A Texas mother recently voiced opposition to a book about poverty she described as “Marxist,” prompting a committee in Highland Park to review whether the book is appropriate for students.
Meg Bakich originally challenged “The Working Poor: Invisible in America” in December, the Dallas Morning News reported last week. In a recent interview, Bakich told online talk show “Women on the Wall” that she felt it was inappropriate for students to read about social issues in English class.
The book, written by journalist David Shipler about Americans living
near the poverty line, is taught in Highland Park Advanced Placement
“I realized there is a real agenda here because [the school] explained to me English III is teaching social issues,” she said, according to Raw Story. “How is that going to help my child read better and write better?”
She then argued that if students must read “The Working Poor,” they should also read conservative writers like Ayn Rand.
“These are feeding children values and beliefs that I don’t hold, and I don’t value. So, I gave some suggestions. If you want to understand poverty in a Marxist or socialist environment, let’s have the children read ‘We the Living’ by Ayn Rand,” she said. “And then let them compare that with poverty in free markets, and read ‘America the Beautiful’ by Benjamin Carson.”
Bakich was concerned that English class has become “a year-long undermining of American values.”
A committee of school staff, parents, and students will review the book and determine whether it should be read in school. “The Working Poor” was previously banned by Highland Park Superintendent Dawson Orr, according to the Dallas Morning News. Orr banned seven books in September, and then reinstated their use after significant backlash.