October 24, 2022
Dispelling The Myth of Ideological Neutrality in Idaho’s Education
By: Brian Parsons
“The rules are simple: they lie to us, we know they’re lying, they know we know they’re lying, but they keep lying to us, and we keep pretending to believe them.” – Elena Gorokhova
In conversations on subversive activism in American society, one can be assured that the activists will deny the accusation and instead, gaslight the audience into believing that what they are seeing is merely a figment of their imagination. Such is the case with many governing officials in Idaho. The most notable example of this regards the oft-cited indoctrination task force of Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin. Most recently, in an op-ed in the Idaho State Journal, SD-25 Superintendent Dr. Douglas Howell claimed that indoctrination does not exist in Idaho Schools and that McGeachin’s indoctrination task force didn’t find a single example of indoctrination in the schools. Dr. Howell is being dishonest.
I know that Dr. Howell is being dishonest because, as I have stated in the past, I submitted the recommended reading list of Pocatello’s Mayor’s Million Challenge, which was a hodgepodge of leftist indoctrination dressed up as a diversity and inclusion initiative curated by the same Marshall Public Library that hosts Drag Queen Story Hour. I know that Dr. Howell is being dishonest because I have been asked by parents for alternate viewpoints on history when their child’s teacher sends them home with ideas about important historical figures that apply modern context to historical times to paint these characters as uniquely heinous villains. I know that Dr. Howell is being dishonest because with a quick search of Idaho State University’s College of Education page, right next to an article touting dozens of scholarships awarded to the next crop of SD-25 teachers, is an announcement of their annual Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion conference.
Had the Idaho legislature not stepped in and banned the teaching of indoctrination outright, you could be assured that Idaho’s would look like much of the more progressive state-run education institutions in the country. Since the publication of such curricula is banned, your children will instead be subjected to a more subversive form of indoctrination. If the state is unable to shape the minds of the students directly, they’ll instead aim for the minds of the next generation of educators. This is not limited to K12 education.
Visit the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare’s website and read about the up-and-coming Early Years Conference, which touts their vision for success in early childhood. They promote their speakers specializing in Unconscious Bias, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. In exchange for participation, counselors, social workers, and therapists will earn Continuing Education Credits so that they might keep their jobs. Or visit the Idaho WWAMI FB page, which is the page of Idaho’s Medical School, touting the latest crop of Idaho medical students as the most diverse in history with hashtags of #Diversity and #Inclusion and stating that now you can have a doctor that looks like you. I don’t know about you, but I would prefer the most competent purple-haired space alien physician versus one that looks like me.
My children are in private school to avoid subversive indoctrination, but even private schools aren’t exempt from dishonest subversive attempts by curriculum writers to mold the children’s minds. Recently our children’s school adopted a Bible Study curriculum that, at face value, seemed harmless enough. But the buzz words Social and Emotional Learning caught my attention and demanded a more thorough investigation. A quick search of the curriculum writers showed that they offered separate curricula for public and Christian schools and that the authors ran a separate non-profit that promoted the woke church. That is, they promoted Critical Race Theory in doctrine and openly bragged about their ability to shape the minds of the youth with their SEL curriculum. The school was extremely responsive to these concerns, and thankfully, the curriculum was removed.
As I have noted in the past, when the state stepped in and banned indoctrination in the schools, a laundry list of educators signed the Zinn Education Project’s pledge to teach it anyway and dress their worldview up as the truth. Several of those educators reside within SD-25’s purview. So when government officials and school board executives suggest that they don’t teach indoctrination, they merely state they do not publish a curriculum called CRT 101 or Gender Ideology 101. Still, many promote the worldview in applying the curriculum, and they most certainly promote that worldview to the next crop of Idaho educators.
Brian Parsons is a paleoconservative opinion columnist in Idaho, a proud husband and father, and saved by Grace. You can follow him at WithdrawConsent.org or find his opinion columns at the American Thinker, in the Idaho State Journal or in other regional publications.