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'Racist,' 'unbelievably offensive' textbook considered for Texas classrooms

The Texas State Board of Education is vetting "Mexican American Heritage" for possible use in new courses in Texas public schools.

SAN ANTONIO - A state senator is the latest to attack a Mexican-American studies textbook as "prejudiced and racist."

The Texas State Board of Education is vetting "Mexican American Heritage" for possible use in new courses in Texas public schools.

State Sen. José Menéndez (D-District 26) called some of the passages "unbelievably offensive," including this one: "Chicanos, on the other hand, adopted a revolutionary narrative that opposed Western civilization and wanted to destroy this society."

He said the problem was "these widespread generalizations about Chicanos being against Western civilization and our society, trying to destroy our society or that immigrant communities are hotbeds for crime."

Another passage from the book reads: "Due to the fact that illegal immigrants fear deportation and involvement with legal authorities, crime and exploitation can circulate unabated in their neighborhoods. Those who have hostile views towards American government and culture may also gain strongholds in immigrant communities because of the difficult challenges they face."

The senator is rallying support at the Statehouse to send the Board of Education a unified message meant to keep the textbook out of the classroom.

"We're not going to whitewash history and gloss over it, but we shouldn't also just be looking at the most negative views of the recent history," Menéndez said.

The full text is available online, and the public can comment through Sept. 2.

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