There are two models of education at work here in America. One–which is growing far more scarce–teaches you how to exercise critical thinking skills. The other just “teaches” what you should think. This is one of those examples.
A high school senior in Manville, New Jersey was suspended for producing a project that had a clear anti-gun-control thesis. But his suspension was just the start–after seeing his project, administrators ordered him to undergo a psychological exam.
Even worse–the psyche evaluation had to be completed before Frank Harvey would be allowed back to class.
Could it get any more absurd? Of course it can; Harvey’s topic was actually assigned to him. His instructor had asked for a video that created an argument in opposition to gun control.
The video Harvey produced showed examples of people using firearms to defend themselves. It also used political cartoons that satirized the arguments of gun-control proponents.
All of this seems above board. But Harvey made a classic mistake. He compiled research on a thumb drive, and he accidentally left that drive behind in the school’s library. Another student found it, and turned over the material to the administration.
The administration, deeply concerned that a student might be examining all sides of an issue, contacted police.
The police in Manville, many whom carry firearms, cleared Harvey of any wrongdoing. This, too, sent the school administrators into a state of panic. They’re ability to govern what Harvey thinks was eroding, so they mandated the five-hour psychological evaluation before Harvey would be allowed back in school.
You may wonder where the teacher fits into this. The teacher is having memory issues. The teacher can’t recall giving Harvey this specific assignment.
Harvey, rather than kowtow to the school’s demands, has withdrawn and is pursuing a GED.