Thomas Jefferson, Cynthia Dunbar, & Fox News

THE whole world is watching Texas — and they’re all laughing. The Economist, which we regard as one of the best publications in the UK, carries this story: Jefferson v Board of Education, which says:

THE good news is that more Texans are paying attention to social-studies lessons than ever before. The bad news is that they suddenly have cause. On March 12th, the state board of education voted for a series of changes to the state’s history and social-sciences curricula.


The most dramatic change is that Thomas Jefferson has gotten the boot. The conservatives on the board deemed him to be a suspiciously secular figure.

That ties together a few themes we’ve previously written about. As we reported on the day it happened, Texas Education: Embracing the Dark Ages, the infinitely insane Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) decided to purge Thomas Jefferson from the list of people who were influential in the American Revolution.

They’re also purging the Enlightenment — which is being replaced by references to the writings of medieval churchmen, including Thomas Aquinas. As the geniuses on the SBOE know — and as Texas students will now learn — the American Revolution and the Constitutional Convention were entirely religious events. The United States was founded as a theocracy.

It was Cynthia Dunbar’s amendment that achieved the Jefferson purging. If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to learn about this arch-creationist, here’s your chance to Meet Cynthia Dunbar. This is her last year on the Board, and she’s making the most of it.

Okay, so far we’ve mentioned Jefferson, the Enlightenment, theocracy, creationism, and Dunbar. The remaining theme our regular readers know about, which also fits into today’s tapestry, is Fox News. We’ve reported about Creationism on Fox News, so what we’re about to tell you should come as no surprise.

On 15 March, Dunbar was interviewed on Fox & Friends, the morning news & chat show. The interviewer was our old friend, Steve Doocy, the same pleasant, ever-cheerful doofus who once gushed all over Casey Luskin (see Casey on Fox & Friends).

Here’s the Dunbar interview — it’s less than three minutes long:

Note that after being given a softball question, Cynthia says: “Thomas Jefferson is still in.” Yes, maybe he’s still mentioned, somewhere, perhaps in a list of Presidents — but his significance has been gutted.

Nice going, Cynthia. And while we’re at it, we’ll also congratulate Doocy on yet another incredibly worthless performance.

Copyright © 2010. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

add to del.icio.usAdd to Blinkslistadd to furlDigg itadd to ma.gnoliaStumble It!add to simpyseed the vineTailRankpost to facebook

. AddThis Social Bookmark Button . Permalink for this article

6 responses to “Thomas Jefferson, Cynthia Dunbar, & Fox News

  1. I’d weep — if I weren’t so angry.

    What nonsense this woman is vomiting!

  2. Great. Let’s hype how exceptional America is while taking out what really made us exceptional. Let’s instill a belief that America has never made mistakes and give less controversial names to things and forget that by not learning history, we are dooming people to repeat it.

  3. techreseller

    So if a Texas University plays either William and Mary or the University of Va in Texas, can the announcers talk about the connection Thomas Jefferson had with those schools? Or would that be too secular? These people are dooming the kids in their state to a last place finish in the global race for jobs, innovation and the future. All in the name of a 2000 year old religion.

  4. This sucks royally! I hope that social studies teachers in Texas will enrich their lessons with any important material that these idiots have left out. If I were teaching social studies, I would. In fact, if the textbook were atrocious enough, I’d chuck it and teach from primary sources. The schoolboard can’t do a damn thing about that.

  5. Gabriel Hanna

    I’m not defending the Texas SBOE here. But I would point out that social studies textbooks now are pretty bad. We’ve got kids all over the country who know all about Rosa Parks but nothing about Abraham Lincoln.

    I’ve been going back through my World Civilizations text–it was for a general university requirement for freshmen. Thomas Jefferson gets one mention, for writing the Declaration of Independence. Mary Wollstonecraft gets a whole chapter section. This is because Thomas Jefferson was neither a woman nor a minority. In my elementary school books we learned about Charles Drew, but not much about Jonas Salk, and we learned about George Washington Carver, but not Watson and Crick.

    I think kids SHOULD know who Thomas Aquinas was, and they definitely should know Thomas Jefferson. There is room in a well-rounded curriculum for both. I don’t believe anywhere in this country are they getting both.

  6. Gabriel Hanna says:

    But I would point out that social studies textbooks now are pretty bad.

    I still remember my 11th grade social studies class. Horrible teacher, Mrs. Carlson. There was at least one chapter on the glories of the trade unions, and I recall several pages about some union guy named Samuel Gompers. Never heard of him since. He had more space in the book than Thomas Edison.