How Our Children Were Programmed to Experience Oppression

By Kenneth Happel

During the current riots I watched as huge numbers of our children and young adults expressed their overwhelming hatred for our society. When queried as to why they believed their version of events and their required solutions, they often expressed that they experienced the pain of oppression personally and, because of that personal experience, were immune to argumentation against opposing views and demands.

This answer greatly worried me because more than 50 years ago I was exposed to psychological techniques designed to allow activists to imprint beliefs into subject members of their movements. I learned this technique during a course in “Revolutionary Psychology” that was training class for social justice activists. They called this psychological imprinting process “consciousness raising”.

Consciousness raising is a set of psychological indoctrination theories propagated in the 1960’s to aid in the destabilization of the American political environment. It is effective in creating profound experiences of personal alienation and anti-societal group identity. During the Cold War, it was taught to and propagated widely within academic circles and protest movements within the United States.

Consciousness raising has been a mainstay of political action efforts designed to define the American public in terms of racism, sexism, prejudice, and cultural arrogance and explains some of the more problematic behavior, statements and beliefs expressed within the American Left. For decades I have been watching its effects slowly grow until they have finally resulted in open rebellion. Every American needs to understand how it works, what it causes and how to deprogram its psychologically imprinted and captive persons.

Have you ever noticed that the Progressive Left sees all its opponents as stupid, ignorant or less evolved? The entire concept of “woke” in our current society is an expression of this. Have you ever noticed that their politically correct speech forces all conversation to occur on their terms and within their context? Have you noticed that they endlessly repeat the same mantra of explanations with the expectation that the ignorant will finally awaken from their ignorant and unevolved state? Have you noticed a common attribute of anyone who disagrees them and all political opponents is that they are stupid; in fact, so stupid that they cannot receive the truth of their beliefs. These are signs that you are dealing with a consciousness-raising-imprinted individual, and even such a society.

The great danger is that they have not arrived at their beliefs through logic or reason that can be countered with logic or reason. When cornered with facts they respond “I know it happens.” Whatever “it” happens to be. Why? Because they believe that they themselves have experienced “it” and arguments from those that haven’t experienced “it” are invalid. You will notice that their experience universally causes them to be alienated from the oppressive society they are in. They identify the enlightened by the use of politically correct language and that those who don’t use the language are clearly either ignorant or an oppressor. They will give you personal examples of how they see their oppression occurring daily, all around them, and that the society itself must be changed if it is to end.

The basis of consciousness raising is that there are real problems that exist in every society. The activist uses these problems as an access point to imprint an explanation for the problem and prove its validity by causing a personal experience that is believed to prove the explanation’s truth. The goal is to alienate the individual from their own personal identity within society and eventually to alienate them from the society as a whole. A person alienated from society, in this way, sees the society as inhuman and impersonal. They see the society’s supporters as venerating evil and in dehumanizing terms. Since they have no allegiance to the society and see it in dehumanizing terms, they feel no pain or remorse at causing pain or suffering to the society or its members.

So how does it work? If you are a Progressive activist you believe that American society is evil and needs to be replaced with your solution, a Socialist, Marxist or Communist social structure and economy, a solution that brings social justice to the people. Social justice is defined as redressing some complaint about the society that can be identified as belonging to a group of citizens who, through their opposition to the problem, form an identity. This group identity is taught as the core instrument in a solution that, when alienated from the society, is seen as the force that will cause the sick society to redress their issue. So the trainer forms an explanation of why their problem and their identity is caused by the very nature of their society, its oppression and its lack of social justice. You build up an argument that there are societies in the world that have redressed the issue and that know their current society is unjust. You invite them to join the enlightened of the world in solving their problem by joining the international movement to redress all social injustice. This is the explanation that consciousness raising is going to validate. This is why all “problems” are seen by Progressives as having the same cause and the same solution.

There are seven steps in consciousness raising programs (you might see this as a lesson plan for school):

  1. Identify a set of behaviors or experiences common to an individual that can be associated with the problem (they must be common so that the individual will experience them often);

  2. Identify those behaviors or experiences as being expressions of social or cultural pathologies;

  3. Explain that the social or cultural pathologies are:

    • Widely recognized outside their society as fundamentally unjust, corrupt or evil, and

    • A fundamental attribute of the sick society the individual belongs to (stress the individual is an unwitting part of an inherently sick/evil society);

  1. Distinguish or define an identity for their problem group as a social justice doctrine that is against the social or cultural pathology. Stress that by joining the group and its shared alienation your are removed from the guilt and conflict of being part of the pathological society;

  2. Reinforce the group identity as being defined by those that see the common behaviors or experiences as expressing the social or cultural pathologies You state that those who have escaped from the social or cultural pathology have discovered that seeing the common behaviors or experiences are pervasive proof that the social or cultural pathology exists. You then reinforce the explanation that behind the problem is the fact that their society is sick and devoid of social justice and needs to be reformed or replaced by the principles of the explanation;

  3. Explain the reason they can now see the social or cultural pathology all around them while the vast majority cannot, is caused by their growth through education. That through their elimination of ignorance they have become more aware or more enlightened than those who consciousness has not yet been raised;

  4. Create and instruct the use of a politically correct form of expression as a societal sign of the individual’s intolerance of the social or cultural pathology (this public acknowledgment of opposition to the pathology causes an increased sense of separation from the pathological society and increased sense of belonging to those who are superior and correct or justified).

The practical results of consciousness raising are:

  • The individual has a direct experience of alienation and separation from their society;

  • The individual is permanently aligned with the proposition that their society is pathological and must be changed, often at any cost;

  • The truth of the pathological explanation is a perpetually reinforcing lesson triggered by every occurrence of the common behaviors or experiences;

  • The individual has a feeling of superiority and worth connected with their allegiance to the group and its social justice doctrine that is against the pathologies and the unconscious society;

  • A fundamental belief that education leads to higher level of intelligence and enlightenment only when it results in the acknowledgment of the social justice doctrine, the use of politically correct language and the support of or membership in the anti-pathology identity group and its social justice doctrine; and

  • Any opposing view is, therefore,

    • Pathological;

    • Ignorant, a product of poor education, an uninformed and unreasoned position;

    • An unevolved, unenlightened human consciousness, conscience or morality; or

    • Stupid, the result of deficient intelligence.

Next we will examine how it has been used and how to break its effects.

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