Far be it from MSNBC to let the facts get in the way of a good smear against conservatives. The far-left network’s latest misinformation campaign concerns Colorado’s Woodland Park School Board and a group of concerned parents.
At issue is the use by Merit Academy, a charter school, of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ book “Between the World and Me” in its curriculum. A parent, Jameson Dion, filed a complaint over the work which was featured in a junior- and senior-level English and Social Studies elective.
"Smeared By MSNBC For Refusing To Teach Kids To Hate Each Other, Colorado School District Hits Back" After being targeted by MSNBC, Colorado’s conservative Woodland Park School District is correcting the record.https://t.co/KgPniJe7fE
— Democracy In Motion (@DemocracyMotion) February 11, 2023
The title of the course is “Civil Disobedience.”
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes fired up the outrage machine against the district last week, claiming the system is pursuing an agenda of not allowing teaching about race. The host claimed that a school board member “grilled a high school teacher about one of the texts.”
There are multiple points to be made about that accusation. First, it wasn’t a teacher who was “grilled” but an applicant for a vacant board position. Secondly, there’s the text itself.
In writing “Between the World and Me,’ Coates described “the power of domination and exclusion” as being key to “the belief in being White.” Without those, he said, “White people would cease to exist.”
Referring to the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Coates described the hundreds of police as firefighters who perished as “not human to me.”
School District Vice President Dave Illingworth asked the applicant if they considered it “appropriate or even lawful” to teach subject matter based on this writing.
And the book was not removed from the library or banned from classrooms. As Illingworth noted, “it just wasn’t a good fit for the standards that were adopted.”
Those standards, adopted by Woodland Park, require that in addition to state requirements students be taught through social studies to love, not hate their country. They are also to be instructed to respect fellow Americans and not despise them for the color of their skin.
With that in mind, WPSD Superintendent Ken Witt decided the Coates book was non-compliant.
Invited to respond by MSNBC, Coates denied targeting White people and claimed his work is against “White” as a category.
The Civil Disobedience course ultimately replaced “Between the World and Me” with Thoreau’s “Civil Disobedience,” a remarkably logical choice. Other works studied include writings from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela, and Mahatma Gandhi.