textbooks

David Barton OKs Sharia Law in the U.S.

Here’s a clip to file away for future reference: in his fast-talking, low-fact interview with Jon Stewart last night, David Barton was cornered into giving his blessing to majority-Muslim communities in the United States implementing Sharia law:

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Stewart: Do you feel like the majority in a locality should be able to determine…
Barton: Yes, yes, and here in New York City, there’s schools that are 100 percent Hasidic Jewish, and I think they should be allowed to have Hasidic Jewish practices there because all 100 percent kids are…
Stewart: So you would allow, like, let’s say Dearborn, Michigan was majority Muslim…
Barton: And it is.
Stewart: Are you all right with Sharia law and the whole business…
Barton: Sure, sure.
Stewart: Well, that’s consistent.
Barton: But for somebody from the outside to come in and say “I don’t like this, you can’t do it” that’s what I have trouble with.

This might come as a surprise to the right-wingers who are on high Sharia-alert. Barton in the past has been less than sympathetic to Muslim Americans even practicing their religion in the United States, much less imposing Muslim theocracies. For instance, when Rep. Keith Ellison became the first Muslim member of Congress, Barton objected to Ellison being sworn into office using Thomas Jefferson’s Koran, implying that Ellison’s expression of faith was somehow un-American:

Keith Ellison may be the one to break this pattern and start something new with Islam, but in the meantime, he should not be surprised that there is widespread concern over his decision to publicly flaunt American tradition and values and replace them with Islamic ones.

Barton, in his work rewriting American history for Texas’s school board, also made sure to cast as bad a light as possible on Muslims. Washington Monthly reported:

On the global front, Barton and company want textbooks to play up clashes with Islamic cultures, particularly where Muslims were the aggressors, and to paint them as part of an ongoing battle between the West and Muslim extremists. Barton argues, for instance, that the Barbary wars, a string of skirmishes over piracy that pitted America against Ottoman vassal states in the 1800s, were the “original war against Islamic Terrorism.”

Barton unsurprisingly objected to the planned Islamic community center in Lower Manhattan last summer, saying, ”When they’re claiming it’s a freedom of religion issue, and that’s all they’re talking about, that’s great proof that’s not the issue.”

Then there was the time he claimed that an appeals court decision allowing California schools to teach children about different religions, was in fact authorizing a “three-week indoctrination to the Islamic faith.”

Which all makes it seem somewhat suspect that Barton would suddenly embrace the idea of Sharia law being implemented in any American communities.

But even if he’s serious, there’s no need to worry about Barton’s new embrace of Sharia taking hold. Dearborn, Michigan, for one, has already made it very clear that it has absolutely no inclination to run its government with anything but the United States’ secular legal code.

Fact Checking Barton Part I: Texas Textbooks

With no academic credentials as a historian, David Barton toldThe Daily Show host Jon Stewart that his involvement in editing textbooks around the country was proof that he is a respected and esteemed historian. However, his work with textbooks if anything reveals his blatant partisanship and pseudo-scholarship.

As Mariah Blake writes in The Washington Monthly, Barton’s Christian nation mythology was indeed just one aspect of his role shaping the Texas textbooks as a consultant for the Texas School Board. Barton wanted to give a positive spin to Joseph McCarthy’s anti-communist politics and “purge the standards of key figures of the civil rights era, such as César Chávez and Thurgood Marshall.” As Blake writes, Barton tried to diminish the work of civil rights leaders like Martin Luther Ling Jr. by arguing “that they shouldn’t be given credit for advancing the rights of minorities. As Barton put it, ‘Only majorities can expand political rights in America’s constitutional society.’ Ergo, any rights people of color have were handed to them by whites—in his view, mostly white Republican men.”

Barton, who was once vice-chair of the Texas GOP and a paid surrogate of the Republican National Committee, tirelessly works to convince black audiences that they should vote for Republicans and oppose the Democratic Party because the GOP is responsible for black civil rights.

But Barton’s claims that he writes about more than just America as a “Christian nation” shouldn’t distract from the reason Texas School Board members invited Barton to edit their textbooks in the first place. In fact, then-Texas School Board member Cynthia Dunbar admitted that it was the board’s goal to promote religion through the state’s textbooks to counteract “a Biblically illiterate society,” and another ex-member Don McLeroy said that it was his job at the School Board to fight “secular humanists” because “we are a Christian nation founded on Christian principles” and “the way I evaluate history textbooks is first I see how they cover Christianity and Israel.”

Barton also told Jon Stewart that he was used to help write textbooks in other states, namely California. However, this is quite an exaggeration. Rob Boston writes that while Barton was invited by a conservative to advise California in its development of textbooks, his proposals went nowhere:

In 1998, a conservative member of the California Academic Standards Commission appointed Barton to an advisory position, asking the Texan to critique proposed social studies/history standards. From that perch, Barton attacked the portion of the standards that discussed the development of religious freedom, trying to remove every reference to separation of church and state.

He almost pulled it off. Commission members, unfamiliar with Barton’s agenda, seemed open to adopting his suggestions. They changed course only after intervention by Americans United’s Sacramento Chapter, AU’s national office and others.

Chris Rodda of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation notes that this isn’t the only time Barton embellished his work with other states, as he also worked with Michele Bachmann when she was a Minnesota state legislator to ensure that schools display the Declaration of Independence.

Such a record of exaggeration demonstrates why real historians, including Christian historians, who have followed David Barton have repeatedly criticized and dismissed his faulty “scholarship.”

Exposing David Barton's Bunk

Today, People For the American Way released a new report entitled "Barton’s Bunk: Religious Right ‘Historian’ Hits the Big Time in Tea Party America" written by PFAW Senior Fellow Peter Montgomery that exposes David Barton's shoddy pseudo-history and why it matters: 

Barton’s growing visibility and influence with members of Congress and other Republican Party officials is troubling for many reasons: he distorts history and the Constitution for political purposes; he encourages religious divisiveness and unequal treatment for religious minorities; and he feeds a toxic political climate in which one’s political opponents are not just wrong, but evil and anti-God.

Scholars have criticized Barton for presenting facts out of context or in misleading ways, but that hasn’t stopped him from promoting his theories through books, television, and, yes, the textbooks that will teach the next generation of Americans. He promotes conspiracy theories about elites hiding the truth from average Americans in order to undermine the nation from within. Last summer, he declared that liberal and media attacks on the Tea Party were just like attacks on Jesus. In February, Barton spoke at the Connect 2011 Pastors Conference, where he said that Christians needed to control the culture and media so that “guys that have a secular viewpoint cannot survive.” Said Barton, “If the press lacks moral discrimination, it’s because we haven’t been pushing our people to chop that kind of news off.”

Barton’s work is not just an academic exercise. It is meant to have a political impact. For Barton, “documenting” the divine origins of his interpretations of the Constitution gives him and his political allies a potent weapon. Barton promotes a false reality in which anyone who opposes any element of his political agenda stands in opposition to both the Founding Fathers and to God. He believes that everything in our society – government, the judiciary, the economy, the family – should be governed according to the Bible, and he promotes a view of the Bible and Jesus that many Christians would not recognize. Opponents, even Christians, who disagree with Barton about tax policy or the powers of Congress are not only wrong, they are un-American and anti-religious, enemies of America and of God.

President Obama is a particularly frequent target of Barton’s. In January, one of his WallBuilders Live radio shows was titled “Why is Obama Trying to Remove God from the United States?” In March, right-wing “news” service WND quoted Barton accusing Obama (falsely of course) of being “engaged in a pattern of ‘willfully, deliberately’ repudiating America's Christian heritage.”

Those are the kind of accusations long favored by the Religious Right, and they are destructive. Claims that political opponents are evil and are actively trying to destroy Americans’ freedoms poison the public arena, make constructive civic discourse nearly impossible, and have the potential to incite acts of violence.

Elected officials who endorse Barton give his claims credibility they do not deserve. He in turn gives cover and a veneer of legitimacy to right-wing politicians interested in putting their notions of a nation created by and for Christians into public policy. Both Barton and his backers are undermining understanding of, and respect for, vital American values and constitutional principles like separation of church and state and equal treatment under the law.

And last night, Peter appeared on "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell to discuss Barton and his influence:

ACT! For America Warns Against "Anti-American" History Textbooks

“Is your child’s classroom becoming a recruiting ground for Islam?” asks ACT! for America, the burgeoning anti-Muslim group led by activist Brigitte Gabriel. In a recent program of their new television show, ACT! for America discussed the organization’s new “textbook project” and how the head of their Sarasota, Florida chapter interrogated schools about their textbooks.

The group’s Sarasota chapter is led by Rich Swier, a Tea Party activist who yesterday warned that as a result of same-sex marriage and lower birthrates, “the White Anglo-Saxon Protestant (WASP) population in America is headed for extinction and with it our economy, well-being and survival as a uniquely America culture.”

Swier told ACT! for America’s Brant Travis: “I would encourage every parent and grandparent that [sic] look at your child’s and grandchild’s textbook, it is not the same textbook that you grew up with, it is dramatically different, it is I would almost say anti-American.”

In Texas, the ultraconservative State Board of Education already passed a resolution alleging that “pro-Islamic/anti-Christian bias has tainted some past Texas Social Studies textbooks” and warned they would reject textbooks with “gross pro-Islamic/anti-Christian distortions in Social Studies texts.”

Watch:

Save California Warns of "Sexual Brainwashing" in History Bill

A proposal in the California State Senate that incorporates the state’s important LGBT historical figures into the social studies curriculum is stirring up intense anger on the anti-gay Right. Known as the Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act, S.B. 48 ensures that schools discuss the contributions made by “gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans” along with a multitude of other groups, including “Native Americans, African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, [and] European Americans.” But the militantly anti-gay group Save California is fiercely resisting the measure.

Save California, which is led by Randy Thomasson, already runs the “Rescue Your Children” campaign against public schools. The group’s “ten reasons to leave your government-run school” includes “#1 homosexual-bi-trans indoctrination;” “#2 abortion indoctrination;” “#3 condom/birth control indoctrination;” “#4 anti-God, pro-evolution indoctrination;” and “#9 Anti-Christian indoctrination and widespread rejection of religious and moral values.” Thomasson was also a strong opponent of California’s Harvey Milk Day, which he called a “moral crime,” saying “teachers, principals, and schools that push Harvey Milk's values are responsible for the degradation of children as human beings.”

Thomasson now tells WorldNetDaily that SB 48 will lead to “the worst school sexual indoctrination ever”:

Randy Thomasson of the family-promoting SaveCalifornia.com said parents "don't want and children don't need 'LGBTIQ' role models in school."

"S.B. 48 micromanages public schools by forcing teachers, administrators, local school boards, textbooks, and instructional materials to promote a gaggle of sexual lifestyles that disturb parents and confuse kids," Thomasson said. "This costly state mandate targets children for sexual brainwashing, behind the backs of parents, teaching boys and girls to admire those who engage in homosexual, bisexual or transsexual behavior."



In a letter to Rep. Alan Lowenthall, chairman of the Senate Education Committee where the vote – six Democrats in favor and three Republicans opposed – was recorded, Thomasson's organization had opposed the plan.

"On behalf of the millions of parents we serve and the children they love, please oppose S.B. 48, which is the most radical sexual indoctrination ever of children in California public schools, which are supposed to be about academics," the letter said.



"The California public schools are no longer safe places for boys and girls morally," he told WND. "This new bill, S.B. 48, reflects the desire of the Democrat state legislators to recruit boys and girls to support the homosexual-bisexual-transsexual agenda both personally and publicly."

So Much For The New Scott Lively

Earlier this year, The Boston Globe reported that notorious anti-gay activist Scott Lively was "toning down his antigay rhetoric and shifting his focus to helping the downtrodden" by opening a coffee shop, saying this new venture was going to be "completely different from all the things that I’ve done in the past" and that he was going "to stop being involved in the other [anti-gay] stuff."

Not surprisingly, Lively hasn't actually given up his anti-gay activism, as earlier this month Lively was in Moldova warning of "secret plan by the homosexual powers of the EU" to destroy the country. 

And now he warned the AFA's OneNewsNow about efforts to "include social sciences instruction on the contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people," claiming it is an attempt to coerce people iton "being pro-gay":

Dr. Scott Lively, president of Defend the Family International, tells OneNewsNow that now is the time for Christians to voice their concern.

"And politics is a part of every church, it's part of every family -- and frankly, the reason we're suffering the consequences that we are is because the church has abdicated its responsibilities to be stewards of civil society."

The bill would mandate that teachers, textbooks, and materials present a positive image of the LGBT lifestyle.

"This isn't about tolerance. This isn't even about acceptance," Lively emphasizes. "This is about celebration and even goes further than that -- the next step after that is forced acceptance; you're coerced into being pro-gay."

Lively explains that the bill is another method for homosexual activists to identify and go after those who do not support homosexuality -- in much the same manner that activists aggressively targeted those who supported Proposition 8.

Conservative Think Tank Blasts Texas' "Blatant Politicizing" of Education

The Texas State Board of Education’s right-wing spin on U.S. history has earned the state a “D” from a conservative education think tank. Mary Tuma of the Texas Independent notes that the Thomas B. Fordham Institute is a “national conservative group calls for a ‘radical’ overhaul of U.S. history standards at K-12 public schools nationwide,” but even the self-declared “right-of-center” group couldn’t deny the drastic manipulation of the education curriculum by the far-right SBOE. The new education standards, outlined in the Right Wing Watch In-Focus: Texas Textbooks, downplay the roles of the civil rights and labor movements, whitewash slavery and Japanese internment, utilize a Religious Right view of the Constitution and the nation’s founding, and embrace a partisan Republican reading of history (among other changes) in an attempt to remove the alleged “liberal bias” of history textbooks.

The Fordham Institute lowered Texas’ rating from a C to a D due to the SBOE’s “blatant politicizing,” saying that “history is distorted throughout the document in the interest of political talking points.” According to the report, the new Texas standards are “inculcated” with “right-wing policy positions” and promote the Religious Right’s interpretation of government as the “Biblical influences on America’s founding are exaggerated, if not invented.” The report states:

Texas’s heavily politicized 2010 revisions to its social studies curriculum have attracted massive national attention. Indeed, both in public hearings and press interviews, the leaders of the State Board of Education made no secret of their evangelical Christian right agenda, promising to inculcate biblical principles, patriotic values, and American exceptionalism. And politics do figure heavily in the resulting TEKS.



While such social studies doctrine is usually associated with the relativist and diversity-obsessed educational left, the right-dominated Texas Board of Education made no effort to replace traditional social studies dogma with substantive historical content. Instead, it seems to have grafted on its own conservative talking points. The lists of “historically significant” names, for example, incorporate all the familiar politically correct group categories (women and minorities are systematically included in all such lists, regardless of their relative historical significance). At the same time, however, the document distorts or suppresses less triumphal or more nuanced aspects of our past that the Board found politically unacceptable (slavery and segregation are all but ignored, while religious influences are grossly exaggerated). The resulting fusion is a confusing, unteachable hodgepodge, blending the worst of two educational dogmas.


Complex historical issues are obscured with blatant politicizing throughout the document. Biblical influences on America’s founding are exaggerated, if not invented. The complicated but undeniable history of separation between church and state is flatly dismissed. From the earliest grades, students are pressed to uncritically celebrate the “free enterprise system and its benefits.” “Minimal government intrusion” is hailed as key to the early nineteenth-century commercial boom—ignoring the critical role of the state and federal governments in internal improvements and economic expansion. Native peoples are missing until brief references to nineteenth-century events. Slavery, too, is largely missing. Sectionalism and states’ rights are listed before slavery as causes of the Civil War, while the issue of slavery in the territories—the actual trigger for the sectional crisis—is never mentioned at all. During and after Reconstruction, there is no mention of the Black Codes, the Ku Klux Klan, or sharecropping; the term “Jim Crow” never appears. Incredibly, racial segregation is only mentioned in a passing reference to the 1948 integration of the armed forces.


In the modern era, the standards list “the internment of German, Italian and Japanese Americans and Executive Order 9066”—exaggerating the comparatively trivial internment of German and Italian Americans, and thereby obscuring the incontrovertible racial dimension of the larger and more systematic Japanese American internment. It is disingenuously suggested that the House Un-American Activities Committee— and, by extension, McCarthyism—have been vindicated by the Venona decrypts of Soviet espionage activities (which had, in reality, no link to McCarthy’s targets). Opposition to the civil rights movement is falsely identified only with “the congressional bloc of Southern Democrats”—whose later metamorphosis into Southern Republicans is never mentioned. Specific right-wing policy positions are inculcated as well. For example, students are explicitly urged to condemn federal entitlement programs, including Texas-born Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society,” and to mistrust international treaties (considered threats to American sovereignty).



Slavery, so central to the history of Texas, is mentioned only in passing. And then, of course, the other seven strands “cover” the same period yet again. In the high school U.S. history course, the pattern is the same. Scattered examples and lists of names quickly move through late nineteenth-century politics, the emergence of the United States as a world power, Progressivism, and the 1920s; on to the civil rights movement, the Reagan era, 9/11 and beyond. Once again, the other strands revisit the same ground from different perspectives, adding more isolated factoids and ill-matched lists of names. Then, the government and economics courses (themselves subdivided into the usual strands) “cover” the subject yet again, each strand and course offering further fragments of material in a historically incomprehensible jumble.

Conservative Think Tank Blasts Texas' "Blatant Politicizing" of Education

The Texas State Board of Education’s right-wing spin on U.S. history has earned the state a “D” from a conservative education think tank. Mary Tuma of the Texas Independent notes that the Thomas B. Fordham Institute is a “national conservative group calls for a ‘radical’ overhaul of U.S. history standards at K-12 public schools nationwide,” but even the self-declared “right-of-center” group couldn’t deny the drastic manipulation of the education curriculum by the far-right SBOE. The new education standards, outlined in the Right Wing Watch In-Focus: Texas Textbooks, downplay the roles of the civil rights and labor movements, whitewash slavery and Japanese internment, utilize a Religious Right view of the Constitution and the nation’s founding, and embrace a partisan Republican reading of history (among other changes) in an attempt to remove the alleged “liberal bias” of history textbooks.

The Fordham Institute lowered Texas’ rating from a C to a D due to the SBOE’s “blatant politicizing,” saying that “history is distorted throughout the document in the interest of political talking points.” According to the report, the new Texas standards are “inculcated” with “right-wing policy positions” and promote the Religious Right’s interpretation of government as the “Biblical influences on America’s founding are exaggerated, if not invented.” The report states:

Texas’s heavily politicized 2010 revisions to its social studies curriculum have attracted massive national attention. Indeed, both in public hearings and press interviews, the leaders of the State Board of Education made no secret of their evangelical Christian right agenda, promising to inculcate biblical principles, patriotic values, and American exceptionalism. And politics do figure heavily in the resulting TEKS.



While such social studies doctrine is usually associated with the relativist and diversity-obsessed educational left, the right-dominated Texas Board of Education made no effort to replace traditional social studies dogma with substantive historical content. Instead, it seems to have grafted on its own conservative talking points. The lists of “historically significant” names, for example, incorporate all the familiar politically correct group categories (women and minorities are systematically included in all such lists, regardless of their relative historical significance). At the same time, however, the document distorts or suppresses less triumphal or more nuanced aspects of our past that the Board found politically unacceptable (slavery and segregation are all but ignored, while religious influences are grossly exaggerated). The resulting fusion is a confusing, unteachable hodgepodge, blending the worst of two educational dogmas.


Complex historical issues are obscured with blatant politicizing throughout the document. Biblical influences on America’s founding are exaggerated, if not invented. The complicated but undeniable history of separation between church and state is flatly dismissed. From the earliest grades, students are pressed to uncritically celebrate the “free enterprise system and its benefits.” “Minimal government intrusion” is hailed as key to the early nineteenth-century commercial boom—ignoring the critical role of the state and federal governments in internal improvements and economic expansion. Native peoples are missing until brief references to nineteenth-century events. Slavery, too, is largely missing. Sectionalism and states’ rights are listed before slavery as causes of the Civil War, while the issue of slavery in the territories—the actual trigger for the sectional crisis—is never mentioned at all. During and after Reconstruction, there is no mention of the Black Codes, the Ku Klux Klan, or sharecropping; the term “Jim Crow” never appears. Incredibly, racial segregation is only mentioned in a passing reference to the 1948 integration of the armed forces.


In the modern era, the standards list “the internment of German, Italian and Japanese Americans and Executive Order 9066”—exaggerating the comparatively trivial internment of German and Italian Americans, and thereby obscuring the incontrovertible racial dimension of the larger and more systematic Japanese American internment. It is disingenuously suggested that the House Un-American Activities Committee— and, by extension, McCarthyism—have been vindicated by the Venona decrypts of Soviet espionage activities (which had, in reality, no link to McCarthy’s targets). Opposition to the civil rights movement is falsely identified only with “the congressional bloc of Southern Democrats”—whose later metamorphosis into Southern Republicans is never mentioned. Specific right-wing policy positions are inculcated as well. For example, students are explicitly urged to condemn federal entitlement programs, including Texas-born Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society,” and to mistrust international treaties (considered threats to American sovereignty).



Slavery, so central to the history of Texas, is mentioned only in passing. And then, of course, the other seven strands “cover” the same period yet again. In the high school U.S. history course, the pattern is the same. Scattered examples and lists of names quickly move through late nineteenth-century politics, the emergence of the United States as a world power, Progressivism, and the 1920s; on to the civil rights movement, the Reagan era, 9/11 and beyond. Once again, the other strands revisit the same ground from different perspectives, adding more isolated factoids and ill-matched lists of names. Then, the government and economics courses (themselves subdivided into the usual strands) “cover” the subject yet again, each strand and course offering further fragments of material in a historically incomprehensible jumble.

Barton: “I Guarantee You They Are Getting Homosexual Indoctrination” in Public Schools

The zealous opposition to anti-bullying initiatives in schools from Religious Right groups is based on the premise that such programs are surreptitious ways to “promote homosexuality” or disseminate “homosexual propaganda” in schools. On WallBuildersLive, faux-historian David Barton and co-host Rick Green brought on Brian Camenker of the stringently anti-gay group MassResistance to discuss ways “homosexual activists” are the real bullies and manufactured the whole problem of bullying in the first place. With more scrutiny given to the problem of the pervasive harassment of LGBT students (including the case of one Minnesota teenager who committed suicide last week), right-wing groups and leaders have become even more fanatical in their hostility to anti-bullying programs.

Green and Camenker, who described gay-rights groups as “fascist,” agree that “homosexual activists” invented the problem of bullying and became the bullies themselves:

Camenker: It often takes parents standing up to the homosexual activists and it’s hard to do, but you’re right. This is a very aggressive, fascist type of movement and these guys define the term ‘bullies.’

Green: I think you’re right and the perception I guess and maybe a lot of teachers, principals, superintendents out there have bought into this perception is that they are only the ones being bullied, the homosexual lobby is, so they’re hypersensitive to the other side of it.

Barton later claims that “homosexual indoctrination” is found in the entire public school system and tells parents that they “better get on top of what’s being taught to your kids.”

Barton: There’s a whole lost of this that goes on that parents don’t even hear about but it is going on. All this bullying stuff, as Brian pointed out, it’s not the schools that are doing bullying, it’s the people from outside the schools coming in and saying “oh you got a bullying problem and we need to teach a course for you.” The people living there didn’t see any problem. But it’s these outside agenda-

Green: They’re the very thing they say they’re going in to stop is what they’re doing themselves.

Barton: They generate and start. It goes back to the question Jesus asks, “What’s it profit you to gain the whole world and lose your soul?” The question I gotta ask is, what’s it worth to you to gain everything you want and lose your kids?

Because unless you’re willing to monitor what’s going on in that classroom, I guarantee you they are getting homosexual indoctrination. I don’t care whether you’re in a rural area or not, because this is so much a part of textbooks, so much a part of curricular stuff, so much a part of what goes on with other kids. We see it too often in lawsuits, we hear of accounts like this, and we hear of dozens of other accounts where nothing’s ever done. You better get on top of what’s being taught to your kids.

Barton: “I Guarantee You They Are Getting Homosexual Indoctrination” in Public Schools

The zealous opposition to anti-bullying initiatives in schools from Religious Right groups is based on the premise that such programs are surreptitious ways to “promote homosexuality” or disseminate “homosexual propaganda” in schools. On WallBuildersLive, faux-historian David Barton and co-host Rick Green brought on Brian Camenker of the stringently anti-gay group MassResistance to discuss ways “homosexual activists” are the real bullies and manufactured the whole problem of bullying in the first place. With more scrutiny given to the problem of the pervasive harassment of LGBT students (including the case of one Minnesota teenager who committed suicide last week), right-wing groups and leaders have become even more fanatical in their hostility to anti-bullying programs.

Green and Camenker, who described gay-rights groups as “fascist,” agree that “homosexual activists” invented the problem of bullying and became the bullies themselves:

Camenker: It often takes parents standing up to the homosexual activists and it’s hard to do, but you’re right. This is a very aggressive, fascist type of movement and these guys define the term ‘bullies.’

Green: I think you’re right and the perception I guess and maybe a lot of teachers, principals, superintendents out there have bought into this perception is that they are only the ones being bullied, the homosexual lobby is, so they’re hypersensitive to the other side of it.

Barton later claims that “homosexual indoctrination” is found in the entire public school system and tells parents that they “better get on top of what’s being taught to your kids.”

Barton: There’s a whole lost of this that goes on that parents don’t even hear about but it is going on. All this bullying stuff, as Brian pointed out, it’s not the schools that are doing bullying, it’s the people from outside the schools coming in and saying “oh you got a bullying problem and we need to teach a course for you.” The people living there didn’t see any problem. But it’s these outside agenda-

Green: They’re the very thing they say they’re going in to stop is what they’re doing themselves.

Barton: They generate and start. It goes back to the question Jesus asks, “What’s it profit you to gain the whole world and lose your soul?” The question I gotta ask is, what’s it worth to you to gain everything you want and lose your kids?

Because unless you’re willing to monitor what’s going on in that classroom, I guarantee you they are getting homosexual indoctrination. I don’t care whether you’re in a rural area or not, because this is so much a part of textbooks, so much a part of curricular stuff, so much a part of what goes on with other kids. We see it too often in lawsuits, we hear of accounts like this, and we hear of dozens of other accounts where nothing’s ever done. You better get on top of what’s being taught to your kids.

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Round-Up

Texas Eagle Forum Calls for Banning Muslims From Military, Government Jobs, and Running for Office

Via the Texas Freedom Network, we see that the Texas Eagle Forum has endorsed a position staked out by Elijah Abraham, an evangelical Christian convert from Islam, calling for the banning of Muslims from serving in the military , running for public office, or serving as government employees:

In the U.S., there are Muslim training camps across the country actively planning attacks on American soil. Young Americans are being converted to Islam in our jails, our military, public schools and universities, and in churches that preach Liberation Theology. Muslims have gained two seats in the U.S, Congress and have won seats in state and local races. Public school textbooks are becoming pro-Islam and anti-Christian. Muslims are buying Fortune 500 companies and high tech companies. There is a Dow Jones Islamic Index. Islamic banks, insurance companies and mortgage companies are springing up across the country. Our open borders welcome Muslims.

The challenge to America is to stop the spread of Islam in the U.S. before it is too late.

SOLUTIONS:

1. Congress MUST outlaw Shariah and international law
2. Eliminate Muslim government employees
3. Outlaw Muslim terrorist organizations, such as The Muslim Brotherhood, CAIR, etc.
4. Muslims should be ineligible to run for political office
5. All Muslim military personnel should be removed from the U.S. armed forces
6. Monitor mosques
7. Shut down terrorist training camps in the U.S.

Texas Eagle Forum also announces that it "will push for a bill against Shariah law during the 2011 legislative session, which opens in January in Austin."

Jacobs Calls The "Blood-Covered Justice and Judgments of God" Down Up Her Enemies

I admit that I find the Religious Right's commingling of prayer with politics endlessly fascinating, especially the way they formulate specific political goals as prayer targets, which is why I keep posting them.

The targets set out by Cindy Jacobs and Generals International are particularly revealing, as she has been providing specific day-by-day prayers heading into the election.

Her latest prayer update focuses mainly on reclaiming the "education mountain," and seeks to remove "unrighteous leadership" for the nation's public school system so that the "light of the gospel of Jesus Christ and the fear of the Lord" can be spread by educators. 

In addition, Jacobs declares that "progressive politics" and "multiculturalism" must be stripped from the nation's textbooks because they are "denigrating the importance of Christianity in American culture" and asks God to "break unholy conspiracies and expose for public scrutiny those who are advancing pro-Islamic textbooks and school curriculums under the rhetoric of diversity, rights, tolerance and democracy."

And, of course, Jacobs urges activists to pray to end "Homosexuality and Sexual Perversion in our Children's Schools" and calls the "blood-covered justice and judgments of God" down upon those who seek to "destroy the family unit through the advancement of the homosexual agenda":

· Pray for exposure to public scrutiny those who are covertly working to advance the homosexual indoctrination of our children through the educational system.

· Pray that God would raise up righteous leaders to successfully contend against the encroachments of the homosexual activists upon our nation's educational system.

· Pray that defenders of family and protectors of our children's welfare remain strong and courageous and true to their calling.

· Pray for protection of our children's minds and hearts as they sit in school, college and university classrooms.

Father, we come before you humbly crying out for mercy upon America's civic and household leaders for allowing the minority homosexual community to make such deep inroads into our nation's educational system. In Jesus' Name, we pray that You would awaken believers to the critical importance of being involved in preserving Biblical principals for living as the foundation of our children's education. Father, raise up Christians across America who will vote in leaders that will strongly oppose the encroachments of the homosexual activists upon our nation's educational system and diligently protect our children from being subjected to lessons in sexual perversion, deviance and decadence in their school classrooms and libraries. We ask You would expose to public scrutiny those who, under a cloak of "equality" that is devoid of Judeo-Christian values, are working to undermine parental rights in education and indoctrinate our impressionable school children in an effort to change public attitudes toward homosexuality. We release into our children the knowledge and wisdom of God and the boldness to stand up for what is true, holy and pure. We release strength, boldness and divine strategies to the faithful defenders of Your precepts for the instruction of our children and declare that they will not compromise their standards or cave to the abhorrent demands of the homosexual community even in the face of great opposition and threats. We release the blood-covered justice and judgments of God upon those forces that are trying to subjugate American education and thereby, destroy the family unit through the advancement of the homosexual agenda.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • The American Family Association will be webcasting the Values Voter Summit live - you can watch it here.
  • Several Religious Right groups have "delivered 20,000 petitions from Americans to the Republican leadership in Congress demanding that it feature family values in its soon-to-be-released legislative agenda."
  • Some rare good news: people don't think that Glenn Beck should be in a position as a religious leader.
  • The insanity regarding Texas textbooks just never stops.
  • Mike Huckabee has endorsed Rand Paul.
  • Rob Schenck and Pat Mahoney secured all the copies of the Koran that Terry Jones intended to burn and transported them back to Washington, DC for safe-keeping.
  • The Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation has changed its name to the "Terri Schiavo Life & Hope Network."
  • Marco Rubio teams up with David Barton.
  • The new head of the Idaho Values Alliance doesn't want to talk about Bryan Fischer.
  • Finally, I have to say that all of the revelations about Christine O'Donnell that are coming out are not really all that surprising.  After all, what do you expect from someone who worked at Concerned Women for America, which was founded by a woman who believes that "Christian values should dominate our government. The test of those values is the Bible. Politicians who do not use the Bible to guide their public and private lives do not belong in office."

Keyes: Slavery Was All About Guaranteed Food, Shelter, Clothing, and Jobs

Is it just me or does Alan Keyes' attempt to claim that President Obama desires to turn us all into slaves utterly dependent upon the government rely on a rather odd understanding of the institution of slavery: 

Keyes compared the institution of slavery with liberalism and socialism.

“What did it mean to be a slave?” Keyes asked. “It meant that you actually had guaranteed shelter, guaranteed clothing. Your master guaranteed your food, your clothing, your shelter and a job. “Sounds interesting, doesn’t it?” he said. “That’s exactly what the Obama faction and the leftists and the socialists and the so-called ‘liberals’ want to pretend is what all Americans should aspire to."

Keyes said he grew up wrestling with the heritage of slavery and understanding its true meaning. As a result, he said, "I have seen through that phony promise of socialism, that government-dominated largesse. It simply means that we shall all become slaves on the government’s plantation."

Is that what slavery was all about?  An effort by white landowner to provide food, shelter, and jobs to blacks? 

Did Keyes get that idea from a Texas textbook or something? 

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Joe.My.God: Texas GOP Platform Calls For Making It A Felony To Perform Gay Marriages.
  • Wonk Room: Texas Can’t Afford To Buy New Far-Right Textbooks, But Rick Perry Still Resists Federal Aid.
  • Alvin McEwen: Is the LGBT Community Plotting to Make Children 'Crossdress?' Of Course Not.
  • William Saletan: If it's OK to Reject Blood from Gay Men, What About Blacks?
  • Bruce Wilson: Leading Biblical Law Advocate "Jubilant" To Endorse Angle For Senate.
  • Iowa Independent: National Organization for Marriage heading to Iowa.
  • Finally, the quote of the day from Janet Jenkins' attorney Jennifer Levi regarding the Liberty Counsel's continuing efforts to represent Lisa Miller in court despite the fact that she reportedly fled the country in order to avoid court orders: "It doesn’t make sense for a lawyer unable to communicate with a client to pursue very important issues at the appellate level. Clearly, they have a broader legal agenda in continuing this legal fight, which is all but dead."

Right Wing Round-Up

Gov. Perry: Voters Need to Decide If They Worship Government or God

For years, Cathie Adams has been the President of the Texas affiliate of Phyllis Schlafly's Eagle Forum, until she was elected Chair of the state Republican Party last year.

So I guess it should come as no surprise that Gov. Rick Perry would attend a Texas Eagle Forum event at which Don McLeroy received a "Patriot Award" for his efforts to remake the state's textbooks and curriculum ... or that Perry would use his appearance to demand to know whether voters worship government or God

Gov. Rick Perry painted the upcoming election as a religious crusade to take back the soul of the country during a Thursday night speech to the conservative Texas Eagle Forum.

While Perry has invoked God and country before, his 14-minute speech to the 500 gathered, most of them delegates to the Texas Republican state convention, was stronger and more strident than previously.

"We will raise our voices in defense of our values and in defiance of the hollow precepts and shameful self-interests that guide our opponents on the left," Perry said to the receptive audience.

He said the November election is bigger than "red states and blue states, conservatives or liberals, stimulus or budget cuts."

"We are in a struggle for the heart and soul of our nation," Perry said.

"That's the question: Who do you worship? Do you believe in the primacy of unrestrained federal government? Or do you worship the God of the universe, placing our trust in him?"

...

Featured at the event was national Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly, who said she is heartened by shifts in public attitudes. She cited the diminished influence of big media, the majority of Americans considering themselves conservatives and anti-abortion, and the overall pervasive feeling that come November, "conservatives know they can win."

The group presented its Patriot Award to State Board of Education leader Don McLeroy, who led the board for the past two years as it tackled curriculum standards for English, science and social studies.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • PFAW: People For, CREDO, Brave New Foundation Deliver Petitions Demanding Unbiased Textbooks.
  • DCist: Harry Jackson Jumps Into D.C. Election Fray.
  • Media Matters: Newsmax confirms bid for Newsweek, claims magazine would "objectively report the news" under its ownership.
  • Amie Newman: Sarah Palin's Great Feminist Magic Trick.
  • Wonk Room: O’Reilly Compares Gay People To Al Qaeda, Suggests Gay Ad Will Turn Off Straight People.
  • Steve Benen: Fiorina Dismisses Global Warming as "The Weather".
  • Andrew Sullivan: The Catholic Hierarchy: Firing Gays Should Not Be Illegal.
  • Finally, be sure to read David Weigel's fascinating interview with Alexander Zaitchik, author of the new book "Common Nonsense: Glenn Beck and the Triumph of Ignorance."
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textbooks Posts Archive

Kyle Mantyla, Monday 08/08/2011, 1:06pm
As we have said time and time and time again, David Barton may be a lot of things, but he is not a historian. Of course, that has not stopping people like Mike Huckabee from routinely hailing Barton as "the single best historian in America today." So I imagine it will come as quite a surprise to the Religious Right to learn that Barton does not consider himself to be a historian, as he explained on an episode of "Face to Face" with Oral Roberts University President Mark Rutland: Barton: I really kind of do a whole lot of all of it, but I don't consider myself a... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 08/01/2011, 9:22am
With the emergence of the Stop SB 48 Coalition, which seeks to overturn the California law that makes sure textbooks include prominent LGBT historical figures by referendum, Religious Right activists have been stepping up their rhetoric against the new law. Larry Jacobs, the Vice President and Managing Director of the right-wing World Congress of Families, told the American Family Association’s OneNewsNow that the LGBT-inclusive law represents “a Nazi state or a communist type of way of dealing with an issue”: Larry Jacobs of the World Congress of Families expects... MORE
Brian Tashman, Friday 07/22/2011, 12:30pm
Rebecca Hagelin, James Dobson’s co-host on Family Talk, has proclaimed that the “culture challenge of the week” is to stop “intimidation and homosexual marriage.” Hagelin wrote in the Washington Times Sunday, “It has long been the goal of homosexual activists and the Hollywood elite to destroy the timeless truths of marriage, of family and of purity.” She adds that gay rights advocates are acting “like the bully on the playground” by using the media and schools to “ridicule” their opponents. Hagelin writes: Our present... MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 07/20/2011, 11:14am
Save California’s Randy Thomasson told conservative radio talk show host Janet Mefferd yesterday that Americans may need to have a new revolution to block a new California law that makes sure history textbooks include historic LGBT figures. Thomasson, who has likened homosexuality to drunk driving and drug abuse, said that “homosexual activists want children” and accordingly “the Democrat governor gave the homosexual activists the brains of children.” He went on to say that “we’re declaring independence” just like the colonists during the... MORE
Brian Tashman, Thursday 07/14/2011, 3:27pm
Writing for the ultraconservative Crisis magazine, Kevin Ryan of Boston University’s Center for the Advancement of Ethics and Character is outraged over the recently signed California law that makes sure textbooks cover important LGBT historical figures. Ryan said that the policy has a “distinct Stalinist odor” that will bolster the “gay agenda.” But Ryan has a way to respond to the new textbook law: abolish public schools. “Eliminate state-run public schools,” Ryan writes, “make a transition to one of the many school choice options” like... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 07/14/2011, 9:37am
Ever since the media started examining reports that the clinic operated by Michele Bachmann's husband Marcus practices "ex-gay therapy," the Religious Right has been in a tizzy and come rushing to their defense. So it was no surprise to see Bryan Fischer doing his part, though in this case it was Dr. Tim Rampey (who, oddly, was promoted as the author of "America Fooled: The Truth About Antidepressants, Antipsychotics And How We've Been Deceived," though the book cover says it was written by "Dr. Timothy Scott") who reached out to Fischer and offered to come on to... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 07/06/2011, 3:39pm
As Brian mentioned in the last post, the Religious Right is none-too-pleased about the passage of a bill that would make sure textbooks recognize the contributions of prominent LGBT figures in California history. So it was no surprise that it was a topic of discussion on today's broadcast of the AFA Report where Ed Vitagliano said that gay men are "abusing the nature of the design of the human body" while Jeremy Wiggins was outraged that they would allow such things into school before comparing gay sex to using a screwdriver to open paint cans: Vitagliano: Our perspective... MORE