Archive for May 6, 2006

Free Higher Education

May 6, 2006

kozol.jpgOne advantage of living in a two-college town is that all kinds of brilliant people come to visit. They stand at podiums and offer slices of their wisdom, almost always for free. When I am smart enough to show up, I learn so much. Yes, even a bird can learn. So you have no excuse.

I attended Jonathan Kozol’s public lecture at Carleton College on Friday and I am so glad I made the time. Essentially, as he persuasively argues in his latest book, America has developed two separate systems of public education — one that educates children, most of them white, in the ways we wish for and expect; the other system educates most everyone else in ways that should make us all ashamed.

Kozol, a National Book Award-winning author, spoke passionately and articulately. He used humor and offered unabashed views on racial inequality and what he called “evil apathy” in America. I think Shame of the Nation is one of those rare volumes everyone should read — especially if you happen to be a member of Congress.

The book is available at River City Books. Click here for a list of other Kozol-authored titles.