Reps. Gina Johnsen and Joseph Fox each introduced bills this week that aim to restore educational sanity to public school curriculum.
House Bills 4284 (Johnsen) and 4672 (Fox) would together require public schools to give proper, fact-based instruction on critical areas of American history – eras that defined our country and shaped its destiny.
These bills come amidst a tide of historical revisionism that has crept into our public schools’ curricula, according to the representatives.
“Narratives such as the 1619 Project categorically shift the focus of instruction about the colonial era away from exploring how the early colonists cultivated societies built on Judeo-Christian ethics and institutions built on democratic ideals,” said Fox, of Fremont. “Instead, these projects and philosophies emphasize that America has somehow been a society built on perpetuating slavery and dismiss the former emphasis on the expansion of freedoms in our constitutional republic.”
At the expense of historical facts, such narratives craft an overly pessimistic portrayal of American History in order to produce a negative attitude among modern Americans about their past, according to Fox. Worse yet, such stories shun patriotism and adopt a posture of indifference or outright hostility at the concept of love of country.
Jointly, these bills strike back against such revisionism and instead advocate for a return to objectivity in our public schools.
“My measure would ensure that history classes give instruction on a wide range of topics if they aren’t already incorporated into the curriculum: all major wars in which the US has engaged, as well as the documents foundational to the country’s political history,” said Johnsen, of Lake Odessa.
Fox’s HB 4672 would require history classes to teach how the operation of the early colonial communities was intimately tied to Christianity, from the reason the colonists immigrated to the construction of their societies based on Christian beliefs and ethics.
“The present state of our nation can be traced back to its conception, when an independent, free nation was simply an idea in the minds of immigrants,” Fox said. “This is an accurate portrayal of American History. These bills continue that enthusiasm by reviewing many of the major identity-shaping wars America has taken part in during the past two hundred and fifty years.”
“These two bills seek to safeguard the truth and restore parental trust in our public school system,” Johnsen said. “School must be a place of instruction and intellectual cultivation, rather than a place of indoctrination following only the latest trend.”
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