Category ArchiveCulture wars
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 02 Dec 2013
UPDATE AFTER PRESS TIME! Video here “Southern California County Orders Removal of Christmas Lights” via BreitbartTV.
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New Overpass Media: Tea Partiers Confront Christmas Muzzlers
Last Friday, Tea Partiers – joined by nearby supporters rotating in and out – on Brooklyn Bridge Road over I-95 northbound near Laurel in Maryland – displayed a banner (below) with a message that in earlier times would not have been controversial: “HONK! — WE SAY MERRY CHRISTMAS.”
Faithful readers will recall our earlier related posts–
- VIDEO ‘Overpass Media’ After-Shutdown-Message Resonates Strongly
- UPDATED!Pix of August Pushback:Conservatives Flock to Mark Levin’s “Liberty Amendments” Signing;MD-VA Tea Partiers Hammer Amnesty & Urge Obamacare Defunding at Overpasses
- Action Images: VA-MD Tea Partiers Take Message to Eric Cantor
Organizer Ed Hunter (email him here) reports that he plans more “overpass media” messages throughout the holidays.
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 03 Nov 2013
UPDATE NOVEMBER 5! Blair Ames here reports “Carroll commissioners common core forum draws a crowd.” Ames also reports “‘The bottom line is we offered a balanced forum,’ [Commissioner Richard] Rothschild said after Monday’s event.” Readers should consider Commissioner Doug Howard’s position against the forum and the tone of his follow-on comments. Did he lose his way and stumble into the wrong Party? Not surprisingly, the Maryland Educational Establishment avoided a forum they could not dominate.
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Under the auspices of the Carroll County Commissioners here, there will be a Common Core State Standards Forum, tomorrow, Monday, November 4, beginning at 6:30pm at Carroll Community College located at 1601 Washington Road, Westminster, MD 21157.
Click here for more details.
Declared Commissioner Richard Rothschild –
“The majority of the public still has little insight into what Common Core is, and the long-term implications. I am concerned that most forums around the state have given the podium to state educational officials that support the core, but groups with different perspectives have been denied an opportunity to present.”
Added Commissioner Robin Frazier–
“If Common Core is good, we should embrace it, but if it is bad, we should do everything in our power to stop it. Either way, we need more information.”
Rothschild said “time will be reserved for questions or comments from the public. All Marylanders are welcome.”
What Is The Maryland Education Establishment Hiding?
State and county public education officials were invited but declined to attend, the Blue Ridge Forum learned.
We urge prospective attendees (and readers) to consider Stanley Kurtz’ National Review on Line post concerning the consequences to our freedom of imposing the Common Core curriculum here.
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 08 Sep 2012
Catherine Mann-Grandy, aka Mrs. Fred just reports from California –
“Fred will be back on WTNT Radio for a few days very soon. On Friday (9/14) he’ll co-host with Andy Parks once again. The following week, Fred will be sitting in for Andy from 3pm to 6pm Monday through Thursday (9/17 – 9/20.) I know he’d really like to hear from you on the show. Here’s the call in number: 1 800 768 4637. Or, just send a supportive email, saying you’d like to hear more of Fred on WTNT. Please send emails to the Marketing Director at the Washington Times, Tom Culligan email@example.com
3PM – 6PM (9/14…and 9/17 –9/20)
WTNT RADIO 730AM or 102.9 FM
Online at: http://www.washingtontimes.com/radio/andy-parks-live-from-the-washington-times/”
Below are some related Blue Ridge Forum posts:
Every smart conservative voice we can keep – and nurture — in the media is an invaluable asset.
Readers will know what they must do to keep Fred Grandy on the air
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 23 Aug 2012
UPDATE AUGUST24! Cliff Kincaid (Renew America) yesterday reported on “Purging conservatism from the GOP” – “Once again, in ganging up on Akin, Republicans and conservatives lost sight of the real extremist, Barack Obama, while ceding ground to the liberals and allowing them to control the parameters of the public debate. It is a scenario that is played out over and over again, as if the Republicans never learn. Or perhaps a Republican like Romney, who supported abortion rights in Massachusetts, knew exactly what he was doing and where this is all going — the eventual elimination of the social issues from the national Republican agenda. Romney has made it quite clear that he wants no part of them, preferring instead to run on economic and financial matters. He doesn’t even want to talk about security problems in the State Department, in the person of Muslim Brotherhood-connected official and Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin.”
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Missouri Senate: McCaskill (D) 48%, Akin (R) 38% – - Rasmussen
“Who ordered this ‘Code Red’ on Akin? There were talking point memos sent from the National Republican Senatorial Committee suggesting language to urge Akin to drop out. Political consultants were ordered to stay away from Akin or lose future business with GOP committees. Operatives were recruited to set up a network of pastors to call Akin to urge him to get out. Money has changed hands to push him off the plank. It is disgraceful. From the spotlights of political offices and media perches, it may appear that the demand for Akin’s head is universal in the party. I assure you it is not. There is a vast, but mostly quiet army of people who have an innate sense of fairness and don’t like to see a fellow political pilgrim bullied.” — Mike Huckabee via Politico’s Alexander Burns
“’If Todd wants to stay in the race, I will continue to support him,’ Perkins said in an interview. ‘I think his comments were indefensible. I think they were inappropriate. He’s acknowledged as such. But you know, when others have made mistakes, you haven’t seen the entire Republican establishment abandon him. I think it’s somewhat suspect.’”
Let us stipulate right now that, in our view, Representative Todd Akin’s misstep through his comments about “legitimate rape” was very serious. See Daniel Horowitz’s (RedState) “The Broader Issue is Abortion on Demand, Not Political Gaffes” for a thoughtful discussion.
But the right question for the Romney Campaign was the classic: “Do you want a bill, or do you want an issue?”
That is, do you want a resolution right away and have the issue largely go away? Or, for some perverse reason, do you want to lead a long-continuing national denunciation of the GOP Missouri U. S. Senate candidate?
In the event, the Romney Campaign now has no resolution; the “issue” – whatever it is by now after Mr. Akin’s apology – is open to endless exploitation by the Left. And, as governor Huckabee’s and Mr. Perkins’ statements make clear, there is a palpable distaste among social conservatives for the way the matter is playing out.
As they understandably fear, the Romney Campaign might turn on any of the social conservatives. “Who ordered this ‘Code Red’?” indeed.
Apart from the information governor Huckabee provided, we don’t know the timeline of the Campaign’s reaction to the initial news about Mr. Akin’s blunder.
But we wonder whether a call from governor Mitt Romney to candidate Akin thanking him for confessing his serious error and expressing Mr. Romney’s recognition for his past good work in the House and the governor’s expectation that he would make a strong national contribution to the pro-life movement in the future, would have enabled Mr. Aikin to leave promptly and with some dignity.
Is it too late?
We know some of Mr. Akin’s former staff and respect them, and have even had a (courteous) exchange with him on foreign policy. He is a decent man who has worked hard in the House on values concerns.
And, yes, the matter is “somewhat suspect” as Tony Perkins said.
The ad hominem tone and force of many of the GOP attacks on Mr. Akin — and the reportedly strong and precipitate moves against his campaign –
- seem unrelated to any rational objective (like allowing him to leave with his head up and not angering his supporters who are necessary to unseat the Democrat incumbent);
- are likely to make grass-roots social conservatives even more uneasy after Mr. Romney’s dismissive remarks about Chick-A-Filet;
- and, as the Rasmussen poll suggests, are further jeopardizing any favorable electoral outcome in Missouri by demoralizing Republicans and vexing Akin loyalists.
Let’s pray that governor Romney himself takes the time to fix this, quickly. That is what effective presidents do — get to the root of complicated political standoffs and craft a solution. That is what he will have to do, when he is elected, with errant senators of both parties — and no matter which party takes the Senate.
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 17 Jul 2012
Yesterday the Gatestone Institute spelled out with chapter and verse “How Political Correctness Is Transforming British Education.”
Declared Soeren Kern –
“In Cheshire, two students at the Alsager High School were punished by their teacher for refusing to pray to Allah as part of their religious education class.
In Scotland, 30 non-Muslim children from the Parkview Primary School recently were required to visit the Bait ur Rehman Ahmadiyya mosque in the Yorkhill district of Glasgow (videos here and here). At the mosque, the children were instructed to recite the shahada, the Muslim declaration of faith which states: ‘There is no god but Allah and Mohammed is his messenger.’ Muslims are also demanding that Islamic preachers be sent to every school in Scotland to teach children about Islam, ostensibly in an effort to end negative attitudes about Muslims.
British schools are increasingly dropping the Jewish Holocaust from history lessons to avoid offending Muslim pupils, according to a report entitled, Teaching Emotive and Controversial History, commissioned by the Department for Education and Skills.”
Also yesterday Mark Tapson revealed in his “Muslim Congressman: Islam in America Must Not Retreat” (FrontPage Magazine) –
“In a May 26 address before the Islamic Circle of North America/Muslim American Society (ICNA/MSA), both Muslim Brotherhood front groups, André Carson commiserated with his audience over how difficult things have been for them since the World Trade Center attacks at the hands of al Qaeda jihadists: ’9/11 was tough on Muslims.’
Carson is America’s race-baiting, confirmed socialist and second Muslim Congressman (Keith Ellison is the first), who had a lot of interesting things to say at this event. In video clips surfacing on the internet, Carson made the above comment as well as this eyebrow-raising pronouncement, to the applause of his Muslim-American audience:
‘America will never tap into educational innovation and ingenuity without looking at the model that we have in our madrassas, in our schools, where innovation is encouraged, where the foundation is the Koran. And that model that we are pushing in some of our schools meets the multiple needs of students… America must understand that she needs Muslims.’”
Conservatives themselves in Maryland and Virginia must become vigilant about the curricula in taxpayer-supported schools.
Charter Schools in Maryland and Virginia
Charter schools have promise for many more young Americans, but these taxpayer-supported enterprises must not become the means of advancing a political agenda.
Writes Stephen Schwartz (American Thinker) –
“Americans should ask both why and how the Islamist Gülen movement has managed to establish such a large presence for Turkish religious political indoctrination in publicly financed education — and should unite to oppose it.”
Janet Levy (American Thinker) declared –
“Beginning in the 1970′s, Gulen began establishing a worldwide network to promote Islam and Turkish nationalism. His followers have since established hundreds of schools in over 110 countries. Gulenists operate an Islamic bank with over $5 billion in assets and own significant print and broadcast media properties, NGOs, think tanks and a publishing company. Gulen recruits Turkish youth by providing housing and education and grooms them for careers in the legal, political and academic professions. In recent years, the AKP passed legislation allowing graduates of Islamic high schools entry into Turkey’s universities, guaranteeing Islamist leadership in the future. Gulen controls the majority of schools, universities and dormitories throughout Turkey. His followers remain loyal and donate up to one-third of their income to the movement. In Turkey, Gulen and the AKP together control the police, the intelligence services and the media and actively recruit diplomats for their utility as foreign intelligence satellites. Overall, the holdings are valued at up to $50 billion.”
Levy is not convinced by the Gulen schools’ claims of academic excellence –
“As for their reported academic excellence, the Gülen schools show high performance on school-administered state tests but lackluster results on college admission tests such as SAT and ACT. The Gülen schools’ SAT average score of 1026 falls short of the 1100 considered to indicate college readiness. Former Gülen schoolteachers have reported state testing violations, lack of test monitors, and unqualified individuals administering tests.”
And Stephen Schwartz reports – -
“But while Fatih Karatas, principal of the Sonoran Science Academy middle school in Tucson, flatly denied any connection with the Gülen movement, Beehive principal Muhammet ‘Frank’ Erdogan in Salt Lake City admitted such links in the case of his school. The Salt Lake Tribune quoted his admission that along with him, ‘many of Beehive’s teachers and founders also support Gülen’s ideals.’ The paper also described how ‘Adam Kuntz, a first-year history teacher at Beehive, was fired [in spring 2009], he alleges, for taking academic freedom concerns to the state board. Earlier in the school year, Kuntz had a run-in with Erdogan over a lesson plan on World War II and the Holocaust. Erdogan wanted Kuntz to revise the plan and during a tape-recorded meeting, questioned conventional accounts of the genocide.’”
Readers need to weigh all the evidence, both on performance and political affiliation, on Fetulla Gulen and American charter schools. We know one education reformer close to a Gulen school genuinely enraptured with their performance among minorities. But the same advocate was unwilling to talk to the critics and reporters in Arizona and Utah to get more information when we suggested doing so over two years ago.
In the meantime, stay tuned for more on school curricula, and we’ll try to help with more facts and informed opinion.
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 05 May 2012
UPDATES! See Hans Bader here (DC SCOTUS Examiner) “Elizabeth Warren ‘Didn’t Tell the Truth,’ Professors Say,” and Harvey Silverglate here (Minding the Campus) “Harvard’s PR Machine and the Cherokees.” Bader reveals:“The safest path for many college hiring committee members is to consider race in hiring somewhat, but not admit it. Using race appeases liberal civil-rights bureaucrats and law-school accreditors, but not admitting it effectively prevents lawsuits by conservative non-profit law firms like the Center for Individual Rights (CIR), which lack the resources to sue over anything but the most blatant and obvious cases of reverse discrimination.” Silverglate declares: “So it was not surprising to read that Warren’s claimed 1/32nd Cherokee ancestry was something first promoted not by Warren, but by a Harvard Law communications officer trying to construct a particular perception of the school. Indeed, the Harvard Office of Public Affairs and Communication, and the communications offices for many of the various Harvard-branded schools, put out a number of publications that ensure the entire university stays on message or, more precisely, on image.”
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Senate Candidate Warren: Can Minority “Roots” Have A Dark Side?
“An Oklahoma native, Warren said this week she used the law school directory to meet other ‘people who are like I am’ with similar tribal roots — even though the directory does not specify which minority professors belong to. Chris Child of the New England Historic Genealogical Society said Monday he found documentation indicating Warren’s great-great-great-grandmother is Cherokee, meaning she is 1/32 Native American. – Hillary Chabot (Boston Herald) via NRO’s Patrick Brennan
We have this bizarre idea at Blue Ridge Forum that America should be color-blind and gender-blind and ancestry-blind in the transaction of public business including hiring and admission at taxpayer-aided schools.
Shedding more light on Massachusetts U. S. Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren’s claim of “minority” status, Mark Steyn writes this weekend (“Going Native” in NRO) about –
“. . .Harvard Law prof and Democrat Teepee Party candidate Elizabeth Warren, who can’t understand why anyone could possibly get the idea she’s been passing herself off as a Cherokee for most of her adult life. Well, maybe they got if from Harvard’s daily newspaper. From 1998:
‘Harvard Law School currently has only one tenured minority woman, Gottlieb Professor of Law Elizabeth Warren, who is Native American.’
This may be the drollest diversity scam since an Englishman called Archibald parlayed himself into global celebrity as the Ojibwe Indian “Grey Owl.”
Elizabeth Warren’s Cherokee Nation
We wonder whether professor Warren had the Cherokee Nation’s history as slaveholders and suppressors of a slave revolt in mind when “she used the law school directory to meet other ‘people who are like I am’ with similar tribal roots . . . .”
Did she really do her homework on her claimed (Michael Warren in the Weekly Standard) ancestors?
The “Encyclopaedia of Oklahoma History and Culture” tells us –
“SLAVE REVOLT OF 1842
Of the Five Civilized Tribes, the Cherokees were the largest holder of Africans as chattel slaves. By 1860 the Cherokees had 4,600 slaves. Many Cherokees depended on them as a bridge to white society. Full-blood Indian slave owners relied on the blacks as English interpreters and translators. Mainly, however, slaves worked on farms as laborers or in homes as maids or servants. The Cherokees feared the aspect of a slave revolt, and that is just what happened in 1842 at Webbers Falls.
On the morning of November 15 more than twenty-five slaves, mostly from the Joseph Vann plantation, revolted. They locked their masters and overseers in their homes and cabins while they slept. The slaves stole guns, horses, mules, ammunition, food and supplies. At daybreak the group, which included men, women, and children, headed toward Mexico, where slavery was illegal. In the Creek Nation the Cherokee slaves were joined by Creek slaves, bringing the group total to more than thirty-five. The fugitives fought off and killed a couple of slave hunters in the Choctaw Nation.
The Cherokee Nation sent the Cherokee Militia, under Capt. John Drew, with eighty-seven men to catch the runaways. This expedition was authorized by the Cherokee National Council in Tahlequah on November 17, 1842. The militia caught up with the slaves seven miles north of the Red River on November 28, 1842. The tired, famished fugitives offered no resistance.
The party returned to Tahlequah on December 8, 1842. Five slaves were executed, and Joseph Vann put the majority of his rebellious slaves to work on his steamboats, which worked the Arkansas, Mississippi, and Ohio Rivers. The Cherokees blamed the incident on free, armed black Seminoles who lived in close proximity to the Cherokee slaves at Fort Gibson. On December 2, 1842, the Cherokee Nation passed a law commanding all free African Americans, except former Cherokee slaves, to leave the nation.”
All of us have to take the bad with the good when we speak of our personal ancestry. Massachusetts U. S. Senate candidate Warren, of course, cannot be held responsible for the wrong turns the Cherokee Nation took in its history. But we cannot “fix” our complex past by today’s facile schemes of preferences and quotas.
Hers is just another example why preferences in hiring and contracting and university admissions as well as ‘diversity’ quotas show the fecklessness and often the cruelty of such social engineering.
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 20 Jan 2012
Of course, we can’t realistically expect the Institutionalized Left, a.k.a. the Democratic Party, to want to prepare young Americans, K through graduate-or-professional school, for life in a society based on liberty and enterprise. That Party prefers and helps carry out (through sympathetic schools of education) training for collectivism.
But we have every right to expect that the GOP — both through repealing legislation that distorts sound learning and by using their public pulpits to warn citizens of what is going on in their schools — will try to bring all taxpayer-supported education back to fundamentals.
‘A prominent federal judge has added to the growing chorus of criticism for American law schools and their failure to provide practical training for their students despite charging exorbitant tuition:
“Judge José Cabranes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2d Circuit… noted that law schools are in ‘something of a crisis,’ given the skyrocketing cost of tuition, ever-higher graduate debts and a growing feeling that legal scholarship is of little use to the bench or practitioners.…
To get back on track, law schools should shift their curricula back to core courses and away from the interdisciplinary classes that have grown in popularity, he said; they should introduce a two-year core law program followed by a yearlong apprenticeship, and increase transparency regarding costs, job prospects and financial aid information.…
Cabranes lamented the move by law schools toward specialized, often interdisciplinary courses that can displace ‘black-letter’ law courses — criminal and civil procedure, evidence and federal courts. He related a story about a friend’s child who enrolled in a law school clinic focusing on housing court — but who had never taken a property law course. Core law courses should come before clinics and interdisciplinary work, even if the latter are more popular with students and faculty, he said.…’”
“As I noted in The New York Times, ‘I learned about trendy ideological fads and feminist and Marxist legal theory while at Harvard Law School. But I did not learn many basic legal principles, such as in contract law and real estate law, until I took a commercial bar-exam preparation course after law school.’
Thus, there is no reason to require people to attend law school before sitting for the bar exam. As law professor Paul Campos notes, legal education is a rip-off, since the typical law professor ‘knows nothing about being a lawyer. Hence, he must bullshit — he does not lie to his students about how to be a lawyer (doing so would require him to know how to be a lawyer, while attempting to deceive his students regarding the substance of that knowledge); rather, he ‘talks without knowing what he is talking about,’ when it comes to discussing the legal system or how to be a lawyer.”
Scroll through our earlier posts on taxpayer-supported education here, here, and here, but particularly read our Radical University Empires vs. Clueless State Lawmakers
Conservatives must be thinking about the next decade, not just electing well-informed and articulate Republicans in the next election — as important as that is. For example, if we ignore what is happening in education, there will be more than some truth in what one wag says: when the last American conservative emigrates, the Republican Party will still be a thriving concern promising to manage Leviathan more efficiently than the Other Team.
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 21 Sep 2011
Revivifying our own culture in the face of Cultural Marxism (or multi-culturalism) is a key conservative goal.
And this means re-instituting the study of our history — including our military history.
It means celebrating (among more than a few “specialists”) those Americans who stood fast against our enemies — both in battle, and if captured.
The saga of Albert Brown, the oldest survivor of the Bataan Death March, who died last month aged 105 is a gripping one.
The London Telegraph, with its world-class military obituary section, tells some of his story:
“Two weeks after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, when the Japanese overran the Philippines, American and Filipino forces retreated into the mountainous jungles of the Bataan peninsula. Eventually, in April 1942, some 78,000 of them surrendered. Unprepared for the scale of their victory, the Japanese decided forcibly to march the PoWs to camps via a railhead 75 miles away at San Fernando.”
Many Americans are unaware of the brutality to prisoners of war and to civilians practiced by the Imperial Japanese forces in the Second World War, and too many Americans are unaware of the conflict in the Philippines itself, where American soldiers felt abandoned by their government during the Japanese invasion. (By way of background, from 1935 to 1946, the Philippines were a commonwealth of the United States.)
“We’re the Battling Bastards of Bataan,
No mama, no papa, no Uncle Sam,
No aunts, no uncles, no cousins, no nieces,
No pills, no planes, no artillery pieces,
And nobody gives a damn!”
The Daily Telegraph obituary spells out in more detail Captain Brown’s ordeal –
“A week later, at the end of the murderous 75-mile trek in temperatures of 90ºF, Brown and another 12,000 American prisoners were put on trains for the three-hour journey to a PoW enclosure at Camp O’Donnell, a former US Air Force facility. At least 600 Americans and 6,000 Filipinos had perished along the way, and another 1,000 Americans and 16,000 Filipinos died over the following six weeks.
“For more than half a century, Brown remained silent about his ordeal. But not only had he survived, he had also secretly chronicled his experiences, using a pencil stub to scribble down details on a tiny pad of paper he hid in the lining of his canvas bag. ‘[There] was an officer with a samurai sword,’ he noted. ‘They had [prisoners] kneel down and just whacked the head off — that happened a lot.’
“Brown’s account described the torment suffered every mile by US troops as they passed freshly dug wells from which they were forbidden to drink. Sympathetic Filipinos who tried to throw bread, rice, cakes or fruit to the marchers were often killed on the spot. The roadside was littered with dead bodies, some crushed beneath trucks. The stench was overpowering as more and more men suffering from dysentery fouled the ground. Those who reached the limits of their endurance were shot as they fell. “
In 2007, Victor Davis Hanson explained (City Journal) “Why Study War? Military history teaches us about honor, sacrifice, and the inevitability of conflict.” –
“Try explaining to a college student that Tet was an American military victory. You’ll provoke not a counterargument—let alone an assent—but a blank stare: Who or what was Tet? Doing interviews about the recent hit movie 300, I encountered similar bewilderment from listeners and hosts. Not only did most of them not know who the 300 were or what Thermopylae was; they seemed clueless about the Persian Wars altogether.”
We must keep this in mind: There are conservative goals well beyond (and unlikely to be addressed through) the outcome of the elections of November 6, 2012.
Crucial among these goals is the teaching of our history in all its dimensions – political, religious, economic, and military. Our citizens — of all ages – must get a firm grasp of the many achievements and struggles that made our land a beacon to the world. Otherwise America will indeed be permanently “transformed,” and grossly diminished.
Yesterday the Associated Press reported in “Md. Board of Education approves environmental literacy graduation requirement” (via the Washington Post) that –
“BALTIMORE — High school seniors in Maryland will have to be literate on environmental matters to graduate from now on.
Maryland’s Board of Education passed the environmental literacy graduation requirement on Tuesday. Gov. Martin O’Malley says Maryland is now the first state in the nation to have such a requirement. The No Child Left Inside Coalition, which pushed for the requirement, says 48 other states are considering similar requirements, a sign of the increasing popularity of environmental education.
Under the graduation requirement, public schools will be required to infuse core subjects with lessons on conservation, smart growth and other environmental topics. School systems will be able to shape their programs, but they must align with state standards.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)
We warned last October in our “A Sobering AEI Report on Teaching Civics.”
“Environmental Education” vs. Solid Civics
“Readers may wonder about taxpayer-supported teaching priorities (see Board of Education details in the foregoing link) after reading Lisa Gartner’s Washington Examiner article‘Maryland schools must offer environmental education.’ Who reviews the environmental science in the curricula to ensure that it is sound? How does ‘environmental education’ comport with learning about established American property rights? With learning about free-market solutions to important challenges? Here is a Chesapeake Bay Foundation ally rejoicing in the environmental-education development: ‘There will be an Environmental Literacy Summit co-hosted by the MDCLI Coalition and the Chesapeake Bay Trust on October 20th in Annapolis.’ Do we believe that those who are skeptical of anthropogenic global warming will be the stars of this ‘summit’? How will Maryland environmental education teachers and texts discuss the human cost to malaria-ridden countries of the Rachel Carson legacy?”
Lisa Gartner also noted last September that – -
“Virginia schools must provide students a Chesapeake Bay watershed experience, as well as local restoration and protection project opportunities, in accordance with the Chesapeake 2000 Agreement.”
What Then Is To Be Done?
If past performance is an indicator, the General Assembly GOP leadership is unlikely to be able to focus the public effectively on the danger of multiculturalism (cultural Marxism) or its variants, such as Green Statism, in taxpayer-supported Maryland curricula.
Consequently the burden must fall on Maryland Tea Partyers, the conservative grass roots, and advocates like the New Renaissance in Education to get individual Maryland legislators in motion — and if necessary to have grass-roots sponsored “shadow hearings” around Maryland, illustrating how teachers are being required to propagandize.
We wondered last October –
“We may (just) be able to roll back Green Statism today, but how long can we keep doing so if new voters have no grasp of our history or are unable to see through the propaganda of statists?”
Culture wars Richard Falknor on 08 Jun 2011
Some on the center-right lament what they suggest is a waste of GOP time on the “culture wars,” instead urging Republicans to become more “socially liberal” while remaining “fiscally conservative.”
Jonah Goldberg wrote an illuminating and entertaining April 6, 2009 National Review article (subscription only) disputing that approach — ‘Democrats and Businessmen, Sitting in a Tree . . . Big corporations love free enterprise, as long as it isn’t too free.’ Heavy hitter Goldberg was suggesting that some “socially liberal” Republicans were business friendly, but not necessarily market friendly.
While the socially liberal crowd were probably referring mainly to pro-life advocacy, social conservatism includes much more than traditional pro-life positions, as important as they are. The social conservative perspective also ranges from thoughtful curriculum reform in taxpayer-supported schools to protecting the Judaeo-Christian tradition underlying our civilization.
On the social and fiscal conservative side, the strategic objective must be a rejection of “multiculturalism” aka “Cultural Marxism.” This anti-freedom ideology — often bankrolled in various guises by large corporations — undermines our constitution, our defenses, and our curricula from kindergarden through graduate school.
All this brings us to “Shari’a and Violence in American Mosques,” which Center for Security Policy head Frank Gaffney terms “an assiduously researched, peer-reviewed study published last Monday by the highly respected journal, Middle East Quarterly.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)
Comments former senior Reagan defense official Gaffney –
“[T]his paper describes an ominous jihadist footprint being put into place across the nation. It is made up of ostensibly religious institutions, entities that, therefore, enjoy constitutional protection. But, according to the data examined by this study, most mosques in the United States are actually engaged in – or at least supportive of – a totalitarian, seditious agenda they call shariah. Its express purpose is undermining and ultimately forcibly replacing the U.S. government and its founding documents. In their place would be a ‘caliph,’ governing in accordance with shariah’s political-military-legal code. To be sure, some American mosques are not part of the jihadist enterprise. And most Muslims in the United States, like most adherents of other faiths, are not regular attendees at their places of worship. Still, according to this study’s two formidable authors – my colleague (and fellow Big Peace contributor), David Yerushalmi, one of the nation’s foremost non-Muslim experts on the totalitarian Islamic doctrine known as shariah, and a highly respected Israeli academic and expert on Islam and Arabic culture, Dr. Mordechai Kedar – on-site investigations of a random but representative sample of American mosques in fourteen states and the District of Columbia produced chilling insights into the threat posed by many such institutions.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)
Reports former Federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy today about this study in his “The Coordinates of Radicalism: Sharia compliance correlates with violent attitudes among American Muslims” (National Review on Line) –
“What is it that radicalizes Muslims, including American Muslims? Is it American foreign policy? Israeli ‘occupation’ of the ancient Jewish territories of Judea and Samaria? Cartoons depicting the warrior-prophet as a warrior? Korans torched by obscure Florida pastors? The life of Osama bin Laden, or, perhaps, his death? Any of a thousand claimed slights, real or imagined, that purportedly provoke young Muslims to ‘conflagrate’ — if we may borrow from the forgiving rationalizations of Faisal Rauf, would-be imam of the would-be Ground Zero mosque?
Here is the unsettling but sedulously avoided truth: What radicalizes Muslims is Islam.
Political correctness requires that we becloud this simple truth with a few caveats that, in most any other context, would be regarded as distractions by sensible people. So it is necessary to say that there is more than one interpretation of Islam. We must further note that the fact that Islam itself is the radicalizing catalyst does not mean that all, or even most, Muslims will become radicals. But here is another disquieting truth: Even the terms ‘radicalization’ and ‘radical Islam’ get things exactly backwards. The reality is that the radicals in Islam are the reformers — the Muslims who embrace Western civilization, its veneration of reason in matters of faith, and the pluralistic space it makes for civil society. What we wishfully call ‘radicalism’ is in fact the Islamic mainstream.”
As defense expert Steve Coughlin said last year –
“You think we are fighting a war over there.
I think we are fighting a war right here.
Illegal Immigration and the “Religious Left“
Veteran investigator Cliff Kincaid revealed last year in his “Catholic Money and Tax Dollars Finance Illegal Alien Rally” (Accuracy in Media) –
“A group organizing a May 1 ‘May Day’ rally in favor of ‘immigrant rights’ in Lafayette Park in front of the White House is financially supported by the Catholic Church, Big Business, the federal government, and various Maryland governmental entities. It is anticipated that the demonstration will take the form of opposition to Arizona’s new law that is designed to discourage illegal immigration. The buses will leave for Lafayette Park from CASA de Maryland centers starting at 12:30, with the rally scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. So-called ‘May Day actions’ are being planned in dozens of cities around the U.S. CASA de Maryland, an illegal alien support group, is sponsoring the buses that will take hundreds of protesters to the event in the nation’s capital. CASA is considered the biggest promoter and facilitator of illegal aliens in Maryland. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and its Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD), which got caught funding the radical group ACORN, are listed. . . on the CASA website as being among its many financial donors and supporters. Bishop John C. Wester of Salt Lake City, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Migration, issued a statement April 27 ‘in solidarity with the Catholic bishops of Arizona’ opposing the enactment and implementation of the Arizona law.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)
Readers may also wish to check into Cliff Kincaid’s website Religious Left Exposed. The website declares – -
“The host of a national Catholic TV talk show says that Catholic Bishops have to come clean on their funding of groups that undermine traditional values and promote radical social change. Raymond Arroyo, host of Catholic television network EWTN’s ‘The World Over’ program, says that the evidence indicates that groups funded by the Bishops through the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) are actually ‘subverting’ Catholic teaching on matters such as homosexual rights and abortion. He regrets that money being spent on such causes is coming at the expense of Catholic schools and hospitals facing funding shortfalls and possible closure.”
Just last Friday, Sarah Breitenbach reported in her “Dream bill backers to counter referendum petition” (Gazette.Net) –
“Other groups that rallied behind the Dream Act also are addressing their membership.
The Maryland Catholic Conference has contacted its pastors and church members, reminding them of the group’s support of the measure.
‘It’s all about the kids and the students who did not come here of their own volition and are simply trying to better themselves and pursue their dreams and their hopes like we all are,’ Catholic Conference spokeswoman Kathy Dempsey said. ‘So the petition drive is a disappointment and one that we hope fails.’” (Underscoring Forum’s.)
Steve Camarota sheds light on the split between clergy and laity in his December 2009 “Religious Leaders vs. Members: An Examination of Contrasting Views on Immigration” (Center for Immigration Studies – CIS) –
“In contrast to many national religious leaders who are lobbying for increases in immigration numbers, a new Zogby poll of likely voters who belong to the same religious communities finds strong support for reducing overall immigration. Moreover, the poll finds that members strongly disagree with their leaders’ contention that more immigrant workers need to be allowed into the country. Also, most parishioners and congregants advocate for more enforcement to cause illegal workers to go home, while most religious leaders are calling for putting illegal immigrants on a path to U.S. citizenship. The survey of Catholic, mainline Protestant, born-again Protestant, and Jewish voters used neutral language and was one of the largest polls on immigration ever done.
Among the findings:
Most members of religious denominations do not feel that illegal immigration is caused by limits on legal immigration, as many religious leaders do; instead, members feel it’s due to a lack of enforcement.”(Underscoring Forum’s.)
Read it all. CIS research head Camarota has a useful February 2010 parallel study “Business and Labor on Immigration: Contrasting Views of Leaders vs. Rank and File” –
“A new Zogby poll of senior executives, business owners, and members of union households finds that each of these groups thinks the best way to deal with illegal immigrants in the country is to enforce the law and cause them to return home. This is in stark contrast to lobbyists for large companies, such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which argue for legalization. The findings of the survey are consistent with surveys done by the National Federation of Independent Business, which represents small enterprises, showing strong opposition to legalization. Among unions, the leadership strongly supports legalizing illegal immigrants, but the survey shows enforcement — not legalization — is by far the option favored by union members and their families.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)
As most conservatives know, the enormous U.S. illegal alien burden is a civic threat and cultural (assimilation) challenge, as well as a public-safety menace, and a fiscal burden. (Click on the link attached to “civic” to see Christian Adams’ post “Yakima (WA) faces voting rights lawsuit to give illegal aliens political representation.”)
Schooling for “Sustainability” & Radical University Empires
Conservatives in Maryland and Virginia (as we have written in our Hiding In Plain Sight: Collectivization by Planners, Schools) are increasingly aware of what is called the UN’s “Agenda 21” and the ongoing threat of “Sustainable Development.” These wide-reaching schemes aim to supersede the traditional property rights of Americans and to indoctrinate new generations to support this “transformation.” Typically local governments are beguiled into signing on to innocent-sounding plans for such “sustainable development.”
“In June 1993, President Clinton signed an executive order to create the President’s Council on Sustainable Development (PCSD). In 1994, the PCSD published ‘Education for Sustainability: an agenda for action,’ calling on educators ‘to serve society by fostering the transformations needed to set us on the path to sustainable development.’That same year, the EFA[Education for All Initiative]/ESD goals became President Clinton’s ‘Goals 2000,’ establishing the framework for our National Standards, Curriculum, and Assessments. All 50 states adopted Goals 2000 in order to receive the funding that came with it.
Today President Bush’s No Child Left Behind (NCLB) holds states ‘accountable’ to implement their previously signed agreements. States and districts that refuse to ‘align’ their standards, curriculum, and assessments with these so-called ‘world-class standards’ will lose federal funding. NCLB requires full implementation by the end of 2014 – which just so happens to be the final year of The United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. What a coincidence!” (Underscoring Forum’s.)
Higher education, moreover, in Maryland and Virginia as elsewhere, is apparently in thrall to the Left Establishment.
Two years ago we warned about Radical University Empires vs. Clueless State Lawmakers “We simply cannot depend on the Republican establishments of Maryland and Virginia to deal with serious threats like the transformation of our taxpayer-supported universities into mechanisms for the dissolution of our way of life.”
Lose the long war against multiculturalism, and we will truly have a “transformed” (and quite unpleasant) America.