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Commentary

Prophetic Statements

Opposing Statements

John Goodlad

…educators must resist the quest for certainty. If there were certainty there would be no scientific advancement. So it is with morals and patriotism. [1]

It is my expectation that Teacher Education for Democracy and Social Justice will become a rich resource for continuing this multi-layered conversation-from democratic belief to democratic action-that is the hallmark of educational renewal. [2]

Benjamin Bloom

…a student attains ‘higher order thinking’ when he no longer believes in right or wrong. A large part of what we call good teaching is a teacher´s ability to obtain affective objectives by challenging the student’s fixed beliefs. …a large part of what we call teaching is that the teacher should be able to use education to reorganize a child’s thoughts, attitudes, and feelings. [3]

Bill Ayers

I walked out of jail and into my first teaching position—and from that day until this I’ve thought of myself as a teacher, but I’ve also understood teaching as a project intimately connected with social justice. [4]

Scriptures

Supporting Statements

Dallin H. Oaks

Unfortunately, other educators deny the existence of God or deem God irrelevant to the human condition. Persons who accept this view deny the existence of moral absolutes. They maintain that right and wrong are relative concepts, and morality is merely a matter of personal choice or expediency. [5]

D. Todd Christofferson

In a complete reversal from a century ago, many today would dispute with Alma about the seriousness of immorality. Others would argue that it’s all relative or that God’s love is permissive. If there is a God, they say, He excuses all sins and misdeeds because of His love for us—there is no need for repentance. Or at most, a simple confession will do. They have imagined a Jesus who wants people to work for social justice but who makes no demands upon their personal life and behavior. [6]

James E. Faust

I wonder how much we offend Satan if the proclamation of our faith is limited only to the great humanitarian work this church does throughout the world, marvelous as these activities are. When we preach the gospel of social justice, no doubt the devil is not troubled. [7]


  1. John Goodlad / Education for Everyone: Agenda for Education in a Democracy, Woods Learning Center, pg. 6
  2. John Goodlad’s forward to “Teacher Education for Democracy and Social Justice,” Nicholas Michelli and David Lee Keiser
  3. Benjamin Bloom, psychologist and educational theorist, “Major Categories in the Taxonomy of Educational Objectives,” pg. 185
  4. Bill Ayers at the World Education Forum in Caracas, Venezuela in front of Pres. Hugo Chavez
  5. Elder Dallin H. Oaks, Ensign, October 1992, pg. 60
  6. Elder D. Todd Christofferson, April 2010 LDS General Conference
  7. President James E. Faust, Liahona, November 1995, pg. 3

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