In January, almost a year after its heated debate over the science curriculum, the Texas State Board of Education started meeting to revise the state’s social studies program. The board’s once-a-decade decisions on curriculum are nationally significant. As the nation’s second-largest textbook market, Texas shapes the content of textbooks sold throughout the country.
On U.S. history, the Texas education board features a virtual standoff between two worldviews. One segment of the board adheres to the myth of the U.S. as a Christian nation. Worried that mainstream educators are indifferent to the nation’s Christian identity, these members want textbooks to put more stress on the central role of Christianity and on the unique and even divinely ordained mission of the nation. The other segment of the board is not opposed to revising the history curriculum, but it wants revisions to reflect the best scholarship.
William H. Willimon on reconsidering practices, Erin Swenson on being a transgender pastor, Elaine Blanchard on a bicycle ministry in Memphis.
Lord have mercy
Apr 09, 2015
A. M. Stroud III, a former prosecutor in Louisiana, expresses regret for the role he played in sending Glenn Ford to death row in 1984. “I was 33 years old. I was arrogant, judgmental, narcissistic and very full of myself. I was not as interested in justice as I was in winning.” Stroud says he presented dubious evidence from a forensic pathologist, precluded black jurors from the trial (Ford, since exonerated, is black), and ignored the fact that the appointed defense attorney had never before tried a criminal or capital case. “I . . . hope that providence will have more mercy for me than I showed Glenn Ford,” Stroud said in a letter to the editor of the Times of Shreveport. “But, I’m also sobered by the realization that I certainly am not deserving of it” (ABA Journal, March 25).