It looks like the defenders of the Alamo will continue to be referred to as 'heroes' in the Texas public school curriculum, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
The State Board of Education heard emotional testimony at a public hearing today on the advisory committee's recommendation that the word 'heroes' is a 'value charged comment' and to delete the current policy of having students study the famous letter written be Alamo commander William Travis.U.S. Rep Ted Poe (R-Houston) actually read the letter to the SBOE.
"Victory or death!" he declared.
"I cannot fatham any possible way that one can teach Texas history without teaching Travis plea 'to the people of Texans and all Americans in the world," he said.
Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush testified before the committee in writing."On the Alamo team we have some simple beliefs: Other places have history, but Texas has legends. Texas is more than a place on a map, it's an idea in the hearts of our people," Bush said. "But those ideas, legends and our history are in danger of being intentionally forgotten by watering down our children's education. They're our future Texans and Texas leaders."
Bush said there are proposals being debated to also remove the name of Sam Houston from 'a list of significant Texas historical figures' and change the name of San Jacinto Day to 'Constitution Day.'
But a member of the committee that came up with the Alamo proposals pleaded that the goal was not to denigrate the sacrifice of the Alamo heroes...but was to eliminate redundancy in the curriculum. He said the Travis letter is already a key part of the Texas history curriculum, and ordering that it be taught separately is redundant.
SBOE Chair Donna Bahorich says the plan is to continue to referring to the defenders as 'heroes.'
"Both the Travis Letter and the heroism language would be added back into the standards like it is now," she said.
A final vote is expected in November.