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This broadcast was recorded in one, 60-minute segment .
Introduction: Public schools and public education are, and for many years have been, the focal point of right-wing activity. From dissatisfaction over mandated school desegregation to opposition to the judicial ban on prayer in public schools to the present-day draconian slashing of public education budges, the right has attacked the public education. At the same time, the right has promoted the use of public funds for parochial schools and home schooling as alternatives to public education.
The formative experience of public school attendance might well be viewed as fundamental to young peoples’ socialization process–learning to share, acquiring tolerance for those of different backgrounds and learning the basics of civic life in America.
Public schools have also come under attack–quite literally–from armed fascists.
The first of a two-part series, this program consists almost entirely of a recap of material from Miscellaneous Archive Show M55 : Purdy’s Last Stand: The Stockton (CA) Schoolyard Massacre of 1989 .
Although Mr. Emory would have engaged in a more nuanced discussion of school shootings and their political and psycho-social implications had the program been recorded today, there are some essential elements to be considered in connection with the event.
The synoptic written description for the program reads as follows:
“Advances the working hypothesis that the Stockton schoolyard massacre of January 1989 may have been deliberately precipitated by elements of the U.S. national security establishment acting in combination with elements of the ultra-right. Patrick Edward Purdy murdered five Asian-American schoolchildren and then committed suicide, spurring legislation for gun control and creating public fear and sentiment for police state tactics. Purdy had associations with Aryan Nations and the Moon organization, and may have been a covert intelligence community patsy and victim of mind control. The broadcast analyzes a possible intelligence community connection to the gun control movement within the larger background of the martial law contingency plans developed by the Reagan and Bush administrations.”
Again, Mr. Emory would have presented a more nuanced analysis of this event had it occurred today–almost 30 years later–critical elements of the dissection of Purdy’s last stand bear repeating and more intense scrutiny:
- Purdy’s xenophobic view of Asian-Americans and “immigrants”–a point of view that is held by a large portion of the Trump constituency, the so-called “Alt-Right” in this country and abroad, as well. Exacerbated greatly by economic deprivation stemming from globalization and the financial collapse of 2008 and austerity economics instituted in the EU at the instigation of Germany and the U.S. by the obstructionist GOP Congressional majority that took power after the 2010 mid-term elections, the fear of immigrants is a major aspect of fascist ideology.
- The galvanizing effect on both parents and their children of the school shootings is vital to consider. Terrorized by these events, a populace is far more willing to accept police-state tactics–creeping martial law, if you will.
- The martial law contingency plans formalized by Oliver North and company and outed during the Iran-Contra scandal involved the federal deputization of paramilitary right-wing groups such as the Oath Keepers and Nazi and fascist elements. Ironically, much of the so-called “Alt-Right” now incorporate anti-gun control ideology and martial law plans into their world view. In Lecture M3 , we highlighted how elements of what are now called “Alt-Right” are playing into the various scenarios they inveigh against.
- It is ironic that much of the so-called “Alt-Right” cite gun control as a step toward martial law. Although they are correct, up to a point, they fail to realize that they, themselves, will be both instigators of, and in some cases, the enforcers for, that very same martial law!
- Again, we note that public education has long been a target of the far-right, which attacked school integration in the 1950’s, 60’s and ’70s, the banning of prayer in public schools and, in later years attempts at introducing programs like sex education and programs promoting a more tolerant attitude toward others. In calendar year 2018, we should note that public schools are under attack from the far right, and not just in the person of school shooters. Betsy De Vos, Trump’s Secretary of Education, is pushing for federal funding of parochial schools, enabling of for-profit colleges. The GOP and far right are pushing home schooling as an alternative to public education and the further slashing of federal and state budgets, which inevitably harms public education. We note that public schools are a major font of social awareness. Students–ideally–encounter and develop a greater understanding and tolerance for others in public schools. Public education is a major feature of social cohesion, and its dissolution a major step toward the implementation of fascism.