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In “Debunking Myths” of American History, Steve Doocy and Fox “Historian” Larry Schweikart Create A New One – Phyllis Schlafly Was A Housewife!

Reported by Priscilla - February 24, 2009 -

The weekly Larry Schweikart show on Fox&Friends got even loonier last week (February 18th). In addition to presenting a rather confused and confusing “critique” of” liberal lies,” Schweikart and Doocy actually created their own myth – or dare I say, conservative lie. But before I get to the substance of the show, it should be mentioned that University of Dayton’s Professor Larry Schweikart is Rush Limbaugh approved. Rush says, regarding Larry’s book (“48 Liberal Lies”) which is pimped weekly on Fox&Friends, "I love this book...When people read [it] they will be mesmerized. They think they know history, but the stuff in [this] book is not taught.” Rush’s comment is right there on the home page for the homeschooling convention that Larry will be appearing at soon. I’m sure his Fox&Friends appearances are doing a great service to homeschooling parents who now know which books NOT to buy!

The chyron, “Liberal Lies debunking myths about America’s past” was ironic, considering that Schweikart creates his own myths. MENSA member Steve Doocy claimed that the textbook, “American Promise,” “got it wrong because it fails to mention that the Equal Rights Amendment failed and (serious sin here) attacks the ERA’s biggest opponent, Phyllis Schlafly. Schweikart opined that “the written text said it failed; but you “have to look at the pictures. The big picture celebrating the ERA (and how does this picture, which we don’t see, “celebrate” the ERA?) didn’t say it failed.” Schweikart saved his opprobrium for the little picture of Schlafly (she’s carrying her stop ERA sign) under which was written “despite time consuming political activities that involved traveling and speaking all over the country, she insisted on calling herself a housewife.” Schweikart claims that the text is really saying that “she couldn’t be a housewife because she was traveling around giving speeches so I guess, in their view Hillary Clinton couldn’t be a New Yorker."(WTF?!) When Doocy said “in fact she was a housewife” Schweikart responded, “She was a housewife.” Doocy said, “Absolutely.” (Comment: The notion that Phyllis Schlafly was just a “housewife” is ludicrous. She was a “lawyer, editor of a monthly newsletter, regular speaker at anti-liberal rallies, and political activist” who was able to combine having a family and career.) So, here we have it – the myth/lie of Phyllis Schlafly as “housewife.”

The next segment was quite muddled as it started with Doocy’s comment about the text “American History“ - "of the Freedom of Information act and John Ashcroft the book said (the quote appeared over the blurred visual of the page which had a photo of Ashcroft) that the act drew fire from liberals and conservative critics of the act said it endangered basic freedoms guaranteed under the us constitution.” Schweikart said that “it passed 98 to one with many prominent Democrats voting for it.” (Comment: Problem here is that Ashcroft issued a memorandum to the FOIA which was not voted on. Schweikart seems to be confusing this with the 2002 Intelligence Authorization Act which was heavily criticized; but which did pass. It also established the 9-11 Commission.) The text, “US History”, was criticized because “the only references to terrorism are Tim McVeigh and racial terrorism with no mention of hundreds of truly deadly acts of terrorism against the us around the world.” Schweikart was upset that the book “has two paragraphs dedicated to church burnings and only one paragraph about the 1990 WTC bombing but no mention of radical Islam or Muslims.” The chyron read “Common myths learned in school.” Obviously Tim McVeigh’s half a page was too much for Larry. (Comment: This is an American history text which should focus on domestic terrorism although Larry probably wants to whitewash that, too. Many of the “deadly acts of terrorism” occurred during the American occupation of Iraq.) According to Schweikart, the book, “United States History,” has no speeches by the Founding Fathers; but one from the Native American Chief, Tecumsah. Larry dismissed the mention of a Hawaiian king from the early 19th century because the US “didn’t have much to do with Hawaii until the late 19th century.” (Comment: Is he dismissing Kamehameha III, "the longest reigning Hawaiian king who brought Hawaii from a pagan absolute monarchy to a Christian constitutional monarchy with the signing of not one but two of Hawaii's Constitution in 1840 and 1852" – yeah, no big deal!) The last chyron was “Trouble with textbooks, how bias is creeping into us classrooms.”

Comment: In addition to smearing texts with no counterpoint, this series works in conservative propaganda messages –Being a housewife is more important than career accomplishments, the ERA was bad, John Ashcroft was good, domestic terrorism and hate crimes are less important than evil Muslims, and who cares about brown people! It’s all so “fair and balanced!”