All shoe salesmen are left wing extremists who we should crack down on.
Al Bundy wasn’t a left wing extremist.
Stanley Dunham moves family to Mercer Island, joins Unitarian church, known as ‘the little red church on the hill’ and enrolls Ann in school know for ‘its hotbed of Marxist teachers’:
The Dunhams from El Dorado to a bigger opportunity in 1955 — to a large store in downtown Seattle called Standard-Grunbaum Furniture at the corner of 2nd Avenue and Pine Street. “First in Furniture, Second at Pine,” read the Yellow Pages ad in the Seattle telephone directory.
Seattle in the 1950s had no Space Needle, no Microsoft, no Starbucks. Mercer Island, now a pricey home to corporate luminaries such as Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, was then “a rural, idyllic place,” said Elaine Johnson, who remembered summers with “sleepovers along the water in sleeping bags. It was so safe.” The island was quiet, politically conservative and all white. As a suburb, Mercer Island was still in its infancy. The 1950 census counted about 5,000 people, almost all white. Sanctioned deer hunts had stopped just a few years before the Dunhams arrived.
But consistent with the 1950s, there were undercurrents of turmoil. In 1955, the chairman of the Mercer Island school board, John Stenhouse, testified before the House Un-American Activities Subcommittee that he had been a member of the Communist Party.
Madelyn and Stanley shed their Methodist and Baptist upbringing and began attending Sunday services at the East Shore Unitarian Church in nearby Bellevue.
“In the 1950s, this was sometimes known as ‘the little Red church on the hill,’” said Peter Luton, the church’s senior minister. Skepticism, the kind that Stanley embraced and passed on to his daughter, was welcomed here.
“She was not a standard-issue girl. You don’t start out life as a girl with a name like Stanley without some sense you are not ordinary.”
At Mercer High School, two teachers — Val Foubert and Jim Wichterman — generated regular parental thunderstorms by teaching their students to challenge societal norms and question all manner of authority. Foubert, who died recently, taught English. His texts were cutting edge: “Atlas Shrugged,” “The Organization Man,” “The Hidden Persuaders,” “1984” and the acerbic writings of H.L. Mencken. Wichterman taught philosophy.
The hallway between the two classes was known as “anarchy alley,” and students pondered the challenging notions of Wichterman’s teachings, including such philosophers as Sartre and Kierkegaard. He also touched the societal third rail of the 1950s: He questioned the existence of God. And he didn’t stop there. “I had them read ‘The Communist Manifesto,’ and the parents went nuts,” said Wichterman, adding that parents also didn’t want any discussions about “anything to do with sex,” religion and theology. The parental protests were known as “mothers’ marches.”
Stanley Dunham had wanted a son, so when his daughter was born, he named her Stanley Ann Dunham, after himself.
Known as Anna, Obama’s mother, was a strong-willed, unconventional member of the Mercer Island High School graduating class of 1960. She spent 8th grade through high school there. Here is her application for a Social Security card, submitted when she was 16. Stanley Ann Dunham was issued Social Security number 535-40-8522.
Curious and precocious, Anna was greatly influenced by left-wing and communist teachers in the Mercer Island High School, who had the students read the philosophers Sartre and Kierkegaard, “The Communist Manifesto” and question the existence of God. Anna touted herself as an atheist.
Mercer Island High was a hotbed of pro-Marxist radical teachers. John Stenhouse, board member, testified before the House Un-American Activities Subcommittee that he had been a member of the Communist Party USA and the school has a number of Marxists on its staff. Two teachers at this school, Val Foubert and Jim Wichterman, both Frankfurt School style Marxists, taught a critical theory curriculum to students which included; rejection of societal norms, attacks on Christianity, the traditional family, and assigned readings by Karl Marx. The hallway between Fouberts and Wichterman classrooms was called “anarchy ally.”
Susan Blake, a classmate and former city councilwoman from Mercer Island who long ago changed the infant Barack’s messy diaper, said of her friend: “Hers was a mind in full tilt.”
Anna gravitated toward an intellectual clique. According to former classmate Chip Wall, she caught foreign films at Seattle’s only art-house theater, the Ridgemont, and trekked to University District coffee shops like the Encore to talk about jazz, the value of learning from other cultures and the “very dull Eisenhower-ness of our parents.”
“We were critiquing America in those days in the same way we are today: The press is dumbed-down, education is dumbed down, people don’t know anything about geography or the rest of the world,” said Wall, who later taught at Mercer Island High and is now retired in Seattle.
A high school classmate described Anna as “a fellow traveler. . . . We were liberals before we knew what liberals were.”
The descriptive, “fellow traveler,” was first applied to non-communists who were inclined toward the views of the Communist Party by Leon Trotsky.
Barack Obama was born of Marxists; mentored by a communist writer and activist; spent his college days hanging around radical activists; worked as a radical community organizer, learning the radical tactics of the communist, Alinsky; attended a radical church; was introduced to Chicago politics by a communist in the home of another communist; and today lends his political skill to the international goals of radical activists, and had radicals working on his campaign and in his administration.
The fact is, Obama has been around Marxists, of one kind or another, since the age of 12.
Stanley Dunham chose as Barack’s mentor a documented Communist:
Stanley Dunham, Obama’s grandfather, was friends with Davis, a bohemian libertine who drank heavily and loved jazz — both had roots reaching back to Kansas and had families of mixed races — and the black writer took an interest in Obama.
“Our grandfather ... thought (Frank) was a point of connection, a bridge if you will, to the larger African-American experience for my brother,” Maya Soetoro-Ng, Obama’s half-sister, said during a recent interview.
Dunham and his grandson would spend evenings at Davis’s dilapidated home in Waikiki, Honolulu’s main tourist district. Davis, who had raised a family with a white wife, would read his poetry and share whiskey with Dunham, Obama recalled.
Dawna Weatherly-Williams, a friend of Davis’ who also lives in Honolulu, said Dunham wanted Obama to know that there were other children like him who were part black and part white, she said.
“Stan was real proud of that,” she said, adding that it was rare to see black men with white women at the time.
“He knew Stan real well. Theyd play Scrabble and drink and crack jokes and argue. Frank always won and he was always very braggadocio about it too. It was all jocular. They didnt get polluted drunk. And Frank never really did drugs, though he and Stan would smoke pot together.”
“Stan had been promising to bring Barry by because we all had that in common. Franks kids were half-white, Stans grandson was half-black and my son was half-black. We all had that in common and we all really enjoyed it. We got a real kick out of reality.”
Maya Soetoro-Ng, Obama’s half-sister, told the Associated Press recently that her grandfather had seen Davis was “a point of connection, a bridge if you will, to the larger African-American experience for my brother”