State Board of Education Committee: Alamo Defenders Not "Heroes"

posted by Jim Forsyth - 

Are the defenders of the Alamo 'heroes?'  The answer to that is a big, fat 'NO,' according to a committee of the State Board of Education, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

A committee of the SBOE is recommending that Texas teachers be forbidden from referring to the Texians who died in the Alamo in March of 1836 as 'heroes,' saying 'hero' is a 'value charged' word.

The committee is also recommending that the so called 'Victory or Death' letter penned by Alamo Commander William Barret Travis, be removed from the mandatory curriculum for middle school and high school history and Texas history classes.

Currently, students are required to learn Travis's famous appeal 'to the people of Texas and all Americans in the world' and to be able to explain its meaning and context.

According to the SBOE committee, that would be changed to simply requiring students to simply be able to 'explain the issues surrounding the significant events of the Texas Revolution.'

The State Board of Education is an elected body which is in charge of curriculum in the state's public schools.

This decision is unusual, because the Republican dominated, elected SBOE is generally criticised for being too conservative, pushing for more religious references and teaching about free markets in Texas schools.

The SBOE committee proposals prompted immediatle push back.

"The Alamo defenders were heroes, period," said State Land Commissioner George P. Bush, whose office owns and manages the Alamo.  "The SBOE labels 'heroic' to 'value-laden' to be taught in out schools.  Frankly, that's exactly why 'heroic' must be in the curriculum.  Texas school children can learn the values of honor, bravery, sacrifice, and liberty from the Alamo defenders."

Governor Abbott called the recommendation 'politically correct nonsense.'  He urged Texans to call members of the SBOE to 'complain.'

The proposal is expected to be voted on by the SBOE in November.

IMAGE: GETTY

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