Fiction in our textbooks and our lives

When I was in school in California we all had to take California history. I remember that a new textbook was written but rejected by the State Board because it included many subjects or statements that the Board did not consider acceptable for exposure to young people. Interestingly, this was a college level history and a few years later I was lucky enough to take California history at the UC from the author and naturally we used his text-book.

Why was this book banned? I wish I still had my copy but I do remember some of the topics. The book and the class were organized around key topics from the history of California:  the Gold Rush, the California wine industry, the history of Los Angeles in terms of stolen water, the Japanese internment, the phasing out of existing light-rail and trolley lines to appease the big oil companies that wanted to sell lots of gas, things like that. The less admirable parts of California history weren’t the problem, but why did the Board of Education want to hide the truth from the students? Was it the chapter on Amy Semple McPherson?

Adam & Eve were white folks?

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Saddle-up my Brachylophosaurus

In honor of the celebration of Charles Darwin and his most-excellent theory of evolution, I just discovered that there is a Creation Museum in Santee, California, not far from where I grew up. Now I’m wondering:  if a museum in Kentucky thinks the universe is 6000 years old and the earth was made and populated with fully mature plants and animals and at least one human in six days and then a completely separate museum in California espouses to the same beliefs, is it possible that it is all true?

When I was growing up, Santee was known for its contaminated lakes (which were actually the San Diego River bubbling above the surface) and a drive-in theater that usually wasn’t too crowded since it was next to a dairy farm which provided a strong odor and flies. Now, with the opening of the freeway to La Jolla, Santee has become a bustling town and they deserve a Creation Museum (this and the site of the original Price Club will keep Santee forever in our memory).

Although I don’t urge anyone to go the museum’s website, they do have several videos available that are interesting (unfortunately, neither God nor Jesus shows up in any of the videos so I believe we’ll have to assume the museum creators are going on faith). In one video it seems that locals are celebrating a religious event with balloon animals and snow cones. In another video an official of the museum decries the modern practice of separating science from politics from religion, etc. and he makes it clear that God hates this separation and would prefer that He would be considered and worshipped in all human endeavors (even doing tech support for Apple in Sri Lanka?). Another man tells us, practically in tears, that he could never have built the museum without help (eyes roll up) from Him.

I’m thinking this place is not too far from a good barbecue joint:  if you turn to the left, you get dinosaurs; if you turn to the right, you get smoked ribs. Good eating!