Patterico's Pontifications

5/6/2014

Wait Until You See What the L.A. Times Thinks “Multiple Credible Sources” Are

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:46 am

Let’s hear from the L.A. Times:

The Rialto Unified School District has decided not to ask its eighth-grade students to argue whether the Holocaust happened after the assignment came under fire.

The decision to revise the assignment came Monday after it drew criticism from the Anti-Defamation League and the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which called it “grotesque” in a statement issued that same day.

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Los Angeles-based center, said the district’s “assignment mistakenly provides moral equivalency between history and bigotry.”

School administrators planned to “assure that any references to the Holocaust ‘not occurring’ would be stricken from any research assignment,” KTLA-TV reported, citing a district statement.

Students were asked to research and write an argumentative essay about whether the Holocaust actually occurred or if it was “merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain wealth.”

They were required to analyze information from multiple, credible sources.

That is rich. Wait until you read, in a story from local news station KTLA, what those “multiple, credible sources” are.

The 18-page assignment instructions included three sources that students were told to use, including one that stated gassings in concentration camps were a “hoax” and that no evidence has shown Jews died in gas chambers.

“With all this money at stake for Israel, it is easy to comprehend why this Holocaust hoax is so secretly guarded,” states the source, which is a attributed to a webpage on biblebelievers.org.au. “In whatever way you can, please help shatter this profitable myth. It is time we stop sacrificing America’s welfare for the sake of Israel and spend our hard-earned dollars on Americans.”

The other sources were from the websites history.com and about.com.

Ladies and gentlemen, I think we just discovered the root of the journalistic problem at the Los Angeles Times. When they base one of their stories on “multiple credible sources” they mean a collection of crackpots and random generalist Internet sites, including ones that rely one sites editable by anyone.

As Ed Morrissey aptly notes: “Really? Why not add Wikipedia in there, too? If the school wanted to teach critical thinking, why not start by teaching students to look for primary sources?”

Unlike many, I have mixed feelings about this assignment. In an ideal world of school competition, no subject should be off-limits for critical thinking — and, done correctly, this could be a smashing assignment. You get students to look at these sites, write their essays, and then hit them over the head with the facts. As Instapundit notes:

[W]hen then-Gen. Eisenhower liberated Europe from the Nazis, he very deliberately ordered their concentration camps to be filmed and otherwise thoroughly documented, lest such staggering atrocities become attributed to “propaganda.”

Yup. So what you do is, you let the kids do their research and write their papers. Then you tell them in no uncertain terms that this happened. That it was well documented. That the documentation was done for a reason: because we knew there would always be crackpots like that Internet page we showed you.

It would teach kids about the dangers of relying on random bullshit from the Internet. And that is an absolutely critical skill these days. One that L.A. Times reporters have not absorbed.

Here’s the problem. In a world where we get to choose our children’s schools, I could get behind an assignment like that, because I could have control over whether it’s done right — and if it’s not, I can go to the competition.

But I don’t trust government-run schools, with their allegiance to Common Core and all the rest, to do it right. And this story shows why.

52 Responses to “Wait Until You See What the L.A. Times Thinks “Multiple Credible Sources” Are”

  1. This is part of it, I think:

    http://pjmedia.com/eddriscoll/2011/06/15/black-armband-history-2/

    What will happen is folks will get carried away about the District Superintendent and spokesperson’s names. Then the story will turn to the “death threats” they received.

    Me, I want to know who suggested this hateful assignment, and I think they should justify their choices.

    There is something very wrong with this story, no matter what unfolds.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  2. But seriously. Ask 100 high school students basic questions about history. You will not be happy at the result.

    Yet they know AAAALLLL about the current political aspects of things (as in yay progressivism).

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  3. Yeah, free stuff, too!

    AZ Bob (533fbc)

  4. Simon, I note the LA Times did not mention Interim Superintendent Mohammad Z. Islam’s name, apparent;y for fear some would draw conclusions from it.

    No article I’ve seen seems to lay the blame anywhere. This “just happened” as the district attempted to follow Common Core guidelines. Typical bureaucratic wagon-circling.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  5. But I don’t trust government-run schools, with their allegiance to Common Core and all the rest, to do it right.

    In the context of the ideological insanity that, oddly and ironically enough, makes true-blue liberals at Brandeis hostile towards a woman who’s bemoaning the reactionary culture of Sharia law and Islamism, the inspiration for such classroom topics is very suspicious. Simply put, if the assignment of “prove or disprove the Holocaust” were originating from non-liberal educators (and also not from a disgusting clique of peculiar anti-Jewish rightwingers), I wouldn’t have major doubts of what was behind it.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  6. BTW, in defense of Wikipedia, it at least has footnotes, which can be useful for FINDING primary sources, something Google is not strong at doing.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  7. First of all, this question does not belong on a one-off SAT question. If you are trying to show how propaganda is made, you have to give the students time to investigate the lunatics who claim to be experts. The question BTW also quotes Fred Leuchter as one of its sources. Total nut job, described as an “expert” in the question, which is propaganda right there.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_A._Leuchter

    And of course Mo Islam. You have to be kidding me. His spokeswoman is some greeny liberal too. This is not just happenstance. They are playing the long game.

    Patricia (be0117)

  8. Yeah. Credible sources like Jay Carney.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  9. And the parents can’t understand it, it’s much too much too absurd.
    Tell me why!
    Interim Superintendent Mohammad Z. Islam.
    Tell me why!
    Interim Superintendent Mohammad Z. Islam. What more do you need to be told?

    He sounds like a convert. Black Muslim? They are the ones with the grandiose names, like Elijah Mohammed or Mohammed Ali, although Kareem Abdul Jabar beat their pairs of prophets with two of Allah’s names.

    nk (dbc370)

  10. As noted by the Head Ewok: it’s difficult to believe that the staff of a government-run school can teach critical thinking to children when they’re so demonstrably bad at it themselves.

    PCachu (e072b7)

  11. My daughter’s school, one of the best public schools, is going Common Core. We are certainly going to send her to a private/Catholic high school but there are no private middle school near us as good as the school she’s in. Her mother and I have discussed it and we’ll just have to do our best with the “homeschooling” she’s already getting from her mother and tutors to make up for it.

    nk (dbc370)

  12. nk… heh.

    “Interim Superintendent Mohammad Z. Islam was set to talk with administrators to “assure that any references to the holocaust ‘not occurring’ will be stricken on any current or future Argumentative Research assignments,” a statement from district spokeswoman Syeda Jafri read.”

    Hmmmmmmmmm…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  13. now, that’s something difference, one could refer to passages from Mein Kampf, to make that argument, but to deny that the Holocause happened,

    narciso (3fec35)

  14. In other news… Obama’s biographer says “the world seems to disappoint him.”
    meh… just imagine how the world feels about Obama.
    weeklystandard.com/blogs/obama-bi…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  15. Greetings:

    But let me guess, the Crusades were worse, right ???

    Interesting that the brouhaha over in the former Great Britain about a Muslim “Trojan Horse” plan to convert the schools over there to Islamania factories didn’t show up in the coverage.

    11B40 (6abb5c)

  16. I was expecting Inf*w*rs.

    Dave (in MA) (037445)

  17. Thankfully, it sounds like the jig is up on this particular assignment. But one does shudder to wonder how on earth this assignment and any other future common core “critical thinking” essays would be graded, and by whom.

    elissa (770ecb)

  18. The district defended their decision and announced that more assignments like these would be forthcoming in the future said spokesman Mo Cowbell

    Mike S. (f5d617)

  19. Sounds more like this assignment was inappropriate for 8th grade. I mean, do you really want 13-14 year olds pouring through archival footage of the death camps? The mass graves filled with starved bodies and the documented executions?

    DejectedHead (a094a6)

  20. My oldest daughter, when in 6th grade (She is 47 now), had an assignment where the students conducted a “trial” of President Truman for war crimes for dropping the atomic bomb on Japan. They convicted him.

    The schools have been nutty for a long time. I sent my kids to private school after a divorce. My ex-wife was a teacher but she went back to teaching for a short while 20 years ago and, after that experience, she said she would home school the kids if she were doing it again.

    MikeK (cd7278)

  21. At least the state department wasn’t one of those “credible sources.”

    Jim (145e10)

  22. Shirley, I wish you were joking.
    My goodness, a legal action goes to the Supreme Court over whether or not a government body can have a prayer at the beginning of a meeting, as if there was not plenty of historical precedent over what was not considered to be the establishment of religion and hence allowed by the Constitution;
    but toss in “Mohammed” and “Islam” and one can get by with almost anything.

    As some alluded to, I believe, had the assignment been to investigate how it is that some people can claim that the Holocaust was a hoax when there was so much documentation of it, and it would be one heck of a good assignment.

    nk, your daughter has the opportunity to learn how to stand for what is true through cross-examination and in the face of cross-examination.
    As long as she doesn’t get bad grades for it.
    Of course, children don’t always make the most of what their parents can offer,
    and parents don’t always do a good job of offering it.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  23. I’ll be 58 in a month, MD, and it was while typing a comment on another thread here that I remembered appreciatively the set of encyclopedias my father bought us when I was twelve. (We still have them and we still get the annual yearbook/updates, too.) I don’t know if “bread upon the waters” is the right parable for one’s children but I can’t think of another right now. ;)

    nk (dbc370)

  24. What would make a legitimate assignment would be requiring students to argue against claims by Holocaust deniers.

    Is the school district unwilling to take a position?

    Or afraid some students wouldn’t be able to do it? (they are the least competent people to do such a thing)

    I’m sure they take for granted many other things when they hand out assignments..

    This is not like a question about whether or not the United States was right to enter World War I.

    And by the way, they don’t question whether the war took place, or whether there was a Great Depression.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  25. Comment by Kevin M (b357ee) — 5/6/2014 @ 7:59 am

    Simon, I note the LA Times did not mention Interim Superintendent Mohammad Z. Islam’s name

    This article did.

    The San Bernadino Sun.

    Article is entitled:

    EXCLUSIVE: Rialto Unified defends writing assignment on confirming or denying Holocaust

    I was sent this by Lester Jackson.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  26. Based upon your research on this issue, write an argumentative essay, utilizing cited textual evidence, in which you explain whether or not you believe the Holocaust was an actual event in history, or merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain

    No, no.

    A genuine assignment would be:

    Based upon your research on this issue, write an argumentative essay, utilizing cited textual evidence, in which you explain that the Holocaust was an actual event in history, and not any kind of a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain

    Yes. The school district must take a position on that.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  27. Look on the bright side. This school is becoming one of the finest madrassas in the world.

    AZ Bob (c949f7)

  28. I think you’re jumping way too hard on KTLA. It looks like “credible sources” is just a piece of boilerplate taken from the assignment, not a judgement by KTLA of the sources.

    A better statement would be to put “multiple, credible sources” in quotes, and note that the “credible” sources suggested include garbage sites.

    But that’s a rather mild sin of omission in a story that was probable written quickly.

    As to the subject of the assignment, it looks really hinky.

    On the idea of a thought-challenging assignment. Have each student pick out an obscure historical fact (X) for which there is or could be be controversy. Research X, and decide on it. Then write two essays, one arguing X, and one arguing not-X.

    The other students review each pair of essays (half reading one of each pair, and each student reading an equal number of each kind), and vote on which are true and false. Prizes to the students who are the most convincing liar, the most credible truth-teller, and least often wrong.

    Rich Rostrom (06e025)

  29. The Progressive Left has never jumped as hard on Holocaust Denial as they might, even when they showed signs of wanting to (which they mostly don’t, anymore), probably because they want so desperately to deny that the Gulags happened.

    C. S. P. Schofield (e8b801)

  30. I wonder how the LA Times would handle “multiple credible sources” who deny that slavery in America ever happened.

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  31. Here’s the thing, though, my main issue with the assignment. If you’re going to teach kids critical thinking skills by way of having them engage in a debate with respect to an issue, then, have them engage in a debate in which there is some substantive, potential merit to the respective pro and con positions, subjectivity aside. The obvious problem with the assignment is that there is no credence to the position that the Holocaust never happened; thus, the assignment proceeds from a point of complete intellectual inequity between the two sides being argued. Of course, all of that is in addition to the fact that Holocaust denial is a well-known province of anti-Semites situated in both Islam and Nazism, so the assignment is really giving prominence and credibility to this loathsome viewpoint, whatever the overarching alleged academic exercise may be claimed to be. The assignment, by its very nature, is positing that the Holocaust is a disputed historical issue (or, at least, some naive students may extrapolate that conclusion), which, outside of the aformentioned, fringe anti-Semitic circles, it is not.

    A subject such as federalism, for example — the divide of power between the federal government and the states, and towards which side the balance should lean — would make for a much more intellectually robust debate, because, there are at least valid arguments that could be made on both sides of the equation, irrespective of one’s personal political leanings.

    Guy Jones (df6cf0)

  32. What gets me is that Rialto is not a hotbed of Muslims, being majority (65%) Hispanic followed by non-Hispanic whites and blacks in that order. The city councilmember’s names bear that out. But it probably hasn’t got a lot of synagogues either.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  33. They’re prosletyzing, Kevin.

    Patricia (be0117)

  34. As others have mentioned, it would be a mistake to make too much of the interim superintendent or spokesperson’s name.

    Because that would be focusing on the wrong issue. The progressive left is rife with antisemitism. And therefore so is acedemia (but I repeat myself because they are one and the same).

    Recall the Occupiers and their blatant anti-semitism? I do. I did a search. Among the copious amounts of articles recording the anti-semitic nature of the progressive left at these nasty events, I came up with this gem from the WaPo:

    Occupy Wall Street: Does anyone care about the anti-Semitism?

    In Los Angeles, California, protester Patricia McAllister, who identified herself as an employee of the Los Angeles Unified School District (we can only hope she is not an educator), had this to say:

    “I think that the Zionist Jews, who are running these big banks and our Federal Reserve, which is not run by the federal government… they need to be run out of this country.”

    No wonder really a lesson that can legitimize Holocaust denial can slip into the curriculum. It isn’t like Mohammad Z. Islam would have to force the issue to get someone named Patricial McAllister to go along with it.

    It’s not really relevant to the discussion other than to note that it’s almost impossible to become a teacher, especially in Kali, as the country’s 1500 plus adopt the concept of teaching “social justice” as defined by avowed communists such as Eric Gutstein and Barack Obama’s old friend and co-worker, Bill Ayers unless you are a flaming leftist with the correct leftist disposition, but the anti-semitism wasn’t being displayed by some fringe element at these Occupy protests. Anti-semitism has gone mainstream in the progressive left.

    One of [the] people reportedly responsible for organizing the “Occupy Wall St.” protests, Adbusters editor Kalle Lasn, has a history of perpetuating conspiracy theories that say the Jews control America’s foreign policies.

    I don’t know if most of you have been following this BDS madness at universities. Prof. Jacobson has been doing a bang up job of chronicling it. The BDS fanatics insist that they’re not anti-semitic. But it’s clear that the BDS movement provides a vehicle for rank anti-semites to indulge in their hatred of the Joooos.

    Like all ostensibly anti-Israel movements it’s hard to say they are entirely made up of anti-semites. But it provides fertile ground for anti-semites. And if the rest aren’t anti-semites, they’re really good at shutting up about it and pretending it’s not going on.

    Anti-Israel academic boycott turns ugly at Vassar

    Heavy racial overtones as Israel class picketed, Professor forced to walk protest gauntlet, Jewish students heckled and mocked.

    Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY, has been in the headlines this year because of anti-Israel agitation related to Hillel. But that’s only part of the story, and the only part to receive mainstream media attention.

    In fact, several events coincided leading to an ugly, racialized and anti-Israel eruption on campus in early March which has not received any mainstream media attention, although it was covered at the pro-Israel Commentary Magazine and Louis Brandeis Center, and previously at the anti-Israel Mondoweiss website.

    …Friedman said that she was “shocked” and “in 17 years at Vassar never experienced anything like this.” She said she “couldn’t believe protestors crossed over into [the] space of classes.” Even though the protesters didn’t enter the classroom itself, they imposed themselves physically in the pathway to the class.

    Friedman considered these physical actions to be a “new kind of transgression.” Friedman felt that the protest was “dangerous” from an academic perspective, and “crossed a line that no other protest crossed.”She said she would not have minded if the protest took place outside of the classroom vicinity and in a way that did not impose on those entering the class. SJP frequently leaflets and has a table set up in the student center, and Friedman said she doesn’t mind that.

    The protesters continued to make noise as class started, but eventually quieted down and left. The students in her class looked “shell shocked” according to Friedman.

    The class spent about a half hour talking about what had happened. Student comments during that session included that they “felt unsafe,” “bullied” and “harrassed.” Some other students felt that their “intelligence was insulted” by the protest.

    …Friedman was told that a dialogue session would be organized with the protesters, so that she and they could express their views to each other civilly. That meeting never took place.

    Instead, and much to her surprise, Friedman received an all-campus email from the Committee on Inclusion and Excellence announcing that there would be a campus-wide forum to discuss the ethics of her class travel.

    …Phillip Weiss, a harsh critic of Israel who runs the Mondoweiss website, attended the forum at the invitation of Friedman and Scheiderman According to Weiss, Kiese Laymon, an African-American writer and English professor, led the meeting, saying he wanted a dialogue about activism–“not to be guided by cardboard notions of civility.” Friedman also remembered that phrase being used to open the meeting

    Weiss descibed the hostile atmosphere, as follows in part (emphasis added):

    I was at the March 3 meeting that so upset Schneiderman, and it was truly unsettling. Over 200 students and faculty jammed a large room of the College Center, and torrents of anger ripped through the gathering. Most of them were directed at Israel or its supporters. Two or three times people shouted at one another. Several said they felt bullied. Schneiderman and another leader of the trip, Rachel Friedman, an associate professor of Greek and Roman studies, looked shocked.

    …I left the room as soon as the meeting ended. The clash felt too raw, and there was a racial element to the division (privileged Jews versus students of color). Vassar is not my community, and I didn’t want to say anything to make things worse.

    …Friedman described how “Jewish kids sho spoke were heckled” and drowned out with a finger snapping noise and loudly laughed at. I asked how she knew they were Jewish, and she said that they self-identified as such in response to the crowd. One student stated: “I felt anti-Semitism before in my small town and never thought I would again until now.”

    (Note: I didn’t use Prof. Jacobson’s emphases, but did emphasize what I wanted to hightlight.)

    Prof. Jacobson notes that the administration at Vassar is doing very little about the atmosphere of anti-Israel/anti-Jewish targeting and intimidation. From my reading they aren’t even acknowledging it. Just like the leftists who were praising the Occupier up and down (cough, cough, Nancy Pelosi) remained quiet about the anti-Semitism.

    In any case, since that is largely the atmosphere in higher education where public school teachers are produced, how could you possibly expect them to teach a course on the Holocaust and Holocaust denial fairly?

    Steve57 (e86077)

  35. Steve #36,

    Good stuff.

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  36. Yes, good stuff.

    felipe (098e97)

  37. Well, any kids who tried to do this assignment before sane people intervened will have a point of reference when they see how “journalism” works in the Middle East if they end up in the US diplomatic corps–”The Protocols of The Elders Of Zion” is more or less a style manual in Cairo and parts beyond.

    M. Scott Eiland (c249e1)

  38. Dear Los Angeles Times,

    We have multiple credible sources who claim that there is a Benghazi cover-up, orchestrated by White House operatives.
    Interested ?

    Signed,

    America

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  39. Let’s try this…What do you think would have happened if the assignment had been this:

    Based upon your research on this issue, write an argumentative essay, utilizing cited textual evidence, in which you explain whether or not you believe that slavery actually existed in this country or claiming so is merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain

    CalFed (5b899d)

  40. Journalism degrees are not actual educations. Being a journalist is not actual experience in anything. Ultimately it all comes down to demographics and bad demographics = Idiocracy. Plus leftism is a mental disorder, not a legitimate ideology. It’s nice to see the cocooned blogosphere finally is catching up to reality on the ground, but frankly speaking they’re many years late and many dollars short.

    Lawrence Westlake (4fc30a)

  41. What gets me is that Rialto is not a hotbed of Muslims, being majority (65%) Hispanic followed by non-Hispanic whites and blacks in that order

    You’re making a mistake of focusing on the race or ethnicity, or, for that matter, also religion of such people instead of their ideology. Left-leaning instincts running in tandem with a diminished (or non-existent) amount of common sense — with an emphasis on the latter — apparently breed a surprising amount of bigotry, using the figurehead examples of Bill Clinton (has used the “n” word casually and implied Obama wasn’t fit due to his race, not just his deranged leftism), Harry Truman (said things in private that would make even a hardened Klu Klux Klanner blush), Franklin Roosevelt (disliked Jews and interracial marriage, and thought growing anti-Jewish sentiment in 1930s German was due to the fault of the Jews themselves) and Woodrow Wilson (instituted Jim Crow laws and opposed non-whites being admitted to Harvard).

    The following does correlate race/ethnicity with anti-Semitism, but I think of people along the lines of whether they’re liberal, moderate or conservative. So substitute “black” and “Latino” with “liberal,” since left-leaning biases dominate those two demographics. Moreover, the Jews described below who are concerned about “phantom” anti-Semitic attitudes also should be substituted with the word “liberal.” After all, that probably reflects their mindset far better than “Jew,” “Jewish” or “Judaism” per se.

    washingtonpost.com, February 19, 2014: ADL surveys show that “approximately 12 percent of Americans hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views.” However, over 30% of African Americans and Latinos hold such views. Given that they are almost 30% of the population, this suggests that of the 12% of Americans who hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views, 9% or so are African Americans or Latinos. This means, in turn, of the 70% or so of the population that is not African American or Latino, only 3% hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views. Put another way, less than 5% of whites, Asians, and “others” (including Native Americans) combined hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views, compared to over 30% of African Americans and Latinos

    Regardless, it seems odd given these numbers that Jews seem especially concerned about mostly phantom anti-Semitism emanating from white evangelical Christians, while being less concerned about anti-Semitism in core Democratic constituencies.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  42. I think you’re jumping way too hard on KTLA. It looks like “credible sources” is just a piece of boilerplate taken from the assignment, not a judgement by KTLA of the sources.

    I wasn’t jumping on KTLA. I was jumping on the L.A. Times. KTLA provided the information I used to mock the L.A. Times.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  43. In memory of Stan Fishman and Larry… Can’t remember his last name but remember the face! The old KTLA!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  44. I don’t understand how an assignment like this has ANY credibility when you could still go to oh, eight zillion eyewitnesses and ask them whether they saw the things described in the holocaust.

    UncleDan (efea20)

  45. Thanks for the compliments. I left out a couple of words when I got lost in the sentence about Bill Ayers et al.

    *the country’s 1500 education schools plus adopt…

    You have to understand just how pernicious “teaching for social justice” is.

    Teachers union boss wants schools to teach ‘social justice’

    Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis wants schools to teach social justice, not “consumerism,” she said in a video.

    Lewis spoke about ways to avoid “consumerist” messages while teaching subjects typically seen as apolitical, like math, at the annual conference of the Network for Public Education, a progressive advocacy group that backs public schools.

    “You want to talk about organizing? You want to talk about social justice?” the Chicago union leader asked. “People always talk about how that there’s no political and values in math, that you can teach math without a place for social justice.”

    “Johnny has five pencils and if he spent two cents for the red pencils and eight cents for the green pencils, and he has 47 cents, how many pencils can he buy? We’ve all seen that, right?” Lewis said. ”That’s a very political statement, because it’s all about consumerism — it’s about buying stuff, right?”

    Instead, Lewis prefers the approach of one progressive teacher who uses union-approved rhetoric in math problems, instead of the damaging consumerism of two cent pencils.

    “Bob Peterson tells them about Jose working in a factory making piecemeal clothes. He uses the same numbers and gets the same answer,” Lewis explained. “Math is political, too…”

    By “consumerism” she means capitalism. It is a tenet of marxism that all social institutions support the existing bourgeois capitalist order. Schools, religion, the boy scouts, marriage, etc. This prevents the proletariat from developing their proper “class consciousness.”

    Or as Maxine Green, one of the “education professors” who opened Bill Ayers’ eyes to the fact that instead of bombing places like Fort Dix he can just corrupt the kids’ minds in the classroom to overthrow capitalism, wrote (linked under Bill Ayers @36):

    …Thus Maxine Greene urged teachers not to mince words with children about the evils of the existing social order. They should portray “homelessness as a consequence of the private dealings of landlords, an arms buildup as a consequence of corporate decisions, racial exclusion as a consequence of a private property-holder’s choice.” In other words, they should turn the little ones into young socialists and critical theorists.

    All music to Bill Ayers’s ears. The ex-Weatherman glimpsed a new radical vocation. He dreamed of bringing the revolution from the streets to the schools. And that’s exactly what he has managed to do.

    So the totalitarian left crypto-Marxists are working overtime to totally change all of the above, to name a few, so that they instead destroy the bourgeois capitalist social order.

    Hence the anti-capitalist message of showing just how the evil capitalists exploit the workers.

    Note how she makes sure to use a name associated with “people of color” when delivering the anti-capitalist message.

    Because they have to hide the Marxist roots behind the message, they instead racialize the message.

    Hence the social marxist theory of “White privilege.” You see, Marxism teaches that capitalism is among other things exploitive, sexist, imperialist, and racist.

    If you have to be a stealth marxist and bring about the revolution by euphemisms such as claiming to fight for “social justice” instead of communism, then instead of talking economic class talk about the racism. America is incorrigibly racist. The most racist country on Earth. And only by fundamentally transforming it (remind you of one of Bill Ayers’ friends?) can we end the racism.

    Speaking of imperialism, let’s talk about the “privileged Jews” as they are called at Vassar and no doubt throughout academia and that Holocaust “lesson.” Can anyone doubt that the lesson was going to be just as political as Karen Lewis’ math lesson. Why else would they tell the students to use a “reliable source” that claims the Holocaust is a hoax perpetrated because of “all this money at stake for Israel?”

    I mean, we all know the evil Joooos are all greedy and only about money? Just ask anybody at your nearest Occupy squatter’s camp.

    You see, Israel is an outpost of Western imperialism and capitalism. And the Joooos exploit the “people of color.” It is an “apartheid state” per the Vassar campus totalitarians and John Kerry is coming around to the idea. Israel is illegitimate and the “privileged Jews” don’t deserve their own country at the expense of all those exploited brown folks.

    Perhaps they wouldn’t have taught all that in 8th grade. But, hey! If the education establishment can keep them for eight more years through college then they’ve planted the seed to make them more amenable to the indoctrination.

    Steve57 (e86077)

  46. I think you’re jumping way too hard on KTLA. It looks like “credible sources” is just a piece of boilerplate taken from the assignment, not a judgement by KTLA of the sources.

    I wasn’t jumping on KTLA. I was jumping on the L.A. Times. KTLA provided the information I used to mock the L.A. Times.

    Comment by Patterico (9c670f) — 5/6/2014 @ 6:17 pm

    Either way, he was pointing out that “multiple, credible sources” is a quote from the assignment, not the L.A. Times calling the sources credible. They should have used quotes.
    http://tribktla.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/rialto.jpeg

    FishUnderTheSea (019857)

  47. The Rialto school district planned to revise an eighth-grade assignment that raised red flags by asking students to consider arguments about whether the Holocaust — the systematic killing by the Nazis of some 6 million Jews and millions of others — was not an “actual event” but instead a “propaganda tool that was used for political and monetary gain.”

    I don’t see anything here about having the students argue that the Holocaust happened only that it didn’t happen and is a propaganda tool. This Common Core program and teaching social justice have got to go. When you have the majority of students entering college who have to take remedial English and math, there’s a problem. The current education system is broken. I believe they should go back to an education system that actually worked.

    Tanny O'Haley (c0a74e)

  48. Common Cult program, Mr. O’Haley, if you will.

    If the American education establishment went back to a curriculum that actually worked, kids would be able to think for themselves and no one would buy their BS.

    This does not fit the agenda.

    By doing things this way college professors can make six figures on the public dime destroying their students’ ability to think. To the extent that when the kids leave school and can’t find jobs because they have degrees in nonsense and can’t read, write, or do math, the kids think it’s capitalism that failed them.

    Not the malicious and venal education establishment that set them up to fail.

    Steve57 (e86077)

  49. I’m just curious if this constitutes a trend.

    School apologizes for ‘Nazi’ writing assignment

    Think like a Nazi, the assignment required students. Argue why Jews are evil.

    Students in some Albany High School English classes were asked this week as part of a persuasive writing assignment to make an abhorrent argument: “You must argue that Jews are evil, and use solid rationale from government propaganda to convince me of your loyalty to the Third Reich!”

    At the very least there’s a consistent theme.

    Steve57 (e86077)

  50. “I would apologize to our families,” she said. “I don’t believe there was malice or intent to cause any insensitivities to our families of Jewish faith.”

    No. Of course not. How could any family of Jewish faith have taken offense that their kids were told to argue that Joooos are evil?

    One-third of the students refused to complete the assignment, she said.

    I would say this indicates there’s hope for the republic. But it should have been the other way around, as apparently two-thirds of students didn’t refuse.

    Vanden Wyngaard said the exercise reflects the type of writing expected of students under the new Common Core curriculum, the tough new academic standards that require more sophisticated writing. Such assignments attempt to connect English with history and social studies.

    The Common Cult curriculum. They’re tough academic standards alright.

    Tough on the evil Jooos.

    Serioiusly, public schools are a systematic form of child abuse.

    Steve57 (e86077)


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