reeducationMy mother, who has been a teacher in two exceptionally multicultural California school districts for 29 years, is currently undergoing ten weeks of district-mandated training in multiculturalism. Friday nights; all day Saturday. Ten. Fucking. Weeks.
And I can picture the training, having been through my own mandatory government multicultural training. Remarkable how something so worthy in principle and so healthy in real-world practice turns straight into garbage when you make it a rule, hire a consultant, and turn it into a series of PowerPoint presentations.
I'm reminded of the history professor I know whose husband and children are enrolled in the Cherokee Nation, and who has dedicated her life to researching and teaching American Indian history -- and whose son came home after school one day and announced that his teacher had informed him he wasn't an Indian and couldn't say that anymore, since the correct term is Native American.
A pure and perfect product of mandatory multiculturalism training. I think in Texas they describe this sort of thing as "all belt buckle, no cattle."
So I add this post to the blog, then sign out of blogger and pick up a copy of the army's magazine for soldiers in Kuwait, Desert Voice. The back page is, yes, a commentary urging us to honor and respect our Native American brothers and sisters, and to take a lesson from their history: "We must understand that it is crucially important to honor and respect our environment and show respect and mercy for all people, the way our Native American Indian ancestors did."
A uniformly gentle people, the Native American Indians [you can resolve doubts about what to call someone by calling him, well, everything], who always separated their recycling from the regular trash and cherished the land only for its, like, spiritual value.
The take-away: "I encourage everyone to take a few moments and learn some history and appreciate the numerous achievements Native American Indians have made to our society and see how their contributions has strenghtened the spirit of our country and world."
State-mandated multiculturalism. It's all here: The marginal literacy ("contributions has"), the glib generalizations, the lame contributionist themes.
Hang in there, mom.