Panel suggests Texas students study conservatives

Conservatives are fun folks when it comes to public school instruction. First creationism as pseudo-science and now pseudo-history.

"AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas public school students should learn about Newt Gingrich and other conservative politicians but not liberals, according to the first draft of proposed standards for the state’s high school history books.

The omission has angered liberals — and some conservatives who feel students should get a look at both sides.

“We ought to be focusing on historical significance and historical figures,” state Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer, D-San Antonio, told the San Antonio Express-News in Friday’s editions. “It’s important that whatever course they take, that it portray a complete view of our history and not a jaded view to suit one’s partisan agenda or one’s partisan philosophy.”

The State Board of Education appointed review committees of current and former teachers as well as “expert reviewers” to help shape the standards document. The 15-member board, which includes 10 Republicans, will decide the standards next spring, influencing how history, civics and geography books are written.

The first draft recommends students studying U.S. history since Reconstruction be able to identify “significant conservative advocacy organizations and individuals, such as Newt Gingrich, Phyllis Schlafly and the Moral Majority.”

Gingrich helped lead House Republicans to their 1994 takeover of Congress. Schlafly founded the conservative Eagle Forum and became a leading opponent of the Equal Rights Amendment. The Moral Majority formed in the late 1970s as an evangelical Christian organization.

Board member David Bradley, R-Beaumont, expects the draft to pass a preliminary vote along party lines. Terri Leo, a Republican board member from Spring, doesn’t.

“It is hard to believe that a majority of the writing team would approve of such wording,” Leo said. “It’s not even a representative selection of the conservative movement, and it is inappropriate.”

Another board conservative, Ken Mercer, R-San Antonio, thinks students should study both sides to “see what the differences are and be able to define those differences.”

it’s about time. Sorry but I have been in education for far too long (specifically colleges) and know all too well that there is a definite liberal bias. I have heard too often about those horrible conservatives. School and educators are supposed to present all sides of an issue and allow the students to …get ready now…use their heads to come to their own conclusions!!!

What are you concerned about? If they hear all perspectives they will simply be well informed instead of underinformed as they are now.

I think this is history with a decidedly conservative tinge. There is no way Phyllis Schlafly is a major figure in the history of this nation.

I think an effort to be bi-partisan would be better.

Great idea!!!

I can remember asking my (rather liberal) civics teacher why it was that only Democrats start wars? He didn’t like the question, but he had to admit it was true. This was pre-Iraq


If it is true that the panel called for “students should learn about Newt Gingrich and other conservative politicians but not liberals,” then their recommendations are silly. However, it is equally silly for a liberal to say “I think an effort to be bi-partisan would be better.” I’ve seen no evidence in the history classes my children have attended of any attempt to be “bi-partisan.”

One of the primary books my son was to read in AP US History was A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn. There was no “bi-partisan” counterbalance. I provided him one by having him read A Patriot’s History of the United States. The very liberal teacher sure wasn’t going to do that, and most teachers out there are liberal.

Yes, I remember Bob Dole coming up with that inaccurate factoid in 1976. To that statement I always ask: “Democrats bombed Pearl Harbor?”

I had history classes in the sixties and I can show you lack of bi-partisanship.

The point here is that let’s not start out slanting history. That does no one any good.

Come on, Beau…we all know that Roosevelt was behind that! I read it in a book somewheres… :rolleyes: :stuck_out_tongue:

BTW…I do generally point out the fact that neither the Democratic nor the Republican Party are an “anti-war” party. Both will use our military when deemed necessary for our defense. Pacifists would do best to vote for a third party.

I think the anti-war Left from last election have learned that fact by now…

The source is just a commentary, without the information actually proposed, or the context in which it is proposed to be presented. So we don’t really know anything other than what the article writer wants us to think about it. If it’s a history of late 20th century political movements, then perhaps the likes of Gingrich and Schlafly ought to be included, along with MLK, McGovern and the like.

One has to question, though, whether there should be any “partisanship” at all in most any history text, as “partisanship” is presently presented. Many schoolbooks nowadays are simply presentations of political, philosophical or sociological points of view and do not give the student any real understanding of history’s significant events.

This makes no sense because Newt Gingrich is a big government liberal. You should be happy.

Well said. One of the advantages of the AP US History class I took in high school (many moons ago) is that the teacher avoided over use of text books and had us read original material from the era. He always had us look at the events from multiple angles. For example, when studying the Dred Scott decision, we debated the case from both sides. He also had us asking more questions, rather than regurgitating a poorly written summary from a textbook.

The term ‘conservative’ has changed dramatically since Reconstruction. Newt Gingrich may be a leader in a modern day conservative movement, but he is nothing like conservatives of 1877 (who were often Democrats), or 1900 or 1920 or 1930 or … well you get the idea.

I am a new teacher, but I have always loved this kind of teacher and hope to do these things in my classroom (granted I’m EC-4 certified right now). My hope is that none of my student would know where I stand on an issue and that I can be suffiently neutral to allow them to come to their own conclusions

I hope you are very successful, as we need good teachers. :thumbsup: A lot of classrooms are devoid of critical thinking. These skills need to be taught to our students, so they can reason things out. Too many adults just swallow the pabulum put out by our major media sources and pundits on both ends of the political spectrum.

Beau, learn history before posting. The major reason for the Japanese bombing Pearl Harbor was FDR’s policy of denying them oil from the dutch east indies. FDR pushed them into the position of needing to attack us

Now if you want pseudo-history look at the worthless dreck in “history” books these days. I was helping my daughter research her paper on WWII and text book mentioned not a single battle, the coverage of the war was limited to a brief mention of the holocaust and how awful it was the blacks had to serve separately from whites.

No mentions of the heroism of the Americans, British, Poles, etc. No mention of a single battle, no Bulge, no Midway, No Anzio. Nothing.

Not a single mention of the reasons behind the war, nothing tying WWII to the ends of WWI. Nothing.

That is not history. That is propaganda and crappola.

Japan didn’t have to attack us. They wanted to oil to further their agression in the Western Pacific. Japan could have negotiated better trade agreements in Asia for the resources it wanted to sustain the population of Japan, instead, they decided to invade China and cast their sights on other nations. This accellerated a huge demand for oil to keep their military machine running. If the militants in Japan were not in power, IMHO, Pearl Harbor would not have happened. Pearl Harbor was Japan’s doing, not FDR or any other Democrat in Washington.

I think a little diplomacy (which they were in the middle of) would have been better than a bombing raid. The Japanese had been at war in Manchuria since 1937 and the US had been shipping scrap steel and other needed materials to them. Denying them oil was not throwing down the gauntlet – Japan had a warlike administration.

Understand the point: It is a misnomer to state that the Democrats caused America’s entry into the wars of the twentieth century.

Did Bush cause 9/11?

It should have mentioned Newt’s armed services heroics.

Oh, my bad! Unlike Dave Dinkins, Doug Wilder, Charlie Rangel, Ted Kennedy, Al Gore, Mike Dukakis, Bobby Rush and Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Newt never served.

What does Newt’s lack of military service have to do with his historical significance? No one else has brought up armed service records in this thread. :shrug:

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