Lessons to be learned …
November 23, 2005
There was a double murder in Spokane, Washington this past weekend. The facts, as reported by the local media, go like this:
Two boys, ages 17 and 18, were in the upstairs bedroom of the 18-year-old at his home. There, these two boys were drinking alcohol and smoking sherm — marijuana laced with PCP (angel dust). After about two hours of this, the 17-year-old picked up an aluminum baseball bat and beat the 18-year-old senseless, but apparently did not kill him. The 17-year-old then picked up a .30-.30 caliber rifle that was in the bedroom and went downstairs where he proceeded to shoot the mother of the 18-year-old, execution style. When he tried to reload the lever-action Marlin with the intent of killing the husband, stepfather to the 18-year-old, the gun jammed. At this point, the stepfather entered into a struggle with the 17-year-old who bested him, beating him severely with the aluminum bat before the man was able to escape the home and get to a neighbor’s home where the police were called. The 17-year-old then returned to the upstairs bedroom where he discovered the 18-year-old was still alive so killed him by stabbing him a multitude of times with a knife with a double-edged blade. He then picked up the rifle and left the home, apparently going to his parents house a short distance away. His parents loaded him and the evidence in their vehicle and headed for the police station but en route, the 17-year-old jumped from their vehicle and fled. Thus began a man-hunt lasting almost 24 hours before the 17-year-old was taken into custody, the result of some quick thinking on the part of an adult with whom the 17-year-old was acquainted.
The first question that came to my mind was why, if these two boys were smoking marijuana in an upstairs bedroom, the parents, downstairs, didn’t smell it? Anyone who has ever smelled burning marijuana will never forget the smell of it. And the smell permeates everything it touches — clothes, bedding, curtains, carpets.
The second question that came to my mind was where did these two minor males get the alcohol that was being consumed?
The third question that came to my mind was where were the parents that they didn’t have a clue what was going on in the upstairs bedroom of their home? Apparently, at some point, in the two hours before the carnage began, the mother had requested that the music reverberating from the bedroom be turned down.
In the days following this obviously heinous event, there was cause to pause and ask more questions.
Appearing on the news was the superintendent of the regional educational service district (ESD). It seems the mother, killed execution-style, worked for the ESD. That alone wasn’t cause to pause, but what she did as an employee of the ESD did give cause to pause.
It seems the mother was a substance abuse counselor for the ESD. That’s right, a substance abuse counselor. In that capacity, she worked with schools throughout the regional jurisdiction covered by the ESD, covering the better part of the east-central and north-east Washington State, several counties in all, many school districts, many students.
The fact that this mother was a substance abuse counselor for the ESD makes the first questions that came to mind as the story unfolded, even more relevant. Here is a substance abuse counselor who didn’t know her own son was smoking marijuana laced with PCP and drinking alcohol in her own home?
The head of the ESD expounded on how this mother, this substance abuse counselor, gave her all for kids. According to him, kids were her life. But she didn’t know her own son was into alcohol and drugs?
Were I a parent with a child in any of the schools using the services of the ESD, and most do, I would be asking some hard questions regarding the program this individual represented. How did this individual get to be a substance abuse counselor when she didn’t know her own son was into alcohol and drugs? What kind of training does it take to be a substance abuse counselor such that those representing the program don’t know their own children are abusing alcohol and drugs?
A few years back, when schools were being inundated with school psychologists, social workers, ie, mental-health workers, this researcher made the comment at a meeting that if children really needed a psychologist, they should see a licensed clinical psychologist. Parents present were absolutely horrified, “Psychologists are too expensive.” My response was, “If you needed surgery would you allow a nurse practitioner to do it?” The response, “Well, no.” “Then why would you allow someone to mess with your child’s mind and mental well-being that isn’t clinically licensed to do so?” No answer. My point made.
School psychologists are not licensed clinicians; they do not have the education or training required to take and pass the state medical exam to be a clinical psychologist. School psychologists have minimal training in the field of psychology and are licensed by the state department of education.
Is the same true with substance abuse counselors? The fact that this substance abuse counselor didn’t know what her own son was into would certainly suggest this to be the case.
The apparent motive behind the actions of this 17-year-old? The 17-year-old told friends that he had “marked” the 18-year-old, meaning he intended to kill him, because the 18-year-old had bad-mouthed a friend of the 17-year-old. He also told friends that he intended to kill the 18-year-old’s parents to leave no witnesses; that he had made a mistake in not killing the stepfather.
Obviously, the 17-year-old was very loyal to his friend such that what happened to his friend became personal. How did this 17-year-old come to the point that he could justify killing two people with the intent to kill three people?
Remember the new basics, the goals of systems education, the education component of the emerging sustainable global environment: — teamwork, critical thinking, communications, making decisions, adapting to change and understanding whole systems? The state and school district exit outcomes must align to these goals. In Washington State the exit outcomes are known as the Essential “Academic” Learning Requirements or EALRs. These EALRs have governed the curriculum and teaching methodologies of whatever government school these two boys attended since the early to mid-1990’s when systems education was brought into Washington State by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Washington State Legislature. This means these two boys have been subjected to it for most of, if not all, their school years.
The philosophy undergirding systems education subscribes to the teachings and writings of one Karl Marx, father of communism. Marx wrote, taught and believed that religions believing in a Higher Authority (deity, God) must be stamped out as they promoted the individual mind over the collective mind and the alienation of self from the group-think, consensus building (Hegelian Dialectic) philosophy of group over individual (communism). Marx’s world view would be identified as humanism, subscribed to by the likes of Charles Darwin who established the unproven theory of evolution to explain how life on earth came about and arrived at its present state.
And since the implementation of the humanist (communist/Marxist) world view under systems education, we have seen a steady rise in the number of kids who kill. People in Germany under Hitler and in the U.S.S.R. saw the same thing happen to the youth under the same world view taught in the schools under systems education.
And since humanism is the world view of systems education, those who work within the system are also taught and must teach using the semantics of it: — the teacher as “guide on the side, not the sage on the stage;” no right, no wrong, help children clarify their values (values clarification); conflict resolution and peer mediation where the goal is not right and wrong but the unifying of perceptions; the producing of Fairminded-Fran whose critical thinking abilities only extend to the affective domain (how she feels) which then controls her psycho-motor domain (how she acts); who lacks the ability to access and use knowledge (cognitive domain) to formulate a reasoned conclusion that then tempers the affective domain in controlling the psycho-motor domain.
When Barry Loukaitas went off the deep-end at Frontier Junior High in Moses Lake in 1996, killing a teacher and two students, and wounding another student, this researcher told the Washington State Legislators that if they did not stop the implementation of systems education, what happened at Frontier Junior High would happen with greater and greater frequency. It has, and it will continue to do so if we do not expose and dispatch the world view and the education system that is supporting it.
© 2005; Lynn M Stuter – All Rights Reserved.