Letters to the Editor

Some need to expand their news sources

To the Editor:

As an occasional writer of letters to the editor I sometimes receive feedback, mostly positive but sometimes negative or dismissive. Most of the time I don’t hear anything, which causes me to wonder if I was just speaking to the void. I was very surprised then to see my name at the beginning of a guest column, no less. I am, therefore, gratified that people are indeed paying attention.

I am old enough to remember the old South with its white only rest rooms and water fountains. I don’t have a personal acquaintance with the situation that she described but I am not unmindful of them. I know that things like that occurred. Maybe Mrs. Curry thought that I didn’t know rather than being, like some, determined to live as if it were perpetually 1965 in Selma, Alabama. We have certainly come a long way since then. The death of all accusations of systemic racism should have been final with the election of Barack Obama in 2008 and his re-election in 2012. If there is still a racial disparity in various areas, we should look for other reasons rather than resorting to knee-jerk racism accusations

It is to the credit of the writer and her husband that they didn’t teach anything like what I referred to in my letter. What I am referring to is of fairly recent vintage and perhaps was not on their radar by the time they retired. I also was not saying that Critical Race Theory was presently being taught in our local schools but it is being pushed elsewhere as I will soon explain. Bad ideas seem to have the ability to really get around so — as the financial people like to say — past performance does not predict future results. It is easier to confront these damaging ideas before they take deep root. Of course, it can be denied that CRT is being taught if they don’t call it that. “Equity” should set off alarm bells as well. Poison by any other name is just as toxic.

It is very likely that the writer and I inhabit different media universes. While the alphabet media is not above promoting completely false stories, its main deficiency is what it does not report at all. Therefore, many people never hear of important developments. I had heard of CRT through Robin DiAngelo’s “White Fragility” and Ibram Kendi’s “How to Be An Antiracist” where one is automatically racist for being born white and any defense against the charge of racism proves that you are racist and are demonstrating white fragility. You cannot keep your head down and let it pass by without saying anything because now “silence is violence.” 

Of course, this is absurd and should never be taken seriously and is totally inappropriate for children. I have no problem with teaching history, warts and all, but to teach everything from the false basis that this country was founded to perpetuate slavery as the “1619 Project” would have it is totally misguided and pits people against one another for no good reason. 

The first time I was aware of any effort to include math in the antiracist effort was an article in Powerline. The Oregon Department of Education sent a letter to math educators telling them about a virtual course in math equity (A Pathway to Equitable Math Instruction) that they could sign up for. The claim by this group is that white supremacy culture can appear in the classroom in ways such as when “the focus is on getting the ‘right’ answer” and by requiring students to “show their work.” These quotes are from KATU-2, an ABC affiliate in Portland. Powerline picked it up from the Fox station there but no matter. This course also supports confronting ways that “math is used to uphold capitalist, imperialist, and racist views.” A Google search will find similar results from other parts of the country.

At the time I wrote the original letter I was aware only occasionally of these stories but recently there has been a spate of news reports. For instance, there is a parental revolt against CRT in Loudon County, Virginia. Similar uprisings against school boards have occurred in other parts of the country. A Google search will yield results; just type in keywords. Google’s algorithms may discriminate against some outlets so searches with other search engines is a good idea as well. 

Going to the news sources themselves will be fruitful. Facebook and Twitter censor what they don’t like so a lot of good information is choked off to people who rely on these platforms. Give these websites a try: The Federalist, American Thinker, Breitbart, The Gateway Pundit, Real Clear Politics (has everything right, left and center), The Epoch Times, American Greatness, etc. Don’t be afraid of Fox News. I know it may be fashionable in some circles to knowingly sneer at people like Tucker Carlson or Rush Limbaugh, but they are more right than the so-called mainstream with their corporate “narrative.” I even like to read some left-of-center journalists like Glenn Greenwald and Matt Taibbi. I don’t always agree with them but at least they are unflinchingly honest. If inquiring minds really want to know, please expand your news sources.

Dave Parker 

Sylva

Leave a comment

6 comments

  • Sometimes people just want to hear their own voice or need validation.

    posted by Jim

    Sunday, 06/06/2021

  • here exists an excellent source for culling various media outlets to assess the degree to which the content is factual, reliable, unbiased, opinion or fact, and/or propaganda. They regularly study the content of each source and update their findings. It is called Media Bias Chart. The link is:

    https://www.adfontesmedia.com/?v=402f03a963ba&fbclid=IwAR0Ew5R-417WQjNSNu6ySI7zDQvdChBtP3DKl3Aor-CVgGIOY4SuLAj0MWc

    I took a moment to open it and typed in one of the sources mentioned by the writer of this opinion piece: Epoch Times. Media Bias chart has it listed as follows: Hyper-partisan right; Some reliability issues/extremism such as selective or incomplete story, or propaganda. Media Bias Chart is a data-driven source for assessing the integrity of information being read by consumers.

    posted by Teri D

    Saturday, 06/05/2021

  • There exists an excellent source for culling various media outlets to assess the degree to which the content is factual, reliable, unbiased, opinion or fact, and/or propaganda. They regularly study the content of each source and update their findings. It is called Media Bias Chart. The link is:

    https://www.adfontesmedia.com/?v=402f03a963ba&fbclid=IwAR0Ew5R-417WQjNSNu6ySI7zDQvdChBtP3DKl3Aor-CVgGIOY4SuLAj0MWc

    I took a moment to open it and typed in one of the sources mentioned by the writer of this opinion piece: Epoch Times. Media Bias chart has it listed as follows: Hyper-partisan right; Some reliability issues/extremism such as selective or incomplete story, or propaganda. Media Bias Chart is a data-driven source for assessing the integrity of information being read by consumers.

    posted by Teri D

    Saturday, 06/05/2021

  • There exists an excellent source for culling various media outlets to assess the degree to which the content is factual, reliable, unbiased, opinion or fact, and/or propaganda. They regularly study the content of each source and update their findings. It is called Media Bias Chart. The link is:

    https://www.adfontesmedia.com/?v=402f03a963ba&fbclid=IwAR0Ew5R-417WQjNSNu6ySI7zDQvdChBtP3DKl3Aor-CVgGIOY4SuLAj0MWc

    I took a moment to open it and typed in one of the sources mentioned by the writer of this opinion piece: Epoch Times. Media Bias chart has it listed as follows: Hyper-partisan right; Some reliability issues/extremism such as selective or incomplete story, or propaganda. Media Bias Chart is a data-driven source for assessing the integrity of information being read by consumers.

    posted by Teri D

    Saturday, 06/05/2021

  • Glenn Greenwald is no longer left of center, he's gone completely the other way. The sites you named are right wing conspiracy and nationalist sites, so I'm not sure what your point is. These people, knowingly or not, are trying to democracy.

    posted by Deni Gottlieb

    Saturday, 06/05/2021

  • I appreciate Mr. Parker's thoughtful, civil reply and will reply further in a letter next week. Although we disagree, we can still respect one another. As Scott McLeod writes in this week's column, we have more in common than we have dividing us.

    posted by Mary Jane Curry

    Friday, 06/04/2021

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