Idaho Dispatch

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Op-Ed: School Choice Debate

By • January 11, 2022

The following Op-Ed was submitted by Julie Paine. Note: Op-Eds do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Idaho Dispatch.

With campaign season ramping up, one of the current buzz words is “School Choice”.  It sounds like a wonderful new idea, but would it surprise you to know that school choice is available now and always has been?  What is being so benignly packaged and sold to parents who are concerned about the state of public education is nothing more than an expansion of the socialist-welfare state.  What is being proposed to the public is the idea that once again, a government solution is the only viable solution.

If so many parents are dissatisfied with government education, why aren’t they seeking other options en masse?  Why aren’t they asking the fundamental question of why the government has an education monopoly in the first place?  Why aren’t private schools popping up as quickly as car washes?  Why hasn’t the free market been able to respond?  Perhaps people don’t actually believe in freedom after all.

If they did, they would have to come to grips with their fundamental beliefs about the proper role of government.  In circles of people that claim the heritage of freedom it should be universally understood that the proper role of government is to protect equal rights, not provide equal things.  The greatest stumbling block is erroneously thinking that education is a right.  That is only true if you subscribe to the false doctrine of Franklin Roosevelt or the United Nations.  Nothing is a right which requires the money or services of another person.

It is astonishing that the prospect of getting a check from the government to pay for education in any manner does not raise serious concerns for parents.  For example, “Where does the money come from when I am handed a voucher?”  Do people still not understand that the government is not a house of cash?  Every dollar handed out for any reason comes from taxes.  If “School Choice” becomes a reality, taxes will increase.

One might argue that raising taxes is justified for something as noble as educating the masses.  Is it?  How has that worked so far?  How long can people justify stealing from their neighbors through the approved bully (Government) and still maintain their moral compass?  How do people actually believe they can become independent of government interference while accepting money from the government?

The only morally acceptable solution to the cesspool that public education has become is to build track two and phase out government education altogether.  The biggest obstacle to this reality is definitely money, but not it in the way politicians would have you believe.  They still want you to vote for them with the promise of a handout.  The American way is to build it yourself.  The original American way is to shrink government so small that enough money remains in the hands of the people so that they do not need dual incomes, so that they have enough capital to build private institutions, and form their own organizations.

Those peddling “School Choice” while at the same time decrying Republicans as “socialism light” are fulfilling their own prophecy.  Believing you can liberate a people using the same method that creates their dependence is a contradiction, at best.  Get rid of your middleman government and educate the rising generation in a style truly worthy of American ingenuity.

Tags: Freedom, Julie Paine, School Choice, Socialism