The left started this war by attacking what was for years taken for granted about America, most especially that we are an exceptional country. The proof is the number of people who want to come here and the selflessness displayed by our citizens in the treasure we've spent and the blood we've spilled on behalf of others.
Too many on the left seem embarrassed by America's prosperity and standing in the world. The right seems just as committed to tearing the country down, literally and figuratively.
When liberals rewrite textbooks, inserting their own spin on history, they are said to be engaging in academic freedom. When conservatives attempt to do the same, they are called censors, bigots, anti-scientific and worse.
Surely conservatives can acknowledge that slavery and the civil rights movement are important subjects to study. And just as surely, liberals ought to acknowledge the contributions made to America by people who were motivated by their faith in God; that Ronald Reagan was a force in bringing down Soviet communism; and that the sovereign state of Israel is a democracy and beacon of freedom in a tough neighborhood. These were among the subjects over which Texas State Board of Education members and the public argued.
California, the largest purchaser of textbooks in the country, is in financial trouble and so has put off purchasing new textbooks until 2014, meaning that as Texas goes, so goes most of the nation.
It's too bad that people of different political stripes can't agree on a common approach to history and the ever-changing social scene. And because they can't, the textbook wars are likely to continue.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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