should be a time of carefree and chaste pleasures that gradually prepare the child to assume hardship and responsibilities. Children need their time of innocence to develop a non-cynical worldview that will guide them throughout their lives.
Moral Education is Important
Above all, education should be oriented toward moral perfection and sanctity. An education without God does not make sense. A child’s natural tendency to imagine perfect and marvelous things naturally leads to God and a desire for Heaven.
When there is no teaching of right and wrong, education becomes a mechanical process that has no clear meaning or purpose. When there is no benevolent God which children can know, love and serve, the world becomes a cruel place devoid of providence.
Liberal educators have it all wrong. According to the bizarre leftist dogma, children must be free to express themselves differently as long as everyone is the same in the end. It is a cruel tyranny that spares not even those special and intimate relationships of the innocent child.
John Horvat II is a scholar, researcher, educator, international speaker, and author of the book Return to Order: From a Frenzied Economy to an Organic Christian Soceity--Where We've Been, How We Go Here, and Where We Need to Go. He lives in Spring Grove, Pennsylvania, where he is the vice president of the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property.