In American high schools, Advanced Placement students are supposed to be the cream of the crop. As a result, they take accelerated classes, and classes outside normal requirements to help them think for themselves more, and challenge their environments. Therefore, it is an especially offensive affront to do to the best and brightest of our youth what Spanish Fort High School in Alabama is doing.
The school released their summer reading list for their Advanced Placement students, and it is filled with nothing but rabid, right-wing propaganda books. A few of the titles are as follows:
Liberalism is a Mental Disorder: Savage Solutions by Michael Savage
The Political Zoo by Michael Savage
The Enemy Within by Michael Savage
Trickle-Up Poverty: Stopping Obama’s Attack on Our Borders, Economy and Security by Michael Savage
Here is an image of the entire list, via Twitter:
Spanish Fort High School in Alabama gave this AP Government summer reading list.
And that is just a few. As you can see, Michael Savage is a prominently featured author on the list, though there are others. To put this into context, Michael Savage is a rabidly anti-LGBTQ, hard-right Evangelical fanatic. He is listed as an anti-Semite and all-around bigot by the Southern Poverty Law Center. He has been poisoning the public consciousness with his special brand of hate since the early 2000’s. Frankly, his views have no place in any public school, for any reason – and they sure as hell should not be required reading for students, Advanced Placement or otherwise.
Now, since it seems that this is for some kind of high school Advanced Placement government class, books by politically relevant figures would be perfectly appropriate – but they should come from mainstream people who are also influential on the national stage in a legitimate way. For instance, there would be nothing wrong with their requiring the students to read President George W. Bush’s Decision Points, or President Barack Obama’s Dreams from My Father, or former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s Hard Choices, or former Secretary of State General Colin Powell’s Soldier: The Life of Colin Powell. These are books by relevant, legitimate, mainstream politicians from both sides of the aisle, and they are people who have legitimacy in our current and past politics, and who will have legitimate places in history. People like Michael Savage are not in that category, though. They are fringe characters who peddle an agenda that has nothing to do with education and everything to do with brainwashing the masses.
There’s no way that this political propaganda is legal. Sadly, however, it’s Alabama, so it is pretty likely that there are many parents there who will have no issue with this list at all; in fact, they’ve likely spent a lifetime pumping their kids’ heads with just this sort of toxic stew of hate-filled propaganda. However, that is a stereotype, and surely there are more moderate conservatives and some liberals there who will voice strong objections to being forced to read this nonsense.
Parents, speak up. Those reading, spread the word far and wide. Make sure this makes the local and national news. School children should not be fed religious and political propaganda of any kind – and it certainly should not be financed by public dollars. Folks, the radical right has officially taken over, and now they are poisoning the minds of the next generation. This list is proof of that. Speak out often and loudly. The very future of the republic depends on it.