Press "Enter" to skip to content

Letters for Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Teach history while revealing agendas

Conservatives wish to censor critical-race theory; they believe it distorts history to paint an unfair picture of the United States.

Recently, the Republican National Committee censured Republicans Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger for serving on the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol. It described those events as: “ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse;” the investigation was “Democrat-led persecution” and “Democrat abuse of prosecutorial power for partisan purposes” (actually, prosecutorial power resides in the executive branch, not the legislative).

Whether CRT’s interpretation of history (or the RNC’s) is fair or unfair, like beauty, lies in the eyes of the beholder. No history is complete, or free from bias. The Revolutionary War lived by a Tory loyalist living in Boston was certainly far different from that of a Minuteman.

One vital criterion to apply is whether the facts relied upon are accurate.

For example, Columbus, in some school textbooks, challenged the prevailing belief, rigidly enforced by the Catholic Church, that the world was flat, and risked torture by the Spanish Inquisition for his heresy. The story fits the schoolbooks’ agenda because it demonstrates what can be accomplished by a person of strong conviction and determination. But, as Stephen Jay Gould (who researched the issue) says, “Dramatic to be sure, but entirely fictitious. There never was a period of ‘flat earth darkness’ among scholars … Greek knowledge of (the Earth’s) sphericity never faded … .” Columbus actually met with the Inquisition, which fully accepted that the Earth was spherical; its (quite accurate) objection was that Columbus hugely underestimated the circumference.

Why the fabrication? In 1870, some scientists had an agenda to discredit the Catholic Church as anti-science because of its opposition to the theory of evolution.

And CRT has an obvious agenda: to emphasize the injustice of slavery, and include in U.S. history the continued horrors of post-Reconstruction, Jim Crow, segregation, and the continued marginalization of people due to race.

Ascertain the agenda of the statement about Jan. 6. Then consider another national committee’s statement: “These violent scenes we have witnessed do not represent acts of patriotism, but an attack on our country and its founding principles.”

What’s the agenda of the latter statement? Does it help to learn that it also came from the GOP National Committee, but on 1/6/21?

Let any accurate history be taught, alongside any other accurate history, with agendas fully revealed, so that our intelligent children and students can decide which view best serves to understand the past and how the present came to be, and plan for the future.

Jed Somit, Kapa‘a

Make people pay for entrance to Kaua‘i

Lucky, or thank God, we live on Kaua‘i.

The weather is perfect, sunny, warm, sandy beaches enough va (rain) to keep everything green and growing. Good food, a small shelter, surf is good, mangoes are ono. Mahalo be Akua.

When we go to Disneyland, we have to pay to get in, pay for the rides, pay for everything. We think every tourist should pay to enter Kaua‘i. Kaua‘i is the best place on the planet, and we have been around the world a few times.

We are holding on to everything that makes for a happy, healthy life — law and order, peace, aloha. God has created everything we need, even before we asked.

Sunshine, fresh air, fertile land to grow our food, sparkling, dancing waters. Be thankful. Mahalo be Akua.

So, make the visitors pay to experience the nicest place on God’s green earth. There is no place as nice as Kaua‘i.

We used to enjoy camping and hiking in Koke‘e 50 years ago, listening to the birds singing, eating sweet plums in the summer, swimming in the Coca-Cola-colored waters. Spraying herbicides to kill Australian tree ferns because they are deemed “invasive” was not a good idea.

Herbicides are made to kill plants and are proven to cause cancer. Rapid ‘ohi‘a death may be the result of our damage to the environment by introducing toxic chemicals due to our ignorance of how nature works.

At one time, Kaua‘i was hot, red, molten lava. Fifty million years later, today, we have plants, animals and people from all over the world. Some came by boats, some by jets, some by jetstream. At what point does a species become “invasive?” When someone in a lab decides it’s time to do something, anything, to keep their paycheck coming?

Kawika Makai, Kekaha
Source: The Garden Island

Be First to Comment

    Leave a Reply

    %d bloggers like this: