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I'd say that it's pretty arrogant.... dismiss those who disagree with your political views as being ignorant. There is no shortage of novels that offer "challenging vocabulary, information about another country, facts about another culture, and glimpses into life situations." Several Hemmingway and Dickens novels pop into mind immediately. But perhaps these children were too young, or those novels didn't preach the exact, desired message. Every year this nation has to "import" more and more engineers and scientists on the H1B program because our educational institutes are not keeping up with the demand by stressing math and science. If you read many of the postings on this board, it becomes immediately obvious that English composition and basic garmmar skills are lacking as well. Our children are little lard-butts who will die in their fifties and sixties because there's no time for phys-ed....but there's time to learn about helping people who can't manage their lives? I see it every day in the business world: People who graduate with awards from a major university, but cannot write a simple sales proposal or engineering brief. A co-worker who graduated from UNC could not compute simple interest. An old girlfriend went to USC on a full scholarship, but had no idea that the United States fought in World War I, or the significance of that war in our modern dealings with Eastern Europe and the Balkans. (She had also never heard of "the Balkans!") Take a look at the average SAT scores of thirty years ago, and compare them with today's scores. The decline coincides exactly with our school systems embarking upon a curriculum that values Sesame Street/Barney/Global Brotherhood of Man political correctness, more than math, reading, and especially more than history. "Values" are supposed to be taught in the formative years by parents and churchs. Schools have no business neglecting important life skills that will benefit the individual student and society as a whole in the years to come. After all, without the skills they'll need to succeed financially, they're not going to have anything to give away, are they?


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