Some of the questions below are, unquestionably, not appropriate for all grade levels. But — certainly — some should be addressed by the time a student secures entrance to, or matriculation status at, one of our institutions of higher education. If you disagree, do let me know.
- Over the last 34 years, incomes for the top 0.001% richest Americans soared by 636% while incomes for the bottom 50% remained stagnate. This wasn’t a by-product, but the plan.
Question: How are you preparing your students to deal with that fact of life by teaching them to put all of their reformist marbles into relying on millionaire representatives to change the status quo?
- Drones are the gift Obama gave to Trump, who is taking maximum advantage of his new killing toys. Since Trump took office, the rate of drone strikes per month has swelled to nearly almost four times Obama’saverage.
Question: How are you preparing your students to address this horrid momentum?
- National Geographic published an intriguing storydocumenting how at least seven species of marine mammals are known to mourn the deaths of family members and “friends”. The writers couldn’t resist referring to this as “human-like” behavior… which seems to me to be exceedingly insulting to the whales.
Questions: Do your students know that members of the U.S. military sometimes execute members of their own species, and then take “selfies” with the corpses? If so, are they taught that they can do something to change that? If so, are they taught that that sort of thing is proliferating? If so, are they taught that those millionaire representatives are highly unlikely to do anything to stop that dynamic? If so, are they taught why?
- NPR’s lead story on UK elections didn’t mentionthe words “Jeremy” or “Corbyn”.
Questions: Do you know what the sources are for your students’ daily news? What mainstream media outlets’ news reports do you warn them about to any degree?
- Trump slammed the door on US travel to and business deals with Cuba recently.
Questions: Have you ever mentioned anything about Cuba in a positive light to your students? What?
- We are hearing a lot now about how “dangerous” “violent” rhetoric motivated the DC shooter. But the actual violence of the State done in our name daily for the last 20 years is a bigger & more dangerous trigger than any kind of inflammatory speech.
Questions: In the classroom, do you ever discuss the relative impact lack of local gun control has vis-a-vis our worldwide arms sales or violent abominations overseas courtesy of the U.S. military? Is any direct correlation ever drawn between those abominations and gender or child abuse? Do you ever underscore how much longer than “20 years” the “trigger” has been in gear? If not, where do you expect your students to learn about our history on that score?
- Scott Pruitt, head of the EPA, apparently lied to congress about his secret email accounts, back channels to his buddies in the oil and gas industry, in Oklahoma recently.
Questions: Do you ever discuss works like E.G. Vallianatos’ Poison Spring, which describe the EPA as having operated like the Mafia for a very long time? If not, why not? Do you lead your students to believe that federal agencies are effectively looking out for our communal interests, for the most part? If so, on what basis?
Feedback would be much appreciated.
Richard Martin Oxman has been an educator and activist for over half-a-century. He would be honored to speak gratis at any educational institution which makes a request at firstname.lastname@example.org. Many of the facts above, along with the language used, can be reviewed in Jeffrey St. Clair’s Washington Bullets.