One of my favorite Leftist nut cases, Amanda Marcotte, had an article on one of favorite Leftist nut case websites, Alternet, describing what she perceived to be a conservative assault on education. No- this was not an indictment of parental choice, the one area where Marcotte and her ilk do not think choice is a desired outcome, nor was it about charter schools or school vouchers. Instead, she listed five recent examples.
The first was Oklahoma’s decision to ban Advanced Placement US History classes. Let’s set the record straight here. What Oklahoma and other states object to is the new advanced placement history curriculum devised around that strange Leftist creation called Common Core. Advanced placement classes are very important since they can result in college credits which lowers college costs. The writers of the new curriculum claim that teachers have broad leeway in teaching the course. But, do they really? The test required to pass the course and thus get potential college credit is geared towards the suggested text books. While it is great that we want our students to be critical thinkers and to express that critical thought, the criticism the College Board and the writers of Common Core wants us to focus on is a criticism of the United States and our history. Lost from the curriculum is a discussion of the many great thinkers who founded this country. In effect, they have become nothing but a collection of elderly white men perpetuating the stain of slavery.
Marcotte claims that Oklahoma’s attempt is to substitute American exceptionalism for the less flattering aspects of American history. And this writer fails to see the problem with this. Apparently it isn’t enough that college academia, which is populated by Leftist instructors teaching a Leftist view of America, has captured the minds of college students, but they now want to move the brainwashing to an earlier stage- high school or younger.
No one on the Right denies that there are some skeletons in the closet of the United States. But, more than a half a million Americans- about 624,000 in fact- died putting an end to slavery. While many blacks died in the aftermath of that Civil War, many whites also suffered in the name of civil rights in this country. On balance, the good in America far outweighs the negative, but to the Left they have the equation backwards. This is not, as Marcotte claims, an attempt by the Right to whitewash history with lies about America’s past. Prior to the new curriculum, slavery, Jim Crow laws and the like were taught throughout Black History Month (a whole month across all subjects except math) while Social Studies courses taught about Manifest Destiny and its effect on Indians as well as the Trail of Tears and other policies that affected Native Americans. In short, it wasn’t broken, but the Left felt the need to fix it. So one needs to question: Who has the true agenda here?
Her second example is Scott Walker’s budget which calls for a $300 million reduction in spending from the state. The Left is also upset with his attempt to change the university’s mission to one of workforce development from one of—well, what is it? Her claim is that Walker is simply using the university as an ideological bargaining chip. Of course, she leaves out a couple of important points. First, the goal of any college should be workforce development, especially state colleges and universities. Second, each campus is being granted greater autonomy with which to spend the money they receive. They will have to make the tough choices- give professors a raise or expand the Transgender Studies Separtment. Third, and probably most importantly, the University of Wisconsin system has a $2 billion endowment from private donors and alumni. That is not even counting the amount of money pumped into the system by private enterprises funding research and development in a variety of studies. Fourth, these cuts will not cost students a single dime more as tuition is frozen for another two years. If Marcotte is going to use this an example as the Right’s alleged assault on education, she needs to cite all the facts.
Her third point is the alleged redefinition of education as welfare. She bases this on a single comment by an obscure Mississippi state representative. To clear the air, elementary education is not welfare and 99.9% of conservatives probably do not view it as such. She then goes on, by insinuation, that this view pervades red states like Mississippi because they refuse to spend more on education. Elementary education is written into most state constitutions because it was traditionally a purely state function. As such, it is considered an important function, not welfare. Where the Left and Right diverge is in how to deal with substandard schools. The Left argues for more spending; the Right for more choice. Again, why only in this area is the Left opposed to choice? What is it they and people like Marcotte are afraid of that they have to so skew facts to get their point across, or trot out the most extreme comments as being the status quo?
Again, we see this tendency with her fourth example which suggests that should you teach sex education in the state of Kansas, you could be arrested if you stray from the “sex is bad” meme. Admittedly, this was a reactionary response by some state legislators towards a single poster hanging in a single class. One would hope that the Kansas sex education curriculum teaches a balanced approach to the subject and does not adopt the Marcotte view that sex is a carefree, no bad consequences act where those being taught should seek out sexual pleasure because….well, its always pleasurable. But Marcotte and her ilk would probably be the first to rail about an increase in teenage pregnancies unless, of course, each course came with a year supply of consoms and free birth control pills. Amanda Marcotte is preoccupied with sex, a strange observation if one was to look at Amanda Marcotte. Perhaps that explains her preoccupation.
Her final point is an alleged Right wing conspiracy to ban science from science classrooms. This goes back to creationism which is quickly becoming a major 2016 presidential campaign issue. Thus, her discussion comes back to Scott Walker’s non-answer to a question about evolution- a question he subsequently answered in no uncertain terms. What upsets her this time is a bill in South Dakota that would allow teachers to question evolution. In fact, it is Marcotte and the Left that is anti-scientific because in real science one does not come to absolute truisms via a vote of consensus. In real science, there is no consensus because it is a regimen that continuously questions the established status quo. No one denies that the earth revolves around the sun and other scientific tenets. But, the most advanced countries in the world have figured out the balance between God and science. Because the Left and Marcotte deny the role or existence of any deity, they place their entire reliance on science. In effect, they are the ones who are retarded. Scott Walker’s statement that both God and science have formed his thoughts indicates that he has evolved light years beyond Amanda Marcotte.