“My View” from the June 29, 2012, edition of “Viewpoint with Eliot Spitzer.”
The Republican Party of Texas has officially come out against critical thinking. And that’s completely true — don’t question anything I say, just listen.
Now, our friends in Texas have had it rough in the public eye for a while. You know, Gov. Rick Perry talked about Texas seceding from the Union if they felt like it, then they busted Willie Nelson for a few ounces of weed — while letting God, who lawlessly grows the stuff around the world, remain at large.
But now the Texas GOP has written this into their platform, and it tops all previous silliness: “We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills, critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a re-labeling of Outcome Based Education which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.”
OK, now the Texas GOP has since said that was an accident. They didn’t mean to put that giant paragraph in there, banning critical thinking. But I say, at least you admitted it — why back away from it?
Critical thinking will undermine parental authority. Critical thinking undermines authority in general. That’s why it’s called critical thinking.
And if the Texas GOP really believed in critical thinking, they could not have written the rest of their platform, which also calls for:
• Abstinence-only sex ed (which worked really well, just ask Levi Johnston).
• Privatizing Social Security (which is a great way of saying, “Hey, have some more cat food, Grandma”).
• The platform calls for opposing the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child (because child slave labor overseas makes for some sweet, cheap cowboy hats).
• Repealing the minimum wage, corporal punishment in schools, not allowing gay people to serve in the military, opposing ACORN (which hasn’t existed for two years), repealing the 16th Amendment (thereby outlawing a national income tax), only having a sales tax (which hurts you-know-who) and repealing the Voting Rights Act (which they called by the wrong name).
Critical thinking skills would let children — or sentient adults — understand that this platform is not sustainable, it ain’t conservative and it ain’t sane.
My friends in Texas, your state GOP wants you dumb. They want you poor. They want you to brainwash your kids, and they want to beat your kids in school if they feel like it. And they want you to blame Barack Obama for 30 years of failed trickle-down economics.
But Texas GOP, sorry friends. You can’t stop progress and you can’t stop evolution, even if you don’t believe in it. And actually, based on your last two governors, Darwin very well could have been wrong.
But I’ll tell you this right now: The world’s getting smaller. The Internet’s making it a lot tougher for fake Christians and religious fundamentalists to keep young minds in a lock box, so go ahead and try to turn your kids into sheep. The times they are a-changin’. It’s not going to work forever.
And by the way, if you ever do try to secede, America gets to keep Austin.
That’s “My View.”