Arizona does it again!

Hey, I am seriously considering moving to Arizona. Not only does it have better weather and lower taxes than my current residence it has brave legislators. Fresh from passing stricter laws on illegal (not undocumented) immigrants, Arizona's legislature

passed a bill Thursday that would ban ethnic studies programs in the state that critics say currently advocate separatism and racial preferences.


The new bill would make it illegal for a school district to teach any courses that promote the overthrow of the U.S. government, promote resentment of a particular race or class of people, are designed primarily for students of a particular ethnic group or "advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals."

The bill stipulates that courses can continue to be taught for Native American pupils in compliance with federal law and does not prohibit English as a second language classes. It also does not prohibit the teaching of the Holocaust or other cases of genocide.

Schools that fail to abide by the law would have state funds withheld.

In addition, as Fox News reported,

State Superintendent for Public Instruction Tom Horne called passage in the state House a victory for the principle that education should unite, not divide students of differing backgrounds.


"Traditionally, the American public school system has brought together students from different backgrounds and taught them to be Americans and to treat each other as individuals, and not on the basis of their ethnic backgrounds," Horne said.

There is nothing wrong with ethnic studies programs as such and certainly schools should acknowledge that Americans from a variety of backgrounds and heritage contributed--as Americans--to making this nation the great country that it is today; that literature from around the world should be studied.

But parents, home and private communal institutions are the places for those who want to learn deeply about their background and heritage. In addition to passing down my Jewish heritage at home, my parents spent their hard earned money to send me to Jewish schools and camps. They certainly didn't expect--and would not have wanted--the government to do that. Parents in my multi ethnic, working class neighborhood did the same. Children attended Sunday, after school or private religious schools; learned Irish step dancing, Polish history or Italian cooking in their respective homes and other cultural institutions.

Long, (very long ago) before political correctness we talked about it at school, learning about other's background but in public school we all received a basic education, more or less. And so many (too many) years later I still like Italian food and can do a few Irish steps. And I continued my Jewish education on my own.

I--we--didn't need the government for all that.