Thursday, September 9, 2010

"Socialization" and homeschooling

I recently read an article by a sadly misinformed young man who seemed to think that the homeschooling movement was going to threaten our democracy because he had ONE encounter with ONE homeschooled young lady - who wasn't able to discuss different worldviews.

Well, #1, the USA isn't a democracy, it's a republic.  A democracy is the rule of mob, a republic respects and safeguards the rights of the individual.

In other words, in a democracy, majority rules, and the rights of the majority override the rights of the individual.  This was brought home to me in a rather explicit example: Two men.  One woman.  She doesn't want to have sex, they do.  Majority rules, and the will of the majority overrides the will of the individual.

In a republic, however,  her right to say no is explicitly respected and protected.  The right of the indivudual is not subsumed into the desires of the majority.  That's why we have a Constitution that is supposed to protect our rights, that's why we have the Electoral College. 

We don't live in a democracy here, so I'm not at all worried about homeschooling causing damage to the democracy.

Further, homeschooled students have a greater range of friends and aquaintances than their schooled peers.  They are regularly exposed to different worldviews and different ways of living. 

Schooled kids can't get that kind of exposure.  They can talk about it, but we actually are out doing it. 

Besides, when I was in school, I was told I wasn't there to socialize - I was there to be taught. 

Homeschooled kids tend to have better social skills than their publicly schooled peers.  I had to laugh when I was talking to some friends who work at a car repair shop.  We were waiting for my car to get done, and my friend told me she was amazed at how well behaved my kids were.  They were respectful to her, they said please and thank you, and they cleaned up after themselves. 

That's the kind of social skills society is sadly lacking these days. 

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