An Education in Rebellion

Student-Protest-US-History-7Crayola colored cardboard signs adorned with bland, opaque rhetoric meant to embolden the civil disobedient in you.  Matriculated, misguided minions manipulated into ditching an education in order to protest in the name of freedom.  The goal being, that they may learn “unpurified, uncensored” US history in the classes that they are skipping.  A fawning media encouraging the future Gandhi Thoreaus to speak Truth to Power, demonizing the constitutionally empowered (Art 9 Sec. 15 of CO Constitution empowers school boards to take responsibility for curriculum) and ELECTED, conservative school board and its job to take responsibility for curriculum. An entitled teachers union, willfully blind to the value of a pay for performance system; deaf to the calamitous crash of fiscal reality.  Ignorant parents.  Naive teachers…  And community organizing rabble rouser Saul Alinsky maniacally laughing whilst his fingertips touch, framing a fiendish smile.

Here is a video of students explaining the protest.  Please watch this as it really exposes the naive mindset of the students:

What the ongoing protests in the school district of Jefferson County Colorado amount to is that one side won an election, which means the other side lost.  This is the fallout.  The voters in Jefferson County chose to elect a slate of conservative candidates who promised to implement new policies, contrary to those supported by the previous board and the activist teachers union.  The new school board, taking its constitutional powers seriously, has created a PROPOSAL (not a law or act of some conservative, vengeful God as one might think after witnessing the protests and hearing or reading media accounts) to create a panel entrusted to make decisions regarding curriculum, in this case what materials will be included in the advanced placement course on the history of the United States.  This review is a direct response to the proposed curriculum for AP US history by the College Board.  Supposedly the College Board values input from local school boards regarding curriculum.  However, the perspective of the College Board cannot withstand the influence of the all too familiar “blame America first” crowd that dominates modern academia.  Here is a statement made about the goals of the review board that has caused much controversy:

Materials should promote citizenship, patriotism, essentials and benefits of the free enterprise system, respect for authority and respect for individual rights. Materials should not encourage or condone civil disorder, social strife or disregard of the law.

Meanwhile, union supporting activists, conflating different issues, have engaged and manipulated the sympathies of the naive student body to create the illusion of kids protesting in the name of their own education.

Read the actual board proposal here

Make no mistake.  The union goons have an endgame to oust the current school board, repatriating members “bought and paid for” and entirely sympathetic to the agenda of the teachers union.  The faux issue of censored history is but smoke and mirrors.  The students hardly grasp the causes that they are being used to support.  Ironically, the Denver Post notes that the movement began on September 19 when 50 teacher skipped out on work to protest a proposal requiring effective, successful results in order for teachers to receive a raise in pay.  This pay for performance system directly opposes the classic, union supported algorithm where everyone with X amount of years on the job and Y amount of degree training receives Z dollars regardless of whether or not they give a damn about the job.  The security blanket of tenure further solidifies teacher pay and job security, insulating teachers from the consequences of poor behavior and on the job performance.  It is astounding and yet entirely predictable that the teachers union, who ostensibly values students and education above all else, would use these kids as misguided pawns in a struggle against the democratic process, as evidenced by the voter supported actions of an ELECTED school board.

This ELECTED school board and the proposal for review seek to implement a balanced approach to US history while promoting national pride and good citizenship.  No one seeks to ignore the civil rights movement, slavery, or the Trail of Tears.  Those are all vital components of our history that document dark times.  This history also demonstrates the ability of our nation to overcome.  What is to be avoided in the AP curriculum is the omnipresent tendency of leftist doctrine such as marxist Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States, still used as an objective textbook, that dwell upon the negative aspects of the United States.  “It’s very difficult, given the dominance of liberal perspectives in college and high school history departments, for faculty committees to avoid unintentionally muting, eliding, or obfuscating the perspectives of the right,” Trevor Packer, senior vice president of the College Board.

A proper education encourages students to develop ideas and discover the truth in all things.  Mentors along the way, parents, coaches and teachers, are charged to present information and nurture the desire to learn, not indoctrinate young minds with a leftist leaning liberal “curriculum” that portrays our country as an evil, imperialistic nation empowered by white privilege.  There are certainly elements in our history that fit that description, but it is not the entire story.  These students want to do ‘right’, as evidenced by their passion for justice.  However, inexperience in politics and controversy has allowed for misguided, misplaced faith in “good natured” educators with union ties.  The good intentions of the students make them unwitting supporters of a biased anti-Americanized curriculum.  This is, ironically, tragically, what the civil disobedience that these students so prize is meant to stand against.  Educationally speaking, they are working towards their own demise.

When taught, history should be a balancing act.  The United States has been the greatest national force for good that the world has ever known.  The Last Best Hope for mankind on Earth.  This is where the world looks when the lights go out everywhere else.  Our story is dominated by a narrative that should be a positive source for pride, despite the negative, undeniable acts of shame.  Students should hear this side of history and be encouraged to be a part of that narrative for the future.  It is in the knowledge of their own heritage, history and culture, that students will become empowered to affect the future and in so doing, shape history for the curriculum of future students.