Textbooks are pushing a PC version of Islam, reports the American Textbook Council in a study of the most commonly used junior high and high school texts. “Jihad,” commonly defined in the ’90s as “sacred” or “holy” struggle or “holy war,” was a struggle “to do one’s best to resist temptation and overcome evil” in Houghton Mifflin’s junior high textbook. That wasn’t soft enough. By 2005, the company “apparently had removed jihad from its entire series of social studies textbooks,” the report finds.
Writing in the Christian Science Monitor, Gary Bauer complains that textbooks are “intentionally vague” about sharia law, “the Islamic code that can be used to subjugate women and deal death to wayward believers.”
Holt Rinehart Winston’s 2006 “Medieval to Early Modern Times” junior high textbook states simply, “[Sharia] sets rewards for good behavior and punishments for crimes.” Another popular history textbook states, “Muslim law requires that Muslim leaders offer religious toleration.”
Descriptions of Islam since 9/11 are particularly disturbing. Though Islamic extremism has become a fact of life throughout much of the world, most of the reviewed textbooks suggest instead that poverty, ignorance, and the existence of Israel are at the root of terrorism.
Christianity doesn’t get such sensitive treatment, Bauer writes.
One book describes the Crusades as “religious wars launched against Muslims by European Christians.” But when Muslims attacked Christians and took their land, the process is referred to as “building” an empire.