Editor,

As a senior applying to college as a history major, I’m in full support of ethnic studies requirements.

History is an important field that informs us of why our world is the way it is, and a history curriculum that doesn’t try to be holistic fails at doing so.

The history that is currently taught in schools does have a definitive bias. It tends to focus on the achievements of white Christian men and devotes little attention to anyone else and erases the negative parts of history. Christopher Columbus, a man who only ended up on the American continent accidentally because of his staunch belief that Earth was pear shaped, is upheld as a hero and a genius despite committing genocide. The suffragette movement in the 1920s is taught as a one-dimensional triumph, ignoring its ties to eugenics and racism.

The general history curriculum is already biased, and the ethnic studies program is a correction to that bias by sharing histories and experiences that are often overlooked.

Eugenia Xu

Palo Alto

Recommended for you

(30) comments

Jorg

Dirk: how in the world do you get the silly idea that I promote different requirements to immigrants to the US, than to those to Norway, or any other country for that matter? What nonsense! Wherever immigrants come from, and to whatever country they go, the requirements in my mind are the same, and fairly strict! First of all, you represent the country you came from as an ambassador! You respect the laws and customs in the country to emigrate to, you behave yourself, keep yourself clean and clean up after you, you make a positive contribution and take care of yourself and those you are responsible for, - and you don’t expect your new country to take care of you! Fair enough?

And, as far as the D/R switch, we have gone through that historic evolution already. And, yes, I am not too hung up on religion and am of the opinion than religion has done so much damage through human history that it is time to abandon such superstition. Enough of all the nonsense!

Terence Y

Jorg, really, the D/R switch hoax. Well you are a Democrat, so that explains why you'd fall for it. Did you know the planet Pluto was named after a dog? Everyone knows Democrats are the party of slavery and the KKK. On the plus side, I see you’ll no longer support the Democrat playbook of open borders, since you’ve explained immigration so well. Maybe there is some intellect in there. It’s definitely not superior, as you’re still afraid of answering my previous questions. Probably because you can’t. However, if you’re being chased by Colonel Sanders, I forgive you.

Ray Fowler

Hi, Eugenia

Good luck with the college application process. We need articulate and clear thinking college students studying history. (I like history, too.)

It's disappointing to hear you believe history is taught with a "definitive bias." Columbus was not a hero and the suffragette movement was more than just a cursory retelling of the life of Susan B. Anthony. Eugenics? We'll have to set that aside for another time...

To overcome the perception that history is taught in an biased way, students, their families and the larger community must insist that instruction conform to the state's content standards. For US History, the state requirements say, "This course includes an emphasis on the contributions of many diverse groups of people to the story of America, including ethnic, cultural, and religious minorities; LGBT individuals; and the disabled." That's a great start.

A separate course in ethnic studies is a good idea. Is there a danger such a course might be presented in a biased way? Sure. However, adherence to standards developed for ethnic studies can minimize that effect and make sure only true heroes are held up as an example.

Good luck in your future study of history!

Jorg

THAT was a comment worthy of the fine young student's thought provoking LTE!

Jorg

Ray: “Racism” in Norway is mainly due to the crime that has increased due to too liberal immigration regulations, where African and Middle-East immigrants are responsible for the vast majority of crimes that used to be virtually non-existent. I readily admit that the authorities have been too tolerant, too understanding and too forgiving by bending over too much to accommodate. But then again, - no one asked me! If they had, I would have recommended that they made Islam and the Quran illegal and incompatible with the Nordic secular culture. And, as far as the Vikings, - way before my time, believe it, or not.

Tommy Tee

Conway--You said "white" seven times. I think we get where you're coming from.

Christopher Conway

White Christian Men's Lives Matter

Christopher Conway

If I am not mistaken, wasn't it white Christian men who were our founding fathers. Did they not come from white Christian countries. Was it not white Christian men who fought for our independence against other white Christian men. Was it not white Christian men who signed the declaration of independence and the writers of our country's constitution. White Christian men are prominent throughout the history of our country and were the main soldiers who fought the wars throughout the centuries. I know educators and politicians today are trying to tear down our history by tearing down statues and rewriting history. Required Ethnic Studies is just another way to make that happen. Without White Christian men we would not have a United States of America, no other race or religion can say that. If you don't like our countries history, tough, you are not allowed to re-write it unless of course you are in today's Communist public schools. Ms. Xu, this isn't communist China were the history of the country begins in 1948.

mreiner

Dear Mr. Conway, I would suspect that if I did an oral history of your development, and I asked many people who observed your upbringing, socialization, personal and professional life, those accounts of what made Christopher Conway the man he is today would not be the same. Which is true? There is more than one story of your history.

Christopher Conway

I think I understand what you are trying to ask. Not sure. However, the facts about my life are undisputable no matter who is commenting on it, even myself.

mreiner

Thanks, Mr. Conway, for your thoughtful reply. As a child, if a teacher commented on your life, puts it in your permanent record, regardless how inaccurate, it would become a part of your life's story and possibly undermine your opportunities in the future, regardless of what you think about yourself. That was all I was trying to say.

Jorg

You’re really in dire need of ethnic studies, Chris! Your comments expose how right Eugenia is! You don’t even know how black people fought both in the Civil war and in both World Wars? Nothing about that in your Catholic school? And nothing about how black people have been mishandled and discriminated against, not even allowed the education they strived for? Finally, for your information: not all of the Founding Fathers where Christian, or religious at all! If they were, I bet the US Constitution wouldn’t have been secular! In general, you should be a bit careful about your “Christian” label, especially considering how much damage has been done, including how “Christian” invaders treated the natives in this country, and how WWII was made possible by a Catholic country like Germany, with a Führer doing God’s work by exterminating Jews. Back to school, Chris! It may not be too late, even for you!

Dirk van Ulden

Jorg - excuse me? Germany was a Catholic country in 1932? There were Catholics but the majority of the population was protestant. They suffered equally under the Nazi regime. And since you are so fond of history, your ancestors, the Vikings, were not sweet talking folks either, they subjected the rest of Europe in their days to most horrific abuses. How far back should we go with this silly notion that we need ethnic studies? The writer could use her marginal knowledge of history a bit better. Why is it that this country, founded by White men, based on Judeo-Christian principles, is still the most attractive to immigrants in the world? You can't deny that. She is likely unaware that her forefathers/mothers had suffered in their native land before they came here. Talking about racist countries, ask any foreigner who lives or has lived in either China or Japan what it is like. The writer can be forgiven because of her age however. But Jorg - perhaps you need to go back to school.

Christopher Conway

The day I take the advice of an immigrant on the history of the United States is the day I vote Democrat. Not going to happen.

Terence Y

That’s the comment of the week, Mr. Conway. I’m a tad upset I didn’t think of it. Ironically, Jorg is from a country whose number of black people is so low they don’t keep statistics, and if I remember correctly, a country that stripped refugees of their status and were unwilling to take in more migrants from Africa. I sure hope his home country folks don’t mind that over half, or more of, the welfare recipients are migrants. So why is Jorg promoting the idiotic Democrat position of open borders?

Jorg

Even though my history background might be superior to yours? That would explain a lot!

Terence Y

Jorg, your sophomania is showing. I don't want to speak for Mr. Conway, but chances are that Mr. Conway, and definitely myself, have forgotten more about American history than you'll ever learn. You don't seem to comprehend that Democrats are the party of slavery and the KKK and no conspiracy theory on your part will change that.

Jorg

Chris: I actually expected you to respond to my history question, not your water carrier Terrence Y. So, let me be blunt about it: In Catholic school, were you taught the impossible, made up bible stories as history, or just fairy tales? Where you taught that the Adam&Eve, Noah’s Arc stories and others were real history? When I grew up, we had an hour of Bible study every day, 6 days a week from first grade through high school, but the teacher never tried to fool us with fairy tales! We were expected to think and reason, especially we in the science line of HS.

Terence Y

Jorg, I'm so sorry you were triggered by my response - you weren't specific. And I have no problems with being anyone's water carrier, especially since the water is from melted snowflakes. Thanks for your two ounces. BTW, Colonel Sanders is still looking for you.

Terence Y

Congrats, Mr. Conway, on again melting a bunch of snowflakes. I get the feeling some of these folks may not have taken American History classes, or if they did, didn't seem to comprehend. I do see your obsessive puppy, JustMikey is back, unfortunately. And we have a guy, Jorg, who lectures us on black history, when his home country is so racist that they don't have statistics on the percentage of blacks. How rich is that?

Jorg

Shows how little YOU know about one of the least racist countries in the world! Why don't you try to Google - perhaps you would learn something? And for the record, yes, history lessons include how badly colored people have been treated, and how much damage religion has done to this world. When I was in high school, lynching of black people was common in the US, - especially in the more "religious" states.

Terence Y

Hey, it's my buddy, Jorg. I'm still waiting on answers to my questions as to why, if you believe you're as smart as you think you are, you keep falling for debunked Democrat hoaxes, you mindlessly accept fake news, and you blindly follow Democrat leaders. Or, in addition to TDS, do you also have a case of sophomania? I guess if you have an undocumented percentage of blacks in your country, you could try to claim you're not racist, but I'd say your country is highly racist.

Ray Fowler

Hello, Jorg

I doubt if Terence will heed your suggestion to search for information re: racism in Norway, but it did pique my interest. I came across the following...

Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg recently told others in her political party, “Racism isn’t only a social problem in the USA… it’s also a problem in our own country.”

Even though some government officials believe that racism does not exist in Norway, an anti-racist movement for non-white Norwegians or persons without Norwegian sounding names has been growing. They are protesting discrimination in the workplace and housing. Non-white Norwegian athletes are also gathering to bring attention to racism in Norway.

The Norwegian newspaper Dagsavisen has reported cases of ethnic profiling, and the newspaper Aftenposten released results from a recent poll that said four out five Norwegians believe discrimination exists in Norway.

Let's be fair. This does not represent exhaustive research into the subject by any means. However, based on your experience, could this information be accurate? Could you shed some light on these reports?

Dirk van Ulden

Strange Jorg - that you would have prohibited certain others from entering Norway because of their clash with the prevailing culture. Yet, you find it intolerable that the US should limit certain individuals from entering. Has it occurred to you that we have a prevailing culture, quite diverse actually, that certain folks are trying to destroy from within? Ethnic studies just emphasize our differences instead of focusing on what we have in common. You actually gave yourself away, it takes one to know one! And BTW, those Southern states were firmly run by Democrats. For some mysterious reason you have a bone to pick with Christians.

Tafhdyd

Well Dirk, you got one right. The southern states were Democratic and racist, until 1964. After LBJ signed the Civil Rights act the racist Democrats of the south didn't want any part of desegregation so they started voting Republican and the Republicans now control the racist south. The Republicans then started voting Democratic and that is when the parties basically flipped. The ideals of the party of Lincoln were Republican until '64 and now they are more in line with the current Democrats.

Terence Y

Really, Laffy Taffy, “… and that is when the parties basically flipped.” Democrat/Republican hoax again? I think something flipped but it's sitting inside the cavity above your neck. I hope you don't have what Biden has.

Jorg

Terence: Y do you believe I am for open borders? What on Earth do you base that on? Just another silly idea you have cooked up, taken out of thin air and based on nothing?

Terence Y

Well let’s see, Jorg. I’ll use simple logic. TDS-infected people support open borders. Brain dead Biden supports open borders. Democrats support open borders. You have TDS and support both brain dead Biden and Democrats. Ergo, you support open borders. You may not like it, but you’ve made your choice so now you own it, regardless of your protestations. You can, of course, go to the right side and dump open borders and Democrats, but you should be aware you may be canceled by the TDS-infected crowd for daring to walk away. Watch out for Colonel Sanders!

Jorg

Just more nonsense from you Terrence! Y? I'm as independent as they come and not bound by any label, - freethinker if you like. Know what that means? No? If anyone is strictly labeled, it is people like you, the Trumpsters, who have tossed away every fiber of independent thinking, and instead blindly follow "Der Rattenfänger", Trumpf, no matter what idiotic things he does, no matter what crazy things he says and claims.

Terence Y

Blah blah blah, Trump bad, you’re bad. Jorg, trying to change the subject because you don’t understand simple logic? If you’re a freethinker, why do you keep falling hook, line and sinker for debunked Democrat hoaxes, why do you mindlessly accept fake news, and why do you blindly follow Democrat leaders and not question their veracity? You’re more of a lemming than a freethinker. Colonel Sanders is off to attend in-person services, so you can rest.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Thank you for visiting the Daily Journal.

Please purchase an Enhanced Subscription to continue reading. To continue, please log in, or sign up for a new account.

We offer one free story view per month. If you register for an account, you will get two additional story views. After those three total views, we ask that you support us with a subscription.

A subscription to our digital content is so much more than just access to our valuable content. It means you’re helping to support a local community institution that has, from its very start, supported the betterment of our society. Thank you very much!