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The opinion of a concerned Muslim group that a recent Texas resolution will "limit" references to al-Islam in public school textbooks may have exposed only the tip of the iceberg. A closer look at the resolution regarding Islamic references in social studies textbooks reveals a disguised effort to raise the banner of white supremacy while denying al-Islam's civilizing role in world history.
Three representatives of the Coalition for Good Government (CGG), during a recent internet panel-discussion, offered some immediate steps that the public could take to combat the Sept. 24 resolution of the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE).
But these actions may have little effect, as the non-binding, one-page proclamation tries, with academic language, to cover the Caucasian's historic and neurotic drive for superiority. In the field of psychology, such behavior is founded upon a deep and pervading sense of inadequacy and inferiority.
According to "The Cress Theory of Color-Confrontation and Racism (White Supremacy)" by Dr. Francis Cress Welsing: "The thrust towards superiority over peoples of color, the drive towards material accumulation, the drive towards a technological culture and the drive towards power are all cornerstones of the universal white supremacy culture, and they are viewed - in terms of the Color-Confrontation thesis - as responses to the core psychological sense of inadequancy...an inadequancy rooted in the (Caucasian's) inability to produce melanin.
"Therefore, a functional definition of racism (white supremacy), is the behavioral syndrome of individual and collective color inferiority and numerical inadequacy that includes patterns of thought, speech and action, as seen in members of the white organization(race)." (The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors, p. 10, 12)
This may explain SBOE's racist concern with the textbook presentations of the religions of al-Islam and Christianity. According to a Sept. 24 article in the Austin American Statesman newspaper, the 12-paragraph resolution is non-binding on future boards. It also reported that, due to budgetary cut-backs, the Texas Board will be unable to approve and purchase new textbooks until the year 2016.
From a religious standpoint, this is how Imam W. D. Mohammed explained racism in a 1975 article entitled Justice Is Come: the Death of White Supremacy: "Under Christianity, more homosexuality, more wine drinking, more gambling, more murder, more enslavement of the innocent and more race hatred has grown up than has grown up under any power that the world has ever known. In fact, racism never became a popular, worldwide idea until Christian people brought it into exisence....
"That is what we are telling the world of grafted Caucasion mentality; they have to be destroyed as a mind. We cannot correct it; we cannot build on it. We cannot let any part of it remain. You have to rid your mind of all of it because none of it is good. All of it is devil."
(The Teachings of W. D. Muhammad, Secondary Adult Level. - Book I, p. 83)
The Sept. 24 resolution charges that three world history books, used seven years ago in Texas middle and high schools, displayed "chronic partiality" towards the religion of al-Islam and "discriminatory treatment" against Christianity. It also stated that "pro-Islamic/anti-Christian half-truths" and "selective disinformation" still exist in "some" current, nationwide, social studies textbooks.
Speaking on the October 5, American Muslim 360 talk-show (www.blogtalkradio.com), CGG members Fleming El-Amin, Marvin Muhammad and Amatullah Yamini offered some immediate steps to take against the resolution.
"I know all elected officials respond to telephone calls and emails; so I would strongly encourage (people) to contact this Board by way of emails and telephone calls, letting them know that you are disappointed with the (decision)," said Bro. Fleming.The SBOE website which falls under the Texas Education Agency, is www.tea.state.tx.us. It also lists the contact number and names of the 15 Board members.
According to Bro. Marvin, the 15 Board members consist of two African-Americans, three Hispanics and 10 persons of European descent. He said that the group was obligated to speak out based upon a 1992 address by Imam W. D. Mohammed in Georgia State Legislature from which IWDM was qouted as saying: "We want the public school system to do the right thing. We want the public school curriculum, textbooks and teachers to reflect high regard for parental excellence, child-life excellence and family honor."
CGG was formed in 1997 after a major address to Muslim elected officials and political leaders by IWDM in Charlotte, NC according its website (www.CoalitionForGoodGovernment.org). Bro. Fleming said the group chose the name which the Imam later approved and operates on the basis of "a committe structure."
One of the group's major projects is to establish a CGG liaison in every masjid or Islamic center associated with the leadership of IWDM. "We want every resident imam to recommend one of his best people to be a liaison between the masjid and CGG, which will give them a closer connection to the outside community, " Sis. Amatullah said.
Returning to the SBOE resolution, Sis. Amatuallah emphasized: "This issue needs to be brought before the U. S. Department of Education." AM 360 host Thomas Abdul-Salaam even suggested that a press conference be held, which he promised to look into.
But the final paragraph in the resolution seems like an innocuous warning to biased textbook publishers. It reads, in part: "(be it) RESOLVED that the SBOE will look to reject future prejudicial Social Studies submissions that continue to offend..."
However, the real damage is cemented in the premises of the resolution.
The resolution is made up of four premise-statements with the first and second statements each having three paragraphs of supporting evidence. The other two premises have no supporting evidence. The proclamation concludes with two "be it resolved" paragraphs.
The first premise cites textbooks banned by the Board seven years ago that devoted more lines of text to Islamic beliefs and practices than to Christian ones. The Board focused on three specific books, used from 1999 to 2003. The highest spacial discrepancy was in World History: Patterns of Interaction where al-Islam had more than twice (248) as many text lines as Christianity (120), according to the resolution.
The second premise which was the heart of the proclamation, focuses on: "politically-correct whitewashes of Islamic culture and stigmas on Christian civilization." The premise claims that "some" current junior and senior high school history books contain such characterizations.
The Board has also included appendices with the resolution to document the claims in its premise-statements. The appendix for the first premise gives an impressive three-page listing of text-lines and religious references. But the sources were not given.
The appendix for the second premise uses only one source for its claims. It cites a 2008 research study entitled, Islam in the Classroom: What the Textbooks Tell Us by the conservative author and educator George Sewall, who is also president of the east coast American Textbook Council. This appendix also mentions the conservative William Bennetta as another source but gives no supporting material by him. He is president of The Textbook League, a west coast establishment.
The 39-page Sewall study reviewed five junior and five senior high school history books. Here are some of Mr. Sewall's findings:
A) One aspect of the scriptural quotations is strikingly different. The Biblical passages are ethical teachings canonical in the Western tradition. The Qur'anic passage is poetic and devotional, more like the Lord's Prayer or Apostles Creeed. It begins:
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate , the Merciful
It is the Merciful who has taught the Qur'an.
He created man and taught him articulate speech.
The sun and the moon pursue their ordered course.
The plants and the trees bow down in adoration. (Holy Qur'an 55:1-6)
In Islam this prayer serves a purpose different from ethical teaching - veneration and adoration of the Prophet - a difference that the textbooks leave unexamined and unstated (emphasis mine).
B) Some textbooks provide glowing declarations of Muslim social conscience. The Holt volume, trying to summarize islam's (sic) organizing principle, says: "People should help the poor. " It adds: " Helping and caring for others is important in Islam." Muhammad "taught equality," says Teachers' Curriculum Institute's History Alive! "He told followers to share their wealth and to care for the less fortunate in society." The Holt seventh-grade volume says, "Fasting also reminds Muslims of people in the world who struggle to get food." TCI says, "Muhammad told his followers to make sure their guests never left a table hungry."
These effusive formulations stop just short of invention and raise questions about the sources of information (emphasis mine).
C) The textbooks feature manifold contributions of Islam to the arts and science expanding coverage to a degree that seems out of proportion to the relative slimness of the material that the same volumes dedicate to European achievements. TCI devotes thirteen textheavy pages to textiles, calligraphy, design, books, city building, architecture, mathematics, medicine, polo and chess; some of it spun like cottton candy...(emphasis mine).
The third premise-statement smacks of pure racism. Besides the fact that there is no documentation nor appendix for its claims, the premise suggests that there will be more bias coverage of al-Islam "...as Middle Easterners buy into U.S. public school textbook" business. The racist assumption here is that all MIddle Easterners are Muslims.
The fourth premise simply asserts the Board's functional role as the "premiere venue" for "curricular grievances" in the state.
But the claim of the first (11th paragraph) of the two resolution-statements that says "diverse reviewers have repeatedly documented gross pro-Islamic/anti-Christian distortions" in school textbooks is a disguised attempt to raise the ugly head of white supremacy culture again.