Paul's Passing Thoughts

What is Common Core?

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on July 23, 2014

ppt-jpeg4“The key is free and true knowledge, not orthodoxy whether secular or religious.”

My wife Susan has been a professional educator for forty years, but knows little about the Common Core education curriculum that is the hot topic in our day among Christians and non-Christians alike. So, for an excuse to get away from our adult children, and finally learn something about this Common Core thing, we went to the Glenn Beck live theater event, “We Will Not Conform” showing here in Dayton, Ohio.

For those of you who know Susan and me, imagine us becoming two extremely grumpy old people on the spot. For me, it was discernment blogging hell. After suffering through this vision of grandeur mission impossible situation room motif for two hours, Susan loudly proclaimed, “I don’t know one more thing about this than when I walked in here.” During the presentation, and with a volume higher than I preferred, she stated, “I want our money back.”

As my grandmother used to say, “That will learn ya,” and it well should—in this information age that we have been blessed with, when will we learn to stop wasting our time with getting our information from personality cults? Or if you will, “experts.”

After we arrived home to the usual interrogation, “Where have you guys been?” I went to Wikipedia and typed “Common Core” into the embedded search engine. Wow. Wiki has an awesome foundational starting point for researching Common Core. The original major players are named with links that lead to more information about them. Basically, Wiki has supplied all of the important dots to get you started. From there, connecting all of the dots may take time, but is not too difficult.

Common Core starts with a really bad idea, the consummate bad idea of the ages: orthodoxy…orthodoxy is dignified mythology. It is flavored with more science-like seasoning than mythology. Myth is then the foundation of social justice and wellbeing; i.e., everyone obeys the myth which equals, “unity.” Peace is the best thing, even among the dead.

The initiative is sponsored by the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and seeks to establish consistent educational standards across the states (

That’s orthodoxy, and it is always a really bad idea. It is a standard dictated to the masses by a minority, and brings free thinking and innovation to a screeching halt. The results of Common Core are well documented; it sets up the student and teacher for failure. Why? Not sure, but it probably has something to do with the same old song and dance: control.

Now, you can dig deeper on your own to ascertain agendas etc., but the primary problem with Common Core is that it foists a set standard of knowledge on the populous at-large by a minority of “experts.” This is a bad idea in secular as well as religious circles. Common Core is a secular version of the Westminster Confession and the Calvin Institutes of the Christian Religion.

Be careful. What you have in a lot of these debates is a vying for control of societal mutton. And such is the case with the religious right of our day and their use of the Common Core issue among many other issues. And last night was a good example.

In the midst of the seemingly hysterical fenzy of Beck’s “We Will Not Conform” event, the situation room was manned by the who’s who of Neo-Calvinist Transformative Dominion Theology educators. Their key and creepy phraseology included a call to “return to classical education” and a “taking back of the public schools.” If you tuned into Susan’s TANC 2014 presentations, you know what all of that means.

The public schools were founded by the colonial Puritans, and the same encompass what would be considered, “classical education.” This is not arguable; the Puritans also founded the Ivy League schools. And trust me, if you were a teacher during that time, you taught according to set standards. If you didn’t, you got the water test: if you can’t swim, you will drown. If you can swim, you’re a witch. This resulted in being tied up in a potato sack and retested. Like Common Core assessments, most fail that test.

The key is free and true knowledge, not orthodoxy whether secular or religious. I found out something about history the other day that has defined our ministry here at TANC. In colonial times, you could do anything to a slave but one thing—teach them how to read or write:

Excerpt from South Carolina Act of 1740

Whereas, the having slaves taught to write, or suffering them to be employed in writing, may be attended with great inconveniences; Be it enacted, that all and every person and persons whatsoever, who shall hereafter teach or cause any slave or slaves to be taught to write, or shall use or employ any slave as a scribe, in any manner of writing whatsoever, hereafter taught to write, every such person or persons shall, for every such offense, forfeit the sum of one hundred pounds, current money.

Excerpt from Virginia Revised Code of 1819

That all meetings or assemblages of slaves, or free negroes or mulattoes mixing and associating with such slaves at any meeting-house or houses, &c., in the night; or at any SCHOOL OR SCHOOLS for teaching them READING OR WRITING, either in the day or night, under whatsoever pretext, shall be deemed and considered an UNLAWFUL ASSEMBLY; and any justice of a county, &c., wherein such assemblage shall be, either from his own knowledge or the information of others, of such unlawful assemblage, &c., may issue his warrant, directed to any sworn officer or officers, authorizing him or them to enter the house or houses where such unlawful assemblages, &c., may be, for the purpose of apprehending or dispersing such slaves, and to inflict corporal punishment on the offender or offenders, at the discretion of any justice of the peace, not exceeding twenty lashes.

In order to control people, you must control knowledge and truth. Truth education is the key; one way or the other—that’s what sets people free and empowers them. Common Core seeks to control the mutton by dumbing us down; the Christian Reconstructionists want to program our minds with bad information.

Pick your master carefully.