Skeptical that the national Common Core standards will improve the quality of education in local schools? Then you must be a lunatic conspiracy theorist — at least according to Missouri State Rep. Mike Lair, a Republican, who set aside $8 — yes, $8 — in a recent appropriations bill to buy tin foil hats for opponents of the Common Core.
The hats will protect them from the aliens that Lair assumes they must believe in.
It may sound unbelievable, but it’s right there in the appropriations bill, according to the Columbia Daily Tribune. The $8 will be used to buy “two rolls of high density aluminum to create headgear designed to deflect drone and/or black helicopter mind reading and control technology.”
A summary sheet given to lawmakers in the Missouri state House of Representatives describes the $8 fund as a provision for “tin foil hats.”
The “tin foil hat” metaphor is often associated with conspiracy theorists who believe implausible things about government and science — like the existence of mind-reading technology and aliens. The mainstream left also deploys the tactic against conservatives in order to paint them as paranoid lunatics.
But this time, the insult came not from the left but from a Republican lawmaker. Lair was unapologetic. (RELATED: Epic fail: Parents reveal insane Common Core worksheets)
“Basically, when you deal with conspiracy theorists, you do logic first,” he said in a statement. “If you can’t deal with folks with logic, you use humor. This is to stop all the problems from the black helicopters and drones. This is high density foil.”
The Common Core standards — currently being implemented in most states — have drawn criticism from the left and the right. To conservatives, Common Core is costly, unproven and a ploy for the Obama administration to erode state sovereignty over education issues. For the left, Common Core threatens to expose untrained teachers and struggling students to a battery of high-stakes tests. (RELATED: Senate Republicans: No more Common Core ‘coercion’)
On the other hand, President Obama and many centrist Republicans remain huge fans of the standards.
There is only one centrist Republican who has been willing to publicly brand his opponents on the issue as conspiracy theorists–and even buy them tin foil hats, courtesy of the taxpayer.
Common Core skeptics got the last laugh, however. Someone apparently wrapped his desk and chair on the state House floor in aluminum foil. Rep. Bryan Spencer, a Republican, posted a picture of the payback on Facebook.
“I guess you shouldn’t upset hundreds of parents that are worried about their child’s education,” wrote Spencer on Facebook.