I am not one who apologizes for the work I have done over the past 9 years of teaching; I have fully enjoyed the Advanced Placement history courses I have taught, the success of my students on the exam, the excellent and very open relationship I have with current and past students, as well as the number of academic and research projects I have contributed to. But, I must say, I find it interesting when one attacks me as a person on my own blog; a few students who read the comment were surprised I did not delete it; I used it as another example to illustrate the weakness of individuals who hide behind an anonymous name. Still, I understand there are those who fear me and my knowledge without understanding my plight nor my background. As a Christian, one who was raised by agnostic parents, I will say that they taught me the one thing Christianity has taught me over the years: love all people as Christ would love them — even those of different values and views. I will let those who know me and my passion judge my political, social, and intellectual values. I think the About the Proletarian outlined the purpose of this blog. In defense of the first comment below, I value his/her opinion and would prefer a more personal email. If it is that much of a concern, my contact information is posted on this blog too. A honest conversation would be nice.
Point of View #2 here is values my intellectual diversity more:
I am a former student who took Carson’s class for 2 years. Firstly, I want to point out Carson is an EXCEPTIONAL teacher. It is said the best teachers seek to make themselves obsolete. What this means is a great teacher instills a student with a desire to learn and the analytical and intellectual skills to teach his or her self- an incredibly valuable skill. I can honestly say that even though i am not majoring in history in college, i not only enjoyed Carson’s class immensely but find the ability to think freely, explore opposing viewpoints intellectually without compromising my own, and solve and articulate complex problems has served me immeasurably well.
Secondly, as a Christian, i have to disagree with some of the other religious viewpoints on this blog, especially regarding Carson’s character and teaching style. In a way, its great that some students have chosen to represent their religious beliefs on this blog, although i think the aggressive tone really undermines the message. But Carson is always kind and open minded towards his students- he never ridicules but always encourages his students to think and challenge. He always does this out of a sense of love- Carson is less concerned about “correcting” his students that letting them discover for themselves what they believe. Isn’t this the kind of servants God wants? We have free will- Carson teaches us to exercise it. St. Francis of Assisi once said we should “preach the gospel at all times; if necessary use words.” There are different types of spiritual mentors- some teach us to use language to articulate beliefs and help us with out spiritual issues. That’s great, but that’s not the singular example of how to represent faith. My experience with Carson has been filled with nothing but patience, kindness, gentleness etc. – Carson really preaches the gospel in the way he lives- not in the way he posts things on a blog. I don’t think “blogging” Christianity in this manner- aggressively and in a headstrong manner- is going to change minds. If you do that you are going to draw praise from those who think the same as you and criticism from those who don’t (I’m going to go out on a limb and extend that comment to say, legislating morality). Christianity believes in a personal God- literally one that became a person and has the power to change human beings into “sons of God”. If this is the kind of Christianity you believe in, then it starts with your friends, your family, and your coworkers and your case is the way you live your life- with joy and perseverance in the face of hardship. In a way, the fact that Carson persists to teach at a place that doesn’t value his incredible contributions the way is should is such evidence. Am i right in recollecting you were never once voted teacher of the year at Houston Christian? Of course, not that it makes any difference- good teaching is good teaching whether it is awarded or not and i think Carson is a big enough man to recognize that. Even though Carson claims to be “elite”, he never beats his chest over his own accomplishments (like KILLER AP passing rates, rivaled perhaps only by the Dox). Lastly, i also am going to pray for Mr. Carson to be a better teacher and mentor- not that he isn’t but that he goes on to do even greater things. God bless Mr Carson and keep up the good work!