Visit http://www.congresslink.org/print_expert_voice.htm to read “The Voices of Your Classroom are the Voices of Our Future” by Everett M. Dirksen (The Instructor, 1967). In his words:
Political apathy is dangerous in that, while it causes no concrete destruction, it also offers no positive contribution. Couple apathy with the often negative and destructive activities of political dissidents, and we have a cause for concern. When there are in evidence no positive demonstrations to counter draft protesters, flag burnings, looting, and the destruction of private property, we must ask why. Where are the strong and enthusiastic youth we would expect to rally to the defense of their nation and its heritage?
The answer, I believe, lies in apathy. The young, strong voices that we need so much to hear at the present time lie dormant. Youth is indifferent. Our young people are not solely to blame for their lack of commitment and involvement. They are merely imitating the example that most Americans have set for them. “We learn anything,” wrote William Heard Kilpatrick, “in the degree that we live it, in the degree that we count it important to us, in the degree that we accept it in our hearts for use in life.”
Dirksen continues by stressing the importance of teaching good citizenship.