A New York Post report from August 24 by Yoav Gonen highlighted the selective Islamophilia readily apparent in reading extracts from the New York State High School “Global History and Geography” Regents examinations. Subsequently, my colleague Gilbert Sewall of the American Textbook Council kindly provided me with the teachers Rating Guide for these Regents exam sections.
The egregious bias in this exam, and its structured, requisite evaluation by teachers, is transparent and disturbing. Two examples of complementary “Official Historical Documents” which students are required to read and discuss — one pertaining to Islamic Spain, the other Reconquista Christian Spain — along with very specific teacher evaluation guidelines they must satisfy for the best grade, epitomize the naked indoctrination being promoted.
Students are given a so-called “document” containing an extract from a textbook (Daniel Roselle’s A World History: A Cultural Approach) which opens with this broad claim:
Wherever they went, the Moslems brought with them their love of art, beauty, and learning. From about the eighth to the eleventh century, their culture was superior in many ways to that of western Christendom.
They are to be “evaluated,” exclusively, according to the guideline reproduced below:
Award 1 credit (up to a maximum of 2 credits) for each different way Islam improved the lives of people in Spain according to Daniel Roselle.
This information alone makes plain the unacceptable bias in the Regents testing process. Medieval Christian Spain was brutally conquered by waves of jihad wars (pp. 56-60) beginning in the early 8th century, involving massacre, pillage, deportation, and mass enslavement. This included harem slavery for non-Muslim women, and to guard these harems, eunuch slavery — the aptly termed “hideous trade” (pp. 92-93) production of human geldings from enslaved non-Muslim men.
But the approach is ultimately much more sinister: it is nothing less than Islamic proselytizing on the one hand, versus the inculcation of cynicism, if not contempt, for Christianity and Western Christian civilization on the other.
Muslim “enlightened” rule of Spain in the Medieval era is contrasted starkly by the unmitigated, ghastly depredations wrought by the Spanish Christian imperialist conquerors and their religious minions in South America centuries later.
Witness a complementary putative “document” on the Regents exam entitled “Common Procedures used by Friars in Converting Areas [to Christianity] in Spanish America,” based on Charles Gibson’s Spain in America. The “document” offers only these entirely negative bulleted statements:
• Idols, temples, and other material evidences of paganism destroyed
• Temporary churches built
• Permanent churches and monasteries built
• Christian buildings often constructed on sites of destroyed native temples in order to symbolize and emphasize the substitution of one religion by the other
• Indians supplied construction labor without receiving payment
• In a converted community, services and fiestas were regularly held in the church building
Once again, the students are to be “evaluated” on this basis alone, according to the guideline below which demands they regurgitate a purely destructive “narrative”:
Award 1 credit (up to a maximum of 2 credits) for each different change the friars introduced in Spanish America. Examples: destroying idols/temples; building permanent monasteries; constructing Christian buildings on sites of destroyed native temples; building temporary/permanent churches; holding services/fiestas in church buildings in a converted community; attempting to destroy paganism.
As for Islam’s own actual treatment of pagans, their places of worship, and religious icons during the “8th to 11th century” period about which the Regents “document” falsely claims: “wherever they went, the Moslems brought with them their love of art, beauty, and learning,” consider the following historical account by S.L. Srivastava. He describes one of the pious Muslim jihadist Mahmud of Ghazni’s (Ghazni being modern Afghanistan) nearly 20 bloody and devastating forays into India around present day Gujarat, during 1025 AD (p. 83):
Mahmud captured the place [Somanath] without much difficulty and ordered a general slaughter in which more than 50,000 persons are said to have perished. The idol of Somanath was broken into pieces which were sent to Ghazni, Mecca, and Medina and cast in streets and the staircases of chief mosques to be trodden by the Muslims going there for their prayers.