We recently posted about the Chaos Brewing for Texas SBOE 19 May Meeting, to remind you that the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) has a public meeting scheduled for 19 May to discuss their theocratic revisions to the state’s standards for history education, with a final vote to be held two days later. That post didn’t generate much attention, but we’re not discouraged.
In the Dallas Morning News we read SBOE should either overhaul social studies standards or postpone vote. Here are some excerpts, with bold added by us:
The Austin American-Statesman reported this week that the State Board of Education has received something like 20,000 comments on its proposed revisions to the state’s social studies standards. Even though the Statesman reports that about 8,000 comments have originated from an American Civil Liberties Union campaign, the volume is nonetheless amazing. The earlier science curriculum debate received a paltry 3,000 comments.
That was what we wrote about a few days ago. But the Dallas Morning News goes further, and ties this in with the recent SBOE election results. Let’s read on:
This is not the only indication that the public is upset about the revised standards. They played into the GOP races that challengers Thomas Ratliff and Marsha Farney won this spring.
Ratliff unseated Don McLeroy, the conservative thinker [sic] who has pushed some of the new social studies standards that go too far in promoting a far-right agenda. (One indication: the standards would prohibit students from learning about the separation of church and state.) …
Similarly, Farney won her primary race to succeed Cynthia Dunbar, who was part of the McLeroy faction driving the social studies rewrite.
That’s the way we see it, but in addition to the social studies issues, there was probably some revulsion against the SBOE’s anti-science antics the year before, when the board trashed the theory of evolution and embarrassed the whole state.
We’re not sure, but we think the hearing next week will be the last major opportunity for creationist theocrats like McLeroy and Dunbar to work their mischief on the Texas education system. Knowing this, they’ll probably make the most of it.
To memorialize this meeting, which should be a classic event in the history of ignorance, irrationality, and arrogance, we suggest that the hearing deserves an appropriate setting. It should be held in the Texas School Book Depository — a fine old building that hasn’t been much in the news lately.
In fact, we recommend that this historical edifice should become the official creationist center for Texas — perhaps even for the whole world! And when old creationist politicians retire they should occupy living quarters within its welcoming walls. That’s where eminent creationist crusaders such as Kansas’ Kathy Martin, Florida’s Ronda Storms, Louisiana’s Bobby Jindal, and the Dover, Pennsylvania school board can spend their final years in shabby, but congenial comfort.
This concept is similar to others about which we’ve written, but we’re not proposing a duplicate of what we’ve described before — the Retirement Home for Obsolete Miracles — that dismal residence where such fading idols as spirit-caused disease, Apollo’s sun chariot, and other myths that once “explained” natural aspects of the world live out their dotage, reminiscing about their glory days.
Nor will the renovated Book Depository be the place where we think Ben Stein belongs — the previously described Hollywood retirement home where discredited kooks go to reminisce about happier days, before they lost all credibility over their mindless embrace of astrology, magic crystals, spiritual channeling, and various other mystical, irrational beliefs.
While we’re discussing goofy ideas and ideological obsolescence, we should also remind you of the previously mentioned Retirement Home for Absolutely Useless Arguments (RHAUA) — those that have seen long and faithful service, but which are now so universally laughable that it’s time to say goodbye.
The more we think about this new usage for the Texas Book Depository building, the more we like the idea. Try to imagine how wonderful it will be when the most outrageous creationist politicians in America are all living under the same roof. Perhaps they’ll convert the building’s ground floor into a creationist museum. Yes! The admission they charge can pay for their modest needs, and there will be — at last! — a practical use for creationism. This concept still needs a bit of work, but it’s got potential!
Anyway, we’re going to miss McLeroy and Dunbar. When they’re gone, the ol’ blog just won’t be the same.
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