Tag: Media

Collectivism in Alabama Politics

By Deborah Love

This week has been “Alabama Week” on The Daily Show, a week devoted to the mocking of Alabama and especially its recent political scandals. I suspect many Alabamians have laughed along with Trevor Noah, half from nervous embarrassment and half from frustration. The hostile spotlight on Alabama brings my thoughts back to one memory from a time when I interned with Senator Jeff Sessions as an eager college student, excited to make a positive difference. One of the first phone calls I received was from an angry man who asked me where I was from, to which I quickly replied with a proud and positive voice, “I am from Alabama.” The man responded “You’re a barefoot, inbred, pregnant woman.” The man continued to yell before eventually hanging up. When I looked up his area code I realized he was not from Alabama. So I wondered why he thought such horrible things about a person he had never met. I thought it was strange that he hated the politics of my state so much he would insult a stranger.

I realized later on that this man’s prejudice and hatred of me was based solely on a sort of collectivist logic. By using that term, I don’t mean merely leftward progressivism – collectivism is the idea that people can be reduced to, and explained according to group interests. It is an idea which promotes stereotypes, prejudice, and hatred. We can all think of examples that permeate the current political and cultural dialogue which are based in this fallacy. If you look on social media you will see political or cultural discussions quickly escalate to these broad stereotypical conclusions that judge an individual or entire group from a collectivist lens. Following are some examples that I have recently seen online. Rebekah Caldwell Mason is like many other women in Montgomery politics. Republicans are all corrupt. Black men are all thugs. Millennials are lazy and want everything for free. Democrats hate America. Libertarians are pot heads. Conservatives are extremists. The media is all liberal and biased. These statements are the result of acceptance of the idea of collectivism; they are not based in reason. We all know that there are caring, loving, smart and well-intentioned people in each of these categories. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

The acceptance of this tribalist sort of collectivism has led to a negative perception of Alabama. The people of Alabama are not synonymous with the state government. Mike Hubbard nor Robert Bentley upheld their duty to the people of Alabama, and they both misled the public; but Alabama is much more than its government. The entire state should not be judged by a few very powerful people. As an Alabamian, I am proud to be from Alabama. I am proud of what private individuals in Alabama are doing right this moment. Our religious institutions, private philanthropic organizations, schools, neighborhoods, and families are all made up of individuals. We are the full sum of each and every man, women, and child, divisible, unique, of value and merit, but with mistakes included .

Progress more often comes in form like a general current, as each individual Alabamian every day makes decision after decision, and act after act. Sometimes these decisions and acts are not the best, but if, as I believe, most days good people do good things, the general tide of progress will rise ever higher and higher. This is thanks to the merits of individual people, each making innumerable positive decisions each and every day. Alabama’s identity does not reside within the Governor’s mansion, but with each and every individual Alabamian. It is because I reject collectivism and collective guilt this week I can still say that I am glad to be an Alabamian. It may be trite to reference the band Lynryd Skynryd, but the outsiders from Florida had a great point – the actions of “the Governor”, or indeed any politician, cannot be held to condemn an entire people.

Deborah Love is Executive Director of Eagle Forum of Alabama, a Conservative grass-roots public policy organization dedicated to sound public policy solutions in Alabama and Washington DC.

“Judges and lawyers are ‘building a bridge’ to evil” by Dr. John Killian

By Dr. John Killian, pastor of Maytown Baptist Church and the former president of the Alabama Baptist State Convention

Remember the classic WWII movie about the persistent British colonel who demanded that the Japanese POW Camp Commandant adhere to the rules of the Geneva Convention prohibiting the torture of officers? The Japanese Commandant ended up giving in to the colonel’s consistent stand.

It’s a story about principle, about standing for the rule of law, and about enemies respecting that resolve. But there’s a painful twist. After winning over the Japanese Commandant, British POWs (the colonel’s men), work to construct a bridge over the River Kwai, which will be used to bring war materials to the Japanese Army. Perhaps unknowingly, perhaps after a series of excuses, the colonel loses sight of the bigger picture: the Japanese Army is the sworn enemy of Great Britain and the Colonel is duty-bound to defend his country.

Even as he champions the rule of law before the Japanese Commandant, the British colonel is violating the very principle he claims to promote as he builds the bridge to his nation’s demise. At the end of the movie, after fighting his American allies’ attempt to destroy the bridge, he comes to his senses, cries “what have I done?” and detonates the bridge.

Today in America, forces of evil – antithetical to God’s moral law that defined American and British common law for centuries and antithetical to the principles of federalism which define our nation’s constitution – have hijacked the legal system. Using federal courts and transfigured ideals of “law” and “justice,” these forces pressure our lawyers and judges to ensure that what is wrong is considered right and that immorality is “held in honor by all.” They make the mistake of the British colonel: defying the rule of law as they appear to champion it, while building a bridge for their enemies.

So, keep building the bridge Christian lawyers and judges. Keep working in the name of “justice” to ensure the rule of the sort of law that places helpless children who need a father and a mother in the homes of two homosexuals and force custody decisions in favor of homosexuals. Work to advance the immoral sexual education of our school children! Approve that false definition of “equality” that ousts those “bigots” who believe that homosexuality is sinful and harmful for an individual’s body and soul, from their businesses, their ministries, and their public offices! Substitute the Constitution’s supremacy for the supremacy of federal judges! And, see to it that the moral law of God never again invades the territory of our great American legal system!

Build the bridge to the destruction of all you claim to hold dear and on the brink of eternity – with American society in shreds, souls that don’t know Christ dying in sin, and a church devoid of relevance in the public square – perhaps you’ll still have time to cry, “what have I done?”

Or, just let go of your Bible chains! You have nothing to lose but your soul.

 

http://www.al.com/opinion/index.ssf/2016/09/judges_and_lawyers_are_buildin.html#incart_river_index

Eagle Forum Press Release – 4/11/16

 

EF National

Eagle Forum Press Release

The Board of Eagle Forum, a 501(c)(4) corporation, held a Board meeting in accordance with and pursuant to the Eagle Forum By-Laws and Illinois State Law at 2 pm CDT on April 11, 2016.

Pursuant to the By-Laws, Eagle Forum First Vice President, Eunie Smith, presided over the meeting.  Eagle Forum Founder, Mrs. Phyllis Schlafly, the Chairman of the Board, was present during the entire meeting, including expressing herself on all seven votes.  In Schlafly’s opening statement she said she has spent her life building Eagle Forum as a unique organization of volunteers.  She also said that paid staff cannot order volunteers around.

Mrs. Smith said,  “The purpose of the meeting was to ensure that Eagle Forum will continue long into the future as a viable force for all the causes we have addressed in the past, for God, family and country.”

The Board of Eagle Forum voted to remove Mr. Ed Martin as President of the corporation; effective immediately.  Mrs. Eunie Smith is serving as President until a new President is elected pursuant to the Eagle Forum By-Laws.

Mrs. Smith appointed Eagle Forum Board Vice Chairman, Anne Schlafly Cori, daughter of Phyllis Schlafly, as Executive Director of Eagle Forum.  Anne Schlafly Cori has worked with our state organizations and worked alongside Phyllis for some time.

Anne Schlafly Cori said, “I am honored and excited to be working with our wonderful state volunteer leaders from across the country.  We are continuing the incredible legacy of our Founder Phyllis Schlafly.”

Dr. Shirley Curry was directed to lead a Search Committee for a new president of Eagle Forum.

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FOURTH PROJECT VERITAS VIDEO: Common Core Insider Reveals Info About LA Bid Rigging Scandal

The fourth video of this Project Veritas series on Common Core shows a former executive for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, the country’s second leading textbook publishing company, alleging that the textbook industry is more about politics and money than education. Again, Project Veritas undercover journalists used hidden video cameras to capture what text book executives would never say in public.  See entire video here.

THIRD PROJECT VERITAS VIDEO: COMMON CORE EXEC REVEALS ANTI-AMERICAN AGENDA: Guns, STDs & Islam

The third video of this Project Veritas series on Common Core shows a former executive for Pearson, the country’s leading textbook publishing company, admitting that elements of Common Core intentionally push elitist indoctrination upon students.

In James O’Keefe’s latest video, Kimberly Koerber, a former executive for Pearson who now works for National Geographic, was caught on camera justifying the Common Core curriculum on the grounds of anti-American and unconstitutional values.  See video here.

SECOND PROJECT VERITAS VIDEO: HIDDEN CAM: ANOTHER PUBLISHING EXECUTIVE CAUGHT DISHING DIRT ON COMMON CORE

This second video of this series shows an account executive at Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt, the country’s second leading textbook publishing company and profiteer of Common Core, admitting that Common Core is never about the kids.

“It’s never about the kids,” is how Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt Strategic Account Manager Amelia Petties reveals how the textbook industry prioritizes profits over students, echoing the comments of her colleague Dianne Barrow who was featured in the first Project Veritas Common Core video of this series. Barrow’s employment with Houghton-Mifflin was terminated at the time of the release of that video.  See entire video here.

Alabama Drops To “Dead Last” Reversing Upward Trend

(T) 205.879.7096

AlabamaEagle@gmail.com
alabamaeagle.org

Open Letter to ALABAMA SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS

From: Eunie Smith, President
Leslie Whitcomb, Education Chairman

Sadly, the latest NAEP results place Alabama dead last on Math and English, a significant decline from where we were before Common Core when Alabama had been trending upward. The 2011 Alabama State Department of Education document here touted:

“In 2011 Alabama moved from near last to 25th in the nation in overall grades and scores [Education Week assessment] … 12th in the nation for standards, assessments and accountability… data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) showed a historic gain of eight points in fourth grade Reading for Alabama public school students – the … highest gain ever in NAEP recorded history. Since then, Alabama has maintained its progress in NAEP assessments.”  But that was before common core implementation in 2012 in Math and 2013 in English.  See graphs and charts below.

 

According to PARCA,

“The National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) is a battery of tests given every two years
to a representative sample of students in all 50 states. The test is designed to serve as a national scorecard, allowing comparison of educational performance across the states. 

The 2015 results are out. They’re disappointing for the nation at large, and for Alabama, in particular.
In 2015, Alabama’s average math score, in both 4th and 8th grade, was the lowest of any state.Between 2013 and 2015, Alabama’s average score declined in both grades.
Among U.S. states, Alabama had the lowest percentage of students scoring proficient in 4th
and 8th grade. Only 26 percent of 4th graders and 17 percent of 8th graders scored high enough on the NAEP to be considered grade-level proficient in math.

While Alabama’s higher poverty rate puts it at something of a competitive disadvantage in national comparisons, a deeper look shows it’s not Alabama’s demographics skewing the results. Name the group – black, white, Hispanic, poverty and non-poverty – all perform worse than their peers in all other states.” (The PARCA Perspective, October 2015)

According to nationally recognized standards expert Sandra Stotsky,
“NAEP scores nationally did not go down because (1) Common Core standards are more demanding and (2) teachers need more professional development.  They went down because Common Core is dumbed down math, and NAEP still includes test items based on what we expected kids to be taught by/in grade 4 only 10 years ago.  Today, our kids can’t get these tests right because their classroom curriculum (based on CC math standards) has been dumbed down, [confuses, and neglects the basics].   Nor can our upper elementary grades do well on NAEP test items in reading when their language arts curriculum has eliminated the great children’s literature that got them to read – especially boys.”

Dr. Stotsky, in a 2011 press conference in Montgomery, advised Alabama to continue with its standards upon which success was building instead of adopting the unproven and flawed common core regimen.  State Board members Betty Peters and Stephanie Bell listened and voted against common core.

Again, more than half of Common Core states showed historic declines on 2015 NAEP – declines that have not been seen since the early 90s when the NAEP began, but Non-Common Core States showed NO decline on NAEP!!!!

It’s not just NAEP scores that confirm the inferiority of Common Core.  ACT scores of Alabama students as shown in The Condition of College and Career Readiness 2015 Alabama report shows that only 16% of Alabama students meet the benchmark in all four subjects.  Further, the percentage is down five percentage points from 2014.  See report here.

For Alabama students, clearly Common Core is a Failure with a capital F! 

Will school board members rescue students from further failure now?   According to Math Standards expert Dr. James Milgram’s research, 4 years of common core type math in California beginning in 1992 resulted in irreparable damage.  California then ditched those standards and returned to what works. Alabama is in its 4th year, as we have pointed out to you before.  When will you ditch the flawed regimen that is common core?

But what would you use?  Just like Alabama has done for years, a committee of professionals and parents could convene.  They could use as a template for Math the pre-common core standards that put California first in the nation; and for English, the acknowledged best were pre-common core Massachusetts.  There are other proven sound standard sets upon which to build.

There is no limit to what our teachers could do for their students if they were no longer constrained by common core and were equipped with the basics that have worked for generations.

You will surely agree with us that it is unfair to our students not to address this ASAP and reverse course before it gets any worse.

 

  

All NAEP Scores for Alabama eighth grade students fell since the implementation of Common Core with the exception of eighth grade ELA.  In this instance, the white and black student scores were basically flat with Hispanic scores up 6 points, which raising the overall score by 2 points.

Impact of Common Core on Alabama education
Alabama Accomplishments 2011 prior to impact of Common Core
http://alabamaeagle.org/issues/education

Average Mathematics grade 4 public schools all students: By jurisdiction
http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/statecomparisons/acrossyear.aspx?usrSelections=0%2cMAT%2c5%2c3%2cacross%2c0%2c0
Average Reading grade 4 public schools all students: By jurisdiction
http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/statecomparisons/acrossyear.aspx?usrSelections=0%2cRED%2c5%2c3%2cacross%2c0%2c0
Average Mathematics grade 8 public schools all students: By jurisdiction
jurisjurisdictionhttp://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/statecomparisons/acrossyear.aspx?usrSelections=1%2cMAT%2c5%2c3%2cacross%2c0%2c0
Average Reading grade 8 public schools all students:  By jurisdiction
http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/statecomparisons/acrossyear.aspx?usrSelections=1%2cRED%2c5%2c3%2cacross%2c0%2c0

Say NO to Same-Sex Marriage

Say NO to Same-Sex Marriage | American College of Pediatricians

THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF PEDIATRICIANS URGES ALABAMA SUPREME COURT TO SAY NO TO SAME-SEX MARRIAGE FOR THE PROTECTION OF ALABAMA’S CHILDREN AND FAMILIES

MONTGOMERY, AL. (November 9, 2015) – In a brief filed Friday, the American College of Pediatricians (the College) urged the Alabama Supreme Court to consider the well-being of children in the case before them that would decide the legal impact of Obergefell v. Hodges in Alabama.  Obergefell is the 5-4 decision by the Supreme Court of the United States discovering a federal constitutional right to same-sex marriage.  Read the entire press release here.

Supremes snubbed: 1 marriage case steams on

Eagle Forum of Alabama President Eunie Smith and Dr. John H. Killian, Sr. have written an oped that was recently published on al.com.  Today, see the latest from WND.com.

“Eunie Smith of the Eagle Forum of Alabama and John Killian, Sr., former president of the Alabama Baptist State Convention contend in a newly published commentary that the judicial branch doesn’t have the constitutional power to legislate a right to same-sex marriage.”

A Cool 4th of July

A Cool 4th of July:  See “America: Imagine the World Without Her”

Dinesh D’Souza’s movie “America: Imagine the World Without Her” is a must see for all patriots. Viewing it would a great way to spend your 4th of July in celebration of our nation’s birth.  The movie starts with a musing on what might have happened if George Washington had been killed during the Revolutionary  War, leading to the erasure of Mount Rushmore, the Statue of Liberty and other icons of America.

D’Souza addresses the main assertions by America haters such as former professor Ward Churchill and Bill Ayers, giving them through interviews the venue to speak to the issue of America from their perspective.  He addresses the fallacies of their bias against America such as the treatment of American Indians, the “stealing of land from Mexico”, Slavery, American  “imperialism”, and “greedy Capitalism”.   He particularly addresses the inaccuracies in Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States, which has been required reading in Madison City Schools 11th grade ELA classes.

The docudrama includes action scenes from America’s past as well as thoughtfully presented facts.  D’Sousa even includes Alabama’s own Becky Gerritson of the Wetumpka Tea Party with her moving testimony before the Congressional hearing on the IRS as he addresses the overreach of our present government and the threats to our freedoms.  He ends with a charge to all freedom loving Americans to do their part to preserve the idea that is America.

Elaine Little, Vice President

http://www.americathemovie.com/