Former Texas legislator Rick Green, a speaker for David Barton’s Texas-based WallBuilders organization and Barton’s sidekick on the daily WallBuilders Live radio program, clearly has a pretty low opinion of people who receive food stamps. In a repellent Facebook post last week (image below), Green compared people who receive that government assistance to wild animals who become dependent on food from humans visiting national parks:
What a country…
The food stamp program, part of the Department of Agriculture, is pleased to be distributing the greatest amount of food stamps ever.
Meanwhile, the National Park Service asks us to “please do not feed the animals” because the animals may grow dependent and not learn to take care of themselves.
Never mind that the country is digging itself out of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Most of us — but apparently not Green — might expect that public aid for struggling families would be higher than usual. What’s really astonishing here is the sneering contempt that Green has for those families.
Green and Barton claim WallBuilders promotes Christian values and what they see as America’s Christian heritage. We fail to see such values in Green’s disgusting attack… Read More
Terri Leo and her colleagues on the Texas State Board of Education have spent years trying to promote their own distorted and politicized versions of American history in our public schools. So it shouldn't be too surprising that Leo got her history wrong yet again in yesterday's announcement that she will not seek re-election in 2012. Leo, R-Spring, endorsed Donna Bahorich, R-Houston, as her replacement on the board. Toward the end of that endorsement, Leo wrote: Donna understands fully what Abraham Lincoln meant when he said, "The philosophy of the schoolroom in one generation will be the philosophy of the government in the next." Except Lincoln quite likely didn't say that. In fact, it's just one of many "unconfirmed" quotations that the far right's favorite phony "historian," David Barton, once attributed to famous Americans in his own work. After years of criticism, Barton felt compelled in 2000 to acknowledge that he has no evidence those quotes were ever uttered. (Yet Leo's far-right colleagues on the state board appointed Barton as an "expert" adviser on the social studies curriculum revision in 2009-10 even though he is mostly a political propagandist with no formal academic training in the social sciences.) Despite his admission of error, Barton's zombie quotations live on, eating their way into our nation's civil and political discourse. Read More
It's become a staple of modern presidential elections -- at the first hint of criticism from the right flank, a Republican puts out a call to religious-right kingmakers to testify to his or her religious bona fides. So when Texas Gov. Rick Perry found his conservative credentials in question (over the HPV vaccine mandate and other issues that troubled social conservatives), the Perry campaign obviously pulled out the standard playbook. But Gov. Perry doesn't do anything modestly. Where other candidates might simply get Jerry Falwell's Liberty University to give them a platform to speak to social conservatives -- something Gov. Perry did last week -- the governor gets the religious pooh-bahs themselves to carry his message to the base. Leading the charge: pseudo-historian David Barton of the Texas-based WallBuilders organization. Barton took to Twitter a few weeks ago to circulate a detailed rebuttal to a popular email listing "14 Reasons Why Rick Perry Would Be A Really, Really Bad President." Most of these 14 charges have nothing to do with social issues (they focus primarily on Gov. Perry's economic record), but Barton wants to make sure all his followers know that the governor no longer supports his controversial Trans-Texas Corridor. Remind us again, David, what this has to do with "educating the nation concerning the Godly foundation of our country." (Barton is widely credited online with authoring this document, though it is unsigned. But it reads more like Gov. Perry campaign talking points, which made me wonder if the real author wasn't a lowly campaign staffer and Barton is just the puppet mouthing the lines.) Read More
Those WallBuilders folks exaggerate and distort reality so much that even fellow religious-righters sometimes have to correct them. Take, for example, Tuesday's WallBuilders Live! radio program, hosted by David "Separation of Church and State Is a Myth" Barton and sidekick Rick "Texas Supreme Court Justice Wannabe" Green. Read More