3. Communism is awesome
An illustration in a CSCOPE high school world history handout shows a figure with a trekking pole climbing steps made out of money. A chart immediately to the right concerns “big ideas” in 18th- and 19th-century economic thinking. At the bottom of the chart is free-market capitalism, where “all people strive to fulfill their own needs and wants,” and where government control and planning are low.
In the middle is socialism, where “the big things” in society (e.g., “telephones, roads, airports”) are “owned by the people.” “Can you think of other big stuff that should be covered?” the chart asks. (Note the loaded verb, “should.”)
At the top of the chart is communism, which the CSCOPE creators innocuously describe as “the idea of living together in a ‘commune’ where all people work together for everyone.” The chart manages to insult the Marxist vision of communism as well, by suggesting that government control and planning is highest under the system.
There is no mention of the nearly 100 million people who died in the 20th century under various self-described communist regimes around the world.
4. Hey kids! Let’s make communist flags
“Imagine a new socialist nation is creating a flag and you have been put in charge of creating a flag,” read the instructions from an activity that directs sixth graders to design a socialist or communist flag. “Use symbolism to represent aspects of socialism/communism on your flag.”
In the same lesson, students are also instructed that socialist utopian Robert Owen wanted to “give every child born into the world an equal chance to live and grow and to lead a happy life.”
No mention is made of the two socialist utopias Owen attempted to create, or how they ended up disastrously failed and disease-ridden.
5. The Boston Tea Party was a terrorist attack
A CSCOPE high school world history lesson plan depicts the Boston Tea Party, the famous protest against taxation without representation, as an act of terrorism.
“A local militia, believed to be a terrorist organization, attacked the property of private citizens today at our nation’s busiest port,” the part of the curriculum pertaining to the Boston Tea Party reads. “Although no one was injured in the attack, a large quantity of merchandise, considered to be valuable to its owners and loathsome to the perpetrators, was destroyed. The terrorists, dressed in disguise and apparently intoxicated, were able to escape into the night with the help of local citizens who harbor these fugitives and conceal their identities from the authorities.”