Saturday, May 29, 2010

The War Over America’s Past

“Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.”That was the slogan of the Ministry of Truth in George Orwell’s 1984, where Winston Smith worked ceaselessly revising the past to conform to the latest party line of Big Brother. And so we come to the battle over history books in the schools of Texas. Liberals are enraged that a Republican-dominated Board of Education is rewriting the texts. But is the rewrite being done to falsify history, or to undo a liberal bias embedded for decades? Consider a few of the issues. The new texts will emphasize that the separation of church and state was never written into the Constitution. Is that not right? The First Amendment prohibits Congress from establishing a national religion. But, in 1776, nine of the 13 colonies had state religions established in their constitutions. Thomas Jefferson’s words about a “separation of church and state” were not written until 1802, when he responded to a letter from the Danbury Baptist Association. Not until after World War II did the Supreme Court begin the systematic purge of Christianity from American public life...more

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