Those Texas Textbooks Get Around
Posted to Vigilance blog on 12.12.04, by Jim Kennedy
Texas is, not very surprisingly, a place where religious conservatives have their way a lot of the time. This LA Times article, reprinted in the Philadephia Inquirer, paid a visit to Spring, Texas:
This is the home and power base of Terri Leo, a state Board of Education member representing 2.5 million people in East Texas. At the urging of Leo and several other members - who describe themselves as Christian conservatives - the board in November approved new health textbooks for high school and middle school students after publishers said they would tweak references to marriage and sexuality.
Publishers end up making these changes to textbooks to sell in Texas, but of course they print thousands of them, and the same changes end up all over the country.
"I have very little use for this religion-driven curriculum," [director of the American Textbook Council Gilbert] Sewall said. "This confuses sex and moral education."
Here's a peek at what your kids will be learning in school before long:
In a nod to those who believe God created the Earth 6,000 years ago, a sentence saying the ice age took place "millions of years ago" was changed to "in the distant past." Descriptions of environmentalism have been attacked as antithetical to free-enterprise ideals; a passage describing the cruelty of slavery was derided as "overkill."
This is a theme we're going to hear more and more: they think they have a mandate.
Maybe they do in Texas.
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