By Paula Bolyard
An Oprah-inspired program in public schools described by critics as an intrusive, emotionally manipulative effort with the laudable goal of ending bullying, cliques, gossip and other such behaviors, has been presented to a million students in 400 cities in 47 states. Challenge Day, the subject of the 2010 MTV series, “If You Really Knew Me,” promises to provide schools and communities with “experiential programs that demonstrate the possibility of love and connection through the celebration of diversity, truth, and full expression.” But critics contend Challenge Day, an independent, nonprofit program, can do more harm than good and pose a danger to emotionally fragile students, lacking privacy safeguards normally expected in counseling programs…….
The trainers are well-trained to be adept at “working the crowd,” pushing their emotional buttons – building people up and breaking them down, praising them and insulting them, inflating them and deflating them, saddening them and gladdening them, scaring them and relieving them, agitating them and relaxing them. … Through it all, people will predictably bond with each other – just like inmates or hostages in a prison, Marine recruits at boot camp, or any group of people put into a helpless position of stress.......Read more at.....
My Take – When I was in the service some of my colleagues went through simulated prisoner of war camps in order to be prepared for the worst….and from the stories….it was not a pleasant experience. I never had to endure that, but I did sit in on a lecture as to what happens in POW camps. I no longer remember the figures, but it took a lot more guards in German POW camps during WWII to guard American prisoners than it did at N. Korean POW camps during the Korean War. Why? That’s what the army wanted to know and what they found was the Koreans practiced psychological control. And it worked! What’s being practiced here sounds startlingly similar to what was practiced in N. Korean POW camps, including group confessions where everyone reveals their deepest and darkest secrets. It starts out all warm and fuzzy - because confession is good for the soul - as described in this article, but as time goes by everyone starts to look sideways at each other, because now they “see” who everyone really is and they don’t like what they see. The real goal was to create a lack of trust in fellow inmates, and it worked. Picture this becoming part of Common Core. Imagine Common Core being compulsory!