With the attention State Board of Education (SBOE) member Cynthia Dunbar’s been getting the last month or so it’s likely she won’t be back on the SBOE after 2010. She came on the scene for most of us last month after making some wild comments about President-elect Barack Obama. Now the words in her soon to be released book are being highlighted.
The Texas Freedom Network (TFN) is responsible for bringing her latest wild ramblings to our attention, Board Member’s New Book Attacks Public Education as a ‘Tool of Perversion,’ ‘Unconstitutional’ and ‘Tyrannical’. And they’re asking for action to be taken.
The State Board of Education’s chairman should remove Cynthia Dunbar, R-Richmond, from the panel’s Committee on Instruction following the publication of a new book in which she attacks a public education system she helps govern, the Texas Freedom Network’s president said today.
In her book, One Nation Under God (Onward, 2008), Dunbar (on p. 100) calls public education a “subtly deceptive tool of perversion.” She charges that the establishment of public schools is unconstitutional and even “tyrannical” because it threatens the authority of families, granted by God through Scripture, to direct the instruction of their children (p. 103). Dunbar, who has home-schooled her children and sent them to private schools, bases that charge on her belief that “the underlying authority for our constitutional form of government stems directly from biblical precedents.” (p. xv)
Dunbar also offers a hint about why she helps govern a public education system she loathes.
“This battle for our nation’s children and who will control their education and training is crucial to our success for reclaiming our nation,” Dunbar writes (p. 100), after earlier condemning what she calls a secular society that resembles Nazi Germany just before the Holocaust. Those at risk today are “the devout, Bible-believing Christians,” she writes (p. 2).
This might be humorous if it was coming from someone without any authority, or someone in another state, but this is someone who represents Williamson County – it isn’t funny! The interesting part is, we know from the recently released GOP poll showing the brand losing it’s appeal this is the exact kind of “wing-nuttery” that’s causing their problems. Dunbar responds to the TFN in this article in the HChron today, Dunbar calls public education a ‘tool of perversion. She states her book “was not written for the general public” and that, “[i]t’s mainly an educational tool to the body of Christ”. And trots out the tired old right-wing line about how persecuted Christians are in the United States.
“I don’t think most people in the churches are aware of the venom against Christian America,” she said. “So, it’s more of a wake-up call to be informed, to be involved. They are fine with the body of Christ as long as we stay hidden in our four walls of the church, sitting quietly in our pews.
“But if we become civically involved or active in public policy issues, then we’re going to be shot down,” Dunbar said.
Just because someone disagrees with someone else on public education policy doesn’t mean their guilty of religious persecution. Her professed belief in public education is laughable, when she is a proponent of the exact things that will undermine it.
In a phone interview, Dunbar said she does not oppose public education, adding that it would be impossible to eliminate public schools.
“We have to work under the current framework,” she said.
But she prefers more competition for public schools in the form of additional charter schools and providing parents more choices on where to educate their children.
While she may not believe she can eliminate it, she can surely do her best to undermine, if not destroy it as Brains and Eggs says:
How is that a person can help govern a public education system she loathes? Because she intends — sort of like Grover Norquist drowning government in a bathtub — to destroy it.
Or as TFN President Kathy Miller says.
“A fire chief wouldn’t knowingly hire an arsonist in the department,” Miller said. “It’s just as hard to imagine many voters knowingly supporting for the State Board of Education an extremist who despises the public schools nearly everybody’s kids except her own attend.”
Whether the attention helps her book sales, possible political aspirations for higher office, or educate the body of Christ, makes no difference to me. I just don’t want her representing me, for anything, any longer. Whether she runs for reelection in 2010 or not, it’s likely she’ll have a wing-nut running against her like she did in 2006. That’s why it’s crucial we get a quality Democratic candidate to run for this office in 2010.