So you already know about my love/hate relationship with Terry Gross and Fresh Air on NPR. Well, there was a very interesting discussion on yesterday's show with Michael Farris, the founder of Home School Legal Defense and Patrick Henry College. Terry was surprisingly civil but remained true to her obviously anti-Christian slant. The discussion about tolerance versus liberty and speech versus action was particulalrly clarifying for me. I admit--I expected there might be a verbal brawl but was perfectly delighted with what I heard. Mr. Farris is a very eloquent man and a sharp legal thinker.
Mr. Farris is a prominant figure in the Christian home schooling world, and is, at times, very controversial because of it. I (like many) don't always agree with his positions but I admire that he is always mindful of his position and the fact that he is the face of home schooling at times. He generally reflects well, I believe.
Of course, Terry made sure to mention that she was prompted to interview him because several pages in Michelle Goldberg's book were spent on him. Of course. We can't have anyone thinking that Terry Gross would want to interview a guest of the Christian conservative persuasion based on his own merit or achievement, now can we?
One very interesting point Michael made was in response to the "Are parents really qualified to teach...do they have the right expertise?" question. He pointed out that permission to teach in a school is not about *expertise*. He used himself as an example, stating that even tho he is a studied constitutional lawyer with many years of experience and *expertise* and is considered by many to be an expert in his chosen subjects of law and history, he is not allowed to teach because he is not considered an educator--because he is not liscensed by the government to teach in schools.
Ding Ding Ding!!
What would happen to education if teaching really was less about educating and more about *expertise*?
I'm still pondering this question.
Anyway, the discussion was more about conservative thought and the role of Christianity in America...not really much about home schooling. I was glad I went back and listened.