Where were you the first time you heard Zack de la Rocha’s aggressive vocals and revolutionary political views? Chances are you didn’t hear it anywhere in a class curriculum. There’s a school district in Arizona where the song “Take the Power Back” was played in a lesson for Mexican-American history. The weirdest part of it all, though? Is that apparently that it’s technically illegal.
The republican superintendent for the district, John Huppenthal, is on his way out, and he spent the last day on the job threatening sanctions on the school for using Rage Against the Machine in the districts curriculum. Apparently, he sent a notice on non compliance to the district citing the Arizona ban on ethnic studies within the collective school system. Huppenthal cites the lyrics of the song, saying that the content isn’t allowed in Arizona classrooms, and claims that the classes were working to promote “the overthrow of the government” and “a resentment toward a race or class of people.”
Of course, Tom Morello caught word of what was going on, and decided to take to Twitter, posting this picture:
It’s a bit of a controversial topic, in some sense. Should education be limited because it can be teach the wrong message? Or should some things be left out for being too inflammatory?
Here’s the song in question, just as a reminder: