Bernie Sanders didn’t mention the dark side of education in Castro’s Cuba

https://thehill.com/opinion/international/484878-bernie-sanders-didnt-mention-the-dark-side-of-education-in-castros-cuba

Bernie Sanders didn’t mention the dark side of education in Castro’s Cuba

By Gregory J. Wallance

February 27, 2020

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TeYCIfmeW70

Plain ignorance is the most charitable explanation for the misleading defense of communist Cuba offered by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on CBS News‘ “60 Minutes.” While saying he was opposed to Cuba’s “authoritarian nature,” Sanders insisted that “it’s unfair to simply say everything is bad. You know? When Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing?”

Sanders correctly stated that education became universal in Castro’s Cuba, but he ignored the deeply Orwellian nature of the educational system. Literacy was not sought by the Cuban regime just for the sake of literacy. From the outset, the regime viewed education, as two experts on Cuba explained in The Atlantic, as the “key to the revolution taking hold and creating a literate population loyal to the government.”

Cuban children were taught in school that their highest loyalty is to the Communist Party. They were instructed to denounce their parents to authorities for counter-revolutionary tendencies. If parents, in the privacy of their own home, explained ideas to their children that conflicted with communist ideology, they could be jailed for three years under the Code for Children, Youth and Family.

The school system stifled private religious beliefs. Cuban children were taught that God does not exist and that religion was the “opium of the masses.” If a child mentioned God in a class, the child’s parents were called in for a stern lecture that they were “confusing” the child and given a warning.

Starting in elementary school, a student’s progress was recorded in a so-called “cumulative school file.” The file not only recorded academic progress but also measured the “revolutionary integration” of both the student and the student’s family, such as whether they participated in mass demonstrations. The file was updated throughout the life of the child, whose education and work options would be determined by what it contained.

Cubans are literate, but the regime severely constricts how they can use their literacy. Freedom House describes Cuba as “a one-party communist state that outlaws political pluralism, suppresses dissent, and severely restricts basic civil liberties.” Only a small percentage of Cubans have access to the internet. Cubans cannot read viewpoints critical of, or disapproved by, the regime, and expressing such views means running considerable risks.

One example of political repression, among too many, is the Cuban dissident Dr. Óscar Elías Biscet, a Nobel Peace Prize nominee and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which he was awarded in absentia by President George W. Bush. Dr. Biscet has been repeatedly arrested for his non-violent political activities (as recently as last week) and held in horrific conditions. He was once sentenced to twenty-five years in prison. (Biscet was released after four years following international protests.)

But there is a less charitable explanation for Senator Sanders’ defense of an Orwellian system than simple ignorance. In 1985, Sanders visited Nicaragua and then defended the Soviet-backed Sandinista regime despite its serious human rights abuses, including the suspension of Nicaraguans’ civil liberties. He refused to call the Venezuelan leader Nicolás Maduro a dictator even though Maduro had rigged his election and banned the elected legislature from passing laws. After a visit to Cuba in the mid-1980s, Sanders said that he was “excited and impressed by the Cuban revolution.”

That last comment is reminiscent of what Lincoln Steffens, the famous muckraking journalist, had to say in 1921 after a visit to the nascent Soviet Union. “I have seen the future, and it works.” Evidently the heady revolutionary spirit and the glittering but false promise of a utopian society had blinded this otherwise tough-minded reporter to a nightmare. Something like that may have happened to Bernie Sanders when he went to Cuba and Nicaragua. But in refusing to acknowledge the brutal reality of these regimes, Sanders demonstrated that he is just as soft on left-wing dictators and autocrats as Donald Trump is on right-wing ones.

February 27, 2020. Tags: , , , , . Bernie Sanders, Communism. Leave a comment.

Fabiola Santiago: I went to school in Cuba under Castro. Here’s what it’s like, Bernie Sanders.

https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/fabiola-santiago/article240425431.html

I went to school in Cuba under Castro. Here’s what it’s like, Bernie Sanders.

By Fabiola Santiago

February 25, 2020

Miami Herald columnist Fabiola Santiago, pictured in third grade in Cuba, was ostracized for not wearing her school uniform with the required scarf of the young Communist pioneers.

Look at the little girl in the picture.

In her serious demeanor, a front for fear — and in her story — you might find, Senator Bernie Sanders, some of the profundity lacking in your populist bid to become the Democratic nominee and 46th U.S. president.

This girl’s real-life experience is the antidote to your cheap, propagandist talking points on Cuba’s education system and Fidel Castro.

The banner behind her tells you her school in the city of Matanzas is confiscated property. “Intervenida” is the euphemism the new government led by Castro used to swoop in and appropriate every asset in the country, not only from the wealthy but from the middle class, too.

And, to make the point that this is now Castro country, take it or leave it, the private school is renamed after his 26th of July Movement.

“You know, when Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program,” you told “60 Minutes” host Anderson Cooper. “Is that a bad thing? Even though Fidel Castro did it?”

https://twitter.com/60Minutes/status/1231732950540132355

Let’s break it all down.

The girl is 8 and in the third grade, the daughter of a beloved and respected teacher forced to resign over her refusal to teach Communist dogma to her students. (More on the mother later.)

Her father, a merchant of flour goods, sees his small, one-man business operation confiscated, and when he declines to continue to operate it as an employee of the state, he is sent to work in the agriculture fields as punishment.

Everyone in town knows the family is leaving the country to the United States.

Like the thousands before them and thousands along with them, they’re branded “gusanos,” worms — and this creates a lot of tension for the children in your idyllic “literacy system.”

The girl has never scored below a 96 on any test.

She’s No. 1 on the honor roll — and the principal wants her to wear the state-mandated red scarf of the Communist youth organization, los pioneros, or she’s out. Her parents refuse. Her mother is called in for a conference. The women argue.

The truce: The price for not wearing the pañoleta is being knocked down to second place for lack of revolutionary spirit. The top spot will go to a boy who is an eager and loyal pionerito (like decades later, a returned Elián González would be, too).

The girl is sad to lose the place she worked hard for over a scarf she sort of liked and everyone gets to wear, except for her and her little brother. But she loves her friends, no matter whether they’re leaving or staying, or if they chant every morning —“Pioneers, for Communism! We will be like Che” — or stay silent like she does.

Communist indoctrination

As the years pass and the wait for a visa wears on, she learns to work around the Communist indoctrination.

When she’s asked to write a glowing essay on Fidel Castro, she writes biography, complete, thorough, but no glowing appraisal because at 10, she knows more than Bernie Sanders at 78.

She’s a little more effusive with Camilo Cienfuegos, the more charismatic comandante who mysteriously “disappeared” during a plane flight. Even she, a child, suspects foul play.

Her little brother, a smart-aleck class clown, also has to make adjustments.

When his teacher asks him to form a sentence with the words “agrarian reform,” her brother eagerly chimes in out loud: “The agrarian reform is very sour!” His sentence rhymes in Spanish — and it’s a hit with classmates, but not with the teacher, an ardent revolutionary.

She is so mad she grabs him by an ear and pulls so hard and long that the boy bleeds all the way home. The next day, the mother goes to school and she could be heard screaming to the teacher that if she ever touches one of her kids again, she’ll be the one dragged down the street.

The girl fears that her mother could go to jail and she would be without parents. But her mother is still respected because she had earned the place she gave up on principle.

Literacy predates Castro

See, despite your claims, senator, that it was Castro who started a literacy program in Cuba, a common and often-repeated lie, the girl’s mother worked in a literacy program in the countryside after graduation from a teacher’s college in the early 1950s.

Teachers had to do so to earn their spot in a city classroom.

She drove a Jeep (bought by her oldest businessman brother, who paid for her schooling) part of the way, then she rode a horse that was brought to her so she could reach the one-room school house.

This isn’t a tall tale of Cuban exiles in Miami. There are photos of all the above to prove it.

In one, she’s tending to the garden planted in front of the school, while a student peeks from inside. The back is inscribed: “First school where I was able to practice my profession as a teacher. San Gregorio Farm. Ceiba Mocha, Matanzas, Cuba.”

Yes, by the time she leaves Cuba in 1969, this girl knows that the Cuban education system is dogmatic and abusive to innocent children who are ostracized for their parents’ beliefs.

Her parents’ heart-wrenching decision to leave it all behind and start a new life in Miami, saves her from worse. After their 12th birthdays, her friends have to enroll in la escuela al campo. They have to leave their home and their parents to live in barracks in the countryside and work in agricultural fields.

Because the “free education” in Cuba isn’t free, and the Castro literacy program the American left has bought into is rooted in indoctrination and devotion to the one-party political system.

Your apparatchik views on Cuba, senator, are as old and dated as the photos of me and my mother.

Sixty-one years of unrelenting dictatorship later, and in the year 2020, the least Florida Democrats looking forward to the primary in March deserve from the front-runner is lucidity, not more obfuscation.

But when you can’t even verbalize on “60 Minutes” how you’ll fund your signature healthcare project, pay for all that free college and child care you’re offering, what else can be expected on Cuba?

You are who you are, a populist riding a wave of discontent, as unfit for the presidency as your rival on the other side of the political spectrum.

Truly not yours, the little girl in the photograph, a registered Democrat in swing-state Florida.

February 26, 2020. Tags: , , , , . Bernie Sanders, Communism, Education. Leave a comment.

A DC elementary school accidentally gave the wrong second-grader to a child-welfare worker

https://www.yahoo.com/news/dc-elementary-school-accidentally-gave-200737572.html

A DC elementary school accidentally gave the wrong second-grader to a child-welfare worker

February 12, 2020

* A DC elementary school mistakenly turned over the wrong 8-year-old student to a child-welfare worker.

* When the student’s relatives arrived to pick him up later that day, they realized he was missing and panicked.

* Washington City Paper reported that the mix-up happened when the case worker arrived and requested the student he was supposed to pick up, and school officials brought out a different student who shared the same distinctive first name.

An elementary school in Washington, DC, accidentally handed over the wrong 8-year-old student to a child-welfare worker, causing the young boy’s family to panic when they arrived at the school to pick him up that day and realized he was missing.

Washington City Paper reported that a Child and Family Services Agency case worker arrived at the Harriet Tubman Elementary School on January 31 to pick up a child for a visit with his father.

But the school brought out a different student who happened to have the same distinctive first name, and the case worker left the school with the incorrect child around 2 p.m. that day.

The mistake wasn’t caught until the student’s relatives arrived at the school that afternoon to pick him up, and learned he had left with a child-welfare worker.

In response to a request for comment, the CFSA directed Insider to comments from its director, Brenda Donald, quoted in The Washington Post. Donald told the newspaper that the case worker had not previously met the child he was supposed to pick up before arriving at the school, and the child he mistakenly picked up never raised any questions about why he was taken from his classroom.

“He’s a little kid, and usually the schools are trying to explain in a nice way that here’s a nice person from CFSA who is going to take you to McDonald’s to have lunch,” Donald told The Post. “It was a mistake, and it’s explainable. And again, I can understand the family being upset.”

The school’s principal, Amanda Delabar, sent a letter to parents confirming that a “student went briefly missing from school premises after being picked up incorrectly by Child and Family Services,” according to the letter obtained by Insider.

Delabar said in the letter school officials had made “every effort to protect the student’s and family’s privacy,” and said all staff had been reminded of school security protocols that include mandatory sign-ins and sign-outs, and identification requirements for any outside agencies picking up students.

But the family of the child who was mistakenly removed from school remained livid, telling Washington City Paper they had feared the boy was harmed.

“I just can’t understand,” his grandfather, Jason Myers, told the newspaper. “Anyone can come with a badge and take anyone’s kid.”

February 14, 2020. Tags: , , , , , . Education. Leave a comment.

A Pennsylvania school called police after a 6-year-old girl with Down Syndrome pointed her finger like a gun, her mother says

https://www.yahoo.com/news/pennsylvania-school-called-police-6-025708501.html

A Pennsylvania school called police after a 6-year-old girl with Down Syndrome pointed her finger like a gun, her mother says

February 11, 2020

* A 6-year-old with Down Syndrome pointed her fingers like a gun at her teacher, prompting officials to call the police, her mother said.

* Maggie Gaines said in a statement to the school board that the call was unnecessary, as her daughter clearly did not understand the gesture and was not a threat.

* The school district said in a statement it had agreed to review its policy requiring school officials to call police in such situations.

A Pennsylvania family is pleading with their school board to reconsider its policy on “threat assessments” for students, after their 6-year-old daughter with Down Syndrome was reported to police for pointing her finger like a gun.

Margot Gaines, a kindergartener at the Valley Forge Elementary School in Tredyffrin, Pennsylvania, made the gesture in November and told her teacher, “I shoot you,” according to her mother, Maggie.

Maggie said her daughter made the comment when her teacher asked her to do something she didn’t want to do, but had no idea what the words or the gesture meant.

“I imagine the utterance was not unlike the instances when I’ve told her it’s time for bed and she says, ‘I hate bed. I hate mommy,'” Maggie said in a statement last month to the school district.

Maggie said the teacher perceived the response as a “threat” and brought Margot to the principal, who realized that Margot was no danger to the teacher or her classmates.

But instead of dropping the incident, the principal followed a school district policy requiring a “threat assessment” team to be convened and decide whether disciplinary action was warranted.

Maggie said in her statement she was fine with that process, which concluded that Margot didn’t intend to harm anyone. But then the school called the police.

“I think most people would agree that this is where the issue should have ended. And yet it did not,” she said.

Maggie said school officials called the police department and provided authorities with the Gaines’ personal information, as well as information on the incident. Maggie said in her statement that an officer told her the information would be entered into the department’s database and would be publicly available.

“Because the school staff and administration chose to blindly follow this policy, an incident that resulted in no disciplinary action … is part of her permanent school record,” she said. “What’s more, her personal information has also been recorded at our local police department, where it is noted, without any context to the situation or her disability that she ‘threatened’ her teacher. How or if this information will be used against her in the future, I can’t say for certain.”

The Tredyffrin Police Department told the website SAVVY Main Line that an incident report was filed containing Margot’s name, address, age, and disability, but that it is “not releasable” and not a criminal record.

The Tredyffrin-Easttown School District told CBS Philly in a statement it would review its policy in the wake of the Gaines’ complaint.

“When developing the current practice, the District worked collaboratively with parents, law enforcement and private safety/mental health agencies and legal consultants to ensure our safety measures reflected considerable input from both our local community and experts in the field of school safety,” the statement said.

February 14, 2020. Tags: , , , , , , . Education, Police state, Zero tolerance. Leave a comment.

Wrongly-convicted man who spent 5 years on death row graduates from Texas college

https://abc7.com/society/man-who-spent-5-years-on-death-row-graduates-from-college/5755247/

Wrongly-convicted man who spent 5 years on death row graduates from Texas college

December 14, 2019

DENTON, Texas — At 17 years old, Ryan Matthews was wrongly accused of killing a man. Two years later, he was sentenced to death. Now, at age 39, he’s graduating from college.

In April 1997, a man in a ski mask shot and killed the 43-year-old owner of Comeaux’s Market in Bridge City, Louisiana, right across the river from New Orleans.

Investigators thought Matthews, a black teenager, killed the white business owner, and he was later found guilty by one black juror and 11 white jurors, WFAA in Dallas reported.

Activists rallied, and his family fought. DNA evidence eventually proved their case, and the real killer confessed.

After five years on death row, Matthews was exonerated, set free, and moved to Texas.

“All these years ago when I first came home, a reporter asked me what I wanted to do, and I told them I wanted to go to school,” he said.

And he followed through on that promise to himself. On Saturday, Matthews graduated from Texas Woman’s University in Denton with a bachelor’s degree in applied arts and sciences.

Moved by Matthews’ story, his sister and 71-year-old mother also enrolled in the university.

“So I decided to go back and pursue my Ph.D. because hopefully, I’ll be able to do some legislative work and get some of that wrongful conviction and reintegration legislation changed,” said Monique Coleman, Matthews’ sister.

His mother, Pauline, said she’s “proud, proud, proud” as she could be.

Matthews said he can feel bitter about his experience, though his feelings are nuanced.

“I am because of what happened, but I can’t because it would stop me from moving forward … I’m trying to be the best I can be,” he said.

 

December 15, 2019. Tags: , . Education. Leave a comment.

A Simple Plan To Address The ‘Student Loan Crisis’

https://townhall.com/columnists/derekhunter/2019/04/25/a-simple-plan-to-address-the-student-loan-crisis-n2545285

A Simple Plan To Address The ‘Student Loan Crisis’

By Derek Hunter

April 25, 2019

It’s the greatest crisis facing the country today and threatens not only the present, but the future as well. It’s not the national debt, terrorism, nuclear proliferation, climate change, health care, or any of the other issues Democratic candidates for president routinely ramble about, no. This is something far more serious – people making informed, really bad choices. And the Democratic Party is rallying to their defense.

Out of pure self-loathing, I watched most of the 5-hour lovefest on CNN Monday with Democratic candidates for president. One hour each for Amy Klobuchar, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg. These back-to-back town halls featured pre-selected questions from a screened audience of college students looking to government to solve their problems. Of course, government can’t solve your problems, especially when your biggest problem is looking to government to solve your problems.

Still, it was a look not only into the minds of the candidates, it was a look into the minds of people who, someday, will be in elected office themselves. It was scary.

A day after more than 300 people were killed in a terrorist attack because of their faith, I don’t remember a single question or statement from anyone about it. There were, however, a lot of questions about student loans.

Judging by the amount of coverage student loan debt has gotten this year, you’d think there were loan officers hiding in bushes outside of high schools waiting to jump out and force college bound seniors to sign their lives away to big banks.

That’s not happening, of course, students are signing those documents willingly after actively seeking out loans for college. But you’d never know it by the way the candidates talk about student loans.

The issue isn’t so much an issue as it is an opportunity to pander. Candidates dangle varying versions of loan forgiveness and “free” college to students with more debt than many companies as a way to buy votes. It’s also a way for Democrats to advance an idea that is at the core of progressive politics: no personal responsibility.

So much of what Democrats are pushing this year is designed to insulate people from the bad choices they make – don’t worry about consequences, government is here to “fix” it. It’s the “let mommy kiss your booboo” of 2020.

Nothing captures this attitude like student loan forgiveness. Fully informed people making bad choices to borrow more money than their education will ever be worth, flocking to politicians promising to make it all better.

Rather than stealing from taxpayers to absolve people of their bad decisions, here’s an alternative that will serve the much more important purpose of teaching future generations about responsibility: tell the truth.

One questioner at Monday’s CNN event asked what can be done for her. According to her question, she’d amassed $25,000 in loans for just her freshman year of undergraduate studies at Saint Anselm College, which cost $38,000 per year in 2017. Rather than pander to someone like this girl, all candidates, and all Americans, should ask her why in the hell she chose to attend such an expensive school. Ask what undergraduate degree she thought could justify such a move. These people need to be taught that a degree in interpretive dance or 1940s bisexual polar bear studies might make you super-woke in your Young Socialists of America drum circle, but they aren’t viable for future employment.

Additionally, every student with a complaint about student debt should be asked the following:

1. Why go to an expensive school if you can’t afford it without taking on massive debt?

2. Why would your parents allow you to choose a school if you have to take on upwards of $100,000 in loans?

3. Do you understand the concept of a loan?

Knowing those questions had to have gone through their heads at some point, they should then be asked why they should be absolved of their debts when they willingly and knowingly made bad decisions?

They won’t have an answer, at least not a good one.

Candidates should pat them on the back, tell them they’re sorry but there’s nothing they can do for them. Not everyone is meant to lead a life of example, some people serve as cautionary tales – so let it be with these people.

Future generations can learn from the high self-esteem, snowflake generation whose parents should have but didn’t tell them “no,” so they can avoid their mistakes. Unless you’re going to be roommates with the next Mark Zuckerberg, no undergraduate education is worth $100,000 or more in debt. If you can’t pay for it with savings, scholarships, grants, and some moderate amount of loans, don’t go to that school. There are other options.

There should be no student loan forgiveness. It’ll be a tough lesson for kids to learn, but it’s one they need. Their parents failed them, their guidance counselors failed them, and they failed themselves. Let a group of liberal billionaires step-up, put their money where their mouths are and help, but don’t force an autoworker in Michigan or farmer in Wisconsin who’s helping their kid work their way through a state school or commuter college do it.

Choices have consequences, especially bad ones. At least they should. Government is supposed to protect people’s rights, not from themselves. And certainly not at the expense of everyone else. Let these people serve as an example of what not to do. It won’t help them, but it’ll do wonders for the next generation.

April 25, 2019. Tags: , , , . Economics, Education. 2 comments.

Student debt forgiveness is a horrible idea

Responsible adults pay off their debts.

If student debt does get forgiven, that will just give colleges one more reason to raise their tuition. Students will then borrow even more money, knowing that they won’t have to pay it back. The more money the government spends on college aid, the more the colleges raise their tuition. College tuition has already risen many times faster than the rate of inflation, and the last thing we need is to make this problem even worse than it already is.

Student debt forgiveness is unfair to the students who already paid off their debt.

Student debt forgiveness is also unfair to students who worked their way through college.

Student debt forgiveness is also unfair to people who never go to college.

January 5, 2019. Tags: , , , . Economics, Education. 1 comment.

Homer Simpson’s ignorance of New Mexico’s statehood is now being replicated by multiple real life government employees in Washington D.C.

When I read this recent news article, it reminded me of this joke from The Simpsons. In 1993, during the season 5 episode “Boy-Scoutz ‘n the Hood,” Homer was shown to not know that New Mexico was a U.S. state. Here’s a video of it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3jYO0TKcm4

When I was searching for that video, I found out that The Simpsons had later recycled that same joke with Mr. Burns seven seasons later in the episode “Homer vs. Dignity,” which I had never seen, because it aired several years after I had stopped watching new episodes due to the series having jumped the shark. Here’s a video of that:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEJzXbqyU8A

Anyway, the recent news article talks about how a citizen of New Mexico had applied for a marriage license in Washington D.C., but the government clerk was not willing to accept the man’s New Mexico driver’s license as proof of U.S. citizenship. The clerk said that the man would need a passport.

Such ignorance among a government employee who handles these kinds of things is inexcusable.

And how is it even possible for an adult who lives in the U.S. to not know that there is a U.S. state called New Mexico?

It was funny when Homer Simpson – a fictional character displayed such ignorance.

But it’s pathetic to be coming from a real life employee of the Washington D.C. government.

To make it worse, when the clerk went to ask a supervisor about this, the supervisor was also unaware that New Mexico was a U.S. state. The supervisor also said that the man would need a passport.

All together, it took a whopping 20 minutes until one of the multiple government employees in the department was finally willing to admit that New Mexico was indeed a U.S. state.

 

https://www.lcsun-news.com/story/news/local/2018/11/29/las-cruces-resident-prove-new-mexico-statehood-washington-dc/2149376002/

Couple forced to prove that New Mexico is a state while applying for marriage license

November 29, 2018

LAS CRUCES — Gavin Clarkson, a recent candidate for New Mexico secretary of state, experienced a one-of-our-50-is-missing moment earlier this month when applying for a marriage license in the nation’s capital.

Clarkson, who lives in Las Cruces, and his then-fiancée visited the District of Columbia Courts Marriage Bureau on Nov. 20 to apply for a marriage license.

But, once there, the couple encountered a small problem, Clarkson said. The clerk wouldn’t accept Clarkson’s driver’s license — from New Mexico — as proof of his identity. Rather, the clerk, who mistakenly believed Clarkson was a foreign citizen — said he would have to provide an international passport to get the marriage license.

After Clarkson objected, the clerk went to check with a supervisor, who confirmed Clarkson would need a passport.

“You know you are from flyover country when you are applying for a marriage license, give them your New Mexico driver’s license, and they come back and say: ‘My supervisor says we cannot accept international driver’s licenses. Do you have a New Mexico passport?'” Clarkson posted on Facebook recently.

Repeat attempt

Speaking with the Sun-News about the incident, Clarkson said the clerk went back to check a second time about whether she could accept a New Mexico driver’s license as proof of identify. After that, the personnel finally concluded New Mexico was in fact a U.S. state and accepted his driver’s license along with the application.

Clarkson, who has called New Mexico home since 2012, said he’s heard about the state’s residents experiencing such incidents when traveling, but “it was the first time it happened to me.”

“She thought New Mexico was a foreign country,” he said of the clerk. “All the couples behind us waiting in line were laughing.”

Clarkson’s wife, Marina, immigrated from Argentina in the 1990s, becoming a legal permanent resident and then a naturalized U.S. citizen. She speaks English fluently, though she has a slight accent. But the clerk complimented Clarkson, not Marina, on how well he spoke the language. He said his wife was in disbelief, wondering: “Why are you complimenting him on his English?”

‘It was a comical moment’

The incident took about 20 minutes altogether, and the clerk kindly apologized for the error, Clarkson said. While it was an annoyance at the time, looking back, he and his wife see the humor in it. The couple’s wedding ceremony — which also took place in Washington, D.C., where his wife lives — took place without any problems.

“Everything else went fine, but it was a comical moment in the whole process,” he said.

Notably, Clarkson is also an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation. If he’d shown that ID to the marriage bureau, he said, it could have cleared up the confusion over his identity.

“Apparently it would have been easier if I’d shown her my tribal ID,” he said.

The D.C. courts system acknowledged the staff error in response to a call from the Sun-News.

“We understand that a clerk in our Marriage Bureau made a mistake regarding New Mexico’s 106-year history as a state,” said Leah H. Gurowitz, director of media and public relations for D.C. Courts, in an email. “We very much regret the error and the slight delay it caused a New Mexico resident in applying for a DC marriage license.”

Not alone

Clarkson is not alone in his experience applying for a marriage license. In a regular feature dubbed “One of Our 50 is Missing,” New Mexico Magazine for years has documented with comedic flair New Mexicans’ frustrations and trials in trying to persuade non-New Mexicans across the country — and sometimes the world — that New Mexico is in fact one of the 50 U.S. states.

The Clarksons have since celebrated their wedding with a reception in Texas, where Marina’s family live; they plan to also have a reception in New Mexico.

Since the Nov. 6 election, Clarkson, who was the GOP’s nominee for New Mexico secretary of state, said he’s been in “recovery mode,” but he’s keeping his options open about what he’ll do next. He does plan to stay in New Mexico.

December 1, 2018. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Television. Leave a comment.

UK middle school teaches students about different religions. But the school’s act of brainwashing its students is only being done with Islam.

A middle school in the UK is teaching its students about different religions. I think that’s a good thing.

However, there is one aspect of this that is only being applied to one religion, and not to others. Specifically, the school has assigned its students to write a letter to their families about converting to Islam. But the school has not handed out this same assignment for any other religion.

As is often the case, the political left is trying to force Islam on to people against their will.

And in this particular case, they’re doing this to children, who are innocent and naive, and may have no idea what is being done to them.

October 2, 2018. Tags: , , , , , . Education, Islamization, Religion, Social justice warriors. 1 comment.

Medical school cancels honor society because whites and Asians were earning better grades than blacks and Latinos

According to this article from NPR, at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, in order to get into the Alpha Omega Alpha honor society, you have to be in the top 25% of your graduating class.

The school is eliminating the honor society because not enough blacks and Latinos were graduating in the top 25%.

I’m not sure how getting rid of this honor society makes anyone better off.

On the contrary – I see this as just one more example of the dumbing down of America’s educational system.

As to the issue of why blacks and Latinos are underrepresented in the top 25%, my guess is that the school has lower admissions standards for blacks and Latinos than for everyone else. I could be wrong. And I’d be curious to hear anyone else explain a different reason in the comment section.

 

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/09/05/643298219/a-medical-school-tradition-comes-under-fire-for-racism

A Medical School Tradition Comes Under Fire For Racism

September 5, 2018

Senior medical student Giselle Lynch has plenty of accomplishments to list when she applies for a coveted spot in an ophthalmology residency program this fall.

But one box she won’t be able to check when she submits her application is one of the highest academic awards medical students can receive, election to the honor society Alpha Omega Alpha.

It’s not because she didn’t excel. It’s because her medical school, the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, put a moratorium on student nominations because it determined the selection process discriminates against students of color.

The award is open to the top 25 percent of a medical school’s graduating class and can be a valuable career boost, making students more competitive for desirable residencies and jobs.

Icahn administrators say the disparities in the selection process reflect deeper issues of racial inequality in medical education.

“AOA perpetuates systems that are deeply flawed,” says Dr. David Muller, the dean for medical education at Icahn. “We can’t justify putting people who are historically at a disadvantage at an even greater disadvantage. It just doesn’t seem fair to dangle in front of our students an honorific that we know people are not equally eligible for.”

Over the past five years, around 3 percent of students chosen for the distinction at Icahn were from a racial background that is underrepresented in medicine, which includes blacks and Latinos. In that same period, about 18 percent to 20 percent of each graduating class at Icahn came from those groups.

The school made the change after Lynch led a group of fellow students in an effort to fight inequality at Icahn. The students collected data on how many students from underrepresented minorities were nominated to the honor society at Icahn and presented it in a series of meetings with school leadership last year.

Lynch, who is black, recalls one particularly moving meeting when they showed photographs of Icahn’s past AOA students — and black and Latino faces were conspicuously sparse.

“Where are we? We’re nowhere here,” says Lynch, remembering her reaction. “AOA is an award of student excellence. What was the argument that was being perpetuated about us if we’re not being included?”

Announced in May of this year, the decision at Icahn was a controversial one, because many students and faculty fear that not participating in the award puts Icahn students at a disadvantage when competing for slots in residency programs.

The honor society has existed since 1902 and is a sought-after line on the résumés of medical students across the country. Membership can help students secure training in competitive specialties and is a predictor of success in academic medicine.

Membership is generally open to the top 25 percent of medical students in a graduating class, as determined by their grades and scores on standardized tests, but only about 16 percent makes it in. Each medical school has its own criteria for making final selections including qualities like leadership or professionalism.

Icahn is not alone in selecting a disproportionately low number of minority students for the honor society. A 2017 study in JAMA Internal Medicine showed that nationwide, black and Asian students were less likely than their white counterparts to be selected for the honor.

Dr. Dowin Boatright, the study’s lead author and an assistant professor of emergency medicine at Yale, hypothesizes that the disparities may be related to racial inequalities in grading and standardized tests, a phenomenon well-documented in medical education literature. Grading based on clinical performance is subjective, he notes, since it often reflects a global assessment of a student rather than technical skills or performance on a test.

“You’re graded on things that are completely vulnerable to bias, like, ‘How good is this medical student?’ ” Boatright says.

Other medical schools are also considering how their AOA chapters can accurately reflect the racial makeup of their student bodies, according to Dr. Eve Higginbotham, the president of AOA board. And at the University of California, San Francisco, faculty and students are debating whether the honor society has a future there.

“Systems we use [for student evaluation] fail to take into account the extra work minorities are doing,” says Dr. Catherine Lucey, vice dean for education at UCSF. “[Minority] students have more stressors they have to deal with, low levels of racism that exist in our patients and our clinical environments.”

Lucey says that UCSF changed its selection criteria for AOA in 2016 to focus less on grades. The number of minority students selected for the honor society that year increased to match the percentage of minorities in each graduating class.

Dr. Jonathan Giftos, an internist in New York who was president of the Icahn chapter when he graduated in 2012, says disparities in the honor society are important to address because when medical education favors white students that can mean fewer minorities in leadership roles.

“It feels like a layering on of accolades that makes people who are doing well do better, have more access and power and opportunity,” Giftos says.

National AOA leadership says that diversity is a priority for the organization, but since every medical school is different, they leave the specifics of how students are chosen up to the school.

“We know that improving diversity will hopefully result in inclusion of talented individuals from different backgrounds, and that will help benefit our patient care,” says Dr. Richard Byyny, executive director of AOA. “But the schools themselves need to tackle this.”

Muller notes that Icahn has not officially closed its AOA chapter and will still nominate faculty and residents.

And student activists at Icahn aren’t celebrating yet. Lynch says she now wants to focus on discrimination in grading and medical school admissions. This, she says, can help address the dearth of minority physicians in different specialities — a problem with negative consequences for the health of minority patients.

“Many of us are still wary,” Lynch says. “It is a symbolic gesture, actually. We are interested in the deeper work.”

September 8, 2018. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Health care, Political correctness, Racism, Social justice warriors. 2 comments.

Here’s my response to Suzanna Danuta Walters, the feminist studies professor who complained that “Women are underrepresented in higher-wage jobs”

Suzanna Danuta Walters is a feminist studies professor at Northeastern University. In a recent Washington Post opinion column titled, “Why can’t we hate men?” she wrote:

“Women are underrepresented in higher-wage jobs”

So here’s my response: We should abolish feminist studies. And we should encourage more women to major in subjects that will get them higher-wage jobs, such as electrical engineering, petroleum engineering, computer science, physics, chemistry, applied mathematics, business, medicine, and law.

 

June 12, 2018. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Education, Sexism, Social justice warriors. 2 comments.

Shame on Trump for continuing Obama’s insane policy of hiring air-traffic controllers based on race instead of merit!

When Obama was president, he abandoned the old system of hiring qualified air-traffic controllers who had a college degree in air-traffic control and/or were military veterans with aviation experience, because too many of these people were white males. Obama then replaced the old system with a new system that tried to achieve racial diversity by asking applicants how many different sports they had played when they were in high school. I explain this below in detail.

But first, I want to post this new video from Fox News, which shows that Trump is continuing with Obama’s ridiculous policy:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qh9SxqsQdpo

The Wall St. Journal has also written an article about Trump’s continuation of Obama’s absurd policy, which you can read at this link.

Now, to explain Obama’s policy in detail.

When Obama was president, the Federal Aviation Administration stopped giving preferential treatment to air-traffic controller applicants who had passed classes from the 36 FAA-approved college aviation programs across the U.S., because too many of the people who passed these classes were white males.

At the same time, the FAA also stopped giving preference to applicants who were military veterans with aviation experience.

Under the new system, applicants were asked how many different high school sports they had participated in.

In 2014, the Wall St. Journal reported:

For years, aspiring air-traffic controllers in the U.S. have enrolled in schools selected by the Federal Aviation Administration to offer special courses that could smooth the way for a job at the agency.

But at the end of December, the FAA abruptly ended that special status for the 36 participating colleges and universities…

… some critics suspect it is intended partly to increase the share of minorities and women among controllers, who are now 83% male and white…

Some school officials say their controller enrollment already has fallen off because of the FAA change.

The FAA’s new stance “just doesn’t make sense,” said Douglas Williams, aviation-program director at the Community College of Baltimore County in Catonsville, Md… “They’re not getting the best-qualified applicants this way,” he said.

Students who have studied for the controller degrees fear they wasted time and money. Navy veteran Oscar Vega recently completed the two-year air-traffic program at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, Calif. He said he passed the FAA controller aptitude test last year, so he was shocked when, in February, he failed the biographical assessment.

“They say you can take it again,” said the 28-year-old. “But it’s not a test you can study for. And we don’t know why we failed because we don’t get any feedback.”

The schools estimate that more than 3,000 graduates have been removed from the FAA’s hiring pool because of the new policy.

In 2014, the Chicago Tribune reported:

More than half of the latest batch of air-traffic controller job offers nationwide went to people with no aviation experience…

The hiring breakdown marks a major shift in FAA recruitment strategy, which is now geared toward… attracting more minorities and women to the nation’s largely white and male controller work force

For almost the last 25 years, until the off-the-street hiring process was implemented in February, the FAA recruited controllers heavily from among military veterans possessing aviation experience and from the 36 FAA-approved college aviation programs across the U.S.

A sample version of the new test includes the following question:

21. The number of different high school sports I participated in was:

A- 4 or more

B- 3

C- 2

D- 1

E- didn’t play sports

Trump has now been president for more than a year, and this policy remains in place.

Shame on Trump for continuing Obama’s insane policy of hiring air-traffic controllers based on race instead of merit!

 

June 6, 2018. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Barack Obama, Donald Trump, Dumbing down, Education, Politics, Racism. Leave a comment.

Real world evidence proves that affirmative action hurts black people

This article is from the Atlantic – not exactly a bastion of the political right.

It says that although the supporters of affirmative action have good intentions, the actual results are that the policy hurts black students. It hurts them by putting them into schools that are above their ability, so they either end up dropping out, or, they abandon the STEM major that they had wanted in exchange for an easier major.

It also talks about how blacks are more likely to have white friends at the school if the school does not have affirmative action, because people tend to choose friends who are of the same academic ability as their own.

It also talks about how blacks are happier at schools that don’t have affirmative action because there is never any question as to their qualifications.

It also says that the same problems happen with white students who are admitted for athletic reasons, and for legacy admissions too.

But most importantly, it says that blacks benefited when UCLA banned affirmative action. After the school ended affirmative action, the number of black freshman was cut in half. However, the number of blacks from these freshman classes who went on to graduate stayed the same.

In other words, UCLA’s elimination of affirmative action did not reduce the number of blacks who graduated from UCLA. Instead, UCLA’s elimination of affirmative action only reduced the number of blacks who dropped out of UCLA.

So instead of getting admitted to UCLA by affirmative action and then dropping out of UCLA because the work at UCLA was too hard for them, these blacks ended up going to easier colleges, where they were admitted based on merit, so they were capable of doing the work, and so they had a much better chance of graduating.

I’d also like to comment on this one sentence from a different article which was published in the New York Times:

“A 2009 Princeton study showed Asian-Americans had to score 140 points higher on their SATs than whites, 270 points higher than Hispanics and 450 points higher than blacks to have the same chance of admission to leading universities.”

That sentence is in complete agreement with everything that is in the Atlantic article. That one sentence explains how affirmative actions sets blacks up for failure and dropping out by putting them into schools that are too difficult for them. We should get rid of affirmative action, and put blacks into schools that they get into based on merit. That way, they will have a much better chance of graduating.

Here is the Atlantic article. The bolding is mine:

https://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/10/the-painful-truth-about-affirmative-action/263122/

The Painful Truth About Affirmative Action

Why racial preferences in college admissions hurt minority students — and shroud the education system in dishonesty.

October 2, 2012

Affirmative action in university admissions started in the late 1960s as a noble effort to jump-start racial integration and foster equal opportunity. But somewhere along the decades, it has lost its way.

Over time, it has become a political lightning rod and one of our most divisive social policies. It has evolved into a regime of racial preferences at almost all selective schools — preferences so strikingly large and politically unpopular that administrators work hard to conceal them. The largest, most aggressive preferences are usually reserved for upper-middle-class minorities on whom they often inflict significant academic harm, whereas more modest policies that could help working-class and poor people of all races are given short shrift. Academic leaders often find themselves flouting the law and acting in ways that aggravate the worst consequences of large preferences. They have become prisoners of a system that many privately deplore for its often-perverse unintended effects but feel they cannot escape.

The single biggest problem in this system — a problem documented by a vast and growing array of research — is the tendency of large preferences to boomerang and harm their intended beneficiaries. Large preferences often place students in environments where they can neither learn nor compete effectively — even though these same students would thrive had they gone to less competitive but still quite good schools.

We refer to this problem as “mismatch,” a word that largely explains why, even though blacks are more likely to enter college than are whites with similar backgrounds, they will usually get much lower grades, rank toward the bottom of the class, and far more often drop out. Because of mismatch, racial preference policies often stigmatize minorities, reinforce pernicious stereotypes, and undermine the self-confidence of beneficiaries, rather than creating the diverse racial utopias so often advertised in college campus brochures.

The mismatch effect happens when a school extends to a student such a large admissions preference — sometimes because of a student’s athletic prowess or legacy connection to the school, but usually because of the student’s race — that the student finds himself in a class where he has weaker academic preparation than nearly all of his classmates. The student who would flourish at, say, Wake Forest or the University of Richmond, instead finds himself at Duke, where the professors are not teaching at a pace designed for him — they are teaching to the “middle” of the class, introducing terms and concepts at a speed that is unnerving even to the best-prepared student.

The student who is underprepared relative to others in that class falls behind from the start and becomes increasingly lost as the professor and his classmates race ahead. His grades on his first exams or papers put him at the bottom of the class. Worse, the experience may well induce panic and self-doubt, making learning even harder.

When explaining to friends how academic mismatch works, we sometimes say: Think back to high school and recall a subject at which you did fine but did not excel. Suppose you had suddenly been transferred into an advanced class in that subject with a friend who was about at your level and 18 other students who excelled in the subject and had already taken the intermediate course you just skipped. You would, in all likelihood, soon be struggling to keep up. The teacher might give you some extra attention but, in class, would be focusing on the median student, not you and your friend, and would probably be covering the material at what, to you, was a bewildering pace.

Wouldn’t you have quickly fallen behind and then continued to fall farther and farther behind as the school year progressed? Now assume that you and the friend who joined you at the bottom of that class were both black and everyone else was Asian or white. How would that have felt? Might you have imagined that this could reinforce in the minds of your classmates the stereotype that blacks are weak students?

So we have a terrible confluence of forces putting students in classes for which they aren’t prepared, causing them to lose confidence and underperform even more while, at the same time, consolidating the stereotype that they are inherently poor students. And you can see how at each level there are feedback effects that reinforce the self-doubts of all the students who are struggling.

Of course, being surrounded by very able peers can confer benefits, too — the atmosphere may be more intellectually challenging, and one may learn a lot from observing others. We have no reason to think that small preferences are not, on net, beneficial. But contemporary racial preferences used by selective schools — especially those extended to blacks and Native Americans — tend to be extremely large, often amounting to the equivalent of hundreds of SAT points.

At the University of Texas, whose racial preference programs come before the Supreme Court for oral argument on October 10, the typical black student receiving a race preference placed at the 52nd percentile of the SAT; the typical white was at the 89th percentile. In other words, Texas is putting blacks who score at the middle of the college-aspiring population in the midst of highly competitive students. This is the sort of academic gap where mismatch flourishes. And, of course, mismatch does not occur merely with racial preferences; it shows up with large preferences of all types.

Research on the mismatch problem was almost non-existent until the mid-1990s; it has developed rapidly in the past half-dozen years, especially among labor economists. To cite just a few examples of the findings:

Black college freshmen are more likely to aspire to science or engineering careers than are white freshmen, but mismatch causes blacks to abandon these fields at twice the rate of whites.

Blacks who start college interested in pursuing a doctorate and an academic career are twice as likely to be derailed from this path if they attend a school where they are mismatched.

About half of black college students rank in the bottom 20 percent of their classes (and the bottom 10 percent in law school).

Black law school graduates are four times as likely to fail bar exams as are whites; mismatch explains half of this gap.

Interracial friendships are more likely to form among students with relatively similar levels of academic preparation; thus, blacks and Hispanics are more socially integrated on campuses where they are less academically mismatched.

Given the severity of the mismatch problem, and the importance of diversity issues to university leaders, one might expect that understanding and addressing mismatch would be at the very top of the academic agenda.

But in fact it is a largely invisible issue. With striking uniformity, university leaders view discussion of the mismatch problem as a threat to affirmative action and to racial peace on campuses, and therefore a subject to be avoided. They suppress data and even often ostracize faculty who attempt to point out the seriousness of mismatch. (See, for instance, the case of UT professor Lino Graglia, who was condemned by university officials after he observed that black and Mexican-American students were “not academically competitive” with their white peers.) We believe that the willful denial of the mismatch issue is as big a problem as mismatch itself.

A powerful example of these problems comes from UCLA, an elite school that used large racial preferences until the Proposition 209 ban took effect in 1998. The anticipated, devastating effects of the ban on preferences at UCLA and Berkeley on minorities were among the chief exhibits of those who attacked Prop 209 as a racist measure. Many predicted that over time blacks and Hispanics would virtually disappear from the UCLA campus.

And there was indeed a post-209 drop in minority enrollment as preferences were phased out. Although it was smaller and more short-lived than anticipated, it was still quite substantial: a 50 percent drop in black freshman enrollment and a 25 percent drop for Hispanics. These drops precipitated ongoing protests by students and continual hand-wringing by administrators, and when, in 2006, there was a particularly low yield of black freshmen, the campus was roiled with agitation, so much so that the university reinstituted covert, illegal racial preferences.

Throughout these crises, university administrators constantly fed agitation against the preference ban by emphasizing the drop in undergraduate minority admissions. Never did the university point out one overwhelming fact: The total number of black and Hispanic students receiving bachelor’s degrees were the same for the five classes after Prop 209 as for the five classes before.

How was this possible? First, the ban on preferences produced better-matched students at UCLA, students who were more likely to graduate. The black four-year graduation rate at UCLA doubled from the early 1990s to the years after Prop 209.

Second, strong black and Hispanic students accepted UCLA offers of admission at much higher rates after the preferences ban went into effect; their choices seem to suggest that they were eager to attend a school where the stigma of a preference could not be attached to them. This mitigated the drop in enrollment.

Third, many minority students who would have been admitted to UCLA with weak qualifications before Prop 209 were admitted to less elite schools instead; those who proved their academic mettle were able to transfer up to UCLA and graduate there.

Thus, Prop 209 changed the minority experience at UCLA from one of frequent failure to much more consistent success. The school granted as many bachelor degrees to minority students as it did before Prop 209 while admitting many fewer and thus dramatically reducing failure and drop-out rates. It was able, in other words, to greatly reduce mismatch.

But university officials were unable or unwilling to advertise this fact. They regularly issued statements suggesting that Prop 209’s consequences had caused unalloyed harm to minorities, and they suppressed data on actual student performance. The university never confronted the mismatch problem, and rather than engage in a candid discussion of the true costs and benefits of a ban on preferences, it engineered secret policies to violate Prop 209’s requirement that admissions be colorblind.

The odd dynamics behind UCLA’s official behavior exist throughout the contemporary academic world. The quest for racial sensitivity has created environments in which it is not only difficult but downright risky for students and professors, not to mention administrators, to talk about what affirmative action has become and about the nature and effects of large admissions preferences. Simply acknowledging the fact that large preferences exist can trigger accusations that one is insulting or stigmatizing minority groups; suggesting that these preferences have counterproductive effects can lead to the immediate inference that one wants to eliminate or cut back efforts to help minority students.

The desire to be sensitive has sealed off failing programs from the scrutiny and dialogue necessary for healthy progress. It has also made racial preferences a force for economic inequality: academically well-prepared working class and poor Asian and white students are routinely passed over in favor of black and Hispanic students who are more affluent as well as less well-prepared.

The way racial preferences affect student outcomes is only part of the story. Equally relevant is the way the academic community has proved unequal to the task of reform — showing great resourcefulness in blocking access to information, enforcing homogenous preference policies across institutions, and evading even legal restrictions on the use of preferences. All of this makes the quest for workable reforms — which are most likely to come from the Supreme Court — both more complex and more interesting than one might at first suspect.

 

June 5, 2018. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Education, Racism. Leave a comment.

By threatening to disrupt classes, Black Lives Matter unintentionally proves that professor who criticized affirmative action is correct

Amy Wax, a professor who teaches at University of Pennsylvania law school, said the school has lower admission standards for blacks than for whites.

Her claim is backed up by this New York Times article:

A 2009 Princeton study showed Asian-Americans had to score 140 points higher on their SATs than whites, 270 points higher than Hispanics and 450 points higher than blacks to have the same chance of admission to leading universities.

Since University of Pennsylvania is an Ivy League school, if falls under that category of “leading universities.” The SAT (for admission to undergraduate school) is not the same as the LSAT (for admission to law school), but the basic principle of having different admission standards for different races is the same.

The school punished professor Wax for her statement by banning her from teaching first year classes, but the school has refused to provide any proof that her statement was false.

Black Lives Matter said they will start disrupting classes if the school does not fire her. In my opinion, a much better response would have been for Black Lives Matter to challenge professor Wax to a debate on the subject.

In fact, by threatening to disrupt classes instead of challenging professor Wax to a debate, Black Lives Matter has just proved that professor Wax’s claim is correct. Anyone who is truly qualified to get into an Ivy League law school would rather participate in a debate than disrupt classes.

Black Lives Matter has unintentionally confirmed that professor Wax’s statement is true.

 

March 20, 2018. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Political correctness, Racism, Social justice warriors. Leave a comment.

Baltimore public schools spend more than $15,000 per student per year, but Democrats Bill Ferguson and Zeke Cohen say they can’t afford to heat the classrooms in January

NPR just published this article about how students at Baltimore’s public schools are freezing because the classrooms do not have any heat.

One student said she couldn’t feel her feet.

Another student said he was wearing four shirts, two hoodies, and a jacket.

The same article also says that Democratic State Senator Bill Ferguson and Democratic City Councilman Zeke Cohen both said that the city’s public schools did not have enough money.

But like all people who claim that public schools do not have enough money, neither one of them actually said how much they spent per student per year.

So I looked it up at wikipedia.

The Baltimore public schools have an annual budget of $1.32 billion, and a student population of 84,730.

That works out to $15,578 per student per year.

So, the Baltimore public schools actually have plenty of money.

It’s just that the government bureaucrats who run the schools, have chosen not to provide heat for the students.

I wonder what would happen if Baltimore shut down its public schools, and gave parents a $15,578 voucher for each student each year.

My guess is that the private schools that accepted those vouchers would be properly heated.

 

January 4, 2018. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . Education, Media bias. 2 comments.

More than 50 Evergreen State College professors sign petition demanding “disciplinary investigation” against biology professor Bret Weinstein because he said the school should treat all races the same

I’ve already written about the nonsense going on at Evergreen State College here and here. And now I have some new information to tell you.

A petition which has been signed by more than 50 of the school’s professors states:

“Demonstrate accountability by pursuing a disciplinary investigation against Bret Weinstein according to guidelines in the Social Contract and Faculty Handbook. Weinstein has endangered faculty, staff, and students, making them targets of white supremacist backlash by promulgating misinformation in public emails, on national television, in news outlets, and on social media.”

Wow.

I was raised in a time when civil rights protestors were demanding (quite reasonably so) that people of all races be treated the same.

But today, apparently, such a desire to treat all races the same “endangers” people and makes them “targets of white supremacist backlash.”

Folks, if you’re considering sending your child to Evergreen State College, here’s a little advice: don’t do it. In addition to the fact that the professors will try to brainwash them into being idiots, there’s also the fact that having the school on their resume will likely act as a repellent to prospective employers.

 

June 5, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , . Education, Political correctness, Racism, Social justice warriors. 3 comments.

Wikipedia violates its own policy by censoring reliably sourced information about the idiots at Evergreen State College

Official wikipedia policy states:

Wikipedia:Neutral point of view

All encyclopedic content on Wikipedia must be written from a neutral point of view (NPOV), which means representing fairly, proportionately, and, as far as possible, without editorial bias, all of the significant views that have been published by reliable sources on a topic.

NPOV is a fundamental principle of Wikipedia and of other Wikimedia projects. It is also one of Wikipedia’s three core content policies; the other two are “Verifiability” and “No original research”. These policies jointly determine the type and quality of material that is acceptable in Wikipedia articles, and, because they work in harmony, they should not be interpreted in isolation from one another. Editors are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with all three.

This policy is non-negotiable, and the principles upon which it is based cannot be superseded by other policies or guidelines, nor by editor consensus.

In line with that policy, a crazy person who lives in my apartment building recently added the following specific, detailed information to wikipedia’s Evergreen State College article:

On June 1, 2017, the Washington Post, referring to events that had taken place earlier that year, wrote, “This year, the school suggested that white students and faculty stay away from campus that day. Weinstein, a biology professor, wrote a letter to organizers saying that he would not stay away from campus, noting, ‘On a college campus, one’s right to speak — or to be — must never be based on skin color.'”

On this same issue, New York Times staff editor Bari Weiss wrote an opinion column which said, “Following the protest, college police, ordered by Evergreen’s president to stand down, told Mr. Weinstein they couldn’t guarantee his safety on campus. In the end, Mr. Weinstein held his biology class in a public park.” Weiss also included a link to this YouTube video, and wrote of the video, “For expressing his view, Mr. Weinstein was confronted outside his classroom last week by a group of some 50 students insisting he was a racist. The video of that exchange — ‘You’re supporting white supremacy’ is one of the more milquetoast quotes — must be seen to be believed. It will make anyone who believes in the liberalizing promise of higher education quickly lose heart. When a calm Mr. Weinstein tries to explain that his only agenda is ‘the truth,’ the students chortle.”

Everything in those two paragraphs is cited by either the Washington Post or the New York Times, which are as reliable (by wikipedia standards of reliability) as any source that one could ever hope to find.

Unfortunately, going against official wikipedia policy, someone else removed that information, and replaced it with this vague, generic, watered down version that doesn’t really convey any specific details about what actually happened at the school:

The Day of Absence is an annual event held in April at Evergreen inspired by Douglas Turner Ward’s play. Each year, minority students are encouraged to attend off campus activities focused on issues involving race. This is followed by the Day of Presence, when the campus community reunites. In 2017 the process was reversed, with white students encouraged to attend off campus activities, while the events for minority students were held on the Evergreen campus. One faculty member, Bret Weinstein, publicly objected to the change. In May 2017, student protests – focused in part on the comments by Weinstein – disrupted the campus and called for a number of changes to the college. Following the protests, a threat conveyed to police led to the temporary evacuation and closure of the campus.

Afterward, something known as an “edit war” happened, with supporters of letting people know the truth reinstating various parts of what had been removed, and opponents of letting people know the truth removing what had been added back in.

As of this writing, none of those original, specific details are in the wikipedia article.

To make matters even worse, YouTube has since removed the video that was cited by the New York Times, with the following explanation:

“This video has been removed for violating YouTube’s policy on harassment and bullying.”

Pretty much any YouTube video of social justice warriors acting like idiots could be removed under that policy, because pretty much everything that social justice warriors do is “harassment and bullying” in one form or another.

But I think the real reason that YouTube removed the video was to protect the social justice warriors from being embarrassed by their own behavior. After the video had been originally put up at YouTube, the protestors had written a letter to the school which stated:

“We demand that the video created for Day of Absence and Day of Presence that was stolen by white supremacists and edited to expose and ridicule the students and staff be taken down by the administration by this Friday.”

I count at least four factual errors in that one sentence:

1) The video was not “stolen.”

2) The video was not “edited” by “white supremacists.”

3) It is the students themselves who “expose and ridicule the students” because they chose to conduct such behavior in a public setting.

4) The video was not put up by “the administration.”

By removing the video, the only people that YouTube is protecting are the people who committed the “harassment and bullying” that YouTube claims to be against. Sunshine is the best disinfectant. The best way to fight against “harassment and bullying” is to expose and embarrass the people who are engaging in it. If YouTube was truly against “harassment and bullying,” then instead of deleting the video, YouTube would link to the video on its home page so as many people as possible would see it.

In addition to demanding that the video be taken down, the protestors also demanded that “criminal charges” be filed against the people who “stole” the video.

Furthermore, after protestors demanded permission to skip doing their homework, the school’s president, a weakling and wimp named George Bridges, gave in to their demand. How hard could it have been for him have said, “You are adults. You chose to attend this school. And with that choice comes the responsibility to do your homework.”?

Evergreen State College has an admission rate of 98%. The school could probably save itself a lot of trouble by lowering that rate all the way down to 96%. And it should get a new president as well.

 

June 5, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Education, Media bias, Political correctness, Racism, Social justice warriors, Wikipedia. 2 comments.

Evergreen State College’s wimpy President George Bridges caves in to social justice warriors’ demand for permission to skip their homework

These social justice warriors at Evergreen State College are like three year olds who throw a tempter tantrum to get what they want.

And the school’s president, George Bridges, is a weakling and a wimp for caving in to their temper tantrum and giving them what they want.

How hard could it have been for him have said, “You are adults. You chose to attend this school. And with that choice comes the responsibility to do your homework.”?

Let it be known far and wide that Evergreen State College is not a real college, and that no student who truly values education should go there.

On the positive side, I’m pretty certain that none of these social justice warriors who are demanding permission to skip their homework are majoring in any subjects where skipping their homework could have any negative consequences to innocent victims in the real world. I doubt that any of these social justice warriors are majoring in subjects that would allow them to get jobs designing bridges, or performing surgery, or writing the computer software for self driving cars.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nh1wGFFsIts

May 30, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Political correctness, Racism, Social justice warriors. 1 comment.

The government imposed Islamization of Hamtramck, Michigan continues with a girls-only prom

According to this 2015 article from the Washington Post, Hamtramck, Michigan is the first Muslim majority city in the U.S., and Muslims make up the majority of its city council. At the time the article was published, this Muslim majority city council had done at least two things to force the rest of the city to adopt the Muslim way of life.

First, the city council banned business owners within 500 feet of any of the city’s mosques from obtaining a liquor license.

Secondly, the city gave all of these mosques an exemption from the city’s noise ordinance, so they can use electronic amplification to loudly broadcast the Muslim call to prayer five times a day, every day. Residents who live near these mosques have complained that this wakes them up at 6 a.m.

Now in 2017, we have something new, a third thing.

Hamtramck High School is a public high school in the city.

It has just been reported that this government owned, operated, and funded high school will be having a “safe space” prom for Muslim girls, where boys will be banned.

The prom was suggested by female Muslim students, who said they wanted to be able to expose their hair without it being seen by boys.

The government owned and operated school said OK.

And thus, government sponsored Islamization in the U.S. continues.

But what about biological boys who self-identify as girls? Will they be allowed to attend this prom, or will they be banned? So far, I haven’t been able to find any answer to that.

 

May 12, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Education, Islamization, LGBT, Political correctness, Religion, Sexism, Social justice warriors. 7 comments.

After years of hard work and studying, Trayvon Martin has earned a well deserved bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science from Florida Memorial University

According to this article from the New York Times, Trayvon Martin was just awarded a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science from Florida Memorial University.

Martin worked very hard to earn this degree.

For example, after a school security camera showed Martin marking graffiti, a search of his backpack showed that it contained 12 pieces of women’s jewelry, including silver wedding rings, and earrings with diamonds. The backpack also had a screwdriver, which is often used as a tool by burglars. Martin said that the jewelry belonged to a friend, but refused to say who that friend was. It’s nice that Martin has such an interest in geology and metallurgy. It’s also a good sign of Martin’s moral character that he protected his friend.

In addition, testing showed that there was THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, in Martin’s system. This is exactly the kind of thing that pilots need in order to safely transport their passengers.

Furthermore, Martin broke George Zimmerman’s nose, and smashed Zimmerman’s head against the concrete. There are very few pilots who have ever managed to achieve this much bodily harm to Zimmerman.

Based on all of these accomplishments, I’m certain that Martin will make an excellent pilot. I can’t wait to have him as my pilot the next time I go on vacation.

I’m sure that Martin’s degree will greatly enhance the reputation of Florida Memorial University, as well as increase the prestige and earning potential of its graduates.

When it comes to STEM subjects, MIT, Caltech, and Carnegie Mellon are usually considered to be the best universities. And for sure, the people who go to these great halls of learning do possess a superior level of intellect and intelligence. But I think Martin’s hard work and achievements have shown that Florida Memorial University outperforms and eclipses them all when it comes to attracting, teaching, and graduating the very best and brightest mathematical and scientific geniuses.

I have no doubt that Martin will go on to win a Nobel Prize in Physics, as well as a Fields Medal.

Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, Newton, Einstein, and Hawking are all well regarded for their scientific genius, and I’m certain that in 500 years from now, Martin’s name will be just as well known for his contributions to the world of scientific knowledge and discovery.

 

May 7, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Black lives matter, Dumbing down, Education, Humor, Political correctness, Racism, Social justice warriors. 2 comments.

Here’s the 1996 clip from “Bill Nye the Science Guy” which is currently being censored on Netflix

During the original 1996 broadcast of the “Probability” episode of the TV program “Bill Nye the Science Guy,” there was a segment that explained how a person’s gender is determined by genetics.

In 2017, Netflix aired a version of this episode in which this segment had been removed.

I don’t know if it was Netflix, Nye himself, or some other party that instigated this censorship.

Since YouTube has a nasty habit of removing politically incorrect videos, I’m including links to four videos, all of which have the clip.

The censored footage consists entirely and exclusively of the part where the young lady is talking about how gender is determined by genetics. Some of these videos also contain additional content which was not censored:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5z9s_bimnw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PArom6CRB0Q

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SNpac2TYX5Y

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sV_W5nFmjA

May 3, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Education, LGBT, Political correctness, Science, Social justice warriors, Television. 1 comment.

Here’s the Internet Archive of Fresno State University professor Lars Maischak’s deleted tweet, which says “To save American democracy, Trump must hang. The sooner and the higher, the better.”

Lars Maischak is a history professor at Fresno State University.

This is all that Twitter has left of a recent tweet of his. The link is dead, because Maischak erased the tweet:

https://twitter.com/LarsMaischak/status/832804291974868996



Maischak erased the tweet after Breitbart published this article, which quoted the tweet.

Fortunately, the Internet Archive has preserved the tweet. Here it is:

https://web.archive.org/web/20170408183712/https://twitter.com/LarsMaischak/status/832804291974868996



The tweet says:

“To save American democracy, Trump must hang. The sooner and the higher, the better.”

I can certainly understand why Maischak deleted the tweet.

What I don’t understand, however, is why Maischak waged a personal attack against Breitbart for accuratelly quoting his tweet.

After Breitbart accurately quoted Maischak’s tweet, Maischak responded by saying:

“The function of articles like the one produced by Breitbart and affiliates is to whip up a digital lynch-mob of people sending threats and insults to my email and Twitter accounts, with the ultimate goal of silencing dissenters.”

Actually, I’d say that the true, real, genuine function of the Breitbart article was to tell the truth about what a college professor said.

Also, I find it incredibly hypocritical that Maischak is accusing Breitbart of trying to “whip up a digital lynch-mob,” when, in reality, it was actually Maischak himself who said, “Trump must hang.”

I’m no psychologist. I suppose, perhaps, it’s possible that Maischak is projecting his own desire for a “hanging” on to Breitbart.

Wikipedia says of “projection”:

Psychological projection

Psychological projection is a theory in psychology in which humans defend themselves against their own unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others. For example, a person who is habitually rude may constantly accuse other people of being rude. It incorporates blame shifting.

Fortunately, Fresno State University had the decency and common sense to cancel Maischak’s classes for next week.

Also, the Secret Service is investigating Maischak.

April 14, 2017. Tags: , , , , , . Donald Trump, Education, Social justice warriors. 1 comment.

Stanford University just dumbed down its admissions’ essay standards by about three standard deviations

http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-39492187

Student gets into Stanford with #BlackLivesMatter x100

April 4, 2017




News that a high school student wrote nothing but #BlackLivesMatter on his personal statement in an application to California’s Stanford University – and got in – has been raising some eyebrows.

Stanford University was ranked third in the world by Times Higher Education last year, and only admitted about 1 in 20 of the students who applied for an undergraduate place.

Ziad Ahmed, a high school student in New Jersey, proudly tweeted his news and received a range of reactions in response. There were congratulations aplenty of course – “forever in love with your audacity”, laughed one user.

But several were also surprised by the news. One detractor accused him of “virtue signalling”. Another remarked “a real [Black Lives Matter] ally would’ve wrote something poignant instead of this … attempt to look progressive”.

Admirers pointed out that Mr Ahmed had plenty to offer on top of his activist statement though. “Have you seen his profile? With a resume like that nothing could derail him,” said one.

In a profile of Mr Ahmed, Mic website notes that he has founded his own teenage marketing consulting firm, as well as an organisation to promote tolerance. He worked for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and had also been invited to the White House under Barack Obama’s administration.

Stanford won’t be the only thing he’s thinking about though. Mr Ahmed has also been accepted to Yale and Princeton universities and he has until May to decide which one to choose.

April 7, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Black lives matter, Dumbing down, Education, Political correctness, Social justice warriors. 1 comment.

Stay at home father Stefan Molyneux talks about “the rise of the daycare generation”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CSo5gzJ1M1s

April 3, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Parenting, Politics, Psychology, Social justice warriors. Leave a comment.

Bucknell University electrical engineering professor Meriel Huggard cancels class for one day, orders students to attend diversity summit instead

I was so hoping that the STEM subjects would be immune from the politically correct nonsense that goes on on college campuses.

However, at Bucknell University, electrical engineering professor Meriel Huggard canceled class for one day, and ordered her students to attend a diversity summit instead.

Folks, if your child is planning on majoring in electrical engineering, I suggest that you not send them to Bucknell University.

Tuition at Bucknell University is $50,152 per year. And that’s not even including room and board, or “other expenses.” When you do include those things, it ends up being $65,268 per year.

That’s a lot of money to pay so your child can be brainwashed in political correctness.

Multiply that by four, and you’ve got enough money to buy a decent three bedroom house in most areas of the country.

As is often the case, the more expensive the college, the more insane it is.

 

March 30, 2017. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Dumbing down, Education, Political correctness, Racism, Social justice warriors. 1 comment.

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