My ignorance(AKA, how was I allowed to graduate High School?)


January 13, 2003, 06:45 AM
Okay. Let me start this out by saying that I have always thought of myself as a pretty intelligent guy(but don't we all?). I was a nuclear trained mechanic for the US Navy(A program with a high failure rate), and while I didn't go to college, I'm fairly well read.

Then, I start reading Unintended Consequences.

Oh My God.

I stand here before you embaressed to admit that 2 weeks ago, I had never heard of the 'Bonus Army'. Until I looked it up on the internet, I thought it might be something Mr. Ross had made up.
When I gave a run down of events to my wife, she called me a liar, until I showed her websites on the Net that had President Hoovers speaches after the events.

I had no idea of what Joe Kennedy once did, about his Prohibition activities, or that he backed the Germans during WWII. I had always thought of him as JFK's dad!

The description of the actions of the ATF in the Lawmaster raid, and the raid against Ken Ballew I thought was fiction, until I looked it up and found a copy of Ballew's lawsuit against the government.

In the last 2 years, I have learned a lot from The Firing Line, and Mr. Volks website. I hope to keep learning more here. A few years ago, I was an Elk hunter, wo if push came to shove would have said, 'Well, I'm not sure we really need semi-auto's, or 10 round magazines.'

Now, well, my wife up until a few days ago, would roll her eyes when I went on one of my rant's against the government, and their unchecked removal of our civil liberties. But now, she's started reading Uninteded Consequences, and she doesn't roll her eyes anymore.

I can see now why they say that Ignorance is Bliss.

My goal is to be a High School teacher, sooner or later. I just wonder how long I will get to teach, if I have my students reading books like Starship Troopers, or Unintended Consequences instead of 'The Grapes of Wrath' or 'To Kill a Mockingbird.'

If you enjoyed reading about "My ignorance(AKA, how was I allowed to graduate High School?)" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
January 13, 2003, 09:12 AM
You will be out on your ear in 30 sec or less!

January 13, 2003, 10:29 AM
The Internet may play a major part in helping to save this Republic. Once information is “in the wild” it’s damn near impossible to eradicate. Someone, somewhere will have a copy and be able redistribute it in the future.

Also, multiple sources of information about events make it possible to see biases and even outright fabrications (as in Arming America).

As the saying goes “The Truth is out there”.

January 13, 2003, 10:33 AM
You will be out on your ear in 30 sec or less! That is, if you even get in. I've heard stories that imply that teechur wannabes have to pass muster with a "PC Officer" in some jurisdictions. Nothing blatant or even written. More prevalent in colleges and universities. The NEA really dominates thinking in the education industry. JMHO.
TFL Survivor

January 13, 2003, 11:14 AM
The Internet may play a major part in helping to save this Republic. Once information is “in the wild” it’s damn near impossible to eradicate. Someone, somewhere will have a copy and be able redistribute it in the future.In the Soviet Bloc, such things as typewriters were banned. Should've expected it, but when that came out about Romania too, I was a bit shocked. Have a typewriter, and die.

After they get the guns, getting control over the Internet will be next.

Vigilance is always necessary.

Don Gwinn
January 13, 2003, 11:53 AM
You have a lot of company. I've been called a liar so many times. . . .

January 13, 2003, 12:16 PM
priv8ter! I am retired now (about five years) but when I was working I was a teacher, a school superintendent, and a dean of education at a public university in our state. And while it is true that, by and large, public education is a highly liberal institution it is not necessarily true that a conservative educator cannot surive. I did, and I was not alone. Education is also a highly political institution and that is something about which you should always be aware! In my state, Oregon, there are school districts which are highly liberal and some that are highly conservative. When you apply for a job you should know that in advance and a little research as to the character of a community is always valuable. When you get the job work very hard and earn a reputation as an excellent teacher! Really excellent teachers are well respected for their opinions ! And when you state your opinion be careful to label it as that, your opinion. If you conduct yourself as a true professional educator you will stay as long as you like wherever you choose. Teaching is a great career and I wish you the best of luck.

January 13, 2003, 01:34 PM
Don't feel too bad about not having heard about the Bonus Army and such. Last quarter, I took an upper division history course for the period covering 1928-1955 and only heard about three sentances about it. The coverage was even less than that of the 1914 coal miner's strike in Colorado, which would be technically outside the scope of the course.

January 13, 2003, 02:39 PM
When I was preparing to retire from the Army, I considered a teaching career; still think it is honorable but things turned out different. To the point, I took the National Teacher's Exam and in my opinion there was a bit of an editorial slant to the questions and that slant I felt was somewhat to the left. I may be wrong but that was my impression. I had thought about teaching years (over twenty) ago and I don't remember my education courses in college being that slanted.

Apple a Day
January 13, 2003, 04:55 PM
I'm a high school physics teacher. I get away with a lot of what I do/say because physics teachers are about as common as frog hair and chicken lips. My kids also come back from their first year of college and thank me for giving them a leg up on the other kids who are taking engineering/physics courses.
At the college training level the education professors are rabidly liberal in my experience. I aced the NTEs my replying exactly how I thought my "advisor" would have replied. Education professors otherwise are also mostly useless, esp. when it comes to things that you can use in a real classroom. In the trenches, er... classrooms things tend to be a bit different in places. There are good schools and bad schools. You can find your niche if you are willing to suffer the headaches, complaints, lousy pay, and inability to carry at work. We can always use more good teachers. The question is: do you really want to put yourself through all that?

January 13, 2003, 05:09 PM
I can't cite the source, but one of the newspapers I regularly read recently had an article on education. The article contained a quote from a college history professor somewhere in the heartland. He finally realized how bad the situation had become when one of his better students came up and thanked him for teaching her things such as...the original 13 colonies were all on the east coast.


Shooter 2.5
January 13, 2003, 05:33 PM
That's odd.
The only question I have of the book is whether or not Richard Davis of Second Chance ever found two Nekkid females in a supply shed.

Double Naught Spy
January 13, 2003, 06:49 PM
This thread is a classic example of just how the internet will save the Republic and doom it as well. The internet is all about freedom of expression and no doubt people express a LOT of things and re-express things they have heard or read elsewhere.

The problem is that there is a lack of a filtering system on the internet. Within reason, anyone can post just about anything and it does not have to be true even if it is conveyed as being true. Much of the information is presented with definite spiritual or political bias. A good example can be seen in and the pro and anti gun sites. From what I have found, if you start trying to verify the facts presented, you will find some dubious data or find some of the sources are unobtainable.

I am not saying anything is horribly wrong only that the internet is a 100% buyer beware situation. Pretty web pages and official sounding names or titles do no more to justify the garbage in on site as it does to refute the garbage in another.

Additionally, the internet has been one of the best high speed means by which urban lore has been spread. People will hear a supposed fact or get something via email and then send it out as factual when they actually have no idea if it is factual or not.

So you want to teach with Stormship Troopers? You are going to be a coach, right?

January 13, 2003, 07:33 PM
DNS, the logical extension of the "filters" you spoke of (they're nothing more than censorship) is what's going to filter the filters?

One of the beautiful things about free, unrestrained speech is that it's self policing. Whomsoever propounds some fairy tale here on THR gets pretty soundly thrashed, with Tamara being one of the black belts in that art.

When something bogus is posted in a non-forum Web venue, another one will come along and out it after a while.

The ABSOLUTE BEST thing the Web does for users is teach them critical thinking skills, which leads to the ability to research. There may be some, but I don't know anybody who uses the Web much at all who doesn't have the ability to separate fact from fiction to a greater extent than non-web users.

The answer to my question is "we are" going to filter the filters. Every member reading a post is the last line of filtering.

As on non-forum sites, the reader of the information is the last filter followed up by the individual research done later.

There's an incentive to put up good information, and that's akin to the human need to create and teach. For those who get their jollies telling lies, using the Web to do it is a lot of work with scant reward.

January 13, 2003, 07:35 PM
Time test.

4v50 Gary
January 13, 2003, 07:40 PM
Call it "crictical thinking" and you may be able to get away with it. It's not about the message of the book but how the book presents its material. Jefferson felt the foundation of democracy is an educated and informed public that can reason and decide. That's exactly what you're going to do.

Msg to JohnBT - kiddie in college didn't know the original colonies were on the east coast? :eek: Even I knew that as a 3rd grader. What a sorry state of education there is in this country.

January 13, 2003, 07:49 PM
Citizens need to think and decide things for themselves! What they don"t need is to have someone else deciding what they should see, read, or here. The filters mentioned earlier are just forms of external censorship which, in a democratic society, should be and are not, necessary or appropriate. Is there a lot of BS on the net? Is a lot of it untrue? Absolutely! Caveat Emptor (let the buyer beware) is, and should be, the order of the day. People must learn to think for themselves in a democratic society if it is truly to remain free and democratic. The next sound you hear will be me climbing down off my soapbox. Good shooting:)

January 13, 2003, 10:23 PM
the original colonies were on the east coast

Uh ..... like where's the east coast, man?


Ron L
January 13, 2003, 10:37 PM
One thing that helps is to have sounding boards or filters that you can use to retest the information. I lurked on TFL for a while before joining and posting. I paid attention not only to what was being said, but how it was said. When information seemed to jive on what I already believed and what I had found in other places, then I would lend credibility to it. It also helps to have old fashioned bull sessions with friends that are also well-informed. Especially if you have friends with a wide variety of interest and knowledge. We often sit around with a few ales and start off with, "You know, I may be crazy, but it seems to me that....." and things take off from there. Of couse forums like this are just a digital form of that.

What was that saying, believe half of what you see and none of what you hear? As always, consider the source and take it with a grain of salt.

January 13, 2003, 11:20 PM
What was that saying, believe half of what you see and none of what you hear? As always, consider the source and take it with a grain of salt.Exactly right, Ron!

It would be nice if one of these could be implanted instead of each of us having to develop our own over a lifetime of experience:

January 13, 2003, 11:57 PM
Our local library has a copy of U/C which I read some time back. While I don't agree with everything I read in it--or all of its conclusions--it was engaging and linked up a lot of things that most people don't know.

I do have a simmering sense of outrage for what we laughingly call an 'educational system' in this country. I base that on the experiences of my 91 year old high school dropout father, my 18 years of education, a wife with a teaching certificate, and having just put two kids through college. The word that comes to mind is 'fraud'.

Most of what my teachers attempted to teach me was irrelevant (When was the last time you used algebra?) Most of what I learned that helped me in real life I picked up from either mentors or my own efforts--once I realized that I was essentially on my own. Given a choice between a really good used bookstore and school, I would take the bookstore.

There are some good teachers--but they are a distinct minority and losing ground. The old saw, 'Those who can't--teach' is fairly apt. Where else will a math, language, or art major get a job? They then insist that kids 'need' to know the only thing that they themselves know anything about. Maybe that's the reason the student is never told WHY he has to take a given class. I figured this out pretty late in the game. as Thoreau put it, 'What demon made me behave so well?'

With the exception of some (!) college teachers, most teachers are intellectual lightweights. Maybe that's why they stay in the shallow end of the pool.

It won't be my call, but I fervently hope that the next generation of my family will be home schooled.

January 14, 2003, 12:22 AM
First off it isn't too surprising that you never heard of the Bonus Army. (They don't cover it in US History Classes in High School).

Public School Teachers don't get to choose the books they use to teach in their classes.

Some schools micromanage teachers right down to daily individual lesson plans..others don't.

It depends upon your Administration in your School and School District.

John Ross took artistic license with a few things, but mostly what he said about the Gun Control Legislation is true.

One thing they NEVER teach in a High School Civics or US History Class is that MANY Black Civil Rights Activists protected themselves with GUNS.

And because of the Jim Crow was illegal in many areas to sell Blacks Guns. So Blacks would cross State Borders, buy their guns and ammunition and head back home.

I don't think John Ross mentions the Battle of Athens, TN in Unintended Consequences (I can't remember, since its been several years since I read the book).

John Ross did get threatened and harrassed by ATF agents who were unhappy about his portrayal of their agency.
I also seem to recall a news account of his house being searched.

January 14, 2003, 12:26 AM
This is a link to a good article on the decay of Civil Rights in the United States (

Another link to a good article (

January 14, 2003, 10:40 AM
Yes, he does talk about the Battle of Athens. It's in about the last 150 pages of the book. It sent my feling of being a crappy American right back up through the roof, because it was something else I had never heard of.

Ever since starting the book about a week ago, my mood hasn't gone below a slow rolling boil whenever I think about some of the things our government has done.

January 14, 2003, 04:52 PM
Priv8ter - I read and enjoyed UC immensely; primarily for its portrayal of gun owners as true patriots and lovers of liberty. The ATF agent portrayals were eye opening and troubling. But remember government agents are employees. The direction of an agency can be changed if the right folks are voted into power. It is not easy. It IS a struggle. My experience with LE guys is that most rank and file are "with us" in their thinking and actions. Stay positive, stay focused politically, stay civil, and stay upbeat. Life is way too short. Keep bitterness and hatred out of your existence. Just remember the anti view of life and guns aint gonna change anytime soon if ever. This is a philosphical and cultural war of immense proportion that will out live 'bout everybody on this board 'cept Mike Irwin and Jim March.

January 15, 2003, 01:53 AM
It has been my experience in life: that whenever a certain class of people who have a great deal of power, have special priviledges such as being able to get a CCW for off duty purposes when ordinary citizens can't. And when these same people are mostly immune from being themselves arrested, charged and convicted for breaking the law that they are supposed to be enforcing and when the organization in which these people work for make it very difficult to fire them.

Well..most people in such a situation would end up rather arrogant and contemptous of ordinarly folk.

To me: that pretty much sums up the BATF and the FBI.
Local police are easier to deal with because, they don't have as much power and their are frequently citizen review boards and the Sherriff ever mindful of being re-elected will dump an officer if there is an enormous amount of bad press.

(Otherwise..the blue line will tighten up and protect their jobs..errr..themselves..)

With bills and a mortgage, most people are very concerned about their job security. Making it easy to fire them and prosecute them if they violate the law or constitution, would put a stop to most of the abuses.

But this is NOT going to happen. Because it is in the interests of higher officials holding elected offices to have corrupt law enforcement agencies..(so long as they are "managable")

Our situation in this country is like Orwell's Book: Animal Farm.
Where there is a steady growth in Totalitarianism.

Jim March
January 15, 2003, 03:10 AM
I'm not as afraid of "unfiltered information" as others here, and I'll explain why.

I've produced a number of articles on history and law without a degree in either. By all the normal rules, you'd expect what I create to be utter crap.

BUT I also heavily cite either original sources such as court cases or peer-reviewed scholarly journals, or exact scans of official documents I've obtained. Here's a good example:

"A Practical Guide To Race And Gun Control" tracks the effects on the RKBA that the 14th Amendment either has or should have had. It's written in the general style of a law review article. If you follow the links to source material, you'll find every single point fully supported, and it was also reviewed in early form by Clayton Cramer who supplied the text of the critical People vs. Rappard case. (That document is a very important read if you haven't checked it out, it's basically a sequel to Clayton Cramer's "The Racist Roots Of Gun Control" (1995) and starts with a link to that peer-reviewed paper. It takes Clayton's history work and asks "OK, cool, if that's the case then what's the modern courthouse effect we can achieve with this info?".)

In other cases, I've published material based on my own personal research (usually involving the California Public Records Act, this state's version of the FOIA). A good example is "Zen And The Art Of CCW Abuse", at:

In this paper, can you be *certain* that I haven't doctored the scanned documents? Well no, except that I'm using my real name, I've been spotted in public talking about this scads of times, and if I were to screw this up I'd get caught by the grabbers in a heartbeat and lose my credibility. And it's easy to get caught, one phone call to the Oakland PD records will tell you more or less what's up.

The same basic ideas apply to everything you see online, if it's fact versus opinion.

Now, are there people too stupid to understand this (either in reading it or writing)? Hell yes. But that doesn't affect those of us who are doing it right (reading OR writing).

If you enjoyed reading about "My ignorance(AKA, how was I allowed to graduate High School?)" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!