Homeland Security links Homeschoolers to Terrorists


By Berit Kjos - September, 2004

Articles | Reinventing the World | Homeschooling Under Fire | Homeland Security


"The public school establishment hates homeschoolers. They've smeared the movement as a conspiracy of conservative Christian zealots.... They've painted homeschooling parents as uneducated and negligent. And now, under the guise of preparing students for a violent terrorist attack, educators in one public school district are casting homeschoolers as bomb-detonating militants."[1] Michelle Malkin

On September 20, the Department of Homeland Security sponsored a mock assault on a school bus. The fictitious terrorists who supposedly planted a bomb on a school bus were portrayed as a group of homeschooling radicals labeled "Wackos Against Schools and Education." The Muskegon Chronicle described this unforgettable role-playing scenario dramatized by local students:

"Muskegon County officials want to be prepared in case the unthinkable happens here. So it was that 25 students ... found themselves crammed at odd angles into a school bus that had been turned onto its side Tuesday morning.

"The scenario for the exercise on Durham Road near Holton-Whitehall Road began after a domestic terrorist group exploded a bomb in the front of the bus. The student victims wore makeup that simulated blood, burns and other injuries. Each wore a tag with a made-up name, age, type of injury and other information.

"Many of the volunteers were from theater class. 'We all carried on and got into character as best we could,' said Kristin Smith, 17, a Reeths-Puffer senior. They screamed and banged on the inside of the bus, waiting to be rescued. Some wouldn't get out alive. Others were assigned to die on the way to the hospital....

"Organizers tried to make the exercise as realistic as possible, complete with distraught parents arriving at the scene."

Do you wonder why Homeland Security officials would sponsor an emergency preparedness drill that painted homeschooling families as bomb-planting terrorists?  We may never know the full answer, but recent history of "prevention" tactics and hostility toward traditional values exposes some frightening facts many Americans prefer to ignore.

The script for this disaster drill was written by Daniel Stout, chief deputy for emergency services with the Muskegon County Sheriff's Department. After choosing to label peaceable homeschooling families (rather than Islamic radicals) as the terrorist killers, Stout was told that the event would be offensive -- but he chose to ignore the warning.

In a report titled "Homeschoolers Portrayed as "Terrorists," Michigan's Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) adds the following details:

"On Monday, September 20, the Muskegon Chronicle reported on a Department of Homeland Security sponsored terrorism drill involving the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District and the Muskegon County Emergency Services. A mock attack would occur on a public school bus. The simulated attack would come from a fictitious radical group called 'Wackos Against Schools and Education' who believe everyone should be homeschooled.

"We immediately called the Muskegon Chronicle and explained how this is offensive to millions of people who have chosen to exercise their right to homeschool. Homeschoolers have never committed violent acts against public schools or any terrorist acts. Comparing us to the most dangerous people in the world is a terrible insult and a travesty."

Michael H. Bozym, Superintendent, Muskegon Area Intermediate School District responded with this apology:

"The Muskegon Area Intermediate School District (MAISD) shared the disappointment of others when we learned the September 21, 2004, emergency preparedness drill referenced home-schoolers as the fictitious group responsible for a mock disaster. We apologize.... A sample scenario was required in order to receive the necessary funding to stage the event. The Muskegon Area Intermediate School District and our local schools did not construct the scenario, but participated with other county agencies, hospitals, and emergency responders in conducting the drill.

"This exercise was meant to sharpen the skills and response time of our emergency services personnel, but was unfortunately clouded by the choice of this fictional group.... We sincerely regret offending home school educators."[3]

Daniel Stout added his apology for the bias expressed in his script:

"In the world today, Homeland security is a very important issue. The training of our nation to respond to the many threats we face is of utmost importance. As part of a full scale homeland security exercise on September 21, 2004 in Muskegon, I wrote about a fictional group and fictional scenario for the exercise. This fictional group and scenario made reference to fictional people who are against schools. This fictional group and scenario was not meant to offend any home school students. It has nothing to do with any home school population...."[3]

It has a lot to do with the homeschool population! It would have been politically incorrect to link fictional terrorists to Muslim                                                                                                                                                   radicals, but homeschooling families have become a permissible target for all kinds of hostile media assaults. Like Christian pastors and fathers, they face endless mockery and ridicule in movies, slanted news reports, and public school curricula. They simply don't fit the new vision of the 21st century community.

In light of our Supreme Court's new tendency to seek legal models in European law, the following examples show an ominous trend:

Judges try to snatch homeschoolers - Families escape homeland to keep from losing children to state: "Germans who choose to homeschool their children are coming under increasing pressure from the state with some families escaping the European Union nation to keep from having their children taken from them.... A few weeks ago, HSLDA reports, a German homeschool family escaped to Central America under threat of a judge who wanted to take custody of the couple's school-aged child. ...

    "Another German homeschool family lost a recent court case when the judge ruled that the parents had no rights to have input into the manner and method of education in government schools. In this case, hard-core pornography reportedly was being used to teach the children in their German-language course. The judge also ruled that fundamentalist Christians who do not want their children to attend the government schools are not protected by the nation's constitution." [See Ban truth - Reap Tyranny]  


Homeschooling Under Fire. "This view, which likens homeschooling to the criminal act of child abuse, was to become the pillar upon which Iowa’s homeschool crisis was founded. A corollary view holds that homeschooling parents are potential 'closet child abusers,' and that the State must conduct routine surveillance of this atypical, 'abnormal' family. Many social reformers held the cynical notion that it was implausible that parents would desire to stay home and educate children out of genuine affection, devotion, and sincere conviction. The nasty inference was made that there must be some sinister ulterior motive for wanting to keep the children at home."


Sitcom Plans to Lampoon Home Schooling (2003): "A new cable TV sitcom pokes fun at home schoolers, pushing the myth that children who get their education at home lack sufficient 'socialization' skills. The WB network will be airing a 30-minute comedy called The O'Keefes...." [This show ended in June 2003]


Children flee homeschool cop: "'The homeschooled boys have been on edge,' says their father Roger, since a truant officer came to the family's front door Oct. 3 and warned, 'I could have your children taken away.'"

Why the hostility toward homeschooling?

While homeschooling parents are less likely to fight back, there are other reasons why change agents in education and government agencies would want to discourage home education. Homeschooling families are unlikely to applaud today's march toward a government controlled system of "lifelong learning" in collective thinking and pluralistic values. They are more likely to trust the Bible and the U.S. Constitution than to trust the growing body of UN treaties. They prefer factual history to earth-centered myths and biased social studies curricula. And they avoid participation in the Hegelian dialectic process that immunizes adults as well as children against God's unchanging truths.[4]

In other words, their "separateness" doesn't fit the global plan for "continual change" and worldwide solidarity. Remember Al Gore's sobering warning at a 1991 Communitarian conference in Washington DC:  "Seeing ourselves as separate is the central problem in our political thinking."[5]

Gore's statement was quoted in the book, Spiritual Politics, co-authored by Corinne McLaughlin, a follower of the Dhjwal Khul, the spirit guide channeled by occultist Alice Bailey. Lest you think McLaughlin too "far out" to be relevant, know that she was the first Task Force Coordinator for President Clinton's Council for Sustainable Development. She also taught her dialectic mediation strategies at the Department of Education, Pentagon, and the EPA.[6]

"There really is only one sin -- separateness," she states in her book. "War is more likely to spring from rampant nationalism, ethnocentrism, and intolerant religious fundamentalism -- all extreme and separative attitudes."[6]  Her solution? The same as Clinton's: "What is needed as a cure for separateness is a deep sense of community -- that we're all in this together."

Professor John Goodlad, an influential "change agent" in the global as well as national arena, would agree. He warned his fellow educators that "most youth still hold the same values as their parents.... If we do not alter this pattern, if we don't resocialize... our society may decay."[7]

"Paradigm shifts are complicated," added Chester Finn, who helped Lamar Alexander market America 2000 to the public. "But shift we will."[8]

It has happened before

After the bombing of the Oklahoma Federal Building in 1996, government and media leaders found an opportunity to blend a varied mix of "malcontents" into the singular group labeled the Radical Right. Day after day, the media's accusing pens pointed to suspected foes of American togetherness -- those whose "enraged rhetoric" had created a national "climate of hate and paranoia." They ranged from "rabid" radio hosts and armed "extremists" to Pat Robertson and concerned parents.

"Their coalition," said Time, "included well known-elements of far-right thought: tax protesters, Christian homeschoolers, conspiracy theorists... and self-reliant types who resent a Federal Government that seems to favor grizzly bears and wolves over humans..."[9] All were implicated, for all had questioned the government's growing control over local schools and personal lives.

"There is a dedicated, very well organized, very well financed movement in America that is very anti-public schools, very anti-government...." said Lew Finch, the superintendent of schools in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. "The ultimate example of that sentiment is the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City."[10]

Finch's main target seemed to be Christian parents, those who supposedly want "all schools" to "be controlled by the church -- their church." Like many progressive educators, he felt hampered by parents who resisted two key parts of the new education system mandated through President Clinton's education program, Goals 2000: (1) the psychological strategies for changing their children's beliefs and values and (2) their government's plan to expand the educational bureaucracy through national standards and tests that emphasize attitudes, not academics.

Across the country, educators battling "the agenda of the Radical Right" express similar paranoia toward concerned parents. In state after state, leaders organize conferences to identify opposition groups, analyze their tactics, and plan counter-action. Many follow the suggestions from Ronald Havelock's book, The Change Agent's Guide to Innovation in Education. "[T]ry to identify resisters before they become vocal and committed," he wrote. "Resisters, like innovators, should be judged for relative sophistication and influence."[11]

A report titled "Primer on the Extremist Attacks on Public Education," teaches educators to do just that. Prepared by the California Teachers' Association, it also lists specific strategies for defeating "Extreme Right Groups" so that "the majority's moderate, more inclusive values may be promoted and protected...."[12]

Homeland Security targets potential domestic terrorists

To understand the massive Homeland Security system, you may want to read "Homeland Security and the transformation of America." Notice its emphasis on prevention. As in the new push for "mental health" (i.e. pluralistic values and collective thinking), terms and goals are redefined. "Prevention" as used in security efforts shifts the public emphasis from catching actual terrorists to identifying potential terrorists. And who might they be? Who could one day become terrorists?

The White House's National Strategy explains the part played by the FBI-led Joint Terrorism Task Forces (JTTF) in Homeland Security: "We will build and continually update a fully integrated, fully accessible terrorist watch list."[13]

One of JTTF's 56 FBI field offices -- located in Phoenix, Arizona -- printed a three-fold flier several years ago. The front panel states, "If you encounter any of the following, call the Joint Terrorism Task Force." An inside panel lists suspects which justifiably include "Hate Groups" such as "Skinheads, Nazis, Neo-Nazis (usually recognized by tattoos), KKK, White Nationalists...."  But it also listed some surprising suspects:

 Right-Wing Extremists

   -'defenders' of US Constitution against federal government and the UN (Super Patriots)

   - groups of individuals engaged in para-military training


 Common Law Movement Proponents

   - No driver's license

   - Refuse to identity themselves

   - Make numerous references to US Constitution

   - Claim driving is a right, not a privilege

   - Attempt to "police the police"


 Single Issue Terrorists

   - Lone individuals"[14]

If you wonder why "lone individuals" would be listed, read "The UN Plan for Your Mental Health." Remember, "separateness" does not fit today's vision of a united world characterized by solidarity and universal participation in Unesco's "lifelong learning" and dialectic process.

The call for prevention opens the door to unthinkable methods. In "Legalizing Mind Control," you saw that President Bush's Freedom Commission on Mental Health would involve continual assessments and monitoring of "human resources" for signs of broad and ambiguous signs of unwanted personality profiles. Homeschooled children who might be considered loners, independent thinkers, unwilling to compromise or who prefer to work alone rather than in groups would be suspect.

This vision of solidarity inspired socialist leaders decades ago. "It is urged upon the citizen that it is wrong for him to oppose economic, social, and political change," wrote Dr. Lewis A. Alesen in his 1956 book, Mental Robots"He is admonished, urged, threatened, and cajoled by all manner of techniques both overt and covert to adopt a 'positive' attitude and to work for... the adoption of these proposed harbingers... of the perfect and classless society."[15]

The framework for control is in place. So is the process for managing, molding and monitoring “healthy communities” and “healthy people” around the world.

Strategies that produce change

It's easier to change minds through an emotional fictional scenario than to engage the public in a factual debate. It's more effective to discredit non-conforming citizens by linking them to violent anarchists through suggestions or role-playing drills than to give logical answers to legitimate questions. History has shown that nothing crushes earnest but "separative" groups faster than well-planned disinformation and false accusations.

Role-playing simulations and fictional scenarios feed lasting suggestions to individual minds as well as to the public consciousness. These impressions take root and mold public values and planned resentments. That's why educational change agents use shocking stories to evoke the strong feelings needed to implant new values into the minds of our children. Whether imagined or real, events and stories that stir strong emotions build convincing mental models. [See "Brave New Schools: A New Way of Thinking"]

This involuntary and unconscious process is part of a century-old plan for change. [See Chronology]. Professor Raymond Houghton described the vision in a book titled, "To Nurture Humaneness," published in 1970 by the ASCD, the curriculum arm of the National Education Association. He wrote, "...absolute behavior control is imminent.... The critical point of behavior control, in effect, is sneaking up on mankind without his self-conscious realization that a crisis is at hand. Man will... never self-consciously know that it has happened."[16]


Storytelling and role-playing in community settings are vital to this process, for they create persuasive group illusions (and delusions) through imagined experiences that stir strong feelings. As Harvard Professor Chris Dede, a global leader the development of education technology programs, writes, "Sensory immersion helps learners grasp reality through illusion."[17] (See "The Power of Suggestion" and "Brainwashing & How to Resist It")

Biblical response

We shouldn't be surprised. The Bible tells us that "the whole world is under the control of the evil one," and he has always despised the Biblical God (in contrast to the more "positive" 21st century god designed to please the public). That's why Jesus warned us that hostility and persecution are normal to the true Christian life. "If they persecuted Me," He told His disciples, "they will also persecute you... because they do not know the One who sent Me." (John 15:20-21)

Our challenge is to follow God's narrow way in the midst of the world's pressure to conform to its broad way toward "continual change" and global oneness. Christian homeschooling parents have made a wise but costly choice to guard and guide the training of their children. Their path will be increasingly difficult as they face new regulations, rising opposition and growing threats to their freedom. But our God -- the almightly King of heaven and earth -- assures us that He will indeed guard and guide those who trust and follow Him.

"...in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:37-39

For more insights into this battle, read these reports and articles:

On this website: Homeschooling Under Fire, Three Myths of Homeschooling, and Homeschooling Alert

Outside links: We Stand For Homeschooling, Homeschoolers new political force, and No child left untested?


1. Michelle Maulkin, "Anti-homeschooling bigots strike again," townhall.com, September 22, 2004 at http://www.townhall.com/columnists/michellemalkin/mm20040922.shtml

2. Lisa Medendorp, Mock terror exercise helps county practice emergency operations plan", September 22, 2004The Muskegon Chronicle, September 22, 2004 at http://www.mlive.com/search/index.ssf?/base/news-5/109586432686410.xml?muchronicle?NEM

3. Homeschoolers Portrayed as "Terrorists," the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) in Michigan

4. See The UN Plan for Your Mental Health, Clinton's War on Hate Bans Christian Values, An International Information System, Brainwashing in America, Trading U.S. Rights for UN Rules, What Happened to Parents' Rights?

5. Corinne McLaughlin and Gordon Davidson, Spiritual Politics (New York: Ballantine Books, 1994),147.

6. See "Local Agenda 21" at our web site. Corinne McLaughlin listed her experiences while conducting a workshop attended by Berit Kjos during a 50th anniversary celebration for the United Nations titled "Celebrating the Spirit" at the University of California at Berkeley, June 19-21, 1995.

7. John Goodlad, "Report of Task Force C: Strategies for Change," Schooling for the Future, a report to the President's Commission on Schools Finance, Issue #9, 1971.

8. Chester Finn, Jr., "The Biggest Reform of All," Phi Delta Kappan (April 1990); 592.

9. Philip Weiss, "Outcasts Digging in for the Apocalypse," Time (May 1, 1995); 48.

10. Anne Carothers-Kay, "School chief fighting the radical right," Des Moines Register, May 4, 1995.  

11. Ronald G. Havelock, The Change Agent's Guide to Innovation in Education (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications, 1973);122.

12. CTA Human Rights Department and CTA Division of Governmental Relations, "Primer on the Extremist Attacks on Public Education," June 1994, page 13.

13. "Domestic Counterterrosism," The Department of Homeland Security, page 26. White House website page: http://www.whitehouse.gov/homeland/book/sect3-2.pdf.

14. The author has a copy of the "Joint Terrorism Task Forces" flier.

15.  Lewis Albert Alesen, Mental Robots (Caldwell, ID: Caxton Printers, 1960); page 10-11.Mental Robots, 10-11

16. Raymond Houghton, To Nurture Humaneness, ASCD (curriculum arm of the NEA), 1970.

17. Professor Chris Dede, The Transformation of Distance Education to Distributed Learning. This link at http://www.nib.unicamp.br/recursos/distance_education/dede.htm is no longer active.

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