There. Much better without that nonsense

To mark the anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, Tennessee state Rep. Andy Holt is calling on the state to revise the history of Islam out of its social studies standards, because obviously if you teach the history of a thing, you are encouraging that thing. Also, with some rightwing Tennessee parents loudly wigging out over "Muslim indoctrination," it's a fine way to pander to address the sincere concerns of constituents.

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In a blog post on his personal/campaign website, Holt solemnly reminds us that fourteen years ago,

our Nation was struck by tragedy. September 11, 2001 remains a date ingrained in the minds of every American, as well as, [sic] our friends and allies around the world. Forcing thousands to an early grave, Islamic extremists attacked the Twin Towers in New York City.

But the barbarism of radical Islam continues, he points out, because "Just two months ago, Mohammad Abdulazeez, whose father was on a terrorist watch list, murdered five United States military servicemen in an attack on our military outlets right here in Tennessee." Clearly, something must be done about all that Islamic radicalism, and Andy Holt knows what it is: Stop teaching seventh-graders anything about one part of world history.

Tennesseans have seen the radical side of Islam, and many have grown skeptical of this “peaceful religion”. As a result, it comes as no surprise that Tennessee parents & citizens are upset to learn that Tennessee students are being forced to spend upwards of three weeks learning about Islam in their local public schools. This “teaching” also occurs while Tennessee students are simultaneously being told they cannot fly American flags and are being discouraged from praying while at school.

Enough is enough, folks.

Forced to learn about Islam! And probably forced to bow to Mecca, too! (Actually, not so much, but it makes for a nice panic.) Holt goes on to claim that "a strong bias in favor of Islam over all other religions is being taught to our children in public schools," which is, to put it plainly, bullshit. Holt calls for an immediate revision to Tennessee's history standards to remove that bias, although he conveniently refuses to link to those standards. Anyone actually reading the standards can see that they place the unit on Islamic history in the context of the wider ancient world, following the "Fall of the Roman Empire" and preceding the histories of Africa, China and Japan from 400 AD to the 1500s (including the religious traditions of those regions), and then moving on to Europe in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, where students are taught about the cultural and religious influences of the Catholic Church and the Protestant Reformation.

Oh, but there's that section on Islam, so it's terrifying and biased, and couldn't we just snip out that portion of the world so it can't harm us any more?

Before closing with a request for donations, Holt plays the Christian Oppression card, claiming that three weeks spent learning about Islam's place in world history will confuse our poor children and make them forget that they're Americans:

While I can certainly understand the desire for cultural knowledge, it must never be at the cost of our own cultural identity. Many of our children are not being taught the Ten Commandments in school, but instead the Five Pillars of Islam and the “Prophet” Muhammad as a sovereign to Jesus Christ.

This is an insult to the men and women serving our country who have lost and risked their lives due to a war instigated by the teachings of Islam, and I will not stand for it.

Excellent work, Rep. Holt! You get an A+ in Fearmongering 101! And if Tennessee schools actually were telling children that Jesus is subordinate to Muhammad, then by golly, we'd call for a change in the standards too. In mere reality, of course, the guidelines merely state that students should understand "Islam’s historical connections to Judaism and Christianity," which isn't nearly as sexy or scary. Also too, the history of Judaism and Christianity are covered in Tennessee's social studies standards for sixth grade, which include this Judeo-Christian-bashing set of learning goals:

Describe the monotheistic religion of the Israelites, including:

  • the belief in one God (monotheism)
  • the Ten Commandments [...]
  • the Torah and the Hebrew Bible as part of the history of early Israel

That's some radical pro-Islam agenda, right there, huh? Say, Rep. Holt, don't those Ten Commandments have something in there about it being a sin to lie?

We've previously profiled Rep. Holt, who runs a hog farm, for his principled opposition to environmental regulations that have personally oppressed him by preventing him from exercising his God-given right to spray liquified pigshit all over his neighbors' property and leave hog carcasses out to rot in the open. Maybe as a pork producer he feels threatened by seventh-graders learning about the very existence of Islam.

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Doesn't look like Rep. Holt is much inclined toward learning anything -- he's still spraying enough pigshit to run Bartertown, only this time it's in the direction of the public schools. We'd like to wish the hypocritical liar a happy Hate Muslims Day.

[RawStory / State Rep. Andy Holt / Nashville Public Radio / 6th grade Tennessee Social Studies standards / 7th grade Tennessee Social Studies standards]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.


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