(NaturalNews) Once bastions of freedom, where civics courses required students to learn about how to be good citizens and guardians of liberty, the progressive left has used the public school system to indoctrinate our children into thinking that their country is a model of excess and evil.
In addition to teaching our kids that, in the words of Russian President Vladimir Putin, America is "not exceptional", education administrators, teachers and the leftist unions they are beholden to have also used the public school system to force compliance to an all-powerful central authority.
Case in point: the growing trend in public schools to use technology to biometrically track our kids, so administrators know where they go and what they do every second of the day.
An example of this can be found in schools' increased required use of biometrics to fulfill otherwise mundane tasks, like purchasing school lunches.
America's public schools - breeding grounds for government compliance
Once upon a time, that was done with U.S. currency or, at a maximum, some sort of punch card that the cashier holed after each purchased meal. Nowadays, as in Muscogee County, Ga., students must have their palms scanned at the end of the lunch line in order to "identify the student and therefore allow cafeteria cashiers to access a student's meal account," according to Government Technology.
More from the site:
The scanners have near-infrared technology, the same type that is used for Nintendo Wii video games. When a hand hovers over the scanner, it can identify the individual by his or her vein pattern below the skin, allowing the student to electronically pay for the meal.
Each scan takes about four seconds and according to an announcement from the school district, purchases conducted with the scanners have about 99 percent accuracy.
Cool, huh? Sure it is. Just ask school Nutrition Director Marian Bone (no, that's not a typo). She says this is the first year the district's nine high school cafeterias are using the technology - and, gee, so far kids and parents alike just love them.
"They are so excited," Bone said. "They think we're so modern."
According to GovTech, when kids registered for school this summer, "the devices were available to take high-resolution infrared photographs of the students' vein patterns in their palms." Each image was then dutifully recorded in yet another database and will most likely be either made available to some government or policy agency without consent at a future point, or to hackers who seek to exploit the students' biometric data.
The scanners, which use Fujitsu PalmSecure hardware, are about 400 bucks apiece. Not bad for massive violations of privacy.
And what's more, they're accurate. "According to Fujitsu, the scanners identify vein patterns against the pre-registered vein patterns to authenticate the individual," said GovTech. "So far, technology has helped the lunch lines go faster since students no longer need to show physical meal plan identification cards to cashiers."
Better, cheaper, faster. Of course.
In days past, students sometimes used other students' identification numbers to obtain a lunch, since students had electronic meal accounts. Parents electronically submit money to a student's meal account through the school district's online meal payment portal - which, no doubt, can also most likely be hacked.
"Bone said that since the new scanner program better identifies each individual, it will keep students from purchasing meals using accounts that don't belong to them," said GovTech - even if, say, one student doesn't have any cash on his or her electronic account and a friend wanted to help them out by buying them lunch for the day.
According to previous reports, the scanners have also been deployed in Pinellas County, Fla., schools.
Our kids are being conditioned, folks
So, what's wrong with this picture?
As constitutional attorney and head of the Rutherford Institute, John Whitehead, writes in America's Schools: Breeding Grounds for Compliant Citizens:
Once looked upon as the starting place for imparting principles of freedom and democracy (in our government) to future citizens, America's classrooms are becoming little more than breeding grounds for compliant citizens.
The moment young people walk into school, they increasingly find themselves under constant surveillance; they are photographed, fingerprinted, scanned, X-rayed, sniffed and snooped on.
Between metal detectors at the entrances, drug-sniffing dogs in the hallways (during police raids) and surveillance cameras in the classrooms and elsewhere, many of America's schools look more like prisons than learning facilities.