PLOWBOY: It's true most educators are jumping on the "relevance" bandwagon. And yet a less didactic approach is certainly appealing to the young person who wants to try new directions in learning.
BERRY: What I'm saying is that the young have had lots of praisers and lots of detractors but few critics which is really a way of saying they've had few friends. A curious phenomenon of the youth culture thing — and it's full of curious phenomena — is these old sycophants who hang about its skirts and try to touch and kiss the hem of its garment. We see white-haired old men stand up at the university and abdicate their responsibility to the young on the grounds that they (the teachers) have not received the word of God.
Charles Reich is one of the best examples I know of a teacher who's copped out completely by becoming a sycophant of his students. I mean I'm completely against this idiocy of his that says surfboarding is an acceptable way of life. That's utterly absurd. The Greening of America is full of false apologies and excuses for people's failure to be responsible. Surfboarding is not a way of life. People are free to think it is because the care and responsibility for society has been broken up and parceled out to the experts. People who make a life of surfboarding are living off other people. They're leeches of the affluent society. They're parasites of a parasite. As long as we have people making some kind of amusement a way of life, you'll find they're getting their support from something destructive, like strip-mining or needless "development" or war-making.