Tuesday, December 15, 2009

School Librarian Curses at Children to Teach "Banned" Books; School Board Apologizes to Furious Parents But Not for Indoctrination; Direct Link from School to ALA is Established

No books in the USA have been banned for about half a century.  Yet the American Library Association [ALA] continues to claim book banning happens every day, and it created "Banned Books Week" [BBW] to push its anything-goes agenda into local communities.  Now, as Reverend Wright would say, the chickens have come home to roost in West Linn, OR.  The Athey Creek Middle School, to be exact.

A direct link from the school to the ALA BBW misinformation is the smoking gun to prove a causal connection that may make the ALA partially liable in the event of any lawsuit.  No, no media reports that link, but it is true, I'll show you, and I hope the media and the parents pick up the trail.

According to "West Linn Librarian in Trouble for Using Profanity in Class," by KGW Staff, Northwest Cable News, 8 December 2009:
Some parents of West Linn middle school students are angry that their children were exposed to vulgar language by their teacher. They shared their frustrations with the school board Monday night.

The parents told the school board that they were never asked or even told that their children’s librarian was going to write and use profanity as part of a lesson on controversial books.

However, when they heard what happened afterwards, from their 8th grade children, the upset parents said they were furious and in disbelief. They said the teacher exposed their kids to more than a dozen curse words.

“There was the “F-word” [sic] written on the board. The teacher yelled them at the kids and then asked the kids to yell them back at him," said parent Elizabeth Thiede. She also explained that her child was upset by the display that was apparently carried out as part of a language arts unit at Athey Creek Middle School.
Language arts! How artfully the librarian intimidated and sexualized the children—"Elizabeth Thiede said her child was upset by the display"; "several children told their parents they were uncomfortable and embarrassed"; even the school board called it inappropriate and not approved.

From my reading of the story and viewing of the video, there is the chance this experience will negatively affect some of the children for the remainder of their lives. This "drastic fall from grace," "making our children wake from the dream of their childhoods," has apparently fallen directly on the heads of the children in the Athey Creek Middle School.

Why? Why has this happened? Let's read on:
For nearly 10 years, the school has discussed banned and controversial books as part of a successful First Ammendment [sic] curriculum. But never before has profanity been used in such a way, school district officials admitted.
Well, I guess it is no longer successful:
"I didn't believe it, to tell you the truth. It had to have been exagerated [sic] a little bit. But then after talking to other parents whose children were in those classes on Monday, it was quite apparent that it was indeed an actual occurance [sic]," said parent Pamela Alarcon.
Indeed, from the West Linn – Wilsonville School District, School Board Meeting Minutes, February 4, 2008, we see:
4.3 Athey Creek Middle School – Reporting were Christine Biancardi and Josh Pratt – .... Eighth graders participated in a banned book challenge – they read and gave a report why they thought a book should or should not be banned....
Again, no books have been banned for about half a century.  Are children still being taught to duck and cover?  And the school library says, "Banned and Challenged Books - Celebrate the Freedom to Read!"

More importantly, why the emphasis on "banned and controversial books"? Might it be the ALA's BBW propaganda? Does the community want its children to learn ALA propaganda instead of reading, writing, and arithmetic? Sadly, it looks to be the case:
Board members were careful to point out that they were not apologizing for the banned and controversial book curriculum, just the particular way it was presented. They said this will not happen again.
Yes, it will.  Why?  Because the "language arts" curriculum has the ALA's propaganda embedded directly within.  In other words, there is a direct link between the ALA's fraudulent teachings about books being banned and censored across the USA on a daily basis and the Athey Creek Middle School teaching children about books being banned and censored across the USA on a daily basis.  The smoking gun can be seen in the lower right of the school's "Language Arts" page [older archived version as the school has already removed the page!], a graphic of which appears to the right.  Yes, the link to the ALA page is dead, but that's only a result of the recent rewriting of the ALA web site that killed almost all old links.  That ALA link is likely the source for the curriculum on "banned" books at the school.  Is there no liability for maintaining a false and misleading web site that may have led to children being sexualized in public school by a school librarian teaching the ALA misinformation?

So what we have here is the chickens coming home to roost in Athey Creek Middle School.  No books have been banned in the USA for about half a century, but the ALA claims they are banned on a daily basis as a means to ensure children retain access to inappropriate material it is perfectly legal to keep from children in public schools and libraries.  The Athey Creek Middle School has a 10 year program that indoctrinates the children with the ALA's fraudulent misinformation.  A direct link from the ALA to the school is evident on the school's "Language Arts" page, though, granted, the ALA likely did not force the school to add the link.  Then, as part of the curriculum to indoctrinate students about supposed banned books, the librarian shouts obscenities at the children and demands they shout them back.  As a result, several children are significantly and negatively affected, perhaps permanently.

I hope a lawsuit results, though it would mean some child has been affected negatively, and no one wants that.  No one, that is, except the cursing school librarian who didn't really apologize and the ALA that promulgates the false information used by the librarian and encouraged by the school board even after this incident. 

Yes, the school board indirectly defends this.  "Board members were careful to point out that they were not apologizing for the banned and controversial book curriculum, just the particular way it was presented."

No, the false lessons on "banned" books stays.  The chickens have come home to roost, and they will continue to roost until the phony curriculum is discarded.  I say keep the librarian, perhaps on a short leash, but dump the ALA-influenced curriculum and any links to ALA pages containing BBW propaganda.

See also, "West Linn Teacher's Censorship Lesson Spurs Outcry, Apology," by Nicole Dungca, The Oregonian, 8 December 2009.  Notice the librarian is not sorry for what he did, only that he got caught:  "Reached at the school Tuesday, Diltz said school officials had not authorized him to discuss the incident but expressed dismay at the fallout. 'I just wish it hadn't backfired like this,' he said."

The indoctrination of the children about "banned" books will not stop:
Last week, Athey Creek Principal Carol Egan issued an apology to parents through an e-mail list.
"It was meant to provoke student understanding and experience how words, taken out of context, can lose their significance. When taken out of context, an author's words can move a community to ban that author's book from a school library," Egan wrote.
Again, no books have been banned for about half a century.  Does Egan know about Board of Education v. Pico?  Does she know communities don't ban books from schools—even if it were possible the school board would have to do that, and then only after complying with existing policy?  Does she know a school board may remove books legally?  Yet the principal repeats the ALA book-banning propaganda as if it were true.

If any lawsuits result from what happened in that school, the plaintiffs should give thought to whether the ALA is partly at fault, along with the school, based on the direct link from the school to the ALA.  The ALA's grip is so strong that the librarian is only sorry that he got caught and the school board will continue with the "banned" book indoctrination.

The question is, will West Linn, OR, citizens and their government at least consider what I have said about the ALA link and considering severing that link?  The school clearly will not, and the offending librarian only wishes "it hadn't backfired."  Is it an ALA school or a public school?

Is censorship as a serious issue being taught, or is it only a political means to ensure children retain access to inappropriate material.  There is a significant difference, and the distinction further evidences why the school's censorship curriculum is for political indoctrination, not for the truth or any real interest in actual censorship:
It also highlights the thing we know about Banned Books Week that we don't talk about much — the bulk of these books are challenged by parents for being age-inappropriate for children.  While I think this is still a formidable thing for librarians to deal with, it's totally different from people trying to block a book from being sold at all. [Source.]
Totally different.

"Afterward, students write an essay that argues why a book should or shouldn't be banned."  Oh, this must be early Twentieth Century American History since no books have been banned for half a century.

See also, "Repeat After Me...," by Scott Burton KGW, NBC-WSAV News 3, 8 December 2009, and watch the video.

Hat tip to LISNews:  "Language in First Amendment Lesson Irks Middle School Parents," by birdie, LISNews, 8 December 2009.


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