From a reader:
Hi Fr. Z,
While I think you would appreciate the entire list of 10 that Victor Davis Hanson writes about today, #1 goes to the crux of what you’ve been talking about for years. Here is the link:
Here is the relevant excerpt:
1. Four years of high-school Latin would dramatically arrest the decline in American education. In particular, such instruction would do more for minority youths than all the ‘role model’ diversity sermons on Harriet Tubman, Malcolm X, Montezuma, and Caesar Chavez put together. Nothing so enriches the vocabulary, so instructs about English grammar and syntax, so creates a discipline of the mind, an elegance of expression, and serves as a gateway to the thinking and values of Western civilization as mastery of a page of Virgil or Livy (except perhaps Sophocles’s Antigone in Greek or Thucydides’ dialogue at Melos). [Nah... stick to Latin.] After some 20 years of teaching mostly minority youth Greek, Latin, and ancient history and literature in translation (1984-2004), I came to the unfortunate conclusion that ethnic studies, women studies–indeed, anything "studies"– were perhaps the fruits of some evil plot dreamed up by illiberal white separatists to ensure that poor minority students in the public schools and universities were offered only a third-rate education.
Again, I want to thank you for inspiring me to teach my young boys’ Latin.
Rem acu tetigerunt!