Quantcast
Connect with us

Alabama school requires students to read right-wing authors including Ann Coulter and Rand Paul

Published

on

An ultra-conservative reading list required by one Alabama school is raising eyebrows and raising concerns among parents.

The right-wing frequently accuses the schools of kowtowing to leftists politics by teaching things like science instead of religion and demanding youth refrain from reading classic literature that depicts a racist American history. But according to AL.com, it’s the far right that is demanding schools teach their philosophies.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Baldwin School Board is getting involved after a summer reading list was given to students at Spanish Fort High School by teacher Gene Ponder. The list mandates that students choose one of the books from the list, which range from Rand Paul books to Ann Coulter. It also has Michael Savage’s 2006 book, Liberalism is a Mental Disorder listed as an option.

While political or controversial books aren’t unheard of, particularly in upper-level Advanced Placement classes, they’re typically taught alongside the contrasting view point. For example, The Bible is often taught with Edith Hamilton’s Mythology. That was not the case here.

Elizabeth Denham, whose son was in the AP class, posted the reading list on her Facebook page and blog saying that she contacted the school out of concern.

“I encourage my children to read things they disagree with,” she explained. “To listen to those with opposing perspectives. To be open to ideas other than theirs, but to stand up for their beliefs respectfully. This list did not encourage that philosophy. It presented one side. And one side filled with pop culture personalities who spew hate and rhetoric – not intellectual, respected authors who offer well-educated ideas from different points of view.”

While the board has received complaints, Baldwin County school board member David Cox doubted board members will care much.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Generally speaking, I would think that needs to be left up to the individual school with the direction of the superintendent,” Cox told AL.com. Though he admitted he hasn’t reviewed the complaint.

“That’s something we leave to the superintendent and his staff and employees,” he continued. “Those need to stay at the school level or the superintendent, without board action. Until the superintendent says otherwise, it’s my opinion that it needs to be left up to him.”

The school board president — who actually lives in the town refused to comment.

ADVERTISEMENT

Superintendent Eddie Tyler told the media this week that he did have a copy of the complaint and would review it.

You can see a copy of the complaint sent by parent Julia Coccaro below, which is concerned with more issues than just the book list. It includes the censorship of a yearbook section that removed the coming-out story of an LGBT teen and an incident in which a driver’s education teacher who spent an entire class period discussing his personal religious beliefs.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It is also concerning that the superintendent was unable to bring himself to condemn books with titles like ‘Liberalism is a Mental Disorder’ when there are both liberals and students with mental illness attending classes within the Baldwin County School District,” the complaint explains. “The parents and students of Baldwin County expect more from our superintendent.”

Conservatives have criticized liberals as being “snowflakes” for their concerns over right-wing, white nationalists and Nazi speakers, however, over and over they oppose what they perceive to be liberal dogma in public schools. In 2015 a Captain Underpants book was banned from a school for having a gay character.

According to the American Library Association, in 2016 they documented 323 attempts to ban books. One had young transgender characters and a series of books by accused rapist Bill Cosby. The vast majority of the books requested for ban contain LGBT related material. In March of this year, a Republican lawmaker in Arkansas sought to ban all Howard Zinn books from public schools. Zinn is known for discussing historically accurate cases of those in the U.S. leaders often oppressed including slaves, women, Native Americans and others.

ADVERTISEMENT

During the 2015-2016 school year many progressive speakers were banned as well. Transgender-rights activist Janet Mock was protested but not because of the content of her speech, because the Jewish student group Hillel co-sponsored the lecture.

Conservatives also led a national meltdown after a performance art photo was posted by comedian Kathy Griffin showing President Donald Trump’s bloody head. She was later blamed by conservatives for the shooting at the GOP baseball park. Similarly, alt-right activists, unaware of the play’s message, seized the stage at the New York Theatre during a production of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar because the character wore a suit and looked like Trump.

You can read the full complaint from Coccaro below:

ADVERTISEMENT


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

‘The worst day of the presidency so far for Donald Trump’: Advisor to four presidents

Published

on

President Donald Trump has not had a worse day in office than he suffered on Friday, according to a top former White House advisor.

David Gergen served in the administrations of Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton. He was interviewed Friday night by CNN's Anderson Cooper.

"If you are looking to throw somebody under the bus, Gordon Sondland would probably be a prime candidate to be next in line to be thrown under the bus," Cooper said.

"I think the president will wait patiently to see what he says and then decide," Gergen replied.

He then offered his analysis of the situation.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Chris Hayes breaks down the ‘busy day in the criminal chronicles of one President Donald J. Trump’

Published

on

MSNBC anchor Chris Hayes connected the dots between all of the bombshell news that was reported Friday in the impeachment hearings into President Donald Trump.

"Good God, today has been ten days and this week has been ten weeks," Hayes said. "And there are a million things happening at once."

"Just in the past couple of hours, for instance, we just got this incredibly incriminating and damning behind closed doors testimony from a U.S. foreign service officer that was still supposed to be kind of like the B-story today, the sideshow," he explained. "It's a guy who works in the U.S. embassy in Ukraine, a guy named David Holmes. He testified behind closed doors that he could hear president Trump talking on the phone to the U.S. Ambassador to the European Union who was an inaugural donor, and they were in a restaurant in Kiev and the president was shouting so loudly on the phone that [Gordon] Sondland had to hold the phone away from his ear because it was hurting his eardrum, so then everyone could hear."

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Trump ignored aides’ advice before first Ukraine call — and it destroyed his impeachment defense: report

Published

on

President Donald Trump has repeatedly referred to himself as his own top advisor and a political "genius." But his interactions with Ukraine at the heart of the impeachment inquiry could demonstrate the limitations of such an approach to governing.

Friday's bombshell, behind-closed-door testimony from David Holmes has made White House aides unhappy, but the bad news for the administration did not stop there.

Continue Reading
 
 
Help Raw Story Uncover Injustice. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1 and go ad-free.
close-image