For if you have fallen in with some who are called Christians, but who do not admit this [truth], and venture to blaspheme the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; who say there is no resurrection of the dead, and that their souls, when they die, are taken to heaven; do not imagine that they are Christians. . .
American teenagers operate in what has been called a “parallel culture” that operates free of adult interference. American high schools have been described as places where “individuals of the same age group define each other’s world.” As we saw in South Hadley, instead of challenging these definitions, or even the kind of cruelty endured by kids like Phoebe Prince, teachers and administrators often adopt a hands-off approach. This is politically correct, to respect personal autonomy. Look what it leads to. Every once in a while, events like those in South Hadley or the school shootings a decade ago cause us to examine some aspect of this “parallel culture,” but the “parallel culture” remains.
I myself wonder whether the problem is more deep-seated than even Colson lets on. Public secondary schools have existed for generations in North America, and they have indeed fostered a powerful adolescent subculture with its own (sometimes twisted) mores and social expectations. This subculture came into its own in the unprecedented prosperity of the postwar era and we are living with the consequences of this 65 years later. My response? Shut down the public high schools! I will come back to this topic, so stay tuned.