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More of Interview with Daphne Woods
In this book, there are several contemporary, social issues that you cover. How did you choose which issues to write about?
That’s tricky. There are so many issues I could have tackled, but I obviously couldn’t get into all of them. Global warming is a huge bugaboo of mine that I wanted to expose as fraudulent, and it was easy to work it into an elementary school situation because kids are taught from kindergarten on that this is a settled, scientifically proven phenomenon. There really isn’t any debate on the subject in school. What is offered as “debate” is skewed and unobjective. Kids are simply taught that global warming is destroying the planet. The fact that many scientists and weathermen question this “science” is treated as bogus, and the fact that any perceptible warming might not be attributable to humans at all is entirely discredited in the schools. So this was an easy one to have Meggie get embroiled in. It opened the door for me to offer some of the opposing positions and facts.
By the way, for skeptics who don’t believe teachers would ever approach a subject this way, I would point to a very recent story that’s been in the news. In early February it was reported that a six-year-old boy in Quebec was not permitted to participate in a draw for a stuffed teddy bear because his parents had packed his sandwich in a plastic Ziploc bag. The school held a draw for a stuffed teddy bear during lunch, but only children whose lunches were packed in Tupperware or other such containers were permitted to enter. The little boy’s Tupperware containers were all in the dishwasher. His parents only found out about this when he begged them, in tears, not to pack his sandwich in a bag again. This is just one example of the type of teaching regarding global warming and other environmental issues that occurs on a daily basis.
The reason I’m so concerned about this particular issue is that political decisions based on this false science have the potential to destroy our economy and are, in fact, in the process of doing so. Cap and Trade will tax everything that uses electricity to sky-high proportions. Companies that cannot afford the fees that will be imposed for every bit of energy used will be driven out of the United States, all in the name of saving the planet. I don’t delve into the catastrophic situation that will arise from the passing of Cap and Trade, but I try to get people to think outside the box of what they’re being taught and to examine this issue from the perspective of common sense and real science. By the end of the novel, when this topic briefly recurs, Meggie has learned a new approach, and she turns the tables in an amazing tour de force.
Other issues probed, such as anti-American sentiment, anti-Christian sentiment, anti-capitalism, and multiculturalism, are all being taught in our schools under the guise of toleration of others and concern for the poor, and all go to the heart of the breakdown of our nation. My concern was to expose these attitudes and raise awareness of how serious it is in our schools.
Some of the scenes and discussions are from my own experience. For instance, the conversation Meggie has after a conference at Yale actually happened to me. It wasn’t at Yale, but it did occur at a dinner following a conference at which I’d read a paper. After I said that poverty couldn’t be solved through the continual raising of taxes, a woman said to me, horror in her voice, “Don’t tell me you’re a Republican!” What follows is pretty much what really happened. While I made Meggie more eloquent than I was in making her defense, this basic conversation did occur, and I could really identify with her sweaty palms and fast beating heart, for they recalled this scene vividly to me as I wrote.
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