Don’t Stay in School


My little sisters are in 7th grade. They’re good students. They work hard, they lead group projects, and they spend hours each night on homework. Tonight, I sent them an email encouraging to drop out.

School Hallway

I wish someone had done this for me. Both of my parents worked in government schools as teachers and administrators while I grew up. I was told to work hard, and it would pay off one day. That was a lie. I don’t think my parents *meant* to lie to me, but the reality is that I don’t think they ever considered what they were saying. They were just regurgitating what is popular: “Stay in school. Success in school leads to success in life.” Both of them had done okay, so why wouldn’t I believe them?

I don’t think my parents *meant* to lie to me, but the reality is that I don’t think they ever considered what they were saying.

I swept the awards ceremony in 8th grade. This was a total waste.

I swept the awards ceremony in 8th grade. This was a total waste.

The problem is that neither of my parents knows what would have become of them if they *hadn’t* gone to school. We can’t know what *could have been* because that opportunity is lost. The fact is, both of them lead mediocre lives. They have bouts of excitement when on vacation, but work for them always seemed draining–not uplifting. Both of my parents are workaholics, and I mistook this dedication to their work as interest rather than avoidance. They were avoiding much of the unpleasantness of life by burying themselves in their jobs. They didn’t have to. Both of them had cozy tenured positions and could be as lazy and incompetent as the other teachers around them. What could have become of my father if he became a pro-wrestler, or taught on-the-job carpentry lessons? What could have become of my mother if she finally opened the private schoolhouse of which she always dreamed? I’m afraid neither of my parents aimed high enough, or thought enough of their abilities, to try for their dreams.

Michelangelo said, “The danger for many of us is not that we aim too high and fail, but that we aim too low and achieve our mark.”

200208649-001When I looked at the way my parents’ lives turned out, I decided I wasn’t going to be like them. I was going to follow my dreams. If I failed, at least I would know that I tried. Michelangelo said, “The danger for many of us is not that we aim too high and fail, but that we aim too low and achieve our mark.” Since deciding to follow this path, I’ve produced a feature-length movie sold on Amazon and Wal-Mart, I’ve hosted not one but two nationally syndicated radio shows, and I’ve gone to jail fighting for my freedoms. All before reaching the quarter-century mark. I have amassed a bigger bank account than both my doctor sister and scientist brother, who are 8 and 10 years my elder, respectively. They both hold multiple degrees. I don’t hold one.

Derrick J in tie

I’m now embarking on a new business venture, CopBlock Protection, which will one day serve millions of happy customers by providing a peaceful remedy for the problem of rampant police abuse.

None of this would be possible if I had fallen in line and followed the course laid out for me: Stay in school, work like a dog, obey authority, and die without impacting the world in any significant way.

My little sisters deserve to hear my honest advice: Drop out and follow your passions. Life, especially youth, is too short to waste following the dreams of others. The sooner you start to listen to the tiny voice inside you, the sooner you’ll start living. Don’t wait until you’re old and retired to start. Start now.


Here’s what I wrote them:

Subject: Don’t Stay in School

That is my sincere recommendation to you.

We live in a pivotal time. You have access to the entire world’s knowledge and can carry it with you in your pocket. You really don’t need school. I hope you will consider testing out early and moving on to follow your passions. You are both very intelligent. School can only get in your way. Take it from someone who did very well in school: it’s a complete waste of time. Worse, school teaches you the wrong things: how to conform to your peers and how to obey authority without question.

Here’s a song that came out just yesterday. Listening to it made me cry because it reminded me what I already knew: my childhood and youth were completely wasted by school. I spent my best years filling my brain with useless knowledge and stressing out. It doesn’t have to be that way for you if you learn from my mistakes and heed my warning.

If you love school, great! Stay in school. If you don’t love it, please don’t go. You don’t need it, and it is my opinion that it is actually doing you harm. Well-intentioned people will tell you that your success in school is very important, but listen to me: Your success in school means almost nothing. Don’t wait until it’s over to find that out, like I did. There are ways to completely skip high school after 8th grade. If you want more information on how to do that, I’ll be happy to help you.

Here’s the song:



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  1. Yeah, little sisters: if you follow your shit-for-brains brother’s advice, you too can end up as societal pariahs, hated by community at-large and no real future to look forward to.

  2. i really can’t believe you actually think school and an education is a waste of time.

  3. There is a difference between schooling/educating and learning. Schooling is a concept that came from the Prussian government from the 1700’s and its pretty much the same system used in schools today. The purpose of schooling is to create a population that will die in modern warfare. Around the 1700’s states were having issues convincing their peasant slave populations to replace the mercenary armies of the dark ages and Renaissance times. Peasants who may have had the power of nationalism at their heels will still run in terror from gun fire and artillery fire.. Thus enters public school, a system designed to take away your ability to think rationally and always support the state. Very little has changed since schooling was introduced and the nationalism wars have gone on and on and on.

  4. Public Schools are just brainwashing cult indoctrination centers for the government religion. Some of these meat grinder edu-McAtion factories crank out something like 25% functionally illiterate “students”. They’re all taught valuable “skills” like how to properly worship a flag and pray to the state if not necessarily the less important ones like reading and math.

  5. did you just say math ad reading are not important?

  6. are you arguing against the teaching of things like math, language arts, science and history?

  7. also where did you learn to read and write btw?

  8. i believe my public education and yours seem to be completely different. i don’t remember being taught to worship the state as you seem to believe everyone has. please provide evidence of this training.

  9. A point of confusion

  10. You say you have a larger bank account than your siblings, Doctor sister and scientist brother? Do they live in a rooming house and do they use “go fund me” for any legal problems? Do they own their homes? Do they have children? Big bank accounts are like big egos….

  11. The fundraisers I’ve run are for supporters to voluntarily reimburse whatever I’ve paid out-of-pocket as a reward for doing valuable activism. Regarding finances, I keep costs low and grow my assets. Most people keep their assets low and grow their liabilities. Both of my siblings are in a world of debt. Financial education is not taught in the types of schools they attended. I hope one day I will have enough to support them both should they ever need it.

  12. Do you believe we must follow all laws even if a law is immoral and wrong i.e. would you turn the slave back over to the marshals? Do you believe government is natural authority? Do you believe it is your duty to pay taxes? Do you believe it is honorable to die for United Police States of America? I think if you say yes to any of these you have been programmed by public school to follow the state to follow the leader. Let me guess you think voting makes a difference…….

  13. Please look up the purpose of the Prussian schooling system it has nothing to do with teaching anything you suggested. Those are bonus points and side methods to obtain the overall goal of compliance. Plus mommy and daddy like it that i can read. C.S. Lewis stated in so many words in hi “That Hideous Strength,” that the easiest man to control is the man who is schooled because he has been taught what to read and how to read it . In other words he learn incorrectly but be made to believe that it is correct. This is basically Information Power Theory i.e. those that determine truth and turn it to pin and paper are the ones who control everything.

  14. do you think the current school system has evolved from the original set up or are you blind to that fact?

  15. The way education currently exists is a waste of time an energy, you are better off teaching yourself and attending lectures and watching TED talks, the drawback is you didn’t pay someone for a piece of paper that verifies you did all that, so no one will know how “educated” you are at a glance. Unfortunately employers don’t take the time to properly evaluate a candidate anyway, so you either have the validation in the form of paper or you don’t. The proof is no longer in the pudding, as they say.

  16. I doubt he has a larger bank account than his siblings – how would he know? I could be wrong, but I thought I had read in the past that he has cut off all ties with his family; he is no doubt a huge disappointment and embarrassment to them.

    His life is a series of constantly shifting half-truths, delusional visions of grandeur, and dubious business ventures.

  17. … so back to the drive-through you go, then.

  18. I’m sure Derrick has nothing but well wishes for you and your endeavors, Rob. It’s a shame that the flaws in your own personality, and made unmistakable by your own cruel comments, has revealed that you’re utterly incapable of doing the same.

  19. Cool strawman. You realize people can learn those things outside of the public education system and that the evidence shows public eduction to be rather bad in terms of statistical results as far as how well it educates kids, right? Even if you can’t force others to pay for your kids, you can still take responsibility for educating them yourself since you are you know, their parent, as in an adult who decided to bring a kid into the world or at least had sex knowing that would be a possible consequence. Did you ever consider being responsible yourself for that choice, rather than shifting that burden to “society”?

  20. They are not as high as priorities in the public school system as teaching flag worship. If 75% of high schoolers finish school actually being able to read at “high school level” but they almost all go through the flag worshiping religious ceremonies, praying to the Leviathan etc. What did you do first thing in school, pray to the flag idol or hit the books? First things first, right?

  21. School mostly. I actually knew how to read a little before I started school (could read doctor Seuss at least). In school, I tested into a special program for “Gifted Kids” like the program Ian went into. So hung around the “smart kids” who were building lasers in 6th grade and probably had about the best experience one could hope for in the public school system. Still, I’m sure there are private schools that would be way better than what I had and I’m not really convinced it was “better than” home schooling(like I said I could read before I went to “formal” “class” anyway so I’m not convinced I learned faster in school because of going to class actually).

  22. This is very revealing to me Ed, and I welcome your efforts in bringing this discovery to me. Very insightful on your part. Setting the characteristically ad hominem remarks in your discourse aside, I’ll restate your reply and ask you a few questions.

    By posting such a link, your intent was to imply that the pathopsychological sufferings of your perceived adversaries must be shared by those who defend them.

    From that supposition Ed, could you conclude further that since they must share the same pathologies then they must also share other faults as well? What about ideas Ed? Does it extend to those too? And if they didn’t share the same ideas, would you then give the defender a pass?

    I’ll leave it to you to ponder these questions Ed, and I’ll ask you another.

    Did you know that many of history’s great society-builders have also accused their less cooperative citizens of the same? Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Ceausescu, Pol Pot… I’m sure you’ll note that these individuals are only the more infamous ones. The list in its entirety would be quite protracted. It would be overflowing with names you either wouldn’t recognize, or wouldn’t agree should be on it. I just gave examples of some of the more nefarious individuals that you and I would agree upon.

    What’s notable is that many of the political enemies of these tyrants were often labelled as being psychologically unfit. The diagnosis of psychological pathologies is an excellent tool for tyrants. It can be used to justify any actions tyrants take on their enemies, actions which can easily be codified into law if necessary to justify it. Such laws have allowed tyrants to throw their political enemies into prison, or even have them executed. I wonder which you would prefer, Ed? I doubt that the agents of those tyrants ever asked their victims what they wanted.

    Is my example an unnecessary hyperbole Ed? Perhaps. But only within the scale of the example you posed in your reply. Certainly not in the full span of history.

    Still Ed, I’ll be the better man here and offer you a suggestion. Maybe you should spend a little more of your time broadening your own knowledge by researching the reasoning behind another individual’s opinions rather than focusing only upon what you think is wrong the individual himself. You might become a little wiser from the effort.

  23. why were you not home schooled or sent to a private school?

  24. in high school, we did not say the pledge of allegiance. if you wish to look more into it and verify that, i went to joseph p keefe technical down in framingham mass

  25. a question can not be a strawman as it is asking for clarification of your stand point, not stating what it is. so good try at that, more schooling needed on that front.

  26. That’s not what he is saying. He’s saying we need to weed out the useless subjects that are outdated or simply don’t apply anymore and get up to speed with the things that are really required in adulthood. I for one am promoting psychology as a prerequisite for graduation from high school. That’s what he’s saying.

  27. please show me where he stated that.


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