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My Personal Side

By Craig Hastings
If you read this column very often you already know that I’m a Laura Ingraham fan.  Laura Ingraham is the host of “The Ingraham Angle’’ on the Fox News Channel.  Her show airs Monday through Friday at 9:00 p.m. CST.  Laura is a conservative for sure but not nearly as faithful to the Republican line as someone like Sean Hannity is, also of the Fox Network.  Hannity precedes the Ingraham Hour at 8:00 p.m. CST.  I enjoy her show enough so that I record her in case I’m unable to watch at 9:00.  So what is it about Laura that interests me enough that I dare to miss one of her shows?  I watch because I learned from just a few of her shows back in 2017 that we share many of the same views as they relate to world events including our own political climate in America.  She was and probably still is a Donald Trump fan but, over the past four years of the Trump presidency she was not afraid to call the President out for any of his off the wall public statements or tweets he was so inclined to make.  Google her sometime and you’ll find she is a very well educated woman growing up in Connecticut.  I think she’s brilliant.

So why this week am I talking about Laura Ingraham?  Because her show that aired last Thursday night struck a chord I’ve been singing for two years now.  She and a few more influential public faces are now questioning the negative influence the internet may have on the education of children attending public schools in kindergarten through Eighth grade.  Because of the pandemic we’ve been exposed the majority of children are forced to learn via Zoom and other social media electronic sources.  Parents, a year later are now discovering that some teachers have maybe steered off course of standard curriculum agendas by adding some of their own flavor to the fields of studies they are trusted to be teaching students.  In some cases bits and pieces of American history may have been left out completely because personal opinions deemed some of America’s history was racist or sexist.  In some cases political beliefs may have factored into how class teachings were presented to students.  If this indeed has happened and in some of the larger cities in America still happening, then there is surely cause for concern.

Those people investigating these allegations blame teachers’ abilities to use their computers and keyboards in their homes to bend and shape courses of study to their own liking.  I assume from what I’ve read and heard this could be easily enough accomplished when the teacher is at home on her own computer and students in their homes following instructions.  Are teachers in these large cities across America not monitored by anyone in their own hierarchy of their school districts?  Is that even possible with some many teachers and all of them teaching from home or wherever they might be on a given day.  I recall one teacher on the news lying on a beach somewhere wishing everyone well while she was basking in the sun.  Was she supposed to be teaching class via Zoom or maybe she was just enjoying time off thanks to a global pandemic?  Who knows.  

On Laura’s Thursday show some of this was revisited.  Has the internet become too dangerous as a whole or maybe just Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc., are the culprits?  Finally I’m not the only one that’s speaking out about the dangers of the internet.  People with my views were laughed and scoffed at in the early years of the internet when we spoke out about our fears.  I think our government failed all of us by not passing legislation regulating internet providers from the startup.  Washington has never balked at putting regulations on any other startup business venture in America.  The question; should any American be allowed to say any damn thing they please about any other American and post it on as many social media sources as they please?  I think the answer is clearly; “No!”  The problem is that something referred to as Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act protects the internet platforms from liability from what you and I might say about someone else.  

“Well, if I can’t sue the internet providers that allowed such defamation statements to be aired then I’ll just sue whoever it was that said such horrible lies about me!”  Wonderful idea, right?  Wrong!  A couple of thoughts.  Most people who post such things either have so few assets and personal worth you might spend more trying to get your piece than you could ever be awarded.  The other people who post such things have more money than god and could keep litigation tied up for years which also might break you before you ever get your first court date.  Of course the deepest pockets and the easiest to sue would be the internet provider that allowed the questionable posts.  But, they’re protected and therefore exempt from paying out.  This isn’t right and needs to be changed.  President Trump was on course to achieve this very thing with new legislation that would allow internet providers to be sued.

Okay, back to Laura and what she and I believe needs to happen next.  America needs to take a couple of giant steps backwards.  We believe simple schools with real printed and bound books should be revived as the standard for learning.  Every teacher, everywhere, will teach their respected course of study from the same books.  Books!  Not laptops, not desktops, not Chromebooks, not anything that plugs in or runs from a charged battery.  Overhead projectors will be allowed of course.  Chalk boards, yes please but they’re optional in case chalk dust makes some students sneeze excessively.  Crayons!  Not computer generated coloring touch screen anything.  Listen!  There would be zero need to rewrite, edit, or change a single picture depiction in any books previously used, say back to 1975 with one exception.  That exception is history.  We wouldn’t change the old history books but instead add a second one that might include any history that was deemed necessary learning from say, 1990 forward. 

I’m of the belief that a second history book edition would be less than fifty pages. What in the heck has happened in the last twenty years that any of us care that our children learn other than who has been president and what wars that our brave men and women have fought, died, and been permanently disfigured all in the cause for freedom.  I vote that not one, zero, zippo, cero, null, nada mention of any politically affiliated or single race, gang, group, club, etc. be included in any scholastic study in public schools.  Those people can find another way to promote their biased causes.  Our children’s minds need not be troubled by giving any thoughts whatsoever about how and why American citizens would break off into activist groups pitting you against me because of the way we think.  Laura, as do I more than her, want Americans to read again.  Read again from printed, authored books, magazines, newspapers, school books, history documents, misc. library books, and real typed and printed letters from your friends and families.  

Young Americans must be taught and given the tools to learn the history of the very roots that grew America to what it was circa 1990.  The 1930’s, 40’s, 50’s, 60’, 70’s, and 80’s generations were each unique and important in their own way.  These were exciting years, building years, and the years American’s were the most proud of what America stood for on the world stage! Our children must be taught in school and in classroom settings how and why their ancestors worked so hard to achieve the American dream that allows anyone to accomplish anything.  What this movement wants is to reach back to a simpler way of life.  Maybe then all Americans might get along with all other Americans just like they did back in the good ol’ days!  Thanks for this Laura Ingraham.

(The views and opinions expressed in the submitted columns are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of The Journal.)

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