Policymakers | General Education

Not Here!

DES MOINES REGISTER   |  April 12, 2016 by Dann Hayes

After serving in the U.S. Army, I came home and went to college on the G.I. Bill.

During that time I came across some interesting people – for example a student teacher who taught Marxist theory in an intro to political science class.

I had to retake the intro class my senior year because some credits from another college didn’t carry over – political science was my minor. I talked to the student teacher and said this was an introduction to political science course. She should review a number of political descriptions. She, of course, didn’t agree.

My grades reflected our discussion – almost straight C’s. That is until the midterm paper.

For my midterm I rewrote the U.S. Constitution adding some things from the Communist Manifesto, Mein Kampf (Hitler’s rag) and just about anything else I could find.

She loved it. We still didn’t agree on the Communist stuff being taught in class, but I started getting A’s and B’s.

Well, this student teacher came to mind reading the news of the day and what is going on at colleges and universities.

Seems students, sometimes with the good will of faculty members, have decided to change names of campus buildings and holidays that are not politically correct – Brown University’s faculty, for example, recently renamed Columbus Day “Indigenous People’s Day.”

Really? And what about renaming buildings? Who cares who the building is named after – I have no clue what buildings were named after who at my institutions of higher learning. I had better things to do, like graduate.

What I find interesting is that some things are named after people who did something bad. Other items are not changed even though they are named after people who have done bad things, but for some reason, they are not touched.

For example, West Virginia’s former U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd, a Democrat, was a recruiter for the Ku Klux Klan while in his 20s and 30s, rising to the title of Kleagle and Exalted Cyclops of his local chapter. But nobody is trying to get West Virginia University to change the name of the Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center.

I wonder why?

I think there should be some law or constitutional amendment that says anyone who wants to change names of buildings, take down statues on campus, remove flags from public display and nearly anything else, must pass a basic history/social studies/common sense class.

Here’s why. According to the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, nearly 10 percent of the college graduates surveyed thought Judith Sheindlin of TV’s “Judge Judy” fame is (not was, but is) a member of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Less than 20 percent of those same students knew the effect of the Emancipation Proclamation and more than a quarter of them did not know Franklin D. Roosevelt was president during World War II.

And these kids want to change some names of buildings because they are politically incorrect.

I still wonder why some things are not touched. The nickname of the San Diego State University sports teams is the “Aztecs.” Yeah, those same people who historically enslaved and slaughtered tens of thousands of people, usually after ripping the hearts out of living victims.

Get rid of a flag you don’t like? Why is the flag of Japan OK? Look at almost any history book of the World War II era and you’ll see a couple versions of the flag of Japan being carried into Nanking to rape, pillage and mass murder hundreds of thousands of Chinese citizens.

Those same flags, which are still being flown today, were also being flown over camps used by Unit 731. This was a covert biological and chemical warfare research and development unit of the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. It was responsible for some of the most notorious war crimes carried out by Japan.

Seems it always gets easier to change history and not learn from it. At least that’s what the Communists did in Russia, the Nazi regime did in Germany and what ISIS and Taliban are doing in the Middle East and the politically correct are doing here in the U.S.


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