One definition of propaganda is the information, ideas or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement, institution, nation, etc. Its roots are traced back to the Latin phrase: congregation for propagating the faith.
This definition does not precisely capture an effort at Southern Methodist University to prevent grade-school students from learning there are two sides to the global-warming debate. But if we said that some of the fine folks at SMU are book burners, that wouldn’t be accurate either.
It’s not far from reality, though.
While students and faculty members were busy losing their minds at other universities over perceived and even some fabricated slights earlier this week, SMU Research issued a long news release complaining that California 6th grade science books say that climate change is a matter of opinion, not scientific fact.
“Climate skeptics and climate deniers are given equal time and treated with equal weight as scientists and scientific facts — even though scientists who refute global warming total a miniscule (sic) number,” wrote Diego Roman, identified as an assistant professor in the Department of Teaching and Learning.
Of course the news release refers to the study that supposedly says that 97% of scientists believe that man is causing Earth to overheat, which isn’t true, as we have shown. But it’s a number that has seeped into widespread use and is frequently cited uncritically. But propagandists never allow canards to stop them. In fact, lies are their fuel.
While Roman and his associates aren’t urging a mob to toss the books into a giant bonfire, they do want them replaced with text books that clarify “what exactly is unknown and why.” They are also recommending “the inclusion of humans as agents and as the cause of climate change.” After getting students all worked up, Roman and his associates want text books to include “specific actions students can take to produce change.” Nothing like indoctrinating young minds and mobilizing students into shock troops to bedevil their parents about their CO2 emissions. Later, these kids will be college students — and recent days have shown us how they behave after being nursed for years with left-wing militancy.
There is so much wrong with the news release, but that’s typical of those who believe that human carbon dioxide emissions are burning our planet. They feel that they have to propagate the faith. They want to spread their religion.
But, no, they’re not really book burners — at least not yet, but they could take that short step — and we won’t taint them with that label.
They don’t mind labeling those who don’t agree with them, though. To Roman and associates, we’re “deniers.” As Anthony Watts of the Watts Up With That blog points out, it’s an offensive term the Associated Press has stopped using. But when we look at their plans to sanitize text books, we wonder who’s doing the denying.