“It is an irony and a paradox that people who fear government authority want to use it in areas where it does not and should not belong.”
If you only read the title of Rabbi Olan’s January 7, 1962 sermon, you may think his message to be terribly outdated. Please read beyond the title. This sermon is surprisingly interesting and relevant.
Olan’s view of education is that the good life and a truly great country require the very best schools. Such schools focus on developing critical thinking skills and appreciation of the arts so that all “may search for truth, know what is good, and experience what is beautiful.”
“In a dictatorship, thinking is not only unnecessary, it is a handicap, it can lead to a criticism of men in power. But a democracy depends wholly upon a citizenry that can distinguish propaganda from fact, prejudice from reality.”
Should the public schools teach religious dogma? Olan would reserve that sacred duty for the home and the faith community.
(Rabbi Olan quotes W. S. Fleming.)