Is Indoctrination of Children Child Abuse?

I saw a headline today.

“Is Indoctrinating children with militant feminism child abuse?”

Even if it’s not legally feasible to enforce it, YES. It’s child abuse.

But the issue is even broader. Indoctrinating a child with anything is child abuse.


Because indoctrinating means suspending reason. Reason and thinking are the future adult’s means of survival and coping.

By impeding rational capacities in childhood, the stage is set for self-esteem problems/anxiety disorders (at best) in grown adults, and (at worst) substance abuse, mental disorder, suicide or other calamities.

It’s true that children are not yet able to reason, at least not like adults.

But it doesn’t follow that you don’t teach children to think and reason, to the best of their ability, as they move (biologically and cognitively) toward young adulthood. It’s the central purpose of childhood education. Children are supposed to learn how to think. Instead, they generally get indoctrinated.

While rules and telling children what to do are an inevitable part of child-rearing, rule-setting should be done simultaneously with an eye to teaching children to think. “What do you think makes sense to do there? Why that? Why not another option?” Every child should reach adulthood being accustomed to rational, objective thought. Otherwise, he or she will feel helpless.

Thinking is the opposite of indoctrination. Indoctrination, whether it’s about feminism, environmentalism, religion or anything else, means conveying to a child, “Think this. I have thought it out for you. There’s no need to question. Don’t you dare question.”

That’s precisely what today’s leftist totalitarians have done to government-run schools. And THAT is a form of child abuse.


Follow Dr. Hurd on Facebook. Search under “Michael Hurd” (Rehoboth Beach DE). Get up-to-the-minute postings, recommended articles and links, and engage in back-and-forth discussion with Dr. Hurd on topics of interest. Also follow Dr. Hurd on Twitter at @MichaelJHurd1, and see “Michael Hurd” on MeWe.