Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Crisis of Confidence

A lot going on these days, no? Sometimes I think I’ve lived too long.

Twenty years ago many of my students carried various Stephen King books along with the history book I required them to bring into my class. I told them I stopped reading horror stories because real life is often scary enough. Truth is much stranger than fiction and actual events, past or present, interest me much more than any fiction.

A week later I’d just finished “The Hot Zone” by Richard Preston. On the back was a comment by Stephen King: “The first chapter of The Hot Zone is one of the most horrifying things I've read in my whole life--and then it gets worse. That's what I keep marveling over: it keeps getting worse. What a remarkable piece of work.” So I brought it to class and read them King’s comment. At their insistence I read some of chapter one, but stopped after the first twenty pages. The following week, I noticed a few students carrying Preston’s book.
Ebola in West Africa

Last month, President Obama tried to calm Americans worried about a new outbreak of Ebola in Africa. He told us it was highly unlikely there would be an outbreak in the US. Two weeks later, though, it happened. This week, there were two more cases reported in Dallas, Texas. Hopefully things won’t, as King said back then, “keep getting worse.” Hopefully the CDC will do as it promised and stop the spread of this disease in its tracks.
However, the confidence expressed by Dr. Thomas Friedman in his first press conference was not evident after the nurse in Dallas became infected. He said we need to “re-think” hospital methods to prevent the spread of this very scary disease. As the federal government takes over more and more aspects of our lives, from health care to education, public confidence in its ability to administer them all competently is waning.

It’s been more than three years since I left the public schools. My thirty-four year career in them witnessed ever-increasing federal and state control over what was to be taught and how, from arithmetic to sex education to what can be eaten at lunch. Countless screwball ideas came down from unions and universities as well. Last week, I read a piece by Katherine Timpf in National Review Online in which she writes: “A Nebraska school district has instructed its teachers to stop referring to students by “gendered expressions” such as “boys and girls,” and use “gender inclusive” ones such as “purple penguins” instead.
Gender-bending programs like this have been trickling in for years and I’ve written about some in this space several times. If I were still in public education and instructed to say: “Good morning Purple Penquins” instead of “Good morning boys and girls,” I believe I would have refused. Are there objections out there in Nebraska? None I have heard. What is it going to take before people push back against relentless LGBT propaganda paid for by their own tax money and foisted on their children?
The “Gender Spectrum” curriculum, mandated in the Nebraska district, “…instructs teachers to interfere and interrupt if they ever hear a student talking about gender in terms of ‘boys and girls’ so the student can learn that this is wrong.”

Wrong, mind you. Students are not being told just to tolerate other students who are confused about whether they’re boys or girls. Now it’s “wrong” to refer to the sexes in a “binary manner.” Nebraska public school teachers must now: “Provide counter-narratives that challenge students to think more expansively about their notions of gender.”

Two months ago, my wife and I attended my niece’s wedding in Massachusetts. When she and her husband filled out their marriage license, there were no categories for “husband” and “wife.” No-no. Not in politically correct Massachusetts. It was “Spouse A” and “Spouse B.” How did this happen?

Several years ago, Massachusetts passed a so-called “gay rights” law which slipped in language about “gender expression.” Then came a Massachusetts Supreme Court ruling that it was then illegal to prevent homosexuals from “marrying” one another. Leftist bureaucrats took over and changed official language pertaining to marriage - for everyone in the state, getting rid of “husband” and “wife” because those terms are wrong, I guess. They’re too “binary,” exclusive of those who claim they’re neither male nor female.
The City of Houston Texas passed an “equal rights” law that included aspects of “gender identity” and conservative groups have filed suit against it. Meanwhile, city attorneys have recently issued subpoenas demanding that local pastors turn over to the city any sermons written pertaining to “homosexuality or gender identity.” Does this not violate First Amendment guarantees of freedom of religion and speech? How about Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable searches and seizures?
Will Houston pastors meekly comply? Will the ACLU step in on their behalf? Be interesting to see.


Anonymous said...

Leave it to you to find the "Gaystapo" poster, that was good.

As they would say on Hogans Heroes, "Vee have Vays of making you.... (well you fill in the blank)"

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Spouse A: Ronald Reagan, Spouse B: Jane Wyman, Spouse C: Nancy Davis.

Spouse A: John McCain, Spouse B: Carol Shepp, Spouse C: Cindy Lou Hensley

Spouse A: Bob Dole, Spouse B: Phyllis Holden, Spouse C: Elizabeth Hanford

Spouse A: Newt Gingrich, Spouse B: Jackie Battley, Spouse C: Marianne Ginther, Spouse D: Callista Bisek

Spouse A: Rudy Giuliani, Spouse B: Regina Peruggi, Spouse C: Donna Hanover, Spouse D; Judith Nathan

neal said...

Ruling in Hell is great pay and hours.
That Other Place is more of an unpaid internship, with hope of permanent hire.
I guess the temporary middle ground of Christendom will be missed after the fact.
Some Wars are binary by nature.

Anonymous said...

"Crisis in Confidence"?
At what point were the the "anecdotal" officially recognized as the trend?

Anonymous said...

Above alphanumeric gobbled gook=CaptDMO

Anonymous said...

One of the few decent things to come out of Fox News.

Brian said...

Once again Tom displays either his complete inability to do simple research to find the truth, or his complete willingness to be a liar in order to try and make "points" Either way, the sign of a true hack as a columnist. DId Tom allow such "research" with his history students? Was he alright with his students making outright lies?

Regurgitating dumb things he read on other Far Right websites, like a Nebraska school be "mandated" to not refer to children "boys" or "girls", but to use gender neutral terms was so obviously untrue that it led me to a snopes factcheck . Easy enough to prove that there was no "mandate", no teachers forced to use any such language, simply a handout that teachers could read to suggest possibilities to dealing with gender issues.

Being forced to use such dishonest tactics has long been the main method used by Tea Party types in order to create anger with all their toadies like Tom who are to ignorant to find the truth for themselves, or too dishonest to care.

What else can they do when truth and morality are not on their side?

Anonymous said...

So...STILL strictly ad hominum then?
Thanks for playing.

Brian said...

ad hominum exactly! How can one be "for" or "against" something that simply isn't true - does not exist?

But one can certainly argue against the need to be a liar in order to "make a point"

Thanks for joining in the fun!

P.S. Notice that the liar himself has no defense!!

Rick said...



Thank god we have one less history teacer in our schools who has absolutely no comprehension of the horrors of Hitler and the Gestapo.

But a so called history teacher would HAVE to know the extent of the horrors, right?

Which leads to another likely scenario. Our imbecile columnist
does know his history about the holocaust but chooses to put those atrocities on the same level as the gay rights movement. In other words he does not think Hitler was all that bad,,,torture, murder and the genocide of jews is really no worse than asking teachers to read a flyer. Because after all, they are all just a bunch of fags and jews, right Tom?

Anonymous said...

Let's cut through the BS and lies about the Houston pastors as well...

From Snopes:

The mayor's office is not interested in what they preached, or how the pastors feel about Parker or her sexual orientation. (Those things are all well protected under the First Amendment, as they should be.) All officials want to know is what kinds of instructions the pastors gave out with respect to collecting petition signatures, and whether what they said agrees with what they're arguing in court while appealing the referendum.


Anonymous said...

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Lizard Man said...

LOL a picture from!! Do you have any idea who david icke is and what he believes in? Hahaha...