April 20th, 2021


Prevent another Orlando by fixing our education system

Bob Tyrrell

By Bob Tyrrell

Published June 16, 2016

The Boston Marathon, San Bernardino, and now Orlando — it goes on and on, as Donald Trump might say. And it is going to continue to get worse, as Mr. Trump already has said. He is the most prescient campaigner in this race for the presidency. Hillary Clinton made progress Monday. In the morning she enunciated the words "radical Islamism" that thitherto she had refused to utter and that her old friend and boss President Obama still will not utter. Yet then she reverted to calling for gun control, misrepresenting the gun control laws of the state of Florida, and prescribing vague palliatives when action is needed.

Mr. Trump has it right. The present government has no idea of who is coming into the country and what their goal in coming might be. With so little control of our borders, we hardly have a country. We need a stricter immigration policy, a wall across our southern border, and a review of just who is living here — lest we regress into a condition not unlike France.

Of course, we need to at least temporarily restrict Muslim immigration. That does not mean a Saudi Prince cannot enter America on business or to participate in affairs of state. Nor does it mean Islamic businessmen cannot enter America to conduct business. But it does mean that the endless lines of Muslim immigrants have to end for now, and by the way, the immigrants can thank for their plight radical Islamic terrorists, not the American government. Washington has the responsibility of taking care of all its citizens living in America now, Christian, Jewish, atheist, and native born or naturalized people of Islam.

I was amused in the questioning of Mr. Trump after the atrocity in Orlando to see the learned commentators notify him that the cowardly murderer was American-born. As if Mr. Trump did not know that. Then the learned commentators would proceed to ask him how further restrictions on Muslim immigration would help prevent future Orlandos. It apparently never occurred to the commentators that admitting Muslims from warlike societies only makes matters here worse. For now, America has enough Muslims streaming into the country. If the stream continues, the situation will only worsen.

Mr. Trump is the only candidate with a feasible plan to deal with future Orlandos, but he has not gone far enough. What can this mean? Am I talking about arming the public? Beefing up the police forces? Increasing eavesdropping by the government so as to make the American Civil Liberties Union squeal even more?

Actually, I am not. I am talking about filling an astounding lapse in our education system. I am talking about educating students to what it means to be an American citizen. I am prescribing in the place of sex education courses, anger management courses and all the rest of the hooey that passes for K-12 and high school education today courses in civics. Possibly, we might even introduce American history classes once our teachers learn American history.

For generations as our education system brought evermore flab into its curriculum, it relieved students of serious studies, serious studies that prepare them for citizenship. Very close the heart of a proper education are these now-defunct studies. The educators ought to revive them. The perpetrators of the Boston Marathon atrocities, San Bernardino and now Orlando might not have committed their barbarisms if they knew why they were living in America. If they knew how America was different from places that practice, for instance, Shariah law. If they knew how America was better than those places. If they understood, as George Washington understood, that they enjoy freedom in America so that they could choose good from evil — and if they chose evil they would be punished. This wretched louse who murdered so many innocents in Orlando chose evil, and he really believed he was going on to a divine orgy. So long, sap.

This great republic has its historic Constitution. From it, its citizens have rights, and just as importantly, they have responsibilities. They are governed by the rule of law, and from those rules all sorts of blessings and obligations follow. It strikes me as a dreadful shame that not many of us understand this almost divinely inspired blueprint for our freedoms.

Can we reintroduce civics into our classrooms? Well, some private schools have. As for the public schools, you will have to take it up with your local teachers union. Good luck.

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R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor in chief of The American Spectator, a political and cultural monthly, which has been published since 1967. He's also the author of several books.