`Great Scares' Aren't to Be Feared

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), October 31, 1999 | Go to article overview

`Great Scares' Aren't to Be Feared


Tony Snow is a remarkable writer, radio host, speaker and thinker. I rarely find myself on the opposite side from Mr. Snow on moral or political issues. I also resonated with his Sunday Oct. 17 article criticizing federally funded sex education programs, which are being introduced into the American education system.

The pro-socialist educator John Dewey was relentless in his criticism of Christianity because of its having responded to Darwinism in an unreasoned fashion. Today it is Dewey's apparent heirs who can be seen as unreasoned in their promotion of condoms, euphemistically promoting safe sex when, at best, we are talking about less dangerous sex. Any airline with a performance record in any way comparable to the failure rate of even the most successful condom would have long ago been banned by the FAA.

It was not this aspect of Mr. Snow's article, which concerned me, however. Instead I wondered about his rather bizarre decision to compare sex education methods to "cult" activities. In his article, Mr. Snow ascribes three traits to cults. He maintains "they weaken family ties." He adds "they jangle moral codes by introducing new standards and reinforcing them through behavior modification." Thirdly, Mr. Snow asserts that "cults also ensnare members by creating bizarre rites."

These observations by Mr. Snow naturally raise certain questions. It is well known that the groups which stereotype "cults" a la Snow assert there are more than 2,000 such "cults" (more correctly referred to as "new religious movements" or NRMs) in America. I am wondering if Mr. Snow can tell us the names of the universities, schools, institutes, or centers that trained the thousands of leaders of these "cults" in behavior modification and brainwashing techniques. Could he provide us with the curriculum and the books, which are read by "cult" leaders to develop the level of psychological sophistication, which they allegedly possess? …

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