Friday, February 20, 2015

Republican Jackass of the Week

This week it's the entire Oklahoma House Education committee that voted on Monday (11-4) to ban their Advanced Placement U.S. History Class, which is an optional course that allows advanced students to obtain college credits while still in high school.

What's the reason?

They claim the course only teaches students "what is bad about America," and fails to teach "American exceptionalism."

Nonsense. No history course does such a thing. But these self-proclaimed patriots want to whitewash American history so that all of the ugly stuff they'd rather not think about would just evaporate out of textbooks. Poof!

Millions of Native Americans killed upon our ancestors' arrival? Never happened. Slavery? Lynchings? Japanese internment camps? The KKK? Segregation? Voter suppression? Nope. Never happened either.

This whole "American exceptionalism" thing is insanity. We are to teach kids that we are superior to others around the world simply by virtue of having been born here. We are the "city upon a hill" that no one else can match, they like to claim.

Baloney. But it sounds nice in political speeches.

Recent efforts by some rightwing school board members in Colorado attempted to make their history courses "more patriotic" in much the same way. Proposed changes meant "students would only be taught lessons depicting American heritage in a positive light and effectively ban any material that could lead to dissent."

Colorado students walked out en masse.  Oklahoma students and teachers need to do the same.

American history must be taught in its entirety, including the good, the bad and the ugly. And there's plenty in each of those categories.

The Oklahoma House Education Committee -- this week's Republican Jackass of the Week.

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