Jesus Camp

Valerie over at HEM News and Commentary blogs about Jesus Camp. A documentary was made that has received several awards. (I am too lazy right now to fill in the details.) Valerie links to a newpaper article called Controversial Camp. It seems evangelicals inculcate (using that word because I have seen it used before by a politician regarding homeschooling) their children with specific beliefs, while liberals are not absolutists and allow their children to come to their own beliefs. I don’t think it’s all so cut and dry. We all inculcate.

There was an observation that the children being observed and written about by the film makers. The concern is that this documentary will further fuel anti-homeschoolers Apple and Reich and make life harder for us as homeschoolers. Apple and Reich believe that the state should keep parents from inculcating their children with narrow-minded, ultra-conservative, non-American ways. (I am using that latter term, not R and A (best I know), but I think it is implied by anyone who is trying to enforce their view of what America should be like as a whole- I love how that term or the implication of it is used (and sometimes seemingly successfully) to control people’s opinions.)

I’m a liberal and a bit of a libertarian. I’m a green liberal libertarian. Think I got that order right. (Sheesh, I think I’m a conservative, too…oh well.) I inculcate my children by WHO I AM. Schools inculcate children. School culture inculcates children. Popular culture (Brittany Spears?) inculcates children. My children also know NOTHING of Brittany Spears (She is irrelevant to their lives.) The authors were actually surprised that the children they documented did know of BS and Lindsay Lohan~OK. My children don’t know those people! They know about about life in general, tons about nature (they know Jeff Corwin, but they don’t worship him), themselves, their own ideas and thoughts and interests…..and mine. They are exposed to my thoughts, ideas and interests. I hope not to actively, purposely inculcate who I am onto them, but I do catch myself at times. I do inculcate my beliefs about the environment, for example.

I do allow my children to think for themselves, to believe what they NEED TO BELIEVE TO FEEL WHOLE AND INTEGRATED as best I can as a mother who is a human being. We all influence each other, and as a parent I have sway just because I am. I try to be aware of the power I hold as a mother to my children and to use it with honor.

I was spiritually abused as a child and quite frankly I think Camp Jesus is appalling. I think children need to grow into their spirituality and I think Jesus (as I choose to understand him) would be appalled, as well. But then I think Camp School can be pretty appalling. “We” do not question Camp School, it’s messages, the control that it exerts upon the lives of our children because Camp School is as it should be, for the most part; Camp School is socially acceptable and beyond question as an institution.

I do not think the state should be in the business of controlling whose right is right. John Holt wrote about this, and when I have more time and the inclination, I will look that up and include it in this post. I refuse to send my children to Camp School or Camp Jesus.

I also think if we feed this fear of Reichey people and Appley people using this kind of stuff against us; we feed that energy. We lose the energy we have to create a REAL view of who we are. So there is a Camp Jesus. It happens. Camp School. Camp Jesus. Camp Brittany Spears. OK. Sad. Do we make laws against them all?

I was pretty much inculcated in sick religious right fundamentalist dogma as a child, and I did attend public school. What do R and A propose about super religious fundamentalist churches all together? Abolish them? What about addressing spiritual abuse? Oh, that’s right, there is this thing called separation of church and state. Seems that should cover Camp Jesus, as well. People are free to spiritually abuse their children whether they homeschool or not. My guess is that school is supposed to provide a break from the abuse~ another potentially toxic exposure?

There is inculcation (as in the schools, cultures) where people see other realities (sometimes from afar~look at what the schooled folk think of those homeschooled folk) and there is in-home/small group/churchy inculcation like where you are locked in a room and know no other reality at all exists. I feel for those children who have mom’s and dad’s fears rammed down their throats and forced into their beings.  

But, what’s the logic with the anti-homeschoolers? Where do they draw the inculcation line? Wouldn’t that be a form of inculcation?

(Revised and “to be” revised, as usual.)

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