Michelle wrote a post about her disillusionment with the current kind of kollel lifestyle promoted in Bais Yakov schools and the community leaders. This is my response to her:
"But a comment from my last post reminded me of to what extremes some teachers or school programs have gone to convince us that Kollel is the only way."
Oh, please say that it was me. ;) I feel like I've done a service when I get people to think about things.
Think about this - if the kollel guy who learns all day and is supported by daddy has ten kids and they all grow up to do what their father does - where does the money come from to support the ten grandkids? The system is economically untenable.
Furthermore, how well can a guy really "learn" about things if he's so divorced from reality? How can he form intelligent opinions if he doesn't know basic history or science or any extra-Talmudic studies? The 'Gedolim' are the case in point where they've done nothing but 'learn' their whole lives and then they say absurd things and pontificate about Indian hair and microscopic bugs in the water.
People should be interested in educating themselves, in the fullest sense of the word, not mindlessly 'learning' gemara which cannot give you an understanding even close to full comprehension of all that's out there.
There isn't any greater understanding in a "learning family." Just greater rates of conformity to what the "glorious leaders" consider the ideal Jewish lifestyle. See, the moment you begin to seriously think for yourself that's the moment you'll be freed from the sociological compulsion to conform. You are an individual! Act like it.