This past Tuesday the Portland, Oregon Public Schools Board voted unanimously to ban any classroom materials — including textbooks — that cast doubt on climate change.
In addition, humanity’s effect on climate must be presented as “one of the phenomenon’s causes.”
Former Portland teacher Bill Bigelow testified that “we don’t want kids in Portland learning material courtesy of the fossil fuel industry.”
He added that materials using the words “might,” “may” and “could” when referring to climate change merely “make concessions for fossil fuel companies.”
The story started making waves on Friday when The Blaze, a conservative news site founded by Glenn Beck, picked it up. U.S. News and World Report also picked it up, which incited one commenter to say, “Well this is special….ban books because you dont (sic) agree with the context. Sounds like teaching professionals promoting a very personal and liberal agenda.”
Republican representatives in Congress agree, but it seems America’s conservative politicians are alone in this regard — much of the world’s right-leaning leaders have urged action on climate change. In the U.S., the Environmental Protection Agency has been doing the same, calling it a public health issue.
Legal Insurrection points out that Mr. Bigelow is the author of an environmentalist book on climate change titled A People’s Curriculum for the Earth. But, he insists, this has nothing to do with his … “motivations”:
“What we’re asking for is not: Buy new stuff. What we’re looking for is a whole different model of curriculum development and distribution.”
Referring to Bigelow as a “progressive gadfly,” L.I.’s Leslie Eastman notes that he once linked July 4 fireworks to heart attacks.
Apart from the noise pollution, air pollution, and flying debris pollution, there is something profoundly inappropriate about blowing off fireworks at a time when the United States is waging war with real fireworks around the world. To cite just one example, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in London found recently that U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan alone have killed more than 200 people, including at least 60 children. And, of course, the U.S. war in Afghanistan drags on and on.
Well, for perspective, the above was published at the (Howard) Zinn Education Project’s “Teaching A People’s History.”