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July 7, 2011
Skool 4 Foolz: Liberal textbooks too liberal for liberals
Posted by Staff
You should check out Chapter 5 "Skhool 4 Foolz" in ZING! after reading this story.

Robert McCartney writes:

Rose, who lives in the Frederick County, Md., community of Knoxville, took her complaint to her school board and became a conservative media heroine, with two appearances on Fox News. Conservative commentator Glenn Beck, who interviewed her on Fox before he left the network, signed her copy of the book: “To Cindy. Remain Standing!”

I wasn’t about to take Rose’s word that the book was biased, so I drove to her home and looked for myself.

She was absolutely right. The 165-page book — “Social Studies Alive! Our Community and Beyond” — is unmistakably slanted to the left in numerous places.

It pushes pro-environmental views — by devoting four pages to the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska, for example. It suggests that health care and child care should be free community services, without noting that the public must pay taxes to support those benefits.

“Child care is important, but it is not free for most people in the United States. Families have to pay for child care. It can be very expensive,” says Page 104. “In some countries, child care is a public service. For example, in Denmark and Vietnam, child care is free or costs very little. This makes it easier for parents to work. Do you think child care should be a public service in your community?”

This controversy puts me in an awkward place, because I applaud the goals that the book promotes. Save the planet? Sign me up. Improve public services? I’m for it. Study foreign success stories? Point me to them.

However, in previous columns, I beat up on Virginia elementary schools for using an error-riddled textbook that included a Civil War falsehood promoted by some conservatives. It claimed mistakenly that African Americans in large numbers carried arms for the pro-slavery Confederacy.

So, fair-mindedness prompts me to give equal time to the other side. And there’s no doubt that if I were a conservative, this book would enrage me just as much as it does Rose.
07/7/11 8:39 AM
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