Monday, January 25, 2010

Texas bored of education

The militantly ignorant State Board of Education of Texas has struck again. They have barred children's book author Bill Martin Jr. from being included in the state's social studies curriculum. Martin is the writer of such books as Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? and another book which taught kids how to say the Pledge of Allegiance. Pretty dangerous stuff, wouldn't you say? We Texans certainly don't want our kids exposed to anything that subversive!

The capital crime for which Martin was expunged from Texas' list of "acceptable literature," though, is that he has the same name as a philosophy professor at DePaul University who wrote a book called Ethical Marxism and it seems that the members of the "bored of education" are too lazy and incompetent to do the research that would reveal to anyone with access to Google that these men are two different people. Instead, they just barred all authors named Bill Martin.

This group of people none of whom. to my certain knowledge, has a child in the public school system in Texas, narrows the range of intellectual freedom for school children and teachers every time they meet. If they could manage it, they would completely outlaw any teaching of evolution in science classes and, in fact, they may finally be successful in that. They have already essentially rewritten history by outlawing any books that do not fit their extremely right wing views of the subject. Which is how they came to bar an author who wrote a book about Marxism - except that he didn't.

And, anyway, what in heaven's name would be wrong with allowing a Texas schoolchild to read a book about Marxism? Why should they not be exposed to all philosophies in order to judge for themselves what is best? What is the Texas bored of education so afraid of?

3 comments:

  1. Bill Martin has to be a pretty common name - at least as ubiquitous as "John Smith" or "Bob Jones." Do a little research, people! Seriously, are they paid to do this job ?!

    And instead of banning perfectly legitimate reading materials from Texas campuses, maybe worry more about the literacy rate among Texans - child and adult alike - and do something about that!

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  2. Too right, troutbirder. It is pathetic.

    Whatever they are paid for the job they do, Susan, it is TOO MUCH! And, I agree, getting kids to read, period, should be the focus, not restricting their access to reading material.

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