Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Yep, Them Founding Fathers, It's Amazing

As The Other Liberal Professor can attest, Huckabee's ignorance here is no shock to any of us here in Arkansas.

We always have to do this interesting tug-of-war with our Far-Right Christian students, here in Arkansas, when we start teaching the first half of American Lit (TOLP teaches it more often than I do, and so endures this dance more often than I). When we hit the part of the course that deals with the literature written by Benjamin Franklin and the other Founders, we have to point out that no, in fact, many of them were not Christians, that, in fact, many were Deists. We have to say what that means. We have to talk about the text of the Declaration and the Constitution as Enlightenment texts. We have to talk about what this means.

We provide evidence.

Many of our students, not having been educated in far-right Christian schools, can understand evidence. They have no trouble with any of this.

Those who come from the local fundamentalist education factories, though -- ai. They've been taught the funamentalist version of history. No fact we present will interfere with what they know to be Truth.

And our facts? Well, they're just opinions.

"You're entitled to your opinion," one of these students kept telling TOLP, one semester.

B/c, you know, all those university professors, who had done all that research, and written their historical texts about the founders? Just guys with opinions. Her preacher? He had the truth.

So we can just shut up.

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