Charles Keefer's Blog

High School

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I really can’t blame the Tea Party people for what they are doing.

Most of the stuff I learned about how this country was formed, and why, was not taught in high school.

I come from a very poor state – South Carolina. I just happen to be lucky. My school was one of the newest in the state and benefited from John Kennedy’s emphasis on education to narrow our supposed deficit in space to the Russians.

We had a physics and a chemistry lab. We had a 12-inch telescope. And we had an actual black person among the students. One out of 900. She was the daughter of the principal of the black high school and was one of the most popular kids in our high school. That means I came from a racially integrated high school, as it were.

I can’t remember exactly what I learned about our country’s history (it has been a long time), but I specifically do not remember learning about unions, the fight against child labor, or the one for for a five-day work week.

South Carolina is an anti-union state.

I can’t remember learning about prohibition. (Read that “War on Drugs”)

I do not remember learning about the creation of Social Security and I certainly did not learn about the creation of the Federal Trade Commission to regulate the stock markets. I was not taught about the Food and Drug Administration or why it came to exist.

As I remember, our history courses did not include Franklin Roosevelt. I believe they stopped around the time Abraham Lincoln was shot.

When I look at the Tea Party folks, it looks as if they had the same high school education I had – minus the telescope and the labs.

Basically, they don’t know how this country really was formed.

They got Washington and the cherry tree, but never read Jefferson or Adams or Franklin.

They didn’t get the incredible grants of land to the railroads or their importation of Chinese labor because it was cheaper than American labor.

They didn’t get the clear cutting of half of America’s forests that Teddy Roosevelt tried to stop.

And they certainly have no clue about the Great Depression.

They think Reagan did something other than tripple the national debt.

And, this I don’t get, they think a sociopath like Newt Gingrich is worth listening to.

I can’t blame them for what they think.

I just think we have a lot of work to do on our high schools.

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Written by Charles Keefer

September 3, 2010 at 6:40 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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