Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Texas School Books: Novel History

A couple of civil rights organizations are preparing to sue the Texas School Board for absurd changes required of textbooks used in their schools. This is one of those horror films produced by the far right religious nuts that not only affects Texas, but has far-reaching application because Texas buys so many text books. Because of that purchase power, the books are offered to school districts all over the country.

Here’s some of what your children could be studying in the future. It comes from here.

Jefferson Removed: Board member Cynthia Dunbar wants to change a standard having students study the impact of Enlightenment ideas on political revolutions from 1750 to the present. She wants to drop the reference to Enlightenment ideas (replacing with “the writings of”) and to Thomas Jefferson. She adds Thomas Aquinas and others. Jefferson’s ideas, she argues, were based on other political philosophers listed in the standards. We don’t buy her argument at all. Board member Bob Craig of Lubbock points out that the curriculum writers clearly wanted to students to study Enlightenment ideas and Jefferson. Could Dunbar’s problem be that Jefferson was a Deist? The board approves the amendment, taking Thomas Jefferson out of the world history standards.

Church and State: “I reject the notion by the left of a constitutional separation of church and state,” said David Bradley, a conservative from Beaumont who works in real estate. “I have $1,000 for the charity of your choice if you can find it in the Constitution.”

State Religion: The Board refused to require that “students learn that the Constitution prevents the U.S. government from promoting one religion over others.”

McCarthyism Redux: [Requires] that the history of [Sen. Joe] McCarthyism include “how the later release of the Venona papers confirmed suspicions of communist infiltration in U.S. government.” Those papers are Russian documents.

One-sided Politics: High school students will learn about leading conservative groups from the 1980s and 1990s, but not about liberal or minority rights groups.”

Sex Ed: There will be no discussion of the difference between sex and gender in classrooms.

No Mexicans: An amendment that would require books to tell the story of Tejanos (Texas Hispanics) at the Alamo was killed. This is now all white boys fighting. Truth: the white boys and the Tex-Mex breteheran were fighting to preserve slavery, brought by them from America.

There's more, including the elevation of Ronald Reagan (the second worst president of the 20th Century) to god-like status and the replacing of a number of congressional icons, men of vision, with Newt Gingrich, for heaven's sake. The world is ending.

(Book photo: BBC Mobile.)

1 comment:

  1. My mind boggles.

    But if we can get word to the Texas students that they're not supposed to know stuff, they will seek out that forbidden stuff.