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On Feb. 23, 2004, at the National Governor’s Association meeting in D.C., United States Secretary of Education Rod Paige called the National Education Association “a terrorist organization.”
The firestorm has started and Paige will be asked to apologize – but should he?
Before the NEA gets up on their soap box about being called a terrorist organization, they should remember that they and many of their liberal members have spent years hurling insults at moms, dads, taxpayers and teachers that have been fighting for traditional academics is in direct contrast to the state goals of the NEA. In fact, I have been on the receiving end of such rabid attacks and name calling by the NEA and their supporters and mouthpieces.
In March of 1996, I was invited by the Hamilton County School Board in Tennessee to offer the conservative opinion to a very liberal education plan that was being considered. The group that was pitching the plan to Hamilton County had ties to Hillary Clinton.
My appearance at this school board meeting was so well advertised by parents who were also opposing the liberal education plan of which I would be speaking, that the event had to be moved to the largest school auditorium in the county.
That night, I spoke for more than 1 hour to over 1,000 taxpayers and I received several standing ovations as I aggressively criticized the liberal left’s wacky education plan.
The proposed plan had next to nothing to do with academics and a lot to do with the promotion of outcome-based education, moral relativism, political correctness and the goal of turning local schools into job-training centers. This plan went so far as to give a new diploma to students who achieved the desired humanist and socialist worldview. In fact, first hiring preference would be given to these students by the local businessmen who were looking for a dumbed-down, low-paid workforce that could perform menial tasks.
Though I was well received by the common-sense parents and taxpayers, I was viciously attacked by local liberals culled from the ranks of the NEA and their sister organization, the PTA.
The next morning in the newspaper, the local PTA president and NEA mouthpieces said, “Mr. Howse is an extremist comparable to that of the Klu Klux Klan and the black listings of the 1950s.” Another NEA mouthpiece said, “Who will be the next speaker who comes to town, a terrorist with a gun in his belt?”
For the next several days in the local newspaper, television and radio, the NEA lovers went after me with all they could. Of course, I wear that as a badge of honor.
Shortly after stepping off the stage that night to a standing ovation, I was given a message from an angry supporter of the liberal education plan I was opposing. “You can count on an audit by the IRS,” I was told.
I really did not take the comment seriously but, to my amazement, within a matter of a few short weeks, I had my IRS audit notice.
This isn’t surprising when you realize that I was opposing the very education plan that the Clintons where pushing on a national level. Hamilton County was being used as the test site and one of the first school districts in America to implement the Clinton education plan that Hillary and her friends had been writing and speaking about when she was in charge of education in Arkansas. The organization trying to implement the plan in Hamilton County also had ties to Hillary Clinton and the National Center on Education and the Economy, of which Hillary was a board member prior to becoming first lady. NCEE and Hillary had been promoting the very same plan now being pitched to the taxpayers of Hamilton County, Tenn.
And since I was not only being critical of the Clinton’s education agenda, but also the NEA and PTA, should I have been shocked to be the recipient of extreme and untrue insults, much less the harassment of an IRS audit?
Bill Clinton told the NEA candidate screening panel in December 1991: “If I become president, you’ll be my partners. I won’t forget who brought me to the White House.”
Clinton kept his promise, and in 1993 while addressing the NEA delegates, Clinton thanked the NEA for “the gift of our assistant secretary.” Clinton was making reference to former NEA staffer Sharon Robinson who became the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education for the Office of Educational Research and Improvement. “I believe that the president of this organization [Keith Geiger] would say we have had the partnership I promised in the campaign in 1992.”
Before you disagree with the comment by Secretary Paige, I think you need a crash course on the NEA, their history and their worldview.
One of the NEA’s formative leaders, John Dewey, an avowed humanist socialist, was made honorary president of the NEA in 1932. In 1933, Dewey was one of the signers of the “Humanist Manifesto.”
John Dewey, who traveled to Russia in the 1930s to help organize and implement the Marxist educational system there, today is known in America as the “Father of Progressive Education.” In 1935, Dewey became the president of the League of Industrial Democracy, which was originally called the Intercollegiate Socialist Society.
What does this tell us about the National Education Association?
In 1940, a California Senate Committee was assembled to investigate how various foundations were using their resources to promote certain philosophies and control teacher training. The committee discovered that the Rockefeller Foundation had spent millions of dollars rewriting current history books and creating new history books that undermined patriotism and a free enterprise system.
The California committee was shocked to discover that the curriculum, which was funded by the Rockefellers and promoted by the NEA, taught socialist ideas. The committee stated:
It is difficult to believe that the Rockefeller Foundation and the National Education Association could have supported these textbooks. But the fact is that the Rockefellers financed them and the NEA promoted them very widely.
Why would the NEA promote the removal of traditional history from our schools? If children do not know where they came from, they will not know where they are headed. Karl Marx said, “Take away the heritage of a people and they are easily persuaded.”
The NEA has actively promoted the United Nations and its global education plan. The United States version is called Goals 2000.
In the January 1946 NEA Journal, editor Joy Elmer Morgan wrote an editorial titled, “The Teacher and World Government,” which stated:
In the struggle to establish an adequate world government, the teacher … can do much to prepare the hearts and minds of children for global understanding and cooperation … At the very top of all the agencies which will assure the coming of world government must stand the school, the teacher and the organized profession.
In the December 1933 NEA Journal, editor Morgan wrote an editorial calling for government control of corporations. We have only to study the words and writings of NEA’s leaders to be convinced of their socialist-communist leanings. On June 29, 1938, the New York Herald Tribune published a story on the NEA Convention being held in New York City and reported the following:
Dr. Goodwin Watson, Professor of Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, begged the teachers of the nation to use their profession to indoctrinate children to overthrow “conservative reactionaries” directing American government and industry … [He] declared that Soviet Russia was one of the most notable international achievements of our generation.
The NEA’s main objective has always been to assume national political power and control much more than education.
The NEA has publicly boasted of its plan to seize control of the agencies and boards that decide who is allowed to teach and what is to be taught. The NEA has become the most powerful special-interest group in the United States. Their lobbying has brought about a 17-fold increase in federal education spending in the last 20 years.
What does the NEA – the most powerful union and special-interest group in the United States – plan to do with all this power?
- The NEA strongly supports hiring of homosexual teachers.
- The NEA believes that union contracts with local school boards should require all teachers to pay dues or fees to the union.
- The NEA is opposed to merit pay for teachers.
- The NEA is opposed to voluntary prayer in schools.
- The NEA opposes tuition tax-credit legislation.
- The NEA is opposed to the use of school facilities after school for voluntary religious meetings.
- The NEA opposes any effort to amend the Constitution requiring a balancing of the federal budget.
- The NEA favors socialized medicine.
- The NEA spent millions of dollars in 1992 to elect Bill Clinton president and supported other liberal candidates for Congress.
What does the NEA think about traditional teachers who went to college and obtained a teaching degree in order to impart true cognitive, academic knowledge to their students? Not much.
In 1971, the NEA publication, “Schools for the ’70s and Beyond: A Call to Action,” the NEA declares:
Teachers who conform to the traditional institutional mode are out of place. They might find fulfillment as tap-dancers, or guards in maximum security prisons or proprietors of reducing salons, or agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation – but they damage teaching, children and themselves by staying in the classroom.
This is a slap in the face to the many outstanding teachers who are gifted in the art of teaching.
In 1970, the then-president of the NEA, George Fischer, told NEA representatives during an assembly. “A good deal of work has been done to begin to bring about uniform certification controlled by the unified profession in each state … With these new laws, we will finally realize our 113-year-old dream of controlling who enters, who stays and who leaves the profession. Once this is done, we can also control the teacher training institutions.”
If the NEA had its way, our nation’s colleges and universities would be using cookie cutters to create American teachers.
Under the NEA’s uniform certification, every teacher leaving the training institutions and entering the profession will be an anti-American socialist with the goal of becoming “an agent of change.” The goal of every teacher under NEA control would be interested in indoctrination not education.
Former NEA president, Catherine Barrett in the Feb. 10, 1973, issue of the Saturday Review of Education makes clear the objective of this powerful organization:
Dramatic changes in the way we will raise our children in the year 2000 are indicated, particularly in terms of schooling … When this happens – and it’s near – the teacher can rise to his true calling. More than a dispenser of information, the teacher will be a conveyor of values, a philosopher … We will be agents of change.
Education is not the goal of the NEA – it is indoctrination, and the NEA will take whatever steps needed to accomplish their goal, including intimidation of teachers, parents and taxpayers who disagree with their agenda and worldview.
What does that make them? I think Secretary Paige knows.