His Excellency Aethien wrote:
His first 3 words are "that's historically true" so that should be the end of it, it's about history and what happened.
His issue isn't about whether something is true, but the bias with regard to what is chosen to be presented/tested and the surrounding context. In some cases, it's about the wording. For example, the question highlighted above has some awkward language. Why ask what conditions in the photo "contributed most directly to"? That's a strange wording. A better way to ask the question would be to use the word "resulted", not "contributed". Resulted means you're asking an actual historical question: "What happened as a result of this condition?". The word contributed suggests some kind of positive action, which is just strange in this context. So maybe they're just poorly worded, but the argument being made by conservatives is that the wording is designed intentionally to inject the idea of intent rather than just cause/effect.
It also has the potential to support the bizarre cart before the horse idea that if you start with the goal of "progressive reform" the way to contribute to the cause of achieving that is to either create impoverished conditions or create the perception of such. And frankly, there's evidence in some social movements that support this being done by the left (just look at what's going on in Ferguson right now for an example). The idea that the way to get what you want is to be a victim (or be perceived as a victim) has become commonplace among the left. So yeah, that's why that wording bothers conservatives.
It's also helpful to read the actual article, and not the editorial slamming it. Far more information about the full context of the complaints is available. It wasn't just that question, but all the questions in that section. The next question asked about the cause of the conditions, and the answer was basically just "low wages", which again is technically correct, but fails to address *why* these men earned such low wages. Which sorta echoes the modern liberal argument for higher wages for everyone, while ignoring the fact that wage *should* vary based on the value of the labor in the workplace. And let's face it, "cause they had low wages" is a crappy answer for an AP level test.
The final question in that section directly ties "advocates for individuals such as those shown in the image" with those who believe that "government should act to eliminate the worst abuses of industrial society". So not only does this leave the student with the assumption that low wages are "abuse", but that if you feel for people earning low wages, you must support active government intervention. And, just in case the "liberals care for the poor while conservatives don't" angle wasn't presented strongly enough, one of the wrong answers to the question was: "Capitalism free of government regulation would improve social conditions”. So the test blatantly assumes that anyone who believes that capitalism will improve social conditions are *not* people who care about individuals like those in the image. So, of course, anyone teaching their students to pass the test would have to teach them that capitalism doesn't improve people's social conditions (despite massive evidence that the opposite is true).
That's biased as ****. And biased specifically to influence the students views of current political issues, under the guise of teaching and testing them about historical events. So yeah, that's a problem. Edited, Aug 21st 2014 1:41pm by gbaji