Skip to content

Conservative parents, left-wing children

November 5, 2013

There is a phenomenon that is rarely discussed, but it’s as common as it is  significant.

For at least two generations, countless conservative parents have seen their  adult children reject their core values.

I have met these parents throughout America. I have spoken with them in  person and on my radio show. Many have confided to me – usually with a resigned  sadness – that one or more of their children has adopted left-wing social, moral  and political beliefs.

A particularly dramatic recent example was a pastor who told me that he has  three sons, all of whom have earned doctorates – from Stanford, Oxford and  Fordham. What parent wouldn’t be proud of such achievements by his or her  children?

But the tone of his voice suggested more irony than pride. They are all  leftists, he added wistfully.

“How do you get along?” I asked.

“We still talk,” he responded.

Needless to say, I was glad to hear that. But as the father of two sons, I  readily admit that if they became leftists, while I would, of course, always  love them, I would be deeply saddened. Parents, on the left or the right,  religious or secular, want to pass on their core values to their children.

As a father, my purpose is not to pass on my seed, but to pass on my values.  Just about anyone can biologically produce a child. That ability we share with  the animals. What renders us distinct from animals is that we can pass on  values. As the Latin puts it, animals only have “genitors;” humans have  “paters.” Or as the Hebrew has it, parent (horeh) comes from the same root as  teacher (moreh). That is why Judaism puts teachers (of religious/moral values)  on the same plane as parents.

So it is sad when a parent who believes, for example, in the American trinity  of liberty, “In God We Trust” and “E Pluribus Unum” has a child who believes  that equality trumps liberty, that a secular America is preferable to a  God-centered one and that multiculturalism should replace the unifying American  identity.

It is sad when a pastor, or any other parent, who believes that the only  gender-based definition of marriage that has ever existed – husband and wife –  has a child who regards the parent as a bigot for holding onto that  definition.

It is sad when a parent who believes that America has always been, in  Lincoln’s famous words, “the last best hope of earth,” has a child who believes  that America has always been little more than an imperialist, racist and  xenophobic nation.

That this happens so often raises the obvious question: Why?

There are two reasons.

One is that most parents with traditional American and Judeo-Christian values  have not thought it necessary to articulate these values to their children on a  regular basis. They assumed that there was no need to because that was true for  much of American history, when the society at large held those values. Villages  do indeed raise children. And when the village shares parents’ values, the  parents don’t have to do the difficult work of inculcating these values.

But the village – i.e., American society – has radically changed.

Which brings us to the second reason.

Virtually every institution outside the home has been captured by people with  left-wing values: specifically the media (television and movies) and the schools  (first the universities and now high schools).

In the 1960s and 1970s, American parents were blindsided. Their children came  home from college with values that thoroughly opposed those of their  parents.

And the parents had no idea how to counteract this. Moreover, even if they  did, after just one year at the left-wing seminaries we still call universities,  it was often too late. As one of the founders of progressivism in America,  Woodrow Wilson, president of Princeton University before becoming president of  the United States, said in a speech in 1914, “I have often said that the use of  a university is to make young gentlemen as unlike their fathers as possible.”  Eighty-eight years later, the president of Dartmouth College, James O. Freedman,  echoed Wilson: “The purpose of a college education is to question your father’s  values,” he told the graduating seniors of Dartmouth College.

Even now, too few conservative parents realize how radical – and effective –  the university agenda is. They are proud that their child has been accepted to  whatever college he or she attends, not realizing that, values-wise, they are  actually playing Russian roulette – except that only one chamber in the gun is  not loaded with a bullet.

And then they come home, often after only year at college, a different  person, values-wise, from the one the naive parent so proudly said goodbye.

What to do? I will answer that in a future column. But the first thing to do  is to realize what is happening.

There are too many sad conservative parents.

CREDIT TO:  Dennis Prager / WND.COM



Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: