The Purposes of Education in American Democracy

By Educational Policies Commission | Go to book overview

II.
THE DEMOCRATIC PROCESSES

The critics of democracy have the easiest of tasks in demonstrating its inefficiency. But there is something even more important than efficiency and expediency, namely, justice. And democracy is the only social order that is admissible, because it is the only one consistent with justice. The moral consideration is supreme. --ROBERT BRIFFAULT.


The Social Policy of America Is Democracy.

We have seen that before the objectives of education at any point of time and place can be stated, people must decide which of several possible social policies are to claim their allegiance. We have seen also that this decision hinges primarily upon certain fundamental judgments of values. The social policy thus accepted and endorsed by the American people is the continued striving toward the democratic ideal. A general description of democratic ways of living is, therefore, an indispensable part of our statement of educational purposes.

Democratic living is a developing and complex process in which certain great elements stand out in bold relief. This chapter attempts to sweep into a few broad generalizations these minimum essentials of democracy.


The General Welfare.

Democracy prizes a broad humanitarianism, an interest in the other fellow, a feeling of kinship to other people more or less fortunate than oneself. One who lives in

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