History à la DeSantis


  • It appears U.S. Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-WI) drunkenly cussed out several Senate pages while giving a tour of the Capitol.
  • During a House hearing on the impact of COVID-19, U.S. Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-OH), a licensed physician who chairs the subcommittee, claimed that the vaccine could have side effects like that of a herbicidal warfare weapon:

"Do we know ten years from now what this vaccine's going to do? No. ... I don't want to wait to deal with something like Agent Orange 30 years later," Wenstrup said.

  • Following U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell's (R-KY) long, concerning pause during a press conference on Wednesday, other Republican senators have voiced concerns that the 81-year-old’s health may force him to step down before his term ends in 2025.

Florida’s new, revisionist history curriculum is nationalist apologia

Following years of fighting so-called “woke indoctrination” in public schools, the Florida Department of Education recently released a new set of academic standards for social studies pedagogy in the state.

The results, given that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has made turning the state a site for revanchist cultural war his personal hobby horse, are unsurprising. The curriculum stresses “patriotism” in American history while downplaying the impact of white supremacy and colonialism.

One section, in particular, has garnered controversy: There is a lesson plan which instructs teachers to discuss with students how slaves could have used skills they learned — while, you know, being compelled to labor under the constant threat of violence — may have later been “applied for their personal benefit."

DeSantis defended the specific language: "I didn't do it. And I wasn't involved in it," he said. "I think that they're probably going to show — some of the folks that eventually parlayed, you know, being a blacksmith into doing things later in life."

Such comments by the governor and 2024 presidential candidate were derided across the political spectrum, including DeSantis’ competitor in the GOP primary: U.S. Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC).

“There is no silver lining in slavery,” said Scott, the only Black Republican in the Senate.

"What slavery was really about [was] separating families, about mutilating humans and even raping their wives. It was just devastating,” he added. “So, I would hope that every person in our country — and certainly running for president — would appreciate that."  

But it’s not just education “standards” in the state that have an ideological bend. The Florida Department of Education has now approved the use of and officially become a vendor of “PragerU Kids,” an offshoot of the right-wing propaganda outfit PragerU—which receives substantial funds from conservative foundations and partners with various members of the Fox News Extended Universe.

PragerU Kids features such enlightening videos like “Los Angeles: Mateo Backs the Blue,” which refers to George Floyd as “a Black man who resisted arrest,” and an essentialist lesson on gender called “How to Embrace Your Femininity.”  

One series of “educational” content, a cartoon series called “Leo & Layla” — which features a brother and sister duo who travel in time to meet historical figures — plays fast and loose its analysis of genocide. When the siblings interact with a fictional Christopher Columbus, the Italian explorer and well-documented mass murderer tells the children that things aren’t that black and white.

“The place I discovered was beautiful, but it wasn’t exactly a paradise of civilization, and the native people were far from peaceful,” the animated Columbus explains in an over-affected accent.

“Slavery is as old as time and has taken place in every corner of the world,” he adds. “How can you come here to the 15th century and judge me by your standards from the 21st century?”


Some progressive victories as of late:

  • Over 340,000 UPS workers avoided a costly strike after their Teamster union representatives and the company reached a $30 billion that will create substantial wage gains for some of the economy’s most underappreciated laborers.
  • U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has created a bipartisan partnership with Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) to go after tech monopolies and create deeper protections regarding the privacy of consumers.  
  • Despite what some conservatives might tell you, Minneapolis is not, in fact, a Mad Max-style hellscape where scavenging marauders roam the aisles of your local Target. Recent statistics point to a pretty substantial crime decline in the Twin Cities over the past few months.

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Jamie Larson