Who Says… There Is A Standard?

Part of the series Who says…
Written by Léo Gaumont, published on 2015-01-12.

Can a standard expectation be applied to a hundred billion unique individuals?

Building on a foundation that God is, that He created the universe and that He ultimately is responsible for our children’s being, should provide ample substance upon which to build our faith. This lengthy series will identify the secular thinking that has eroded that faith.

Bible Reference: Rom. 12:2

How many times have we heard a distraught mother say “am I doing enough?” or “my child(ren) are behind” or “I am not sure they are where they are supposed to be”. Even more disturbing is that we have heard fathers ask these very questions of their wives in their sincere desire to make sure the children are best prepared for their future. These are questions and concerns that unduly pressure moms to perform, but to what end and how will this be measured? By comparing ourselves and the children to the standard, of course!

We are constantly reminded that there is a standard of expected achievement. Educators strive to attain to these standards, but the funny thing is, I have yet to meet a teacher who can define or describe this standard. A standard is defined as “a level of quality or attainment” or as “an idea or thing used as a measure, norm or model in comparative evaluations”. These definitions are somewhat easy to understand when applied to industry, such as comparing computers or cars, where “standards” can be applied to thousands of units of similar inanimate items, but they lose their application when we attempt to make them fit human beings. The reason? There is no standard human being!

Consider this. The world has over seven billion people and no two are alike. We may even venture to guess that in the history of the world, there may have been over a hundred billion people born and each one had a unique fingerprint. How can we apply a standard of any kind to this? Is it possible for all to be able to attain the same level of proficiency in English, math or music? Can everybody attain a certain expected level of understanding of politics, religion or philosophy? Can everybody fix their own broken items? Where is the standard here? There is none! How can there be? Who came up with this idea?

Standards can only be applied to people if we believe that all people are the same and they are obviously not. If we believe that people are all accidental products of nature and as such are all similarly empty containers we can assume they that need to be programmed towards a standard. If that is the case, is a standard a measure of how well a child is doing with a program or how well the program is doing at standardizing the child?

Who says that there is such a thing as a human standard? Those who would have us all behave, believe and become what is expected of unquestioning clones. Stay away from these standards and take your measure of achievement from the Bible. From this perspective, all children are indeed where they are supposed to be.

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