Huppenthal's parting shot at TUSD's Culturally Relevant Curriculum made Rolling Stone
, not because of its attack on the ethnic studies courses, but because Hupp mentioned a Rage Against The Machine song and KRS-One's discussion of the nature of hip-hop. None of that is news to Tucsonans — it's been all over the media — but this comment at the end of the article could be an important bit of information.
Sally Stewart, the spokeswoman for the state's Department of Education, said that Huppenthal's replacement, Diane Douglas, would "keep the ball rolling" and follow up on her predecessor's notice. Douglas' chief of staff did not reply to requests for comment from the Republic on Friday.
I have my doubts that Douglas will want to jump into Hupp's (and Horne's) battle this early in her tenure, but if it's in the Rolling Stone, I guess it's gotta be true. But then again, the information comes from a Dept. of Ed. spokesperson, not Douglas' new Chief of Staff, Michael Bradley, a longtime political operative whose job seems to be to temper the Douglas we saw on the campaign trail — to the extent we saw the invisible candidate, anyway. Until the word comes from Douglas or Bradley, it's not official.
I listened to the Rage Against The Machine song Hupp referenced, "Take The Power Back." Strong, thoughtful lyrics. There's plenty of substance in the in-your-face words, well worth study and analysis in a high school class, both for their historical/political context and their musical/literary quality. Here's part of the song Huppenthal didn't mention, which can be read as a justification for the courses Hupp and his friends condemn.
The present curriculum
I put my fist in 'em
Eurocentric every last one of 'em
See right through the red, white and blue disguise
With lecture I puncture the structure of lies
Installed in our minds and attempting
To hold us back
We've got to take it back
Holes in our spirit causin' tears and fears
One-sided stories for years and years and years
I'm inferior? Who's inferior?
Yeah, we need to check the interior
Of the system that cares about only one culture
And that is why
We gotta take the power back