T Nation

What are they teaching our kids?

I don’t have kids, but I found this very interesting. It’s from the Friday, March 1 issue of Investors Business Daily (the “other” Wall Street paper.)
It seems that the standard world history books used in 6th and 7th grades across the country (“A Message from Ancient Days” and “Across the Centuries”) are pro-Muslim and anti-Christian. The books refer to Muslims as “tolerant” 10 times according to IBD and describe Christians as “persecutors” 10 times, but never tolerant. The books appear to emphasize the brutality of the crusades but never any bad things done by Islam. An interesting note: these are the books “Taliban John” Walker was taught from when the books first came out in California.

These have become standard textbooks, because whatever California chooses for textbooks,the rest of the country generally also chooses, simply because high volume textbooks are cheaper.

I can't vouch for the article. I don't have kids, so I've never seen the textbook, but it does make me wonder what's being taught to the next generation. Do any of you who are parents check the textbooks out?

BTW, I highly recommend Investors Business Daily for anybody who wants to read an opposing viewpoint to the highly liberal popular press. IBD will always tell you the other side of the story.

Sorry pal but if you look at it from a historical context, Christian countries have a shameful past of persecution. I suggest you go to your local library and read up on these historical events; Spanish conquest of the ‘New World’, crusades, inquisition, colonialization of Africa, opium wars, WWI, and slavery. Now Islam has been a far more tolerant religion, excepting this current spate of extremism. Especially during the medieval ages Islam was a far more tolerant religion. I apologize if the textbooks don’t conform to your Eurocentric and sadly mistaken view of the world.

Yes, I read IBD and they have made me quite a bit of money. Also, my textbook in 6th grade said exactly the same thing, strange that I remember that but I was/am a nerd. Regardless, as a general assertion it is true that Muslims were more tolerant than christians. Regardless, every individual in our society is required to process the information presented to them and I’m sure John Walker would have made the dame decisions had his 6th grade textbook not been “tainted” with general assertions of fact.

Now that you metion it, that doesn’t surprise me. I have just finished reading the book “Bias” by Benard Goldburg who talks about alot of this kind of stuff. It seems that the majority of the information fed to us is filtered through these pinko-comi liberal basterd who would like nothing better than to take away all your rights. They are merciful to evil and hard on the good. Islam tolerant? I have never read the Koran, but I am guessing somewhere in there it says that you must tie a bomb around your waste and kill a bunch of Jews. And apparentely, you get bonus points in the form of 72 virgins if you kill some Americans while your at it. I think every major religion has had it’s own sorted pass, but never have I seen such universal and predominant hatred amoung a group of people like the Muslims. I know a Muslim guy, I even went to his Mosk to see how they pray. They seem all tolerant and shit, but don’t metion anything about jews. I believe it was in an Egyption News paper editorial that stated the ‘the only problem with Hitler was that he was to soft on the jews’. There is your tolerant religion.
I believe there are good Muslims, but I think there is something fundamently and royally fucked up in their leadership. The message of from the leaders seems to be pure hate.

I am a parent and I do look at the texts my kids use and hope that an enlightened teacher is supplementing the text with current information and other perspectives. A good teacher will not follow the text only–especially when it is as severley outdated as most of the school texts tend to be. They get revised about once every 20 years, and then the old ones are still kept in classrooms and used as reference material. Most classroom teachers will look to find newer material and will address issues such as the one you mentioned with debate and alternative opinions. As a parent, I find it hard to believe that most kids these days would be influenced very much by what is written in their textbooks. A teacher’s particular bias, on the other hand, may leave a more lasting impression. So if, for example, a teacher is highly anti-jewish or anti-Muslim, the students will more likely remember what the teacher says, as opposed to remembering what they read in the text.

ugh… blaming the actions of a country on its religion? little short sighted, dont ya think. like my man pat said, each and every religion/faith has had its little danc w/ the devil. and most texts are pretty damn liberal. the text they were trying to get into my high school history class mentioned george washington all of, brace yourself, ONCE! my teacher said he would have no part of it and faught like a banshee to keep from having it in his class. i dont know if it ever got in, but if it did, heaven help us. so he was white- he was a founding father!!! it seriously makes me ill what they are trying to pass off as “education” these days.

the jewish people (my ancestors) lived much better under the islamic ruled countries then their cousins did in the Christian countries by along shot. The jews in the islamic countries almost had full rights as citizens compared to christian countries where they were getting thrown out and blamed for plagues. MOst of the problems between the 2 religions (judaism and islam) have only been recent history due too who should control israel

If your comparing anti-semitism, the Catholic church surely has Islam beaten. True, currently they have reversed their position but for hundreds of years they wholeheartedly endorsed the persecutions and massacres of Jews. Just look at Spain and compare the quality of Jewish life before and after the reconquista.

In terms of what the Qu’ran vs. the Bible, you can find passages in both to jusify any kind of religious violence. The problem is not in Islam or Christianity but in the interpretation of these religions.

pat, nice to know that you’ve never read a book, but you can guess what’s in it anyway. I’m sure it really is “sorted.”
Anyway, before ‘recent’ despotism, “Muslim,” or Middle Eastern thinking was science at its best. During Europe’s Dark Ages (which were actually fairly rich with theology and creative expression), the Middle East was the home of rational medicine, science, and innovation. Remember, it wasn’t the Muslims that started the crusades. Regardless what current Muslims (or a faction of them) do or have done, all Muslims throughout history should not be tainted or called evil.

well… lets see here… dont blame all of islam for a couple of things here and there… no matter how major they are. but lets blame christianity for things here and there… it isnt the religion causing the problems, it is the people who bastardize the faith. give humanity anything, and they will proceed to bastardize, distort, and destroy. it is our nature.

Both my boyfriend and I are half-Asian and we can let you or anyone know that this country is pretty wacked in terms of religious beliefs(growing up, I was always asked if I was a buddhist - and I wasn’t. Now, I’m considering…). There was a time when I was looking into some sort of religious demonation to belong to. I asked co-workers about what they were involved with and a battle ensure to SAVE me and my soul. A catholic co-worker began a verbal battle with a devout christian, and so on. But during that time, I figured that a organized religion didn’t have to be a part of my psyche to validate ME - so I told them ALL to take a hike. My sister is married to a Kuwaitie and has lived in Kuwait since 1989 (with husband and four kids…YIKES), she had to accept a Muslim name. And I believe the Muslim religion to hate women. Well, I believe most of these orgranized religions to hate women. Christianity included. So, I ignore them - organized religion is not important to me now or will be in the future. I KNOW this.

Sure I have read books, I read all 4 Harry Potter’s and look forward to the 5th. I just never read the Koran. But based on the actions of a few, but the sentiment of many, these people obviously believe it is OK to hate Jews and murder people. They think it is OK and they use the Koran to back up their hatred. This sentiment runs rampant through out the Middle East. If you do not believe me feel free to go to www.cnn.com and check out the latest gallop poll. It shows that over 60% (with a 1% margin of error) of people in the Middle East hate our fucking guts. This includes supposedly moderate countries like Saudi Arabia and Egypt. Do I think the religion is at fault? Hell no, but I do think it is in real jeopardy. I blame the leadership, really. Who they cannot convince, they control. I really see Islam on the brink of a major disaster. It has to many problems to survive as is. First and foremost, there is tremendous division. There are true moderates who agree they don’t need to live in the 700’s to be holy and they catch a lot of flack. Second, and probably should be first, there is tremendous hate. Hate for Jews, hate for the West and hate for anybody who doesn’t want to kiss their ass. This is devastating to a faith-based belief system and is single handedly enough to destroy it. Thirdly, the target for the destruction of infidels and Zionists are innocent people. All of these things, historically speaking, will all most ensure demise and destruction if something isn’t done with in the system. Don’t believe me? Well nobody ever thought they would see the end on the Soviet Union, but hear we are 12 years later and I bet most people can’t remember who they were….Don’t forget people, they hate you too just because of who you are.

You know since I’m in the middle of a drunken stupor via Mike’s Hard Lemonade - I have to respond one more time. Yes, LEGOS are king of the toys. And so were Lincoln Logs. And my sister and I had these toy Dinosaurs (I, Triceratops - she, T-rex), that were electronic and you controlled them via pad wired to the D-saurs. Oh, them were the days. However dispite all the fun toys -my favorites will always be X-men comic books from the mid to late-seventies to early eighties. Comic books were more of my “toys” when I was a kid. Still are, too. What can I say, I’ m a comic book/sometime computer geek!!!

you guys amaze me-no offense but it’s really sad seeing how brainwashed so many have been by the liberal media and publishers…i’ve read the bible and the koran…as a matter of fact i’m half egyptian and have had extensive dealings with muslims and islam, and can address it directly. my grandmother was killed (yes killed) in cairo for her religion (christianity)…my aunt had acid (yes HCL—ACID dashed on her legs when she walked through a predominantly muslim neighborhood wearing a skirt). I can honestly say that Islam is one of the biggest reasons my family came to america in the first place.

not to say all muslims are bad…there are plenty of horrible christians, jews, hindus, atheists–whatever. but having read the Quran, i can tell you all that islam is at least somewhat predisposed towards violence/terrorism. why do you think there’s a damn near endless supply of suicide bombers, taliban sympathizers and osama-lovers? Islam, and the Qu’ran read literally is not a religion of tolerance…I feel like most other religions are, although they certainly were manipulated to promote anti-semitism and intolerance in the past (i.e. the catholic church).

liberals in this country have embraced a lot of cooky things, some of which have become commonplace, most of which has not. the most recent love affair is with multiculturalism to the 10000000th power. what’s this mean? reject the commonplace! reject the filthy wretched souls (that may have had slaves!!) who founded this country…they and everything about them were horrible!!! so let’s turn to…ahh ISLAM! Islam means peace. um, as an arabic speaker, Islam means resistance and strife. not peace. peace is “Salaam.” anyway the liberal media especially loves to embrace this ultramulticultural view and pour it into the ears of those who know no better. people don’t be fooled. do not accept what you hear on CNN simply because Connie Chung busted it out or whatever. just like you all work hard to get ripped and perfect your bodies, work hard to stay on top of it mentally…peace

Religion is the only thing that can make people do the most irrational things.

WHY was my “toys” post posted here?!! I know I wasn’t that drunk! Wha…?!

NOTE FROM MOD: YES, YOU WERE.

Actually, the intent of my post was to illustrate what’s being put in textbooks nowadays. (Does anybody remember a few years back when a major history textbook company decided to alter the constitution in their textbook?) I am glad to see a civil discourse; either t-mag readers are very literate or the moderators are very skilled.

I went to a Catholic parochial school and I think we got a pretty balanced history education. We learned quite a bit about the atrocities of the Crusades; the Catholic church doesn't try to hide its past from its own members. We also learned how the Muslims were among the most highly educated peoples. Didn't the Moors have a big library and university somewhere in Spain? The loss of that library and society in Spain set civilization back 100's of years. Despite being raised Catholic, I think I got a pretty balanced world history.

I am afraid that too many people don't really watch what their children are taught. A friend at work discovered his child's American history text doesn't even mention the founding fathers because, according to the school, "they were slave owners, and it wouldn't be right to honor them." Boy was he upset. He watches what his kids are taught pretty closely now.

As for religion, I've abandoned it in favor of my own philosophy, which is somewhat Taoist. "God" is so truly ineffable, that EVERY religion is inherently wrong. The force behind the universe cannot be understood by humans, therefore every attempt to explain it, or to anthropomorphize it as a god, is just plain wrong. And I have a Catholic school to thank for giving me the education sufficient to come to this conclusion.

whoa, there big fella. i dont recall dahmer being religous. i dont recall hitler being religous, he hated ppl of jewish decent, but not because his religion told him to. i dont recall many, if any, gang members pulling drive bys screaming “long live Jesus!” yes, ppl w/ skewed views of reality can use religion as an excuse, or can bastardize it into their twisted little version of reality. ppl have done wrong in the name of religion. but just as many if not more have done wrong w/o having any association to any kind of religion at all. people are messed up, no way around it.

you have to pay attention to school books and the news. the school system is overrun with liberals who have agendas. anti-gun, anti-christian, anti-capitalistic, tree huggers, etc. to refer to christians as persercutors is not entirely correct. there were many christains who did not participate in the crusades. the greek orthodox church was also the subject of persecution during the crusades. i’m sure there were other christian groups who did not participate. what out for the liberals and their agenda.

I am somewhat amazed to find several liberal at this site. I had always considered T-men and liberals as two mutually exclusive groups (I consider most liberals to be less than men, never mind T-man!). It is so easy to be swayed by written words. Sure christians have been involved in some atrocities - but don’t go blaming the holocost on christianity. How did those “tolorent” moslims obtain northern africa, the middle east and spain? By force.
What happened 500 or 1000 years ago is colored by the historians experience, time and context. Look what is going on right now. In the past 30 years the “tolorent” moslims have caused a fire on the aircarft carrier Forestal, bombed a disco in France, highjacked the Achille Lauro, attacked christians in church in Sri Lanka, attacked christians in the phillipines, bombed the WTC twice, bombed isreal countless times, bombed the marine barricks in Lebanon to name a few off the top of my head. I’m sure if you took a minute you could think of more. I would say, as of this minute, they are quite intolorent of others.
You know, there is a Red Crescent just like there is a Red Cross. Yet, when there is a disaster, it is always the intolorent christians who are volunteering their time and money to help others.
Here in Mass. the catholics are taking a beating from “The Boston Globe” (Liberal w/ a capital “L”.) All negative press, yet when there is a car crash and mother and father are killed who cares for the children - Catholic Charities. I have seen hundreds of catholic and jewish owned and operated hospitals (Saint __________, Cedar Sinia, etc.). The arabs have barrels of oil money - where are the moslim hospitals?
OPEN YOUR EYES. THE LIBERAL PRESS IS TOTALLY BIASED. JUDGE PEOPLE BY THEIR ACTIONS AND NOT WHAT YOU READ.

Please excuse the spelling here. I get real fired up when I see people bashing christianity.