17 March 2010

Let's Look At The Originial Documents

For all those academics who have been critics of the Texas textbook controversy, I've seen ne'er a one refer to the source documents of those historians and social studies professors who reviewed current curriculum and made recommendations (though most of the critics seem to be unaware of that fact) to the board members (elected representatives I might add) who ultimately make the decisions regarding the textbooks.

For those of you who are interested in the facts, you can go to the links below and read the comments made by the "experts." (Interesting that many of the "academics" voicing criticisms never bothered to go to the source. Rather revealing in a number of ways, isn't it?)

Social Studies Expert Reviewers:

David Barton, President, WallBuilders
Review of Current Social Studies TEKS

Jesus Francisco de la Teja, Professor and Chair, Department of History, Texas State University
Review of Current Social Studies TEKS

Daniel L. Dreisbach, Professor, American University
Review of Current Social Studies TEKS

Lybeth Hodges, Professor, History, Texas Woman's University
Review of Current Social Studies TEKS

Jim Kracht, Associate Dean and Professor, College of Education and Human Development, Texas A&M University
Review of Current Social Studies TEKS

Peter Marshall, President, Peter Marshall Ministries
Review of Current Social Studies TEKS

16 comments:

Corey Meyer said...

Ok, I will bite. Peter Marshall Ministries...first off I have no idea what qualifications this guy has to detail history, but he really lost me when he refered to the list provided under the inventors or scientists (3rd para. from the end) as a "pathetic" list. I agreed with many of his critics to that point, but his arrogance was shining a bit too much on that one. The other one that bothered me was his bashing of Cesar Chavez.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

I believe, by "pathetic" he means that more noteworthy individuals were left out to make room for less noteworthy, in his opinion. That's the purpose of his submission, to provide his views and recommendations. Disagree if you like, but that is what he is supposed to do. And I would agree with him that the Franklin/Chavez comparison is a bit much. I don't know enough about Chavez to answer definitively, other than to say many believed him to be a communist sympathizer as he employed much of the class warfare tactics and rhetoric of communists. I would suspect that is at least part of Marshall's criticism.

I would think you'd like Rev. Marshall - he's very much a proponent of the "holy cause" myth.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Regarding his qualifications, he is a well-respected Christian minister who has written and lectured on America's Christian heritage for decades. No, he doesn't have a degree in history but then neither did Shelby Foote.

Corey Meyer said...

True, but I don't think Shelby Foote was being consulted for what should be included in students textbooks.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

But would he have been qualified? In my world, results and accomplishments tell me a whole lot more about one's ability than does the fact they've completed a degree.

Corey said...

On David Burton of WallBuilders...does he understand that there is more history beyond the founding generation? I believe that his religious driven history supports an agenda most people do not want their kids taught in school...they need to be taught this stuff in church.

Corey said...

Maybe qualified to discuss chapters on the War of the Rebellion...but there is more history to be taught than just that time period.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Corey:

"I believe that his religious driven history supports an agenda most people do not want their kids taught in school."

And what do you base that on?

Why did you only single out the 2 Christians for criticism?

Are you saying Christians don't have the right to bring their views into the public square? You don't think all the global warming crap being taught in schools is "agenda driven?" You don't think the fact that the NEA endorses and promotes Saul Alinsky's book is "agenda driven?"

Nothing is taught in a complete vacuum. It appears to me that it's not that you object to an agenda, you just object to one which is in opposition to the entrenched, NEA agenda.

Corey said...

Actually Richard, I did look at Pete Marshall first due to the ministries aspect, but then I took it from the top...I have not heard of WallBuilders before. So I was actually not singling out the two christian views first...it just happened that way.

It's funny that you bring up the christian deal...All the people who seem to have a problem with public schools say that we are teaching anti-religion in the schools and we need to stop and put religion back into the schools. If the public school system is so horrible, why do you want us to now start teaching your kids about religion?

I did a quick survey of the union teachers in my building. Only 2 have heard of Alinsky: 1 conservative, 1 liberal. None have ever actually read his book(s).

What do you think about the book for conservatives that used Alinsky's book as a template...as mentioned on the NEA site?

Don't get me started on global warming or climate change...I teach Earth Science as well and I don't push global warming, but we have had some good discussions about who is right and wrong or in between.

Anonymous said...

Why is it when every other social group in this country interprets history it is called diversity but when someone who is a christian interprets history their must be something evil and diabolical a foot?

TG

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Anon:

Because the diversity argument is a diversion, which is why they don't want Creationism taught in schools. They know Darwinism can't stand a robust debate - it will lose, so they use ad hominem attacks to exclude those views they fear.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Corey:

You would also agree with Barton's views on the cause of the war being solely due to slavery. I'm a little surprised you've not heard of him.

"All the people who seem to have a problem with public schools say that we are teaching anti-religion in the schools and we need to stop and put religion back into the schools. If the public school system is so horrible, why do you want us to now start teaching your kids about religion?"

Actually, I don't. I think private school or homeschooling are much better options. But teaching Darwinism is anti-Christian in the most fundamental way.

Alinsky as a template? I'm not familiar with that book, so I would not want to comment. I would want to see it first, though there is really nothing new about turning the strengths of one's opponent against him. I'm concerned that Alinsky was a radical leftist who wanted to overturn the American way of life.

"I teach Earth Science as well and I don't push global warming, but we have had some good discussions about who is right and wrong or in between."

I'm glad to hear that. Recent revelations call into serious doubt what was already flawed science. Thanks for your input.

Corey said...

So how old do you believe the Earth is? Did Humans and Dinosaurs co-habit the Earth?

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

Corey:

I can make this easy for you. I believe in the literal account of creation as told in the book of Genesis.

I was an ardent Darwinist until my early twenties when I was converted and became a Christian. After having studied both sides of the argument I found, quite frankly, the claims of Darwinists to be illogical and based on much more faith than the story of creation.

MSimons said...

We have a diverse group overseeing our TEKS.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

It sure looks that way to me Mike.