Brian’s Column: Who ARE These People?

6. And what have they done with my brother!?
Brian R. Wright

[Link to Episode 5]

Note: These columns are a series, I will make into a volume of my memoirs. You may follow the links at top and bottom of page to go to preceding or succeeding episodes. The series starts here. {If the [Link to Episode <next>] at the  bottom of the column does not show an active hyperlink, then the <next> column has yet to be written.}

First, I’m going to hit you with yet another Bro and me image, mainly because the age is right, probably the summer before kindergarten, and we’re at my mother’s mother’s farm near Centerville, Iowa. With the Mighty Wonder Dog named Tuton— named by our step-grandfather’s sons after the conventional two-ton pickup truck of the time. [I promise, this will be the final cute childhood picture of my brother and me. Well, okay, at most one or two more. 🙂 ] You can see my brother, Forrest, on the right, simply adored that dog. Tuton was a great one, too, he would run after any vehicle that came rolling down the dirt road in front of the farm house, barking and carrying on something fierce. But was as gentle and friendly a pet as you can imagine. Grown manly men cried buckets when Tuton died.

I’m introducing this episode with another brother photo, because one of the most serious crimes of force against me as a child—almost as heartless as taking me away from my parents—was separating me from my brother. In Episode 4, I allude to that assault, in particular:

“… my parents see no real alternative but to enter me in the compulsory government school system, the entry point euphemistically called kindergarten—literally, ‘children’s garden.’

“… ‘Who are these strange people wanting to tell me what to know, what to do, ringing bells, enforcing naps, tying my behavior to a group, regulating my movement into strict confines, watching me all the time, taking me away from my brother (confining me by age), putting this so-called ‘teacher’ adult in front who tells me to raise my hand and stay in my seat, and so on?!

“Who died and made them king? Was I asleep when they came by to ask for my approval? Where’s my brother? ‘If you don’t mind, Mrs. Bland, I’m going to be on my way, I know where the door is, thank you. I can walk home from there. My parents will call your parents. Have a nice day.’ Whhhooooshhh! out the door…. No such luck.”

Yes, I do remember feeling this way, though of course not as articulately. As with my ear- lier indoctrination via Christian Sunday School and churchology—though religion was not legally dictated—I managed, as a normal kid, to roll with the punches. Somewhat. For one thing, virtually none of my kid peers seemed to question the abrupt caging, and, again as kids, we naturally grew to enjoy playing with the others. Thinking back, up through high school, I would approach each new school year with pleasant anticipation… of spiffy new clothes, of seeing my friends again, of any new kids, of who my teacher(s) would be… I even got into what cool school supplies would come my way.

So here’s the nitty gritty team photo of my kindergarten class:

Standing up for Larry McKinney

In my first real brush with this uninvited and unnatural authority system for pod people I’d been shanghaied into, I remember that Larry McKinney had committed some sort of social faux pas… like a dress code violation… though that’s hard to imagine when you look at the class photo. Maybe it was a winter day and he went outside to recess, in a funk of freedom of choice, without his galoshes. In any case, the teacher came down on him, in excess, and I do recall that the rest of the class echoed her scorn for the minor infraction like so many sheep braying obedience. That’s what annoyed me the most.

I either started a fight with one of the boys who was falling in line to chastise Larry or I protested verbally in front of the teacher and everyone: “Leave him alone. He didn’t do anything wrong.” Or both. As a consequence, social pressure from the whole lot of them was applied my way, I had clearly crossed the line of disobedience or ‘subornation of disobedience.’ One way or the other, I had to eat humble pie, apologize, bow under. But it set in stone my increasing resentment of confinement with all these bozos.

Forced Schooling On Reflection—Will Discuss Further and Often

Democracy Reaches the KidsAs my life as an Independent (‘Independent 1,’ as it turns out 🙂 ) would unfold later, then more recently with some powerful readings of true teaching-and-learning system pioneers—e.g. John Taylor Gatto (The Underground History of American Education) and Hon. George Meegan (Democracy Reaches the Kids!)—I see so clearly the psychological damage absorbed from compulsion and regimentation in lieu of the joy of learning. It teaches me how the slightest day-by-day instance of forcing a mind or a body into a mold causes gaping soul wounds upon reaching adulthood. No matter how well they dress it up and say it’s pretty, government schools are the quint-essence of evil, like slavery, designed to snuff out the life of a child’s mind and surrender it to the herd.

[If you go along and comply willfully, you just shuffle your way, head down, into the cattle chute selected for you by the Matrix, losing all sense of self and one’s glorious human potential. If you fight the collectivizing processes, you carry a huge pile of anger and memories of involuntary submission. Battle scars. Often, as in my case, the fighting does not yield the virtue of success-engendering mental toughness rather the repeated self-destructive crying out in frustration against injustice. It’s a rare one who can deal alacritously with the behaviors and addictions such frustration leads to.]

Well, that’s the bleak, stark view—and don’t forget the age segregation! They not only take me from my perfectly good parents they compound the cruelty by effin’ taking away my brother!

But now I’ve come to appreciate the resiliency of the human mind, or I should say the human consciousness, especially in children. When it’s stymied in one area, it quickly works around the impediment. I had a loving home and family life, where both my parents treated me with respect and set the parameters of their authority such that I could make the most of my abilities. I’ve seen notes from Dad that talked me up as a boy of great promise, and my mother, more introverted and verbal, conveyed that I would be someone like King Arthur, strong enough to secure virtue—these visions of theirs being imparted with subtlety not a sledge hammer.

Speaking of sledge hammers: prison school was just a back stage, posturing as the central one and delivering the mind control paradigm handed down ham-handedly through the government propaganda minions from the Men of the Power Sickness. I would eventually discover these men behind the curtain and read them the riot act. Except for recess and a special teacher in fourth grade, Mrs. Dahl, school was a major barnacle on the ass of my progress.

Alas, it was part of the overall socialization landscape. By way of final transitional setup to the neighborhood, here’s the roughly three-mile radius view of where the Wright family had put down the homestead and where I, after all, would grow up.

All right that will take us to the next episode, where I drill down a little more. So-called public school is such an integral part of most people’s young lives that few ever think to ask questions about it:

We accept the reality of the world with which we’re presented.
— Christof, director of The Truman Show.

On the other hand, most of us retain the ability to deprogram ourselves and leave the set:

“In case I don’t see you, good afternoon, good evening, and good night.
— Truman Burbank, leaving the Show.

[Coffee Coaster Column link]

[Link to Episode 7]

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2 thoughts on “Brian’s Column: Who ARE These People?

  1. It is wonderful to see dear Brian and his brother as the sort of smashing looking children that appear throughout American history.Schooling is a powerful institution and as with all power it corrupts. Educators look out over an ocean of unhealthy children, and the system dictates they can do nothing. A long way from the dazzling Wright children.

  2. Never could figure out why we incarcerate healthy children all day long and then complain they do not get enough exercise.

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