Ideological Academics

The mission of this platform is to articulate right wing perspective, principles and thought. That mission is vital because the intellectual and political climate today is bedeviled by shallow analysis and ideological distortion.

An example has arisen this week. The UK’ “Independent” carried a report about the work of Dr David Lundie at Liverpool Hope university in England.  The Independent’s article opened with the words:

Parents should not be allowed to selectively remove their children from religious education (RE) lessons, headteachers say, as study reveals many withdrawal requests are over the teaching of Islam.

Dr Lundie then appeared on the BBC Radio 4 “Sunday” programme on June 30th 2019 saying it was time to remove the legal opt-out parents have to withdraw their children from religious education classes in England’s schools.

Dr Lundie says that the opt- out in the 1944 Act is no longer applicable and should be scrapped. Back in the 1940s, Britain was consciously Christian and Religious education was titled Instruction.

Times have moved on, he says, and RE today is about informing children about different religions, not indoctrinating them in one particular belief. We live in a multi cultural Britain where children need to learn respect for others beliefs, and be tolerant to each other.

Well, I don’t disagree at all about tolerance and respect, and the purpose of education being to enlighten,  not indoctrinate. Absolutely.

But I do fundamentally question Dr Lundie’s philosophical world view and inspiration.

Let me explain.

Back in 1940s Britain, the British establishment still accepted the Protestant Christian religion as the religious and cultural reference point for our society’s moral outlook.

Having a protestant Christian outlook, the State recognised this as a religious and ideological viewpoint. It therefore provided parents with the legal opt-out.

The State understood the need to provide a moral code and an official religion for public life. That being so, it also recognised the modern English tradition of tolerance which refused to oblige anyone to adopt an ideological view. The state did not dream – would not indeed dare – to invade the family and oblige anyone to believe as the State directed.

It was protestant, dissenting Christianity which lobbied for and achieved the tolerance of belief in England, especially after the 1689 Revolution. And while Roman Catholicism remained anathema in 1689, that was because of its historically political pretensions. Things changed and those prohibitions were removed in the 19th Century.

But Dr Lundie and today’s generation of educational experts, however, know better. In their worldview, they have absolute truth on their side. They are the arbiters and stewards of the Truth for democracy. They talk in the liberal terms of tolerance and respect, and the need to dispel ignorance. But they adopt the means of intolerant and totalitarian control to do so. 

They fail to see that their means are ends in themselves, and that their means of compulsion in matters of belief are inimical to true liberty. 

And they fail, too, to see that they are foisting a belief system on the population. Or do they ?

What I find astounding about so many of today’s academics is their refusal to acknowledge the truth about themselves.

They believe that their assumptions and preconceptions are absolute truth. They therefore see themselves as justified in ensuring that their truth is upheld, especially against what they perceive, in their framework of understanding , as ignorance and bigotry.

This is dangerous …

Personally, I believe that my worldview is correct. My worldview is Christian and Conservative and English. And I trust that I make that abundantly clear on this platform.

It is intellectually false and deceitful to pretend otherwise and to say that I have a monopoly on the truth. I have a world view. And I recognise the need to be open about that, and to explain it. It explains why I say what I say. And if you are to persuade others to your view, they should be able to see why,  and assess the importance it merits.

Persuade others. I have respect for others viewpoints and ideologies. I don’t expect to impose my view, but to persuade others as to its legitimacy.

Because I recognise the world as it is, and don’t demand it conform to what I believe.

But Dr Lundie and his fellow thinkers take a diametrically different view. And that is the problem. They don’t examine their assumptions, and they regard themselves as having a monopoly on the Truth – the truth as they understand it, but won’t admit to.

Theirs is a fundamentally false and dangerous position for us all. They want to remove a fundamental legal protection born out of a fundamentally liberal worldview.

The Christian worldview tolerates dissent. You cannot make someone become a Christian – only God can do that, and they themselves.

Whereas the worldview Dr Lundie articulates prescribes perception of the world according to a man centred and materialist philosophy. Because they assume their supposedly ‘liberal’ view is correct, dissent is forbidden and dangerous to the welfare of society. Theirs is the new religion for today.

This world view makes no distinction between the public place and the private space, as did the framers of the 1944 Education Act.

In this world view, the private is subject to public orthodoxy – an orthodoxy to be imposed by an expert elite…

Dr Lundie will no doubt claim otherwise. But my question to him, then, will be: Will you teach Creationism in schools as being as Philosophically  legitimate as Evolution ?

Indeed, many geologists would concede that Creationism is as valid a model for understanding the set up of our Physical world as Evolution.

I guarantee that the educational Establishment in our universities will not concede this because it directly challenges their worldview – if accepted,  it would destroy their Orthodoxy.

Dr Lundie and his ilk trade in the terms of objectivity and liberty, but do not practise it. Their philosophical and psychological standpoint forbids it. They are actually prisoners themselves of prejudice and bigotry; they are not the free thinking and scientific investigators they claim to be.

Evidence  ?

Dr Lundie himself in an article posted on 27th July 2016 following the June 23rd Brexit referendum result. His ideological and political assumptions are made clear – you can read it for yourself on the Schoolsweek.co.uk link in the references below.

His ideological opposition to the fundamental principle of democracy is clear. The Brexit result is interpreted entirely within the internationalist and materialist worldview which assumes the very existence of the nation State is Evil.

Was the Brexit vote a legitimate choice to make ?

In a democracy, Yes.

In the ideologically prescriptive world inhabited by Dr Lundie – ABSOLUTELY NOT !

Ray Catlin

REFERENCES AND LINKS below

The Radio 4 “Sunday” programme interview with David Lundie can be heard in the Podcast titled “Faith at Glastonbury and the Bishop of Burnley on the need for safeguarding changes” with the 6 minute interview at 2 minutes in to 8 minutes on the podcast at

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0006dk6

David Lundie’s own blog page contains significant information and links at

https://davidlundie.wordpress.com/2018/04/20/religious-education-and-the-parental-right-of-withdrawal-survey-results/

and the news report on the Independent’s website this last week is at

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/education/education-news/parents-religious-education-islam-headteachers-liverpool-hope-university-study-a8976366.html

The emphatic political and ideological standpoint of Dr Lundie and others in the educational establishment is made clear in his own words in a post of 27th July 2016 just 5 weeks after the Brexit Referendum result – read it at

https://schoolsweek.co.uk/what-to-make-of-british-values-in-the-aftermath-of-brexit/