article: From Woke to Awakened: Navigating the Journey from Social Awareness to Ethical Individualism
Woke social justice, while well-intentioned in its efforts to improve societal conditions, can be seen as a form of materialistic belief. It operates under the assumption that enhancing external circumstances will inherently lead to better living conditions. Ethical individualism, in contrast, posits that true progress does not arise from merely altering external structures, but rather from the ennoblement of the human soul.
The Demise of AWSNA Woke Waldorf Schools by Dr. Douglas Gabriel Waldorf Teacher Trainer
In this article we will address the following moral concerns about AWSNA (Association of Waldorf Schools of North America) accredited Waldorf schools:
AWSNA’s Innovating for the Next 100 Years – Strategic Priorities – 2019-2024 is racist, sexist, anti-Steiner, discriminatory and is virtue signaling the “woke”(cultural Marxism) agenda
AWSNA has divorced itself from Rudolf Steiner’s teachings and tells lies about him and misrepresents his teachings in their public literature
AWSNA’s “reimagined” Waldorf schools are almost devoid of teachers studying Steiner and thus are not Waldorf schools
AWSNA schools have excluded the spirit of Steiner’s Waldorf education philosophy
AWSNA is prejudice against and discriminates against “white people”
AWSNA’s “woke” DEI policy is double-speak for Critical Race Theory (CRT) wedded to Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) policies and prejudices
Tampa Bay Parents Blog
There are serious problems at the Waldorf School of Tampa Bay, in Palm Harbor, Florida. Approximately half of the families that were enrolled in the grades at the school during the 2022-2023 school year will not be returning. What is going on at this school? Find out here. See articles on their blog here.
Rudolf Steiner | Advancing From Critical Social Justice To Freedom
Teachers And Parents Speak Out Against Abolishing Waldorf Schools
With many Waldorf schools declaring themselves anti-racist schools the culture war has reached Waldorf education. Anti-racist education is a materialistic worldview that believes the way you change people is to change the external world. Waldorf education is based on a spiritualistic worldview that believes the way you change the world is to change people through proper human development.
Defending Steiner Waldorf Education From The Materialistic Worldview Of Anti-Racism
To see who is fighting CRT go to Anthropops With Courage
Waldorf parents, teachers, administrators and others are concerned that social justice activists are taking over Waldorf schools. The principles and values of Steiner Waldorf education are being replaced with the principles and values of anti-racist education.
Activists Are Replacing Steiner Waldorf School Values With “Anti-Racist” Values
Waldorf Neo-Segregation - The Affinity Group
Does Crowd Psychology Explain Waldorf School's Embrace Of Anti-Racist Education?
Parent Speaks Out Against Critical Race Theory At Austin Waldorf School
A parent who had recently enrolled their child into the Austin Waldorf School had been assured by the administration and their child's teacher that Critical Race Theory was “absolutely not” part of the school's program. They were shocked to find out that wasn't the case.
A Family Loses The Dream Of Waldorf Education At Austin Waldorf School
Waldorf School Teacher's Successful Stand Against Mandates And CRT
THE TRUTH ABOUT THE WALDORF SCHOOL OF TAMPA BAY
Approximately half of the families that were enrolled in the grades at the school during the 2022-2023 school year will not be returning. What is going on at this school? See here.
Teachers And Parents Speak Out Against Abolishing Waldorf Schools
00:00 Teachers And Parents Speak Out
01:11 Abolish School Movement
02:14 AWSNA Leadership
04:30 Culture War
05:09 Abolish Waldorf
09:20 Waldorf Works
11:30 Future Of Waldorf Education
Teachers And Parents Speak Out
After I posted two Waldorf videos I've been receiving emails at philosophyoffreedom.com from teachers and parents who are speaking out against the attempt to abolish Waldorf. I am withholding their identities to protect them from retaliation.
Waldorf Teacher 1: "Thanks for having these conversations Tom. I feel a sense of bravery knowing that I am not alone in this fight. I am doing a teacher training program right now and deliberately spoke out that I will not be doing the diversity class put on by an organization supported by AWSNA. I have been speaking out against the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work at the school that I teach at and am working to try and change the ways things work."
The protests, riots, and looting of the social justice movement has terrified all of our cultural institutions that are being accused of being systemically racist. If you believe the whole system is fundamentally racist the only solution is to tear it down.
Abolish School Movement
The call for radical change includes our institutions of education. The extremists are not only calling for the abolition of the police, they are also calling for the abolition of schools. At a recent video conference (Abolitionist Teaching And The Future Of Our Schools) leaders of the abolish school movement were asked,
Host: "Are we talking about abolishing school."
The panel responded, "Yeah, that's exactly what we're talking about..."
Host: "Well I think that brings us to the question of abolition. This word is out there in a new way and more people are thinking it seems like and talking about it but mostly in respect to the police or to prisons or to the incarceral state, abolition of police or abolition of prisons. But what does it mean for school? Are we talking about abolishing school?"
Panel laughs: "Yeah, that's exactly what we're talking about!"
Host laughs: "See, this is why I wanted this conversation!"
It turns out school abolitionist Dina Simmons is a resource highly recommended by AWSNA. Why in the world would AWSNA want to abolish Waldorf schools? AWSNA is the Waldorf accreditation agency. The only reason AWSNA was created was to be the guardians of Waldorf education. To ensure Waldorf schools remain in agreement with the practices and principles of Waldorf and apply the insights of Rudolf Steiner.
Waldorf Teacher 2: "I have recently been extremely alarmed by the social activist rhetoric suddenly appearing in my Waldorf school and alarmingly in documents issued by AWSNA."
Waldorf Teacher 3: Social justice ideas are penetrating into the Waldorf school movement. Teachers need to be educated on the Marxist foundation on which these ideas are based. This is being led in part by the leadership of AWSNA.
Waldorf Teacher 4: "This is what's happening in our Waldorf school. I'm the only one standing up and it is crazy making. No one on the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee even understands Waldorf. AWSNA is completely off the wall. I've tried to say at our meetings that we must be independent thinkers and not follow an umbrella organization that does/says things that don't apply. It's like talking to a wall, they don't care, they are not making decisions based in Anthroposophy, they're working out of warped 'political correctness' and ruining our children's school."
Beverly Amico, marketing director of AWSNA, began the process of abolishing Waldorf schools in her article, "Working Toward Anti-Racist Education." Featured in Amico's article are Dina Simmons ideas for why schools should be abolished. Simmons says the problem is that education is dominated by European values and history, white privilege and supremacy, and of course systemic racism.
The anti-racist movement is not about ending racism, it is part of a political revolution. it is part of the broader culture war that wants to abolish the liberal European enlightenment values of reason, individuality, freedom of expression, and universal human rights, and replace them with human emotions, collectivism, political correctness, and reverse racism. This is why social justice activists want to abolish America and are tearing down monuments to the founders Washington and Jefferson.
To abolish Waldorf it is necessary to tear down the founder Rudolf Steiner. A Rudolf Steiner monument was severely damaged when the bronze bust and plaque were torn off and it was sprayed with red paint.
AWSNA has made no apparent attempt to defend Steiner or Waldorf. They have joined the social justice mob by denouncing Steiner and by making a commitment to break down Waldorf education. Rudolf Steiner knew that the term 'justice' is not really understood today. Peace is only possible when each individual's freedom is assured.
"Freedom is the only word which has a ring of immediate truth today… If, instead of such slogans as peace founded on justice, or peace imposed by force, people would only speak of peace based on freedom, then this word would echo round the world and kindle in the hearts of all a sense of security." Rudolf Steiner
Symptom To Reality in Modern History Lecture VI: Brief Reflections on the Publication of the New Edition of 'The Philosophy of Freedom'
This is why the teaching methods of Waldorf are intended to free the child, not indoctrinate them into a political ideology teacher.
Waldorf Teacher 5: "Not a single teacher in my school understands "The Philosophy Of Freedom". Instead social justice is what they understand because it resonates with their progressive liberal political views."
Waldorf Teacher 6: An organization that places a person's prominent identity on race has abandoned Steiner's Philosophy Of Freedom. The only road to real change is that of developing the self and taking responsibility for your own life circumstances."
Dina Simmons worldview was shaped by growing up in what she describes as the violence of injustice and inequity in the inner city of Bronx, New York. She also taught in a Bronx middle school. What she learned was that some inner city schools are broken and may need to be abolished.
Dina Simmons: "When we go to black and brown schools we usually have an intervention, say it's like you know, whatever it is like it could be SCL. We cannot teach this intervention so that now our students know how to manage and um deal with and navigate racism, right, so it's still steeped in white supremacy and that's why like we need to like abolish it man, get rid of it!"
What does Simmons experience of broken inner city schools have to do with Waldorf schools? Many Waldorf parents agree that public schools are broken. That is why they place their children in a Waldorf school. I doubt if Simmons has ever been in a Waldorf school. There is no reason for AWSNA to apply Simmons criticism of public schools to Waldorf schools.
Anthroposophist: "So-called social justice appears naturally in our souls when we develop ourselves properly. A concept like internal racism underscoring any Waldorf education is repugnant and an insult to Steiner's teachings."
Waldorf Teacher 7: "I do not agree that Waldorf education needs to have racism rooted out of it as it is the most culturally respectful education I have ever come across."
The Waldorf community has fallen under a shroud of silence for fear of being called a racist
Waldorf Teacher 8: "I appreciate the work you are doing to raise awareness and crack open the culture of silent descent that is happening in Waldorf schools."
Critical race theory, which is the basis of anti-racist education, acts like anyone who disagrees with it must do so only for racist and white supremacist reasons.
After Simmons abolishes schools what is she going to replace them with?
Dina Simmons: "We have to ask families what worked and what didn't work and we have to think about where the partnerships that came up all of a sudden between businesses between families between schools where were they and how can we lean into that a little bit more as we abolish the old and go forward with the new."
So after Waldorf education is abolished then we should ask families what worked and what didn't work. Is that AWSNA's plan. I have a better idea. Let's not abolish Waldorf education since it works. Let's try to expand it and make it available to more families. Isn't this what Beverly Amico was hired to do? Has she contacted Dina Simmons to tell her that Waldorf works and may be the solution to a broken education system? After all it was AWSNA that created the Waldorf works marketing campaign, AWSNA's website used to look like this. Its address used to be why Waldorfworks.org. AWSNA's twitter handle is @WhyWaldorfWorks. You can even buy a bumper sticker that says Waldorf Works.
This is not just a clever marketing campaign, it is backed up by research. A survey spanning some 60 years of over 500 Waldorf graduates found three key findings.
1. INDEPENDENT THINKERS Waldorf graduates are independent thinkers, they think for themselves and translate their new ideas into practice.
2. VALUE RELATIONSHIPS Waldorf graduates value lasting relationships and seek out opportunities to be of help to others
3. MORAL COMPASS Waldorf graduates are guided by an inner moral compass, they carry high ethical principles into their chosen professions.
I sent my children to Waldorf schools and would agree with these findings. I would have to ask AWSNA when did Waldorf stop working? When you decided political indoctrination was more important than freedom? There are still hundreds of Why Waldorf Works links throughout the web but AWSNA recently disabled that link and then redirected it to a new website.
Future Of Waldorf Education
The new AWSNA website emphasizes school renewal and the education of the future. What is AWSNA's education of the future? To find out all you have to do is investigate AWSNA's new list of recommended resources. None of the resources have any knowledge of Waldorf teaching methods, but they don't need to if Waldorf is to be abolished.
Parent 1 investigated the resource material and said:
"The linked material is angry, overtly skin color centric, anti-white, anti-white woman, anti-male, anti-police, pro-Marxist, anti-capitalist, pro-revolution, pro-destruction of the political economic system of capitalism, etc., etc."
Rather than opening windows to the wonder and beauty of the world anti-racist education is intended to fill your child with resentment, shame, and guilt by telling them that whiteness is bad.
Black Lives Matter recommended children's book: "Whiteness is a bad deal it always was. All right, here's a contract binding you to whiteness. You get stolen land, stolen riches, special favors. Then there's little footnotes says; land, riches, and favors may be revoked at any time for any reason. Whiteness gets to mess endlessly with the lives of your friends, neighbors, loved ones, and all fellow humans of color for the purpose of profit. The only price is your soul. Sign below."
Social justice educators like to rewrite history so they can judge the past by today's standards. Reviewers call Zinn's "A People's History Of The United States",
Review: "This is a depressing read full of the dark bits of our history. It teaches why America is hated around the world.
Students are becoming depressed.
Waldorf Teacher 9: "Zinn's book is read in the eighth grade. I see the book and the students desks and upon asking a few about it they said that it depresses them."
Based on AWSNA's recommended resource list it looks to me like the future of Waldorf education is going to be inspired by a veiled form of Marxist ideology that views the world through the lens of oppressor and oppressed. This is driving families away.
Parent 2: The school is diverging from the core Steiner teachings and becoming a vehicle for post-modernist Marxist indoctrination. After considering Waldorf I enrolled my children in a different school.
Waldorf Teacher 10: "I have been very concerned with the social justice and socialist agenda infiltrating the Waldorf movement and the process of indoctrination that we are starting to see in the new curriculum that is being created by the diversity committee. I have been very worried that we will lose the philosophy foundation as we stop basing our insights on Anthroposophy. This is not what Waldorf parents signed up for."
Parent 3: What I see is pure smash and grab political activism that has already at least in our case infected and taken over the philosophical underpinnings of the school. It's Waldorf in name only. We have already removed our youngest child from school because our local Waldorf school is pushing this material aggressively."
Good teachers are being forced out.
Parent 4: "There are still good teachers in Waldorf schools, but more and more it seems the good ones are forced out or forced to go along. This is cause for great concern."
Dreams of a Waldorf education are being dashed.
Parent 5: Although my husband and I went through great lengths to pinch pennies and gather the funds we will not be placing our daughter in the local Waldorf school here which brings me to the question, is there still a good Waldorf school out there? Any advice or know of a Waldorf school that is still teaching the traditional Rudolf Steiner values?
Waldorf teachers and families who are leaving AWSNA schools will form new schools. This will split the Waldorf school movement in two and some established Waldorf schools will declare their independence from AWSNA. From what I understand the only power that AWSNA really holds is ownership of name service marks but there are guidelines to deal with that.
Now is the time to stand up for Rudolf Steiner and true Waldorf education before it is too late and lost forever. Share this video, talk to your teacher and school, form coalitions, start a new school.
Defending Steiner Waldorf Education From The Materialistic Worldview Of Anti-Racism
0:04 Waldorf Alert
1:56 Materialism Vs Spiritualism
4:50 Waldorf Schools For Social Change
5:59 Anti-Racist Education
9:22 Cultural Determinism
10:18 First Principles
13:10 Group Identity
15:06 The Way To Peace
Recently someone posted a very disturbing comment about Steiner Waldorf education. I reposted it on the philosophyoffreedom.com website.
"Hey heads up, Waldorf schools are being completely taken over by the leftist cult religion of Woke. Take it from an insider. Waldorf education has now completely abandoned the teachings and principles of Steiner, or has twisted them to fit the contemporary identity politics woke agenda. Waldorf education is now a factory of Leftist cult indoctrination.
Oh my god, it looked like the culture war had reached Waldorf education. I sent my children through Waldorf schools and am an advocate for Rudolf Steiner's science of freedom, so it was very disturbing to hear that Waldorf education was under attack. How did this happen?
I have been monitoring the culture war after producing 4 culture war videos for the Rudolf Steiner Philosophy Of Freedom Youtube channel. I found that social justice ideology was influenced by the ideas of postmodernism neo-Marxism, intersectionality theory and identity politics. These far left political ideas are attempting to replace the enlightenment values of reason, science, individualism, and freedom emphasized in Rudolf Steiner's foundation book The Philosophy Of Freedom. This is the first video in a series that investigates the culture war that is now being fought in Waldorf schools.
Materialism Vs Spiritualism
I started my investigation when Black Lives Matter was in the news every night. The first thing I discovered on most Waldorf websites were statements declaring support for BLM. BLM is a left-wing political organization that has been organizing protest demonstrations around the country that have escalated into violence. The founders of BLM are trained Marxists who know how to organize and agitate by inflaming feelings of resentment and victimhood. Marxism views the world as a never-ending conflict between the oppressed and the oppressor.
Marxism is a materialistic worldview. It believes that the way you change people is to change the external world. Waldorf education is based on a spiritualistic worldview that believes the way you change the world is to change people through proper human development. The materialistic worldview focuses on the outer conditions in the world. Rudolf Steiner explains,
"Take the thought of social democracy: change the circumstances and a person will have better living and working conditions --that's a belief of materialism, short and deceiving. This belief is very paralyzing for every study of social life.'
Rudolf Steiner Hamburg lecture March 3, 1906
When BLM marches to end systemic racism and white privilege they steer the issue to outer circumstances and away from inner character development. The spiritualistic world view focuses on the inner human condition.
"Now how can a theosophist free himself from this materialistic belief that existence and even morality would improve if one would just improve outer conditions? Let's begin with the reflection that every change has to be made by human beings and that therefore every condition that's brought about for the social order arises from human thoughts and feelings. Once one has this thought firmly in mind one can free oneself from the materialistic view that everything is brought about by external conditions."
Rudolf Steiner knew that the way to improve social and political life is to improve people. Steiner's Waldorf education is a unique method that focuses on character development along with academic achievement.
Waldorf Schools For Social Change
The first Waldorf school was founded back in 1919 because after World War 1 people were disillusioned with society and political leaders just as they are today. A businessman with a spiritualistic worldview realized that what was needed to remedy the breakdown of the social system was better people and better leaders. The businessman asked Rudolf Steiner for his help to start a new kind of school that would teach children to become better people and future leaders. Steiner agreed that working with children was the best way to move towards a new social order. You can imagine the most ingenious Utopian societies but they won't work without better people and better leaders.
The principles of Waldorf education work because they are based on Steiner's deep understanding of the stages of human development that address the needs of the growing child.
Waldorf education has its foundation in the spiritual ideals of Rudolf Steiner's Anthroposophy which believes in humanity's inner wisdom. This is why Waldorf education's primary intention is to nurture the unique potential in each child.
BLM does not believe in the spiritualistic view of humanity's inner wisdom. They believe that at the inner core of every human being is a racist that supports the oppression of people of color. BLM says the best way to move towards a new social order is anti-racist education and training to end the bias of white supremacy.
I had a sinking feeling when I discovered many Waldorf schools were committed to becoming anti-racist schools. Will anti-racist education produce better people who will build a better society? Ibram Kendi is known as a prophet of anti-racism. His book "How To Be An Anti-Racist" is on many Waldorf schools anti-racist recommended reading lists. Martin Luther King Jr's solution to racism was to judge people on the content of their character not the color of their skin.
"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character."
Martin Luther King Jr
Anti-racists disagree. They say the solution to past racism is more racism. Ibram Kendi states,
"The only remedy to racist discrimination is anti-racist discrimination. The only remedy to pass discrimination is present discrimination. The only remedy to present discrimination is future discrimination."
"So, a fact about anti-racism training is that it not only can't get rid of racism; it makes you more racist, both literally and according to the standards of the Theory in which it is defined."
How will making people more racist bring about a better society? I have been contacted by parents who have told me that anti-racism education is not the Waldorf education that they signed up for.
The fact that many Waldorf schools are implementing anti-racist action plans was a serious sign that the materialism of social justice ideology is indeed taking over Waldorf education. Social justice activists are making sweeping changes to the Waldorf school structure and curriculum. These radical changes are being imposed by social justice extremists who have set up Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committees made up of woke parents and teachers who are now running the schools. When the Diversity committee starts deciding cultural norms, curriculum hiring, and teacher training led by non-Waldorf educators, you no longer have a Waldorf school.
Anti-racist education fails because it is based on the materialistic view of cultural determinism. Cultural determinism believes that the external culture in which we are raised determines who we are, our emotions and behavior. They claim without evidence that everyone has been culturally determined to be a racist because of systemic racism and are in need of re-education. The solution according to this kind of thinking is to culturally determine a different result through indoctrination. It almost looks like some kind of socialist revolution is turning Waldorf schools into indoctrination camps for teachers and students.
The spiritual principle of a Waldorf school is that the image of a human being as a spiritual being informs every aspect of the school. It is the mission of the school to nurture the unique spirit of each child. Steiner puts it this way in The Philosophy Of Freedom:
"The concept of the human being is not complete unless it includes the free spirit as the purest expression of human nature. After all, we are human in the fullest sense only to the extent that we are free."
TPOF Chapter 9.11
The first principle of an anti-racist school is a materialistic view that the image of a human being as a racist informs every aspect of the school. To stamp out racism the Diversity committee in an anti-racist school will have a community watch program to encourage informants to report acts of observed racism. Anti-racism education assumes racist microaggressions are present in every human interaction so no one is safe from being reported as a racist. Here is a short clip with an example of how you cannot avoid accusations of being a racist.
"I'll give you a quick example out of cynical theories about how critical race theory in particular but it could be any of the woke theories, sets you up to lose, to always end up in a struggle session even if it's not forced. So we give the following example: Imagine you own something like a shop where you have to interact with the customers. You have to help them and so as you come out from behind the counter two customers happen to enter at the same time. say it's a black person and a white person. Your race doesn't matter in this analysis as it turns out and so then you have to choose who to approach first. So if you choose to approach the white person critical race theory begins with the assumption that racism is present in this interaction and it's the critical race theorists job to find it and call it out, make it visible, make oppression visible is the saying. So if you approach the white person first the analysis will be you approached the white person first because you see them as first class citizens, you see black people as second class citizens therefore you are a racist. If however you approach the black person first again the assumption is racism is present in the interaction and it is a critical race theorist's purpose to find it and call it out, make it visible. If you approach the black person first the analysis from critical race theory will be you don't trust black people to be unattended in a store and so you wanted to deal with that first and get the black person out therefore your decision was racist. So in both cases you are caught with racism."
Another materialistic view of social justice ideology is its emphasis on group identity. They expect that the way people will think and behave is culturally constructed by their ethnic and social surroundings. When the main thing you notice about someone is their ethnicity then you are not truly looking at that person. It is true we have characteristics that are determined by our ethnic group, but the spiritualistic view is that in the course of our development we free ourselves from these typical characteristics to become a unique individuality. How to free ourselves from our group type is discussed in chapter 14 of The Philosophy Of Freedom, "Individuality and Type":
"An ethnic group is a whole and the members belonging to it exhibit characteristic traits that are determined by the nature of the group. How the single member is constituted and his general behavior will be characteristic of the ethnic group to which he belongs. However the human being frees himself from these typical characteristics. He develops his own traits and rules for reasons that can only be found in himself. What is typical in him serves only as a means to develop his own individual nature."
People who are free from typical characteristics and group think will build a better more inclusive society because they will be less tribal and less divisive
The Way To Peace
Black Lives Matter's threat that there will be no peace until there is justice is not the path to a better society. When your plan for a just society is the reverse discrimination of anti-racism it creates insecurity for those who will be discriminated against. To have peace everyone needs to feel secure in their freedom to pursue their own goals and happiness and to be fairly rewarded for merit. This is why Rudolf Steiner says the way to a peaceful society is freedom, not justice.
"Freedom is the only word which has a ring of immediate truth today. If instead of such slogans as peace founded on justice or peace imposed by force people would only speak of peace based on freedom, then this word would echo around the world and kindle in the hearts of all a sense of security."
Symptom To Reality in Modern History Lecture VI: Brief Reflections on the Publication of the New Edition of 'The Philosophy of Freedom'
Waldorf education is the way to peace because of its emphasis on freedom and dignity for everyone. It has a proven record of developing the creative and critical thinkers needed to build a better society by nurturing the free spirit in each student. You can't expect to change the fundamental structure, values, and principles of a Waldorf school and still have Waldorf education. Waldorf worked for my children so I believe Waldorf education is worth fighting for.
Activists Are Replacing Steiner Waldorf School Values With “Anti-Racist” Values
0:00 Waldorf School Values
4:27 Anti-Racism vs Liberal Values
Waldorf School Values
In this video I want to place the values that are taught in anti-racist education side by side with the values of liberal education that we are already familiar with. This is important to know if you have a child in a Waldorf school because many Waldorf schools are transitioning to become anti-racist schools and will be teaching your children anti-racist values.
Woke activists are gaining control of Waldorf schools by setting up Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committees and then dictating cultural norms, curriculum, enrollment, and hiring. Teachers and administrators are being retrained in the woke ideology of anti-racism by non-Waldorf instructors. This transformation changes Waldorf education into what many are calling anti-racist indoctrination and becoming an anti-racist school doesn't even help the school to overcome racism. Critics say it actually increases racism.
We are being warned that the real purpose of anti-racist education is conversion to the 'cult of woke'. The president recently banned all diversity and anti-racist training in federal agencies for being divisive and anti-American propaganda. A Facebook group is gaining national attention for warning parents about anti-racist indoctrination in the schools and its devastating impact on our communities.
With all this turmoil you might ask where is AWSNA? AWSNA is the accreditation agency of Waldorf schools and is entrusted to be the guardians of Waldorf education and its principles. Its vision is to strengthen and nurture Waldorf education and to advance Waldorf principles worldwide yet Beverly Amico, marketing director and fundraiser of AWSNA, is leading the charge toward anti-racist education. Anti-racist education and training dramatically changes the values of any school including a Waldorf school.
The objective of the culture war is to have social justice values replace the liberal values of the enlightenment that our culture has honored, cherished, and fought for. Values such as freedom of speech, freedom of the press, self-defense, free association, privacy, and the presumption of innocence.
Enlightenment liberal values are found throughout Rudolf Steiner's "The Philosophy Of Freedom" and have always been an important part of Waldorf education. If you really want to overcome racism it requires the liberal values of universal human rights, individual freedom, and empowerment. These are the values of Rudolf Steiner's ethical individualism. The civil rights movement succeeded because it appealed to the universal liberal spirit. The anti-racist movement is failing because its sole focus on group identity is divisive and reduces empathy between groups.
The comparison of values I'm about to show you will help you to make up your own mind. It is the work of New Discourses, an educational resource that provides material to inspire discussion on social, political, and cultural issues. Links to New Discourses are placed in the description below.
BEGIN NEW DISCOURSES COMPARISON
Anti-Racism vs Liberal Values
Anti-racism is not the same as being against racism. Despite its lofty goals "anti-racism", when examined, in practice leads to increased divisiveness, social unrest, and intolerance. There are better ways to fight racism than being anti-racist, but the discussion is clouded by changing definitions and overly simplistic reasoning.
Anti-racism employs racist attitudes to determine who is racist (only white people are racist based on the social position they hold on account of their racial origin)
Liberalism employs individualism, tolerant attitudes, and reasoned arguments to minimize prejudiced attitudes and discriminatory behavior against individuals or groups on the grounds of race both in self and others (of any race).
Anti-racism adopts an extreme worldview that racializes every human interaction.
Liberalism sees some interactions as racialized and others as not racialized.
Anti-racism: Racist until proven innocent (which isn't actually possible)
Liberalism: Innocent until racism is proven.
Anti-racism denies the possibility of white and "white adjacent" people ever being not racist due to automatic "white complicity" in a "racist system"
Liberalism contends that each individual can choose not to hold racist views and should be expected to do so.
Anti-racism demands a simple-minded commitment to callout and cancel culture and all its destructive implications for freedom of speech, subtlety in reasoning, and the possibility of redemption and forgiveness.
Liberalism recognizes that freedom of speech is the best protection of the minority; avoids oversimplification; and sees that issues of race are best dealt with honestly while still working towards shared goals and a common vision.
Anti-racism encourages discrimination by race.
Liberalism encourages universally upholding the principle of not discriminating by race.
Anti-racism encourages conflict through a race-based derivation of Marxist "conflict theory".
Liberalism offers neutral, fair, and objective standards so we can resolve conflicts successfully.
Anti-racism increases the social significance of racial categories. In fact it makes them central.
Liberalism decreases the social significance of racial categories while acknowledging and correcting remaining problems.
Anti-racism begins with the assumption racism is present and seeks to find it to make it visible. Intentions don't matter.
Liberalism begins with openness to consider all possible situations and avoids reading bad intentions into situations.
Anti-racism uses storytelling to point out problems and demands they be solved.
Liberalism uses rigorous methods to identify causes of problems and seeks workable solutions.
Anti-racism requires commitment to social activism that is lifelong and "ongoing." No one is ever done.
Liberalism requires no commitment to social activism. Just be yourself and treat people as equal individuals.
Philosophy Of Freedom note: When the individual is encouraged to fulfill his or her unique destiny the whole of humanity benefits.
If you value Waldorf education now is the time to speak up to keep anti-racist indoctrination out of Waldorf schools.
"Say no to indoctrination. Say yes to education. Say no to segregation and tribalism. Say yes to unity. We embrace Martin Luther King. We reject Black Lives Matter." Facebook group No Left Turn In Education