As the current recession continues to drag on the American economy and optimism, taxpayers continue to foot the bill for government spending, and particularly, the surprisingly large PBS budget. According to a recent Special Report from Accuracy in Media’s Center for Investigative Journalism and Accuracy in Academia, PBS’s spending and bloated budget have ballooned to upwards of $450 million. The report, by Mary Grabar and Tina Trent, shows that in Georgia alone, the PBS affiliate receives more than half of its $29 million budget from state taxpayers. In the words of the state’s PBS marketing vice president, PBS’ executive salaries and extensive budget are required because Georgia teachers download significant portions of data (about 5 million times for 80,000 teachers) for classroom use. However, unknown to taxpayers, PBS’s education material are leaning towards promoting left-wing ideologies with the support of the likes of George Soros’ Open Society Foundations.
Specifically, the PBS curriculum has teachers use material that teaches their students from a left-leaning perspective. Instead of focusing on facts, PBS material tries to enhance their student’s “emotional” learning by placing students in the shoes of the repressed. One example is PBS’s World War II material, where one “emotional” learning exercise has students imagine they were Japanese Americans and were ordered to pack for internment camps. Instead of learning the facts, the students are to experience these historical events and tell how they feel about the event. Also, other parts of PBS’s education material are comprised of focusing on protest movements, environmental issues and having an equal number of lessons about George Washington and hip-hop music. Within the protest movement curriculum, it teaches students that several race riots like the Newark riots were “principled” and discusses police brutality while praising the Black Panther movement.
The environmental leanings of PBS are apparent when the topic of the pesticide DDT ban was discussed, asking students about the benefits of the DDT ban without measuring the negatives. The curriculum displays a significant anti-Wal-Mart bias, with one lesson plan’s title being “Store Wars: When Wal-Mart comes to Town”. This lesson plan, after showing the struggles of local businesses in dealing with Wal-Mart, also discusses the effects of Wal-Mart not selling sexually-explicit music or material to its consumers, which the lesson tells students is a suppression of First Amendment rights. PBS gives homage to the brown eyes and blue eyes experiment, where it attempts to simulate racism in a class experiment by assigning certain privileges to students with of brown or blue eyes. This exercise forces students to go through a “psychological cleansing process” and personally experience racism.
These are some of the many instances where PBS is failing public education and the future of America’s children. In today’s recession, some ask whether taxpayers should continue to fund public education initiatives and institutions such as PBS when America’s test scores struggle. PBS maintains its grip on public education funding and continues to waste taxpayer dollars through its promotion of left-leaning ideologies in the classroom, and that has to change if America’s parents want a better education for their children.
Spencer Irvine is a research assistant at Accuracy in Academia.
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