In 2017, I wrote an article asking whether teachers "have a front row seat to American decline." I noted that when teachers get together to discuss education, they have a common complaint: young Americans are "hollowed out." It is not just that many students can't recognize America's leading politicians; it's not just that they lack knowledge that you might expect them to have; it's not just that they appear to have no interest in acquiring wisdom. That would be bad enough, but it goes far deeper, and is far more worrying. They seem bereft of an understanding of what it means to be fully human. What do I mean by that? I mean that they seem mysteriously barren of the behaviors, values, and hopes from which human beings have traditionally found higher meaning, grand purpose, or even simple contentment - and little that is worthwhile has filled this vacancy.
- Jeremy S. Adams, Hollowed Out: A Warning about America's Next Generation (2021)
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