Thursday, November 15, 2012
Michael Perry has linked to Charles Reid's suggestion that, in the wake of the election, we look to John Dewey -- described as the "philosopher of the common good" -- for optimism and inspiration. It seems to me that we should look elsewhere.
John Dewey's "optimism" and "egalitarianism" included -- indeed, his approach had at its heart -- a deep antipathy to religious authority and truth-claims, and indeed to any significant role for non-state mediating associations in the formation and education of persons. Dewey praised Paul Blanshard's anti-Catholic screeds, and in some ways inspired them. Charles notes, of course, that praise of Dewey needs to be "qualified," and says that he "appreciate[s] the diversity religious education offers in a world where public education might otherwise become too homogeneous." As he should, and as Dewey -- an implacable enemy of the Catholic schools -- did not.
I wonder, does Michael endorse Reid's endorsement of Dewey? Why or why not?