"The most effectual means of preventing [the perversion of power into tyranny are] to illuminate, as far as practicable, the minds of the people at large, and more especially to give them knowledge of those facts which history exhibits, that possessed thereby of the experience of other ages and countries, they may be enabled to know ambition under all its shapes, and prompt to exert their natural powers to defeat its purposes."
-- Thomas Jefferson
Education is another hot topic in American politics, mainly due to the soaring costs of higher education. But there is more to education than college tuition. The purpose gets lost in discussions of money. What education is meant to teach us goes out the window when it comes to partisan politics in this day and age. Populism trumps correctness to the point where millions of Americans still believe President Obama is a Kenyan Muslim, no matter what proof otherwise might claim.
What Thomas Jefferson wrote above is extremely true. Education is paramount for successful democracy. In order for society by the people, for the people to work, the people must be educated. And when I say educated, I don't mean get straight A's and PhD's. That is not a requirement for education. Education is about learning, expanding awareness. Through an expanded awareness, issues can be tackled with multiple perspectives in mind. Awareness allows wisdom to shine through. Our educational system must help deliver unto us the capability for logic, reasoning, and critical thinking that our founding fathers felt so passionate about. Only then can our democracy truly flourish. Only then can this political pandering- especially to the base- be conquered.
There are four sections here relating to education. I feel the need to break it out this way compared to other (really long) pages I've written due to the distinct nature of each topic. All the topics relate together, but not as concretely as the pieces in intellectual property reform, healthcare reform, immigration reform, etc. do. Each section is its own mini-thesis. So without further adieu, please consider the following: