Larry Elder

Owen: Reaganomics. . . . He said Reaganomics does not work, because the government wants to keep the rich people rich, and the poor people poor. There is no such thing as the "middle class."

Elder: . . . This is an English class? . . .

Owen: Finally, my parents did meet him at back-to-school night. The next day, I went to his class. . . . He said, in front of the class, that when he met my parents, my mom hugged him, he returned the hug, my mom started weeping, and my mom said, "Why did I drink when I was pregnant with Owen?" . . . He told us that my mom said that. My mom did not say that. He made all that up.

Elder: He then said, to your class, you might have a better understanding -- meaning you might be more intelligent, you might reason better -- if your mom hadn't been a drunk when she was pregnant.

Owen: Yes. . . . I just stood there in shock. He pretty much just told the class that I had mental problems, my mom's an alcoholic, and I had family problems. . . . Then he went on his usual rampage. . . . I go to my vice-principal, and I tell him my story, and he gets me out of the class. . . . I am out of his class now.

I asked Owen to invite the teacher to come on my radio show. I wanted to hear how "Reaganomics" lands you in jail, and how the teacher justifies calling President Bush "Satan." Does the teacher, I asked Owen, possess the "cashews" to come on my show?

The teacher refused to appear on my show, but did tell students, "Tell Mr. Elder that cashews are not nuts. They are legumes."

Culinarily speaking, all chefs classify cashews as nuts, as do some botanists. Botanically speaking, however, cashews, like almonds, come from a type of fruit called a "drupe." Inside the drupe's dry, leathery flesh is the cashew "nut" -- actually a seed. Peanuts, on the other hand, are legumes.

So, apparently, Mr. Teacher knows even less about "nuts" than he does about "Reaganomics." Looks like somebody deserves an "F."

Larry Elder

Larry Elder is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit