Of course, the life of every system eventually comes to its material end. The skin begins to sag and lose color, the bones become fragile, the blood flow meets increasing resistance and mental processes start to fade. The “immune system” of our global civilization is not nearly as effective as it used to be, and even the slightest infection could bypass its defenses and spell society’s demise. Efficient systems will always and forever become fragile and burn themselves out, given enough time. It may take millions of years to occur in large biological or ecological systems, but it only takes a few human generations in socioeconomic ones. The evolved systems of global civilization are absolutely necessary for its survival, and they are all quickly deteriorating now. Given the surety of this impending death, the only thing left to fear is the possibility that our society dies in bitter and painful agony, rather than a state of composed dignity.
It is possible that nothing will help. The nation’s memory and attention span may already have sustained so much damage that they cannot be revived by the best efforts of America’s best minds. I too am nibbling at the edges by talking about the need for political leaders who address Americans as thinking adults; for intellectuals willing to step up and bring their knowledge, instead of a lust for power, to the public square; for educators devoted to teaching and learning rather than to the latest fads in pop psychology. None of these suggestions addresses the core problem created by the media—the pacifiers of the mind that permeate our homes, schools, and politics.
–The Age of American Unreason (Susan Jacoby)
We don’t need no education. We don’t need no thought control No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teachers leave them kids alone…All in all it’s just another brick in the wall All in all you’re just another brick in the wall.
—Pink Floyd, “Another Brick in the Wall
The nation’s young people have been given front-row seats for an unfolding police drama that is rated R for profanity, violence and adult content.
In Arizona, a 7-year-old girl watched panic-stricken as a state trooper pointed his gun at her and her father during a traffic stop and reportedly threated to shoot her father in the back (twice) based on the mistaken belief that they were driving a stolen rental car.
In Oklahoma, a 5-year-old boy watched as a police officer used a high-powered rifle to shoot his dog Opie multiple timesin his family’s backyard while other children were also present. The police officer was mistakenly attempting to deliver a warrant on a 10-year-old case for someone who hadn’t lived at that address in a decade.
In Maryland, a 5-year-old boy was shot when police exchanged gunfire with the child’s mother—eventually killing her—over a dispute that began when Korryn Gaines refused to accept a traffic ticket for driving without a license plate on her car.
It’s difficult enough raising a child in a world ravaged by war, disease, poverty and hate, but when you add the police state into the mix, it becomes near impossible to guard against the growing unease that some of the monsters of our age come dressed in government uniforms.
The lesson being taught to our youngest—and most impressionable—citizens is this: in the American police state, you’re either a prisoner (shackled, controlled, monitored, ordered about, limited in what you can do and say, your life not your own) or a prison bureaucrat (politician, police officer, judge, jailer, spy, profiteer, etc.).
Unfortunately, now that school is back in session, life is that much worse for the children of the American police state.