The Texas Board of Education’s conservative members went on the deep end. As the one of the largest buyers of textbooks in the country, the board changed and re-wrote the history books. Smaller states who have no textbook buying power would essentially have to read and study the new Texas version of history.
|Tools of “Atlantic Triangulation Trade”|
The changes are ideological and distort history, but conservative Board of Education argue they are correcting a long-standing liberal bias in education. Read the running history of this very interesting “culture war” here and if you want details, read the exact changes here.
One of the most controversial changes is to deny the slave trade. The Texas Board of Education wants to refer to the slave trade as the “Atlantic triangular trade”. What the he** is the “Atlantic triangular trade”? What do you call the millions of African-Americans whose ancestors came here as slaves? Descendants of triangulates?
Capitalism can only be referred to as “free enterprise system”, largely because of the negative connotations of the word “capitalism”. Personally I don’t think there is anything wrong with capitalism but they should consider teaching that unfettered greed can be bad for society.
The board has diminished Thomas Jefferson’s role in history because of his belief in the separation of church and state. Students also are required to learn that America’s founding documents were influenced by various intellectual traditions, “especially biblical law,” and principles laid down by Moses. From the tenor of the changes, the board approved the foundation for a fundamentalist Christian theocracy. It would be kinda like Iran, only it would be the right Christian kind. Social conservatives, creationists and religious fanatics who dominate the Texas State Board of Education want to redefine the Constitution as an explicitly Christian document and highlight the role of God in the establishment of the US.
The board approved dropping references to a landmark court case that barred schools from segregating Mexican American students. Joseph McCarthy’s campaign against suspected communists is now to be toned down. Like McCarthy was just a curious senator, right?
The amendments also cast the United Nations in a critical light, with students asked to evaluate whether the UN and its committees undermine US sovereignty – a tune for conservatives. Students would be required to learn about the “unintended consequences” of Title IX, affirmative action, and the Great Society, and would need to study conservative icons like Phyllis Schlafly, the Heritage Foundation, and the Moral Majority.
Maybe we should add that Hussein has weapons of mass destruction so we had to spend trillions on an unnecessary war in Iraq? Nah… that will never make it.
In fact, in the transcripts of the board discussions, they specifically did not want to include President George W. Bush’s controversial 2000 election outcome nor the election of the first African American President Barack Obama. On the other hand, the board added positive references to the Moral Majority, the National Rifle Association and the GOP’s Contract with America.
The board will not even listen to Rod Paige’s plea to reconsider the changes. Paige is the first African-American to serve as education secretary… President George “Dubya” Bush’s education secretary.
More than 1,200 historians and college faculty members from across the nation have signed a petition calling the standards academically shoddy.
The Texas Board of Education voted today his week and approved all of the changes. More