We don’t need no EDUCATION(!)

I am pleasantly surprised to see the song Another brick in the Wall still famous in college festivals and campuses. “Another brick in the Wall” is a protest song against “social conditioning” in the schooling system – the sort that makes you something that you weren’t meant to be. The song is best known for the line “We don’t need no education” which has achieved cult status within youth culture. I was surprised to see the spectatorial exuberance at the mere mention of the song at Saarang – the cultural festival of Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Chennai.

I wish the rock band had sung Korn’s version of Another Brick in the Wall. Firstly, I love Korn’s unique(?) sound. Secondly, the song was their final single with guitarist Brian “Head” Welch. Brian left korn after having decided to follow Jesus. Thirdly, I love part three of the Korn version.

I don’t need no arms around me
I don’t need no drugs to calm me
I have seen the writing on the wall
Don’t think I need anything at all
No, don’t think I need anything at all

It’s a message, everyone needs to hear today – loud and clear. What is education doing to this world? We find better ways to kill each other. We find ways to destroy ourselves. Look around. The writing on the wall is clear.

And then, education has changed a lot since Roger Walters sang ” We don’t need no education”. I guess, there’s a lot of freedom – Technology has made it possible to make our voices heard and our choices spoken. There’s so much freedom to say what’s on our mind that we can say “whatever” and get away with it. Pronouncements in science repeatedly pushes religion out of everyday life. Professing to be wise, we are only educated fools. God has been pushed away from our lifespace and kids grow up to despise religion. I guess, its time to bring back the line ” we don’t need no education” alive.

We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teachers, leave them kids alone.

It’s important to see the writing on the wall. Urban road rage is at an all time high. Even kids gun down their classmates after a brawl. It’s time to bring back “education” – as it was meant to be – to learn (and unlearn) behaviour. It’s a pity we don’t study to learn. We study to earn. True, education must be able to bring transformation within and without. And, there’s one thing that I find “jarring” about this song – another brick in the wall. We are not just another brick in the wall. We can make a difference. We can influence change. All this can happen when we have seen the writing on the wall. Have you seen it?

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