Keep Your Kid Conservative

Watch out!  Going to school might ruin a perfectly good conservative child.

That’s the message this morning from pundit and school-founder Dennis Prager.

In the pages of National Review Online, Prager gives conservative parents advice about how to keep their kids conservative.

The danger is clear, Prager warns.  Those who believe in “traditional American values” must fight a “war” with “the media and the schools” for control of their children’s minds.

Kids must be told repeatedly and explicitly about the propriety of conservative ideas.  Not only that, they must be intellectually inoculated against the sorts of left-wing propaganda they will be subjected to in college.  One way to do that is to get high-schoolers to spend some time in the world of work before college.  By seeing a slice of the real world, young people will be protected from the drivel that passes for academic thought these days, Prager claims.

Another option is to have young people spend a year or so after college studying their faith.  After all, he says, leftism itself is an influential faith on college campuses.  Students who are grounded in their own religious traditions will have a better chance of resisting the siren call of college leftism.

In general, Prager writes, young people who are taught character, not given a false sense of “self-esteem,” have the best chance to remain sensibly conservative.

Overall, Prager tells conservative parents, don’t fret.  “It is not all that hard,” he says, “to produce a son or daughter able to withstand left-wing indoctrination.”  It just takes some doing.


Leave a comment


  1. “Kids must be told repeatedly and explicitly about the propriety of conservative ideas.”

    So they’re not brainwashed.

    • Ha! I wouldn’t presume to speak for Mr. Prager, but I imagine he might say that it’s not brainwashing when it is something a parent says to a child. In that case, it is passing along values. Just a guess…

  2. Donna

     /  November 12, 2013

    Adam, what do you think about the idea of a gap year?

    • I don’t agree with much of Mr. Prager’s commentary, but I agree that a year (or more) between high school and college can be terrific. Too many students head into college without thinking about their reasons for going. By doing something of use for a year or so after high school, young people can learn a lot about life before they go for more schooling. Just my humble opinion. What do you think?

  3. Donna

     /  November 13, 2013

    I agree, and think it’s a good idea for some students for that reason. My only concern, and I can only speak for my own kids, is that they would lose momentum and not have as much of a desire to go to college eventually.

  4. Agellius

     /  November 21, 2013

    “Kids must be told repeatedly and explicitly about the propriety of conservative ideas.”

    I understand that this might come across as brainwashing. But the thing is, conservative parents feel like kids are constantly “told repeatedly and explicitly about the propriety of” liberal ideas, whether in high school, college, movies or television. (Which to us feels a lot like brainwashing as well.) We feel like we’re swimming against the tide, and it requires telling kids repeatedly about conservative ideas just to give them a level playing field in their minds.


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