On Perpetuating Ignorance

I witnessed recently a busy grandmother telling a toddler “no, no” when the latter was trying to grab at a curious looking empty drinking glass. The toddler persisted, which caused the grandmother to threaten a time-out. Aside from the obviously silly threat of punishment for being curious, the greater crime committed by the grandmother in my opinion was the perpetuation of ignorance. The toddler’s curiosity is evidence that she was ignorant of what the empty drinking glass was all about, and like the natural scientist that all children are, she just had to find out. The grandmother stood in her way, in effect, perpetuating her ignorance about some small part of the universe. Why do I consider that the greater crime? Because I value knowledge and wisdom and consider the perpetuation of ignorance to be foundational to some of the greatest atrocities the human race has ever seen. Thankfully I was on hand to assist the toddler in satiating her curiosity and become that much more knowledgeable about how the universe works. And that’s today’s two cents.


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Founder and editor of Everything-Voluntary.com and UnschoolingDads.com, Skyler is a husband and unschooling father of three beautiful children. His writings include the column series “One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” and “One Improved Unit,” and blog series “Two Cents“. Skyler also wrote the books No Hitting! and Toward a Free Society, and edited the books Everything Voluntary and Unschooling Dads. You can hear Skyler chatting away on his podcasts, Everything Voluntary and Thinking & Doing.