Yesterday’s debate over social studies curriculum standards at the Texas State Board of Education mostly illuminated political biases of board members more than it did good education policies. Many conservative board members opposed, for example, restoring civil rights and labor leader Dolores Huerta to third-grade standards because they say she’s a socialist and isn’t an inappropriate role model for students. Small-minded pettiness was also on display. For example, far-right board members — barely stifling grins and smirks — insisted that the nation’s president be listed in the standards only by his full name, Barack Hussein Obama. They finally backed off after sharp criticism, even from other Republicans on the board.
And then there was right-wing paranoia about American participation in global organizations like the United Nations and in international treaties: