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  •  I agree ... it's a very important column (38+ / 0-)

    It's especially important in its take-down of Rubio opposing the teaching of actual science because it might cause young people to question the beliefs they had been taught by their parents.  To me, if your parents have taught you to believe things that are contrary to the actual facts, the educational system SHOULD cause you to question what you've been told to believe.

    Three personal stories to illustrate this point:

    My late mother was the oldest of 9 kids raised on a farm in the early part of the 20th Century.  Her father was a pretty earthy and realistic guy, but her mother acted as though anything concerning sex should NEVER be discussed.  She had told the kids that cows found their calves in haystacks, and that the doctor brought new babies to the house (this was when most births were at home, at least in rural areas) in his black bag.  One day, at dinner in front of her assembled younger siblings, my mother announced that she had seen a cow having a calf, "and she sure wasn't finding him in any haystack."  The family lore is that my grandfather was doing his best not to laugh, while my grandmother was horrified.  Should my mother's younger siblings have been allowed to reach adulthood thinking that cows found their calves in haystacks?  I don't think so, but that's apparently the way Marco Rubio would have it.

    When I was in high school, a very naive girl who had been told by her parents that you got pregnant if you slept with a boy was horrified to discover that she had fallen asleep in the school bus on some trip, and when she woke up, she was leaning against the boy next to her, who was also asleep.  She told some friends that she was afraid she was pregnant because of this, which of course immediately spread all over the school.  Apparently, Marco Rubio thinks that it was inappropriate to tell her the true facts of how one gets pregnant, since this would encourage her to question what her parents had told her to believe.

    When I was in college in the late 1960's, I tutored middle school students (then called junior high school students), one of whom was in an 8th grade biology unit on the functions of various human organ systems (but which did NOT include the genital organs).  I asked him to tell me the functions of the stomach, and to my utter astonishment, he told me that in addition to being where food was stored before moving to the intestines, it was where the baby grew until it was ready to be born.  I asked him where he had heard this, and he told me that his mother had told him that a woman got pregnant by accidentally eating an apple seed.  (I'm really not making this up.)  It frightened me that this young man, clearly in the early stages of puberty, had no idea of the basic facts of human reproduction, and so I made him promise not to tell his mother where he heard them, and proceeded to explain the basic facts of human reproduction.  Apparently, Marco Rubio thinks he should have been permitted to continue believing his mother's BS about eating apple seeds.

    Facts are facts, science is science, and some parents unfortunately feed their kids BS that is utterly inconsistent with the facts and with science.  It is preposterous that we should enshrine parents' ignorant beliefs (or in some cases, their ignorant lies) as having equal validity with actual scientific knowledge.

    Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

    by leevank on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 10:29:17 PM PST

    •  Great post, thanks! (4+ / 0-)

      I love the real-life examples that you provided. Funny how it is so obvious to us that the truth should have precedence, but if a redstater were here he would likely agree that the Mom can tell her kids what she wants and it shouldn't be contradicted. Mom is the ultimate "Authoritarian" figure after all (next to Dad that is.)

      •  Of course no parent can be allowed (6+ / 0-)

        to teach their kids that God does not exist, or that communism is superior to capitalism. Or -- the one true god forbid -- that there is no God but Allah and Mohammed is his prophet! Quel horrerur!

        And thus the basic hypocrisy of the conservative position is revealed. "Parents must be allowed to control their children's education in every detail!" Unless such education contradicts my holy ideology in which case child services must be called in to break up this family and send the children to a church school where they will be taught the truth (that is to say my religion) and beaten until they believe it. That's family values!

    •  Excellent examples, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OhioNatureMom, DvCM

      and many of us could add to your stories.  I will say, that my parents, also raised at the beginning of the 20th century, grew up on farms and daily life with domestic animals pretty much destroyed the myths some tried to propagate.  One might excuse those in very rural, isolated areas over 100 years ago for their myths and tales, except that way of "thinking" is more a mind set than a lack of education.  And is alive and well today, despite easy access to education and all sorts of information.

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