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[Excerpt] There’s No Such Thing as Values-Free Education

By John Stonestreet & Timothy D Padgett

Stripping morals from education—or, more accurately, attempting to strip morals from education—is a dangerous idea with dangerous consequences. Chuck Colson repeatedly highlighted this, especially in light of the financial scandals of the late 1980s and early 2000s. He spoke often of “a crisis of character” and the “inescapable consequence of neglecting moral training.

This is also the central focus of the essay “Men Without Chests,” the opening essay in one of C.S. Lewis’s most important books, The Abolition of Man. Lewis clearly saw that years of attempts to de-moralize education would not give us a world without vice, but a world without virtue. And, he closed, we would wonder how it could ever have happened in our enlightened age:

In a sort of ghastly simplicity, we remove the organ and demand the function. We make men without chests and expect of them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honour and are shocked to find traitors in our midst. We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful.


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