And the next county on the terrible textbook tour is …

lee countyI’ve already pointed out that Collier County is the main hotbed of textbook unrest in Florida. That’s the home of Florida Citizens’ Alliance, the group that authored and supported the passage through our state legislature of the instructional materials bill that is much loved by creationists and climate change deniers. The Alliance has been protesting about what’s in various textbooks to their school board for quite a while now and they’ve even resorted to filing a lawsuit. But we need to keep in mind that the Alliance has friends in other counties.

The next target could be Lee County in southwest Florida. Someone there has compiled a laundry list of complaints against three social studies textbooks. You can see the complaint documents here. Of special interest to us here at Florida Citizens for Science are these two points:

First is “HMH Social Studies: Civics In Practice Integrated: Civics, Econ, & Geography Florida: Student Edition 2018”

The Geography Handbook contains maps with instructions for interpretation. Two maps in particular call into question bias and slant. Pg 441 includes maps of the west coast of Florida that Project the Impact of Global Warming on Charlotte Harbor. “Maps can be used to predict future conditions. This pair of maps shows how predicted sea-level rise due to global warming might affect the Charlotte Harbor area on Florida’s Gulf coast.” This takes the perspective that global warming is a known fact, introduces it as fact and an accurate prediction and does not allow for discussion regarding the possibility or denial of global warming. BUT the bullet uses “predicted” and “might” in the same sentence. The Skills box asks questions of the students about elimination of landforms, increase of vegetation and changes in wildlife, fisheries and economies as if global warming is an indisputable fact. FACT: Global warming is argued for and against on many levels by some of the best scientific minds and still there is no conclusive evidence that warrants instruction in the classroom where ‘predicted” is considered the correct approach.

Next, we have “HMH Social Studies American History: Reconstruction To The Present Student Edition” ~ 2018

Page 966-967 A Global Concern: States without any scientific fact or resource that “extreme weather events are occurring more often” and “the greenhouse effect has led to global warming and climate change.” They conclude that fossil fuels in the atmosphere have caused this. This is purely political diatribe used to gain power and money. Read the book, Global Warming every 1500 Years by S. Fred Singer, or go to or for scientific links and political problems pursuant to the global warming “crisis” promoted by supporters of this debunked theory.

I invite you to check out the links given in these complaints, review them and report back on their claims so as to help the folks in Lee County who might need to fight back against this nonsense.

About Brandon Haught

Communications Director for Florida Citizens for Science.
This entry was posted in Instructional Materials bills '17, Textbooks. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to And the next county on the terrible textbook tour is …

  1. Mary says:

    If you caught the latest tweet from the WH its very informative on these attacks of climate change and science in general. The president said: “They can’t even get the weather report right”.
    There are many problems with this statement, but a major issue is a lack of understanding of what science is. It’s findings are not religious or authoritarian statements that do not change. Rather science is tentative and its predictions are like a weather report in that they are not 100%. The fact that they can only be disproved and not proved supports this idea. The strength of this characteristic of scientific knowledge is that it can and will change and improve as new evidence, technology and ideas come to bear on an idea.
    Authoritarians are very uncomfortable with this kind of information as it is open to interpretation by anybody including the people they want to obey them. They are more comfortable with religious proclamations set in stone that cannot be argued with. And it is easier to attack the tentative nature of scientific ideas with false or cherry picked facts.
    I prefer to think of scientific ideas as tools that we humans can use as our moral or religious beliefs lead us. Tools of course can be and are improved over time and we may toss aside our hammer for a nail gun. So the Climate models are a tool to help us plan for the future. Attacking them without offering another way to protect ourselves from very real sea rise that many people on the coasts around the world are already experiencing is supremely irresponsible.
    Evidence that supports theory are facts and these are perhaps easier to debate although they have taken to changing these for their convenience as well. But the wholesale misunderstanding of the nature of science in these attacks is clearly evident.

  2. Mary says:

    here is a recent weather underground blog with a summary of the response to the Paris Accord withdrawal. It includes an interesting article from Forbes that compares the tactics of climate skeptics with the corporate fight against banning aerosols that affected the ozone hole in the Montreal Accords in the 1970s. Many of the tactics used back them and the claims about jobs and economy are familiar to what we are seeing form climate change skeptics today. Interestingly the job and economic claims of DuPont Corp on aerosols were proved completely wrong. new technology led to more jobs.
    Forbes articlce here
    and Weather Underground summary here

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