Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Howard Zinn for Middle School Students...why NOT?

If you read nothing else, please read the words I reddened down below.   It's so typical of the leftwing mind:

Philadelphia city council members have approved a resolution that calls for socialist historian Howard Zinn’s book “A People’s History of the United States” to be taught in public high schools.
The resolution was backed by council members Jim Kenny and Jannie Blackwell, who believe that Zinn’s far-left socialist vision of American history is currently missing from high school textbooks.
“Howard Zinn’s ‘A People’s History of the United States’ emphasizes the role of working people, women, people of color, and organized social movements in shaping history; not simply the version retold by those powerful enough to ensure history remembers their actions in a positive light, regardless of the truth,” the resolution states.
The power to set curriculum is in the hands of the school district superintendent and board, meaning that the resolution is little more than a strong recommendation. Still, Kenny and Blackwell believe a message must be sent that Philadelphia students need formal instruction in recognizing privilege and inequality.
“Council does hereby recognize the need for students to be taught an unvarnished, honest version of U.S. history that empowers students to differentiate between moments that have truly made our country great versus those that established systemic inequality, privilege, and  prejudice which continue to reinforce modern society’s most difficult issues,” the resolution states.
Zinn’s book is lauded in far-left circles, but many conservative thinkers believe his self-described “history” is really social activism masquerading as fact. Former Indiana Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels believed strongly that the book had no place in K-12 classrooms–an opinion that landed him in trouble with liberal academics when he started his new job as president of Purdue University. 
“We must not falsely teach American history in our schools,” said Daniels in a statement defending his opposition to Zinn’s work. “Howard Zinn, by his own admission a biased writer, purposely falsified American history. His books have no more place in Indiana history classrooms than phrenology or Lysenkoism would in our biology classes or the `Protocols of the Elders of Zion’ in world history courses.”
Daniels made clear that college professors had the right to use the book if they so choose, but K-12 teachers have no business treating Zinn’s work as fact.

Zinn was an apologist for communist dictators like Fidel Castro, who has brutalized and oppressed the people of Cuba for decades.
Like Zinn, Councilwoman Blackwell defended the Castro regime.  “Castro did not do everything wrong, or he would not have lasted so long,” she said in a statement to CBS.
Philadelphia Daily News columnist Will Bunch praised the decision to demand that Zinn be taught in class, happily explaining that his own radicalism was fostered by “A People’s History of the United States.”
“Although readers here assume because of my fondness for the radical ’60s that I emerged from the womb carrying a picture of Chairman Mao, the truth is that I was a bland center-left voters and a pretty “balanced” journalist in the ’90s,” he wrote. “Reading Zinn helped me understand what went wrong, and how everyday people could fight to get things right.”
Mao, the Chinese dictator whom Bunch recalled fondly, ruled communist China from 1949 to 1976. His policies of mass starvation and execution are responsible for an estimated 50 million deaths.
Neither Bunch, Kenny or Blackwell responded to requests for comment.
There has been no word yet on whether district officials plan to turn Philadelphia students into apologists for mass-murdering dictators.

So...what do you think?   Zinn before college?  Might as well, I suppose.   Our kids are pretty much lost, anyway;  they're entitlement seekers, they don't understand the millions who've died under leftwing dictatorships, they don't even know the America worth fighting for..........why NOT Zinn?
Tell me.



Ed Bonderenka said...

Sure, teach Zinn, then balance it with Modern Times by Paul Johnson and America: The Last Best Hope Volumes I, II & 111 by Bill Bennett.
Like that would ever happen.

sue hanes said...

Z - I think high schoolers are still too impressionable for Zinn.
I would not want it taught in high school.

In fact - I think Zinn should be read outside of a learning institution - by the individual.

But I think it should be read - by someone with an open mind. And a mature mind.

Cephalopod said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Constitutional Insurgent said...

I agree with Z, Zinn should be read, but not as part of a high school curriculum.

Duckys here said...

American participatory democracy has been gutted. The innovation of the Founders was to posit a government by the people.

It didn't happen and I continue to wonder why the right doesn't wish to understand why. In fact, they are frightened to even explore the idea.

Sharon Feingold said...

Now these idiots on the Left are bringing Up "Slavery" AGAIN!

Can you believe it? Is there no end to their Idiotsy ?

It was inevitable, because their insanity never ends, it’s just idiot logic.. Bringing up slavery today after ALL these years is simply an anti-white attack on blameless whites who had nothing at all to do with this.... .... Those people on Progressive blogs have a lot in common with Oprah, She’s another hard core bigot and black racist. My ancestors freed the slaves, and were slaves themselves in Europe.


Z said...

Ducky, are you joking?
WHO is 'frightened to even explore the idea'? Suddenly, you're a member of the Tea Party and we here at geeez are "frightened to even explore the idea" that participatory democracy has been gutted.'s still too young for both points of view, in my opinion.

Sue, I'm not sure leftwing history should be read with any more open or mature a mind than our real history but I agree with you about impressionable kids' minds.

Sharon...where did THAT come from today on this post!??

Duckys here said...

I'm quite serious, z.

The right wing cannot continue without the steady noise machine trumpeting the false idea of exceptionalism. Zinn calls it into question.

Impertinent said...

"honest version of U.S. history that empowers students to differentiate between moments that have truly made our country great versus those that established systemic inequality, privilege, and prejudice which continue to reinforce modern society’s most difficult issues,” the resolution states."

Does this eggplant mean this then? Here's some honesty for it's ignorant racist idiots.

"The KKK was formed by Democrats, after the Civil War in which the Republican Party freed the slaves.

It eventually morphed into the Jim Crow south whose laws were written by Democrats, and all of those guys turning the hoses on the Civil Rights marchers –

guys like Lester Maddox, Bull Connor and George Wallace, were all Democrats turning the same hatred on Republican Martin Luther King as they had a century earlier when the Democrats in white hoods turned it on Republican Frederick Douglass, who said: “I recognize the Republican party as the sheet anchor of the colored man's political hopes and the ark of his safety.”

That Lyndon Baines Johnson – who fought tooth and nail against Civil rights in the Eisenhower administration so go look it up – said, famously in front of two governors on Air Force One that, quote, “I’ll have those N-words voting Democratic for the next 200 years.”

He bought them -- millions of them -- with government handouts; destroying their families, as they always have. Now the Democratic party is the largest slaveholding organization in the entire world. Guys like LBJ, Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Obama, Grayson and all the rest of the race-industry hucksters have kept three generations of black Americans helpless and dependent on the plantation, where they think they belong and always have belonged.

The Democrats used to harvest cotton from these slaves; now they harvest votes. And if pea-brained Vogons like Al Sharpton & Jesse Jackson...smashes enough things with their little iron mallet then they think no one will notice or remember.

Liberalmann said...

Zinn is just another Reich Whinger. Karl Marx the ONLY philosopher for me!

Duckys here said...

No Imp, I think Zinn correctly chronicles the morphing of the Dixiecrats into today's Republican party.

That's why an alternative accurate voice is so essential.

Impertinent said...

You deny that then?

Mustang said...

By now, all of us should realize that there is more than one point of view about almost everything that takes place in our country today. I suspect is has always been thus. Let me say that I have read through the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Academic Standards for History, and it is my judgment that this is a carefully constructed guideline seeking to enhance the ability of students to sequence, interpret, and analyze causes and effects of historical events, distinguish fact from opinion, discern literal meanings, develop map and graph reading skills, understand differing points of view, and appreciate American folklore.

That said I have never favored a single-source textbook in American history because, even among those that consist of joint-authorships and collaboration, there is always another point of view that one could argue is equally valid. If we want inculcate within our students the ability to think for themselves, then we should offer multiple source materials in the presentment of US History instruction.

Classroom reality is that history courses (from middle school on) are survey classes. It is a broad brush of history because (1) it is impossible to expect developing children to understand all of the complexities associated with an emerging society as multifaceted as ours, and (2) there simply isn’t the time to offer in-depth classes in a regular school year. What this means is that most schools do not incorporate multiple source materials into history instruction. In Pennsylvania, this means that the state’s standards in US History cannot be met.

For this reason, I do not support the adoption of Zinn’s book for single-source high school instruction. His book lacks scholarship, and ideology driven, is far too subjective. I would not object to Zinn if adopted as but one of several sources of instructional material.

Impertinent said...


"I would not object to Zinn if adopted as but one of several sources of instructional material."

You and I know that will never be considered or allowed. They must prepare the next generations to be fully invested in the ongoing profit of the grievance industry.

The truth is never important to ideologues.

Thersites said...

Nothing beats a White Zinn at a cocktail party in either DC or NYC.

Hmmm... I do have to admit, his shade IS a bit closer to RED.

Thersites said...

...of course ducky will try and convince you that it's only a "labelling" issue. But cut us all , and we're certain to discover that in TRUTH, we're ALL RED on the inside.

Duckys here said...

@Imp --- The truth is never important to ideologues.

Which is why you'll keep any people like Zinn, Harrington or Judt from impressionable young minds.

Better to fill them with pap like "The Puritans came seeking religious freedom" while leaving out the "yeah, but only for themselves".

Anonymous said...


Well, Ducky, if Zinn calls it into question, who are we patriots to question HIM, right?

Obama was right when he, too, called America exceptional in the way we've helped other countries. Of course, he left out how we thrived all these years, circles around other countries, but since he's doing his best to squash that, I guess that doesn't count.

And yes, as I clearly said in the post; better that children learn all the good about their great countries than to learn Zinn's self-proclaimed bias.

And, no.....let older minds read Zinn and Harrington, etc.......just not middle school.
Could we PLEASE give them all the good without focusing on "founding fathers had slaves " (of course, EVERYONE who could DID, but context is of no help to libs), or "we killed Indians" (as if they did nothing back or even to warrant it in a few cases), or "we hate the poor and sick"..because we do not. Finding ways of helping our family/friends/community without putting it on the gov't isn't hate.

By the way, everyone:

We have a PUBLIC high school in Manhattan named NORMAN THOMAS HIGH SCHOOL. He was an avowed socialist. NY knew
I'll bet they read Zinn.

You know, Ducky and others; the point is TEACH THEM EVERYTHING.

Even teach them "I CANNOT TELL A LIE" by Geo Washington. Most scholars think it never happened. WHO CARES? I always teach it to my preschoolers (I teach a 20 min. class every Friday morning to the preschool campus on our campus) as "We're not sure this happened,but.. isn't it best not to lie? Here's a great story that might have happened to our first president!"....they learn character and they get veryproud of learning the response "I cannot tell a LIE" when I ask "What did little George Washington tell his father?"
nothing wrong with that.

Impertinent said...


Yea...they were too damn busy trying to survive a winter and not get killed by the local welcome committee to be concerned with your asinine 20th century view of diversity.

Go right ahead...blame those GD Christians, Quakers, Anglicans for civilizing Plymouth.

Have you gone there to relieve yourself on the rock yet? Or plant some crab grass?

BB-Idaho said...

The Puritans 'civilized' Plymouth.
Tolerations was not in their vocabulary; they drove out or hung
Quakers . History is neither good nor bad..just what happened.

Impertinent said...

They drove out or hung
Quakers .

Good..that's why most of them settled in Pennsylvania I guess...too afraid the Puritans might still get to them?

Impertinent said...

OT..but a nice intro to the Obummer care package coming to you.

I received my “Obamacare enrollment packet” from the White House. It contained:
· An aspirin and a Band-Aid.
· An ‘Obama Hope & Change’ bumper sticker
· A ‘Bush’s Fault’ yard sign
· A ‘Blame Republicans first, then anybody and everybody’ poster
· A ‘Tax the Rich’ banner
· An application for unemployment and a free cellphone
· An application for food stamps
· A prayer rug
· A letter assigning my debt to my grandchildren
· And lastly, a coupon for a machine that blows smoke up my ass.
Everything was made in “China” and all directions were in Spanish.
Keep an eye out. Yours should be arriving soon.

Robert Sinclair said...

Yes, the left has had a long history of inhumane behavior: hanging Quakers, witches, and southern blacks, apartheid through abortion ... the list goes on, and on, and on.

Well, thankfully the anti-Federalists demanded a Bill of Rights, otherwise the government today could shove health insurance down our throats.

Kid said...

Well......... nothing interesting is going to happen before the kids (3 + generations of PLUS the older dummies) feel the pain of making poor choices.

I say the faster we get to the bottom, the faster we start heading back up.

Z said...

BB.... I doubt all early American settlers bothered killing anybody.
But I think you SHOULD turn your family's little ones from all the wonderful things America's been. "And children, early Americans killed people just for the heck of it..weren't they AWFUL?"
At least you'll be raising more little Democrats who want to 'fundamentally change' something that was probably the best experiment in the world for many years. Good on you!

Imp; I'd have posted that but the prayer rug sucks the legitimacy of the rest of it. Don't give them ammo, my friend. We Republicans do that all the time, then we wonder ..

Robert..excellent ... so true.

Kid, they say you have to go way down and hit bottom or you have nothing to shove off of to make it to the top again.
But the lefties are ruining our kids and telling them more about bananas on condemns, letting little boys go in the girls' bathrooms, and making sure they know Americans killed Quakers :-)
Not much there to get back to the American we grew up in when and if the pendulum ever does swing back to sanity.

Anonymous said...

IRS, Benghazi, the Arab Spring, HHS and Obama Care and the Oval office are all headed and run by women? Has anyone noticed that at all?

The Obama care web portal is just the latest fiasco.

Rice, Lerner, Sebelius, Clinton ( after Albright ) all a coincidence or proof that the glass ceiling was burglarized by AA and not competence?

Anonymous said...

Are feminists are trying to create “gender-neutral utopias” that will make men into “doughy bonobos and chunky Chaz Bonos playing out their endless manic-depressive melodramas in a big bean-flicking circle of sterility, sickness and desperation?

It certainly looks that way.

Z said...

Anonymous, if you haven't noticed or known this, I, the owner of this blog, am a woman and, trust me, the only time I get my feminine (notice I said 'feminine', not 'feminist') dander up is EQUAL PAY FOR EQUAL WORK.

But, do I think women are unqualified to do the work in HHS, etc? No, I don't.

Do I believe it's a case of politics and not gender? Yes, I do.

You don't like what happened; it's not because they're women, they're just damned WRONG

Anonymous said...'s clear that these women are totally unqualified for this particular work and jobs. I didn't condemn all women...just this bunch of incompetents.

Let me ask you this. Do you think the Arab dictators really respect us sending them women secretaries of state from Madeline Albright on? Knowing how they think women are second class "citizens" and wipe their hands off after meeting our women?

Do you think insulting them is a way to gain any political advantages with them? I don't. And although I may detest John Kerry with a passion... they'll respect him more than they will his former cabinet holders or predecessors.

Just as we insist on "nation building" we have no business insisting that other countries adopt our diversity or equality attitudes. There's about 140 other countries in the world that don't buy our garbage or baggage.

Impertinent said...'s been a long time since 1918...Boston certainly needed that.


Sam Huntington said...

I will agree with the insinuation that Clinton is a bag of manure, but I do not really care what the Arab nations think of our sending a female official to entreat with them. Insofar as I am concerned, those who would be our detractors can piss off. Let us make sure that in our anger toward this (or any other) incompetent administration that we do not begin kissing the posterior of any foreigner.

Mustang said...

Hint: Middle Eastern countries do not respect John Kerry. They are laughing at him (and us). Kerry is now and has always been a useful idiot to foreign ideology.

Z said...

"I agree" to all of the above latest comments!

Anonymous...I get you...but I repeat: It's their politics, not their gender, that makes them NUTS.

I will say that I have to disagree SLIGHTLY with Sam... Years ago, when we first started sending women over there, we sent Diane Sawyer for the ABC news and she wore slacks.
Fine..we have no problem with slacks, but THEY DO.
Why wipe their noses in it?

I thought that was wrong.

If there was some island of nudists in the South Pacific and we had to talk diplomacy with them and they were coming to the White House, we'd expect them to WEAR's an American bugaboo!

Well, we knew Saudis don't like pants on women; and we know they like the hair covered; out of respect, why not go alone.

ON THE OTHER HAND< I do agree a LITTLE with SAM......."this is what WE do, so get used to it".

But, we WERE in their country.

Still, many Arabs are glad to see us dead, so ............

screw them :-)


I can't believe I typed that! :-)

Anonymous said... they won't respect if any of us really knew that to be true or false. Politics I'd imagine. Although he is a goofy slime ball. But who the hell would they respect? A John Bolton perhaps? He's got some classy facial hair they might dig.

The point is as Z stated, we don't have to push pants suits in their faces any longer. We know they don't like it.