Texas Gov. Rick Perry has just appointed Gail Lowe, R-Lampasas, as chairman of the State Board of Education. Lowe will replace Don McLeroy, whose nomination as chairman the state Senate rejected in May.
In a press release announcing the appointment. Gov. Perry expressed confidence “that through her leadership, we will continue to ensure that Texans receive the educational foundation necessary to be successful in college, the workplace and beyond.”
Far-right pressure groups had been pushing for the appointment of Cynthia Dunbar, who has called public education “unconstitutional,” “tyrannical” and a “tool of perversion.”
We’ll have more soon.
Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller is releasing the following statement regarding Gov. Rick Perry’s appointment today of Gail Lowe as the new chair of the State Board of Education.
“It’s disappointing that instead of choosing a mainstream conservative who could heal the divisions on the board, the governor once again appointed someone who repeatedly has put political agendas ahead of the education of Texas schoolchildren. Ms. Lowe has marched in lockstep with a faction of board members who believe that their personal beliefs are more important than the experience and expertise of teachers and academics who have dedicated their careers to educating our children and helping them succeed. We can only hope that she will rise above her history on the board and as chair keep the board from continuing to hold the education of our children hostage to divisive ‘culture war’ battles.”
Lowe’s record on the State Board of Education includes:
In 2004 Ms. Lowe opposed requiring that publishers obey curriculum standards and put medically accurate information about responsible pregnancy and disease prevention in new high school health textbooks.
In 2008 Ms. Lowe voted to throw out nearly three years of work by teacher writing teams on new language arts standards. Over the strenuous objections of teachers and curriculum specialists, Lowe instead voted for a standards document that the board’s far-right bloc patched together overnight and slipped under hotel doors the morning of the final vote.
In 2003 and 2009 Ms. Lowe supported dumbing down the state’s public school science curriculum by voting to include unscientific, creationist criticisms of evolution in science textbooks and curriculum standards.
If you’re hoping things on the state board will improve under Ms. Lowe, don’t hold your breath. She appointed David Barton, an absurdly unqualified political activist, to the so-called “expert” panel for the social studies curricuclum revision. Barton has already called for removing from the curriculum historical figures like César Chavez whose politics he doesn’t like.
Read an earlier post from TFNInsider about Lowe, highlighting her highly politicized agenda for public schools (including global warming denial and shoe-horning lots of supposedly “conservative values” into the classroom).
31 thoughts on “Breaking News: Perry Picks Lowe to Head SBOE”
Gail Lowe is not evil like Dunbar. She’s just dumb as a rock, and is as easily led as the Manson family.
The forces of evil on the SBOE will tell Lowe what to do and she will do it thinking it is the Christian thing to do.
She is the puppet of McLeroy and Bradley. When she speaks, you will be hearing them. Whatever she does, it will be because they told her to do it.
This is as good an appointment as could reasonably have been hoped for. Of *course* it would have been much better to have Bob Craig (R – Lubbock), but it was clear from the start that Perry was going to appoint one of the Gang Of Seven. Their voting records are all similar, so we shouldn’t expect any policy changes, but Lowe doesn’t have the strident “us against them” attitude of Dunbar or Mercer. With her, there’s at least the hope of dialog, and maybe compromise on some non-ideological issues.
On the ideologically charged issues, like social studies standards, things won’t get any better until we replace some of the Board members.
Lowe is not vile, caustic and hateful like Dunbar; just delusional.
Aside from having a lower IQ (if you have ever talked or corresponded with this woman you know what I mean), their voting record is the same.
Gail Lowe is a strong C+. Once again we get to celebrate the mediocre.
Mediocrity isn’t as good as it used to be.
David Barton is a Constitutionalist, Texas historian, and much more of a libertarian, than some sort of religious right extremist as the leftist media is trying to paint him.
But of course, just as in the case of Palin, Cynthia Dunbar, Michelle Bachman and other libertarians, to call them such, wouldn’t quite fit the liberal template. Better to apply the label “religious right extremist.”
As if we Libertarians aren’t keen to y’all’s little trick.
Eric Dondero, Publisher
David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. David Barton. Nope, it just doesn’t get any less offensive.
George Bush, other criminals, and now this…
Do you people eat that cow s***?
What the hell is wrong with y’all?
Sorry, Mr. Dondero, but David Barton condemns himself by his own words, not by the “leftist media.” If Mr. Barton is a libertarian as you claim, he’s the most evangelical libertarian I’ve ever met. Consider this Barton quote: “There should be absolutely no separation of church and state in America.”
In addition, I found this interesting little piece via internet:
David Barton is a little known Texan Christian Right activitist and founder of Wallbuilders. Barton was hired by the RNC as a political consultant and by November 2004, for U.S. presidential election, 2004, had traveled the country and spoken “at about 300 RNC-sponsored lunches for local evangelical pastors.” During the “lunches,” Barton presented “a slide show of American monuments,” discussed his view of “America’s Christian heritage,” and told “pastors that they are allowed to endorse political candidates from the pulpit.” 
1 Christian Historical Revisionism
2 A “Christian Nation”
3 Author of Judicial Intimidation
4 Overseeing Public School History
7 SourceWatch Resources
8 External links
8.1 Biographical Data
8.2 Testimony & Documents
8.3 Articles & Commentary
8.4 Dated Material
Christian Historical Revisionism
Described as a “Christian historical revisionist,” Barton is attributed with not only authoring the following quotes which “the culture warriors of the Religious Right never tire of repeating … ad infinitum and ad nauseam, …” 
“The United States of America are a Christian Nation.”
“The founding fathers were evangelical Christians.”
“Church-state separation is a liberal myth.”
but is also credited with making up supporting quotes, “such as the following one that is completely bogus, but still circulating in Christian Right circles.”
“We have staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all of our political institutions upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God.” –fictional quote attributed to James Madison.
A “Christian Nation”
Frederick Clarkson wrote in an April 11, 2005, essay that “David Barton is perhaps the leading proponent of the notion that the U.S. was once, and should again be a ‘Christian Nation.’ He wants to sell you on that idea. He has books and tapes to sell too. The problem is that his slick products and presentations don’t stand up to scrutiny.” 
“In 2004, the notion that the U.S. is a Christian Nation was added to the Texas GOP platform. According to Americans United for Separation of Church and State, this action was denounced by both Jewish and Muslim groups.” 
Author of Judicial Intimidation
Clarkson added April 12, 2005, that the “national media seems to be ignoring the outcry by civil liberties groups and Democrats about Christian Right author David Barton’s religious history of the U.S. tour sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist. They are also ignoring Barton’s role in formulating the strategy of ‘intimidation’ of judges by the Christian Right and their allies in Congress.” 
Texas Republican Party, Vice Chairman 
The Providence Foundation, Member of the Board 
America: To Pray or Not to Pray, WallBuilder Press; 5th edition 1994, ISBN 0925279420.
America’s Godly Heritage, WallBuilder Press, 1993, ISBN 0925279293.
Education and the Founding Fathers, Wallbuilders Press, 1993, ISBN 0925279307.
Keys to Good Government, WallBuilder Press, 1994, ISBN 0925279366.
Original Intent: The Courts, the Constitution, and Religion, WallBuilder Press, 1996 ISBN 0925279501; 2000 ISBN 0925279757; 3rd edition 2004 Softcover ISBN 1932225269.
The Foundations of American Government, Wallbuilder Press, 1993, ISBN 0925279323.
The Myth of Separation: What Is the Correct Relationship Between Church and State?, Wallbuilders Press; 5th edition 1992, ISBN 0925279188.
The Role of Pastors and Christians in Civil Government, WallBuilder Press, 2004, ISBN 193222503X.
The Second Amendment, Preserving the Inalienable Right of Individual Self-Protection, WallBuilder Press, 2000, ISBN 0925279773.
The Bush Theocracy
David Barton’s Wallbuilders biography.
David Barton (1783 – 1837), Democratic Republican Senator from Missouri served 1821-1831; was also: Adams-Clay Republican; Adams Democrat; Anti-Jacksonian.”
Testimony & Documents
David Barton, Testimony in the Kansas House on HCR 5050, School Prayer Amendment, April 3, 2002.
David Barton, “Separation of Church and State,” Wallbuilders.
Articles & Commentary
Rob Boston, “Sects, Lies and Videotape. David Barton’s Distorted History,”. Originally Published in Church & State Volume 46, No. 4, April 1993, pp 8-12.
J. Brent Walker, “Critique of David Barton’s ‘America’s Godly Heritage’,” Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs, January 20, 1995. Broken link; type link into search line.
Rob Boston, “David Barton. Master of myth and misinformation,” IFAS/Freedom Writer, June 1996.
Rob Boston, David Barton and Wallbuilders, positiveatheism.org: Includes a comprehensive linked articles, particularly to examples of mentions of the false quotes.
Rob Boston, “David Barton’s ‘Questionable Quotes’,” positiveatheism.org: based on concession statement from Barton that “the following twelve quotations attributed to prominent historical figures are either false or at best questionable.”
Richard S. Russell, “Bogus Quotes” by Barton, positiveatheism.
Jim Allison, compiler, “An Index to Factual Information About David Barton And His Books” and “Study Guide: Problematical Religious Right Quotes And Arguments”: Provides citations and debunking of Barton quotes.
Editorial: “A Critique of David Barton’s America’s Godly Heritage,” Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs.
Nicholas P. Miller, “Wallbuilders or Mythbuilders,” Christian Ethics Today, May 5, 2003 (update).
Background on David Barton (cache file), The Interfaith Alliance, July 2004.
Deborah Caldwell, “David Barton & the ‘Myth’ of Church-State Separation. The Bush campaign has hired a controversial activist who calls the U.S. a ‘Christian nation’,” Beliefnet, [November] 2004.
Steve Weissman, “America’s Religious Right – Saints or Subversives?: The Lure of Christian Nationalism,” Truthout, April 6, 2005.
Mark Preston, “Judicial Critic to Lead Frist Tour; Activist Favors Impeachment,” Roll Call, April 7, 2005.
Bob Moser, “The Crusaders. Christian evangelicals are plotting to remake America in their own image,” Rolling Stone, April 7, 2005.
Letter from Ralph G. Neas to Senator Frist Requesting Withdrawal of Sponsorship of Capital Tour Led by Judicial Intimidation Activist David Barton, People for the American Way, April 8, 2005.
Max Blumenthal, “In Contempt of Courts,” The Nation, April 11, 2005.
Frederick Clarkson, “A Top Christian Nationalist Comes to Massachusetts,” frederickclarkson.com, April 11, 2005.
Frederick Clarkson, “The Author of Judicial Intimidation,” frederickclarkson.com, April 12, 2005.
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Categories: Civil liberties (U.S.) | Needs review
So, Mr. Dondero, we’re keen to you all Libertarian’s little tricks.
Why would you make such a ludicrous statement when you know it is so easy to debunk?
Your a dolt.
Oh, these donderheads!
I would withdraw your comment gracefully if I were you, after getting drubbed by Cytocop. David Barton is not worth defending, it’s not a “leftist media” thing.
As Michelle said in Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion: “Well…yeah.”
Attention all Young Earth Creationists.
The Earth is not 6000 years old.
The Flintstones is not a documentary.
** face palm**
Texas has made a terrible and tragic mistake.
How in the hell does someone like Texas illustrious Governor stay in office? This ***** makes Kay Bailey seem almost mainstream by comparison. Secession, fighting the stimulus dollars and now this appointment… Are you serious?
Texas didn’t make a mistake, this is all the work of soon to be ex Gov. Goodhair. I’m a Democrat who will be voting in the Republican Primary. I encourage all good Texas Democrats to do the same.
Vote with your feet. Kick a conservative in the ass.
It is highly ironic that the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) science panel meets in San Antonio this year.
I have commented before on websites focussing on issues related to the great state of Texas, although I do not live in Texas. Frankly, I wouldn’t want to. Given what your great governor Perry has said about secession, and the keen desire of all educated Americans not to let Texas set the standards for primary and secondary level texts in the rest of the country, I think I speak on behalf of a majority of educated Americans in asking you to follow the governor’s advice and secede. Secede now. Here’s the plan. We (the United States) would welcome the educated folk of Texas into our country in exchange for our rather large troop of ignorant yahoos. We would also trade our counterfactually based tertiary educational institutions, such as Bob Jones University, for the University of Texas, Texas A&M and the like. Texas would no doubt be justifiably relieved to see anyone logical and literate leaving, as we would also be justifiably relieved to see our drooling loons firmly ensconced in Texas.
En attendant Godot.
They don’t call it the Lone Star State for nothing. Maybe someone back in the 1830s was more of a prophet than they figured.
However, I have thought of this. We Americans could create a Christian Neo-Fundamentalist homeland right here in the United States. We could carve up pieces of several adjacent states (like they once did with counties or Israel) and create what amounts to a 51st state. However, it would not really be a state. It would be more of a native homeland founded on the model of South African ethnic enclave states such as Swaziland and Basutoland, which had their own governments and issued their own postage stamps. It would be culturally WASP and would have its own government completely separate from and unaffected by the U.S. Constitution. Of cources, the folks who live there would have Safeway, Kroger, and most of the other American cultural icons for their convenience so none who live there would feel as if they had left home or even left the United States. Then they could do whatever they want governmentally, such as forbid blacks, Mexicans, and other ethnic minorities from entry at their borders; have an official state church; eliminate public schools, teach creation science, encourage dumping hazardous waste in the rivers, ignore global warming, have all-smoking restaurants, etc. It would be heaven on Earth for these people. Moreover, the rest of us in the real 50 states would have a lab-bench crucible to study what would really have happened to the 50 United States if they had taken charge here. If we could actually do this experiment, I would bet my last dime that we would see another prime competitor for “World Nut State” just like North Korea.
While checking out Gail Lowe’s social studies “experts,” I found David Barton’s Wallbuilder site filled with useful links. As a Unitarian/Universalist I was amused by the founders the site quoted; excepting Gen. Washington, they were all Unitarians or Universalists. All were very religious men, but their recent history had taught them the value of separation of church and state.
Also, from their founding, all the colonies had laws separating church and state. While the voter had to be of the “right church” to vote, ordained clergy were forbidden to hold elected public offices. It was not until the late nineteenth-century backlash against the theological errors of the late-Puritan era that the colonies were thought of as theocracies.
Apparently, the “experts” believe it is impossible to be religious and favor separation. Or, believe in scientific facts. Or, believe in ideas other than those they hold. Despite their reliance on the quotes of men who were capable of such feats.
I published a video on YouTube titled “The Truth About Evolution and Religion.” The address is
The phrase “The Truth” means I am revealing something disingenuous about the ongoing controversy. I quote from mainstream biologist to show the following: 1) Evolution only applies to the bodies of humans, not their souls. Biologists must admit that humans have souls, but they don’t have to admit the souls are spiritual. 2) Darwinian evolution only explains adaptation. It does not explain common descent (macroevolution or the fact of evolution).
What amazes me the most about blogs that pretend to comment on controversial issues is that they always degenerate into name calling. The whole business is scary to me as a teacher, and if my students see this discussion, they may be scared into dropping out. Hey, maybe there’s a solution.
I’ve always been suspicious of the motives of any organization as big as our “educational system.” The bigger it gets, the less it seems to have anything to do with learning.
This is when the only prayer worth reciting for me is the serenity prayer. But that’s for me, personally, not for the entire state.
What the hell is wrong with y’all?
And go to hell libertarian…
It’s curious that the liberals feel they have the right to manipulate our country’s history in order to promote their political agenda. And they accuse those who present all of our history of having an agenda! Bizarre. How can anyone possibly think that perverting our country’s history to suit their agenda, i.e., lying, is in the best interest of our children! And yes, like it or not, the country was founded on the Judeo-Christian ethic. That is that we are all equal in the eyes of God. That’s what the early settlers were looking for! The liberals are so drawn to Che, Chavez, Mao, Castro because they love the idea of silencing those who disagree, and ordering us all what we can and cannot think. This is a scary moment.