The Probation Interview, or Look at What They’ve Done to My History Lesson, Ma!
Sooo, how’s everything down by the Rio Grande? Having any problems with illegal aliens? That’s too bad, but hey, we’re working on that issue. Listen, we didn’t call you in here just for a friendly little chat. No, we want to tell you that we’re a little...oh...let’s say...concerned about how you want to teach American history.
Now, whoa, whoa! Just calm down and let us finish! Yes, of course you have a right as a sovereign member of the United States to teach the children of your state, as you like to put it, any damn way you please. That’s...that’s fine, but still we – the other sovereign states of the United States — feel it is our right to let you know that we are concerned about the direction you want to take teaching our country’s history.
You realize that any decision your state board of education makes affects the studies in the rest of the country. Your school system is so big that many textbook publishers find it easier to follow your lead rather than change lessons or wording in their books for the rest of the country. Simply put, if they don’t print the ideas of which you approve, then they don’t sell their books. Frankly, not all of us agree with that, but that’s their decision.
I realize that there are many of us outside of Texas who are...well...you know...liberal...hey, don’t smirk at me! We have rights too! Anyway, my point is that we realize your most recent decisions about teaching history was made by a group that were heavily slanted towards the conservative political philosophy. Here, for example, you want to play up Ronald Reagan’s presidency. Okay, granted he did accomplish a lot, but let’s face it...he wasn’t bigger than Jesus Christ.
Whoa, whoa! Now just put your shooting iron down and let me finish! No reason to go all Sarah Palin on me! Okay, I see you have some deep emotions for Reagan, so we’ll come back to that later.
Well, what about the United Nations! This organization is dedicated to promoting world peace so that we won’t necessarily have to fight any other countries on our own...oh, you don’t see it that way. You believe the United Nations is just a meddlesome governing body that wants to take over our country. Hmm...interesting. Well, let’s look at Joseph McCarthy. You want to treat him as some sort of patriot. What’s wrong? Well, I tell you what’s wrong with it. Portraying Joseph McCarthy as a conservative demagogue has been a cherished liberal philosophy for nearly fifty years! He exploited people’s paranoia about a certain political theory and, in doing so, destroyed the livelihoods and lives of many people. He undermined due process in his fanatical zeal to wipe out what he liked to call the red scourge! And his scare tactics showed a total lack of faith in the flexibility in the US Constitution. Surely you realize that the Constitution has the ability to withstand the challenges from dictatorial political ideas like Communism, even as it allows it to exist within its own borders. That’s called freedom of speech, and showing tolerance for other people’s beliefs!
May I remind you, Texas, that this weekend we are honoring the sacrifices made by millions of American men and women to uphold this principle of tolerance! Do you really want to negate their efforts just to further your agenda? Is that being fair to their memory?
What will you come up with next, Texas? Will you teach your children that the President wasn’t born in this country? What...oh, you’re saving that for the second edition. I don’t believe this! I suppose next you’ll be telling me that Hitler was just misunderstood...what? No, I’m not listening to this about a third edition! Na-na-na-na-na...I’m not listening...na-na-na!
Look, Texas, I have to be frank with you. We both know that you’ve contributed a lot to the United States, but many people in the other states don’t regard you very highly. Many people see you as arrogant, too eager to pick a fight, always presenting yourself with a chip on your shoulder, and...what, oh? That’s not a chip, that’s Oklahoma! Oh, ha ha, that’s a good one, Texas!
Anyway, my point is that some of your fellow Americans may see our country’s future relationship with you as doubtful. Some seem to think that this relationship is not working out, and perhaps it’s time we went in a different direction. It’s my duty to inform you that we have to put you on probation for an undetermined amount of time. I advise you to go home and think about how your extremist conservative views could ultimately harm our country. We’re not asking you to abandon your viewpoints, just think about moderating them, okay? After all, your ideas could come around and backfire on you when you least expect it.
Okay, Texas, thanks for coming in. Could you do me a favor? Send Arizona in on your way out. Thanks!
Hey, Arizona! Come in, have a seat! This will just take a moment. Listen, we’re a little concerned about your new immigration policy, and frankly, we just got to ask you something...what the hell have you been smoking?
(Thank you for reading. Please remember history has more than one point of view!)