Ask for the old ways, wherein is life

The Old School Building

“The past will not tell us what we ought to do, but what we ought to avoid.” – Jose Ortega y Gasset

“A fool contributes nothing worth hearing and takes offense at everything” . . “Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all” . . “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.” – Aristotle

“In keeping silent about evil, in burying it so deep within us that no sign of it appears on the surface, we are implanting it, and it will rise up a thousand fold in the future. When we neither punish nor reproach evildoers, we are not simply protecting their trivial old age, we are thereby ripping the foundations of justice from beneath new generations.” – Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago

“Whenever law ends, tyranny begins.” – John Locke

“If the truth shall kill them, let them die.” – Immanuel Kant

I think he meant that rejecting the truth would kill them. Many have said, in various ways, “Sin isn’t hurtful because it’s forbidden; it’s forbidden because it’s hurtful.”

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.” – George Bernard Shaw

“The aim of totalitarian education has never been to instill convictions but to destroy the capacity to form any.” – Hannah Arendt

“You can have your experience or your perspective. But there is no such thing as ‘your truth’ or ‘my truth.’ There is only the truth.” – PragerU

“Reality doesn’t go away when it is ignored.” – Thomas Sowell

“Wrong does not cease to be wrong [just] because the majority share in it.” – Leo Tolstoy

“The fact that a majority of a community dislikes an opinion gives it no right to interfere with those who hold it.” – Bertrand Russell

“As the months passed, friends and colleagues of mine who were highly educated, and who had been lifelong critical thinkers, journalists, editors, researchers, doctors, philanthropists, teachers, psychologists—all began to repeat only talking points from MSNBC and CNN, and soon overtly refused to look at any sources—even peer-reviewed sources in medical journals—even CDC data—that contradicted those talking points.

These people literally said to me, “I don’t want to see that; don’t show it to me.” It became clear soon enough that if they absorbed information contradictory to “the narrative” that was consolidating, they risked losing social status, maybe even jobs; doors would close, opportunities would be lost. One well-educated woman told me she did not want to see any unsanctioned information because she was afraid of being disinvited from her bridge group . . ”

– Naomi Wolf, bestselling author, columnist, and professor; a graduate of Yale University and received a D.Phil. in English language and literature from Oxford University where she was a Rhodes Scholar

John Stuart Mill warned us about the “tyranny of prevailing public opinion.” Now it’s the “silent majority’s” opinion versus the perceived “approved” narratives of the elite political class: “Settled science” and politically correct public policies, the majority be damned.

“It is better to debate a question without settling it than to settle a question without debating it.”  Joseph Joubert (1774-1824)

Heterodoxacademy.org says that in 2021, 88% of students agreed that colleges should encourage students – and professors – to interact respectfully with people whose beliefs differ from their own. But how much of that tolerance actually still exists in practice on the campus? More than one student has heard from the podium:

“When are you going to quit believing that crap your parents tell you?” One more from heterodoxacademy.org:

“Threats to open inquiry (the ability to ask genuine questions and share ideas without fear of rebuke or censure), however, are not new, . . . Our 2020 Campus Expression Survey data show that roughly half of undergraduate students in the U.S., regardless of their political ideology, agreed that the climate on their campus prevents people from saying things because others may find them offensive. Many faculty members, administrators, and staff at universities have expressed similar concerns . . ”

CONCLUSION: Regardless of ideology though, who are the people afraid to say “men can’t get pregnant”? The people on the LEFT.

I CALL IT THE TYRANNY OF “PEER FEAR.”

P.S. To paraphrase John Stuart Mill, if only one person on the planet disagreed with the “consensus,” it would be wrong to use force to silence him (or her). Remember the Emperor has no clothes.

PPS: But that brings up the topic of “right and wrong,” a whole ‘nother subject.

Photo: Big Think

Curtis Dahlgren

To read more articles by Curtis Dahlgren click here.

About the Author

Curtis Dahlgren
Curtis Dahlgren is semi-retired in the frozen tundra of Michigan's U.P., and is the author of "Massey-Harris 101." His career has had some rough similarities to one of his favorite writers, Ferrar Fenton. In the intro to The Fenton Bible, Fenton said: ​"I was in '53 a young student in a course of education for an entirely literary career, but with a wider basis of study than is usual. . . . In commerce my life has been passed. . . . Indeed, I hold my commercial experience to have been my most important field of education, divinely prepared to fit me to be a competent translator of the Bible, for it taught me what men are and upon what motives they act, and by what influences they are controlled. Had I, on the other hand, lived the life of a Collegiate Professor, shut up in the narrow walls of a library, I consider that I should have had my knowledge of mankind so confined to glancing through a 'peep-hole' as to make me totally unfit for [my life's work]." ​In 1971-72 Curtis did some writing for the Badger Herald and he is listed as a University of Wisconsin-Madison "alumnus" (loosely speaking, along with a few other drop-outs including John Muir, Charles Lindbergh, Frank Lloyd Wright and Dick Cheney). [He writes humor, too.]