POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. – Proponents of Common Core national standards say they want to encourage critical thinking.

New rotten appleBut they turn and run when they become the targets of the critical thinkers.

That’s obviously why Common Core supporters in New York have cancelled four remaining forums on the topic, organized by the Parent Teacher Association and attended by state Education Commissioner John B. King.

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Video surfaced from the first of the scheduled meetings showing a rowdy crowd hammering Common Core for a variety of reasons, including the potential for intrusion into student privacy through data mining, the harm the unproven standards may cause students, and the fact that Bill Gates is among the main proponents of the program.

The video claims King spoke for an hour and forty minutes while the audience was allowed to speak for only 23 minutes. And when King attempted to address some statements from the crowd, the group would have none of it and shouted him down.

King and the PTA reacted to the protests by cancelling the other four “town hall meetings.”

“While our goal was to provide an opportunity to learn and share, based on review of the initial October 10 meeting, the Commissioner concluded the outcome was not constructive for those taking the time to attend,” the New York State PTA posted on its Facebook page.

So instead of allowing the “critical thinkers” who have been researching Common Core for years to have their say, state education officials are turning off the microphone and shutting down debate.

That only happens when an insecure bureaucracy can’t stand up and tell parents and teachers why they’re doing what they’re doing. The bureaucrats clearly want a compliant citizenry that will accept whatever they recommend.

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But perhaps this meeting was a step in the right direction – at least nobody was arrested this time for having the nerve to speak out against Common Core.