Shawnee, Kansas – A newly proposed bill in the Kansas State Legislature would threaten teachers with time in jail if they happened to teach anything that could be considered “harmful” for children.
The bill was inspired by a recent outrage that was caused by the material in a sex education class.
“There was a list of sexual acts, some of which were highly offensive,” the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Mary Pilcher-Cook, said in a statement.
However, as with much of the legislation on the books throughout the country, the wording is particularly vague and could be interpreted in many different ways. According to the bill, any teacher who provides material for students that can be considered offensive by “any reasonable person,” they could potentially face time in jail.
These are highly subjective and arbitrary conditions, as many different things are offensive to many different people. Making matters even more difficult is the fact that schools are a melting pot of many different cultures and ideas, so it is likely that parents will have a variety of different opinions about how their children should be raised and treated.
As federal employees, educators are shielded from criminal prosecution in cases like this, much in the same way that police are shielded from legal consequences when they are behind the badge. This newly proposed legislation would not only strip away that exemption, but also impose potential penalties on the educators as well.
“They probably wouldn’t want to be held accountable for every individual parent’s preferences,” said parent Megan Smith.
Micah Kubic, the executive director of the ACLU of Kansas said that this could have a chilling effect on teachers and cause them to self-censor to prevent themselves from getting into trouble.
“If a teacher is afraid that they’re going to be charged and convicted of a misdemeanor just for doing their job, they’re going to be a lot less likely to share any information that someone somewhere might object to,” Kubic said.
And so the rusty and brutal gears of the bureaucracy keep on turning, arguing over what your children should or shouldn’t learn.
Ron Paul described public education perfectly, “They don’t educate our kids, they indoctrinate our kids. It’s a propaganda machine.”
John Vibes is an author, researcher and investigative journalist who takes a special interest in the counter culture and the drug war. In addition to his writing and activist work he is also the owner of a successful music promotion company. In 2013, he became one of the organizers of the Free Your Mind Conference, which features top caliber speakers and whistle-blowers from all over the world. You can contact him and stay connected to his work at his Facebook page. You can find his 65 chapter Book entitled “Alchemy of the Timeless Renaissance” at bookpatch.com.