Separate Worlds

My uncle passed one onto me in an email. He is involved in one of those email chains that usually involves swapping humorous stories and jokes. Occasionally, it dives into the political. This time he wanted my help. He wanted me to join the fray.

See, this particular uncle is the only other progressive in our family. Most of my other family are conservatives. Mind you, they aren’t bad people. They work hard and generally don’t wish any ill will on anyone. Yet, they are the type of people that peddle this kind of stuff. I absolutely detest labels, but for our purposes here we will call this woman “School Board Karen“.

For those that don’t want to go down the rabbit hole, this is one of many men and women that go to school board meetings and rant about critical race theory or some other such nonsense that is supposedly being taught to our kids. Since I’ve been in the classroom for 24 years, my uncle wanted me to chime in. See, his friends were cheering this woman on.

He wanted me to respond. I could have picked over a dozen videos, but I think this is the one he sent me. I honestly couldn’t know for sure. I call it nonsense not because critical race theory is nonsense, but because this woman exists in a bizarro world that I don’t know. I’ve only done this for 24 years and the first half in a history classroom. I really don’t know what she’s talking about.

I never taught critical race theory or white supremacist theory or anything that could be labeled Antifa, Black Lives Matter, the Aryan brotherhood or any such nonsense. I taught history. In most years I taught World History, but I dabbed my toe in U.S. History once or twice. We did our best to teach the curriculum in front of us and augment it with other authentic history that the textbook skipped over.

I’ve taught in five different school districts and a private school. So, some might be tempted to say that maybe she is describing something that happens in schools you’ve never taught in. Sure. I guess anything is possible. After all, this is happening in another state. Yet, we have to ask ourselves what is more likely. Is it more likely that some rogue teacher or school somewhere is indoctrinating children with crap or is it more likely that Karen needs to take her meds?

I’ll have to admit that my response to the email was short and terse. I honestly don’t have much of a response to what this woman is saying. It’s just so ludicrous that you almost don’t want to interrupt her. You quietly make a distress call to the local mental hospital and wait for her to run out of gas. The problem isn’t this woman. The problem is that many feel the need to respond to it with anything other than laughter or scorn.

Somewhere along the way we have lost sight of something. Just because a number of people believe something, that doesn’t make it true. Not every opinion has value just because a certain number of people have it. Yet, people like our governor respond to it. They respond by creating a patriotic curriculum that does exactly what this woman is suggesting. Except, it does it to reinforce this woman’s point of view.

‘Murica is the greatest country there ever was and the greatest country there ever will be. Racism and bigotry only exist in the mind of the liberal. Events like the civil war weren’t about slavery and events like the Tulsa massacre didn’t happen. Lynching and riots weren’t about racism or even if they were that racism is long gone now.

That’s what they want us to teach. This is all in the guise of teaching students the “real” history about America. So, they want to guard against stuff we don’t teach by teaching stuff that didn’t happen. My wife is fond of saying that science doesn’t care about your feelings. Neither does history. I have no doubt there are rogue history teachers out there that try to indoctrinate their students with a political ideology. I’ve never met one and I’ve worked with a lot of them. I certainly don’t think there are enough to make a huge stink about a non-existent socialist plot to indoctrinate our children. God forbid we take the mic away from Karen, it’s ‘Murica after all.

Author: sbarzilla

I have written three books about baseball including The Hall of Fame Index. I also write for You can follow me on twitter @sbarzilla.

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