dorsed the President’s plan. In his ownrnState of the State Address, Engler wentrneven further than the President, proposingrnlegislation that would establish “academicrnreceivership” for school districtsrnthat did not meet certain state standards.rnThose districts would be placedrnunder state-appointed “receivers” who,rnaccording to the Detroit Free Press,rn”would have broad power to fire principalsrnand other administrators, and takernvirtually all decisions from local schoolrnboards.” As Engler said in his address,rn”We cannot sit by and ignore the problemsrnin the name of local control.” (Hisrnremarks echoed a line from a speech thatrnClinton had delivered a week before inrnIllinois: “We can no longer hide behindrnour love of local control of the schoolsrnand use that as an excuse not to hold ourselvesrnto high standards.”)rnEngler has been criticized by many forrnthe racial overtones of his plan (the studentsrnin the school districts most likely tornbe placed into state receivership are overwhelminglyrnminority), but the blackrnDemocratic mayor of Detroit, DennisrnArcher, pointed out the real danger.rn”Whatever the problems in the Detroitrnpublic schools,” Archer argued, “we havernnot reached the point where Lansing canrneducate Detroit children better than Detroiters.”rnI am a product of Michigan’s publicrnschools, but I now live in Rockford, Illinois,rna city whose school system has, forrnthe past three years, been under federalrncontrol as the result of a desegregationrnlawsuit. After $100 million in courtorderedrnspending, Rockford’s schools arernfar worse. Most of the original plaintiffsrnin the lawsuit—which had been filed tornachieve equity in funding between predominantlyrnwhite and predominantlyrnblack schools—have now denounced it,rnand are looking for ways to shake off federalrncontrol, stop busing before it starts,rnand revitalize Rockford’s old neighborhoodrnschool system.rnState control or federal control, thernproblem is still the same: the arrogancernof public officials who believe that theyrncare more for our children than we do.rnWe know what works best for children,rnand it is not—as President Clinton andrnGovernor Engler have proposed—furtherrnschool consolidation, nationalizedrnstandards, or bureaucratized education.rnThe real keys to success are neighborhoodrnschools, local standards, and—rnabove all else—parental involvement.rn—Scott P. RichertrnEPICYCLES:rn• More Benefits of Free Trade: HepatitisrnA is sweeping the nation, borne onrnstrawberries distributed to school lunchrnprograms. Over 200 students in Michiganrnhave contracted the disease, and thernnumbers are still coming in from otherrnstates. Despite a federal law against usingrnfood from foreign sources in thernschool lunch program, the berries werernimported from Mexico under NAFTArnguidelines, which have allowed Mexicanrnproduce to flood American markets.rnThe berries were apparently contaminatedrnin Mexican fields through exposure torndirty irrigation water or human waste.rnMeanwhile, the Washington Times reportsrnthat Representative James Traficantrnof Ohio has demanded that thernPentagon tell him why a military base inrnOhio gave Air Force Reservists bootsrnmade in China. Apparently, in this goldenrnage of free trade, the Pentagon believesrnwe can count on potential enemiesrnto continue to supply us with boots evenrnif hostilities should break out. Doesn’trnanyone remember Valley Forge?rn• Switch or Die: Kuwaiti citizenrnRobert Hussein has been reunited withrnhis family. Readers of our Septemberrn1996 issue will recall that after convertingrnto Christianity, Mr. Hussein was declaredrnan apostate by an Islamic Court,rnwhich is a virtual death sentence inrnKuwait, since apostates may be murderedrnwith impunity. Mr. Hussein wentrninto hiding and eventually left the country.rnNow, in order to be reunited with hisrnchildren, Mr. Hussein has taken the onlyrnstep that could ensure his personal safetyrnin Kuwait—a reconversion back to Islam.rnThe Rutherford Institute has sent a letterrnto the emir of Kuwait protesting the intolerancernthat necessitated this switch,rnbut it appears that the Middle Easternrnally America went to war to protectrncouldn’t care less about “diversity” orrnother Eurocentric ideals.rn• Language Du Jour: “Spanglish” (orrn”Cubonics,” as it is known in the Miamirnarea) is all the rage in our Hispanic communities.rnUnlike the made-up languagernEsperanto, to which it bears a superficialrnresemblance, Spanglish is the concreternresult of the clash of two cultures. It’srneasy to tell which one is winning. Whilernspeakers of Spanglish incorporate somernEnglish words directly, most words arernmade to conform to Spanish pronunciationsrnand spellings. (A few examplesrnfrom a New York Times story: chopingrnis shopping, maicrogtiey is microwave,rnoldoperos is holdup artists or muggers.)rnIt would be easy to dismiss Spanglishrnas this month’s Ebonics, were it not for arnreport recently released by the CensusrnBureau. According to the report, byrn2005 Hispanics will make up a greaterrnproportion of the American populationrnthan blacks, and by the middle of thernnext century, Hispanic Americans willrnaccount for one-quarter of the population.rnThe numbers cast a different lightrnon the new linguistic hybrid. More thanrnanything else, language defines a nation.rnAs Spanglish devours English, the languagernof America isn’t all that’s beingrnlost.rnO B I T E R DICTA: Richard Moore, arnpoet living in Belmont, Massachusetts,rnhas contributed four new poems to thisrnissue. Mr. Moore is the author of eightrnbooks of poetry, of which the most recentrnis The Mouth Whole: An Epic, asrnwell as translations of Plautus and Euripides,rna book of literary essays, and arnnovel. The Investigator. His next book ofrnverse. Pygmies and Pyramids, will be publishedrnin 1998; in the meantime, Mr.rnMoore gives frequent readings in thernBoston area.rnChronicles is illustrated this month byrnSt. Petersburg native Anatol Woolf, whornhas designed sets for theaters in Russiarnand has done illustrations for St. PetersburgrnTextbook Publishers, in addition tornfreelance work. In 1987 Mr. Woolf camernto America, where he began contributingrnto magazines and newspapers such as thernWashington Post, the Washington Times,rnPolicy Review, National GeographicrnTraveler, Legal Times, and Cricket.rnMr. Woolf works with a variety of materials,rnfrom water colors to pencil tornacrylic.rnContributing editor Samuel Francis,rnwho writes the “Principalities & Powers”rncolumn for Chronicles each month,rnhas published a new book with MiddlernAmerican Press, Revolution From thernMiddle. Composed of columns fromrnChronicles written between 1989 andrn1996, the book also includes a prefacernby Jerry Woodruff, editor of MiddlernAmerican News, and an introduction byrnMr. Francis. To order Revolution From thernMiddle, send $6.95 to Middle AmericanrnPress, P.O. Box 17088, Raleigh, NorthrnCarolma, 27619.rnJUNE 1997/9rnrnrn