Saturday, March 13, 2010
Texas’s Education Board Voted To Reflect Their Far Right Influences With Engineer Of Knowledge’s Interpretations Notes:
The Far Right Factions of the Texas State Board of Education succeeded Friday in injecting conservative ideals into social studies, history and economics lessons that will be taught to millions of students for the next decade.
Teachers in Texas will be required to cover the Judeo-Christian influences of the nation's Founding Fathers, (Even though it has been shown that this is not accurate many times) but not highlight the philosophical rationale for the separation of church and state (As if this was not a major part of our Constitution.) Curriculum standards also will describe the U.S. government as a "Constitutional Republic," rather than "Democratic," (The South when succession from the North was a Constitutional Republic, our Founding Fathers set up a Democracy in our Constitution) and students will be required to study the decline in value of the U.S. dollar, including the abandonment of the gold standard. (The Republican President Richard Nixon took us off the gold standard in the early 1970’s)
"We have been about Conservatism versus Liberalism," said Democrat Mavis Knight of Dallas, explaining her vote against the standards. "We have manipulated strands to insert what we want it to be in the document, regardless as to whether or not it's appropriate."
Following three days of impassioned and acrimonious debate, the board gave preliminary approval to the new standards with a 10-5 party line vote. A final vote is expected in May, after a public comment period that could produce additional amendments and arguments.
Decisions by the board can affect textbook content nationwide because Texas is one of publishers' biggest clients.
The Ultra-Conservatives wielded their power over school classroom subjects this week, introducing and rejecting amendments on everything from the civil rights movement to global politics. Hostilities flared and prompted a walkout Thursday by one of the board's most prominent Democrats, Mary Helen Berlanga of Corpus Christi, who accused her colleagues of "Whitewashing" curriculum standards.
By late Thursday night, three other Democrats seemed to sense their futility and left, leaving Republicans to easily push through amendments heralding "American Exceptionalism" (What ever that in the Hell This Is Suppose To Mean) and the U.S. free enterprise system, suggesting it thrives best absent excessive government intervention.
"Some board members themselves acknowledged this morning that the process for revising curriculum standards in Texas is seriously broken, with politics and personal agendas dominating just about every decision," said Kathy Miller, president of the Texas Freedom Network, which advocates for religious freedom.
Republican Terri Leo, a member of the powerful Christian Conservative voting block, called the standards "World Class" and "Exceptional." (To me it sounds like there needs to be a new elections to purge the INSANE from the Education School Board)
Board members argued about the classification of historic periods using the older B.C. and A.D., rather than B.C.E. and C.E. like the rest of the world does now; and whether students should be required to explain the origins of the Israeli / Palestinian conflict and its impact on global politics (They Will); and whether former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir should be required learning (She Will).
In addition to learning the Bill of Rights, (With Modified Interpretations from their perspective) the board specified a reference to the Second Amendment right to bear arms in a section about citizenship in a U.S. government class. (Everybody Must Own Guns, sung to the tune of Bob Dylan’s, “Everybody Must Get Stoned”)
Numerous attempts to add the names or references to important Hispanics throughout history also were denied, inducing one amendment that would specify that Tejanos (“Mexicans? Mexicans? We don’t need no stinking Mexicans in our history lessons,” spoken like Poncho Via) died at the Alamo alongside Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie. Another amendment deleted a requirement that sociology students "explain how institutional racism is evident in American society." (“As always, it those darn Darkies fault causing all this trouble”)
Democrats did score a victory by deleting a portion of an amendment by Republican Don McLeroy suggesting that the civil rights movement led to "unrealistic expectations for equal outcomes." (Everyone know that all those Black Folks just can’t keep up mentally with all of us White Folks who are so much superior….What were they thinking in the 60’s?)