Tuesday, February 05, 2013
Eat More Chicken and Your Skin Will Thicken
Campus Reform is reporting that Chick-fil-A, the popular fast food restaurant chain, has now been dubbed a "symbol of hate," by a professor at Eastern Illinois University (EIU). Lisa Moyer, who teaches in the Family Studies Department at EIU, apparently made the comment with a straight face, although some have suggested that the term "straight face" reinforces heterosexist oppression. Regardless, her comment reinforces my belief that it is always a mistake to choose a major ending in the word "studies."
Moyer made her strangely uninclusive remarks in response to questions about a faculty resolution at EIU. The resolution proposed expelling a Chick-fil-A restaurant from campus in order for the university to be more inclusive. Because of the franchise's alleged opposition to homosexuals, some faculty decided that getting rid of them would promote diversity by producing complete uniformity of thought on issues related to sexual orientation. Talk about queer reasoning!
Moyer, in typical liberal fashion, has projected her hatred of Chick-fil-A onto the restaurant itself and has characterized their company logo as a symbol of hate. I suppose it's now in the same category as a burning cross or a Nazi swastika. In her recent interview with Campus Reform, she elevated hypersensitivity to a Zen art by arguing that her efforts to censor this "symbol of hate" are justified because Chick-fil-A makes a lot of students, particularly in the LGBT community, "feel uncomfortable.” (See www.CampusReform.org for additional details).
Although the Faculty Senate resolution to remove Chick-fil-A from campus was defeated 3-6, the LGBTXYZPDQ community won anyway. That is all because the discussion resulted in the school opening an office for LGBTQ outreach. When they win they win and when they lose they still win - so long as they keep reminding everyone they feel uncomfortable and need special protection.
So I've been thinking about it and I've decided that our LGBTQIA Office here on my campus makes me feel uncomfortable. In fact, the rainbow is a symbol of hate. So, next week, I plan to introduce a resolution to ban them from campus. I expect the resolution to be defeated because it is idiotic. I'm just hoping I get a special office as a consolation prize - simply for being a narrow minded bigot.
Make no mistake about it: the best way to get money in higher education is to be a thin skinned bigot. African American centers reward racial hypersensitivity, Women's Centers reward gender hypersensitivity, and ABC-LGBT-XYZ-PDQ Centers reward unmitigated religious intolerance.
So what exactly is the motivation for all of this thin-skinned hyper-ventilating? Just follow the money. At the end of every rainbow flag, there's a pot of gold - and usually a few burned out professors smoking pot as well.
It is true that Chick-fil-A initially came under fire last summer after CEO, Dan Cathy, indicated personal opposition to marriage. But that wasn't the real issue. The real outrage was over Cathy's personal donations to pro-family conservative groups such as the Family Research Council. The attempt to organize a boycott of the chain was simply an effort to cut off the flow of money to those organizations.
So those of us who support traditional marriage must borrow a page from the pink play book and do the same. If you are donating to a school that houses one of these LGBTQ outreach centers, then shame on you. Give your money to a pro-family "hate group" instead. They tend to be more inclusive anyway.
Oh, yes, and buy more chicken with the money you save from those withheld donations. It'll keep you from having a cow whenever you encounter a divergent viewpoint.
Eliminating feminist teacher bias erases boys' falling grades, study finds
Has the Sexual Revolution, and the feminist ideology that drives it, pushed men out of universities by undermining boys in school as early as kindergarten? Some writers are beginning to connect the dots between the shift over the last few decades in educational practices from fact-based grading to evaluation based on “non-cognitive” and “emotional skills” and the drop in school performance of boys.
In the 1970s, feminist critics regularly complained that the school system favored “male thinking.” Facts, dates, rote learning, and math skills that were seen as “too masculine” for girls. In the intervening decades, feminists have made huge strides throughout the Western world, and education – particularly in the training of teachers – has been transformed as a result.
That most government policy makers and academics accept this as an unqualified success has left bewilderment as to how the new, more “fair” teaching styles have resulted in poor outcomes for boys and ultimately for the men they must become.
A five-year research project, funded by the Departments of Education and Justice in Northern Ireland, has just been released that found “systemic flaws” in the way students are evaluated that leave boys disadvantaged. Boys from poor neighbourhoods in Belfast and other cities are especially vulnerable to learning underachievement and health problems.
Dr. Ken Harland and Sam McCready from the University of Ulster said that the problem has been clear for “several decades,” but that “it was extremely difficult for the research team to find specific strategies addressing boys’ underachievement.”
“Although teachers who were interviewed as part of this study recognised the predominance of boys with lower academic achievement, they generally did not take this into account in terms of learning styles or teaching approaches,” he said.
The Belfast Telegraph quoted a pupil who told the researchers, “Teachers should understand better the way boys think and why they do some things. They’re out of touch.”
The problem of boys’ underachievement in primary and secondary school follows them into their later lives. Research from 2006 has tracked the decline in male academic performance over the same period as the rise of feminist-dominated ideologies in academia and policymaking.
The ratio of males to females graduating from a four-year college stood at 1.60 in 1960, fell to parity by 1980, and continued its decline until by 2003, there were 135 females for every 100 males who graduated from a four-year college. Another study found that half of the current gender gap in college attendance can be linked to lower rates of high-school graduation among males, particularly for young black men.
The work of one American researcher may offer clues to the question of why and how. Professor Christopher Cornwell at the University of Georgia has found that a heavily feminist-driven education paradigm systematically favours girls and disadvantages boys from their first days in school.
Examining student test scores and grades of children in kindergarten through fifth grade, Cornwell found that boys in all racial categories are not being “commensurately graded by their teachers” in any subject “as their test scores would predict.”
The answer lies in the way teachers, who are statistically mostly women, evaluate students without reference to objective test scores. Boys are regularly graded well below their actual academic performance.
Boys are falling significantly behind in grades, “despite performing as least as well as girls on math tests, and significantly better on science tests.”
After fifth grade, he found, student assessment becomes a matter of “a teacher’s subjective assessment of the student’s performance,” and is further removed from the guidance of objective test results. Teachers, he says, tend to assess students on non-cognitive, “socio-emotional skills.” This has had a significant impact on boys’ later achievement because, while objective test scores are important, it is teacher-assigned grades that determine a child’s future with class placement, high school graduation and college admissibility.
Eliminating the factor of “non-cognitive skills…almost eliminates the estimated gender gap in reading grades,” Cornwell found. He said he found it “surprising” that although boys out-perform girls on math and science test scores, girls out-perform boys on teacher-assigned grades.
In science and general knowledge, as in math skills, the data showed that kindergarten and first grade white boys’ grades “are lower by 0.11 and 0.06 standard deviations, even though their test scores are higher.” This disparity continues and grows through to the fifth grade, with white boys and girls being graded similarly, “but the disparity between their test performance and teacher assessment grows.”
The disparity between the sexes in school achievement also far outstrips the disparity between ethnicities. Cornwell notes that “the girl-boy gap in reading grades is over 300 percent larger than the white-black reading gap,” and boy-girl gap is about 40 percent larger than the white-black grade gaps.
“From kindergarten to fifth grade,” he found, “the top half of the test-score distribution” among whites is increasingly populated by boys, “while the grade distribution provides no corresponding evidence that boys are out-performing girls”.
These disparities are “even sharper for black and Hispanic children” with the “misalignment of grades with test scores steadily increases as black and Hispanic students advance in school.”
The study, he said, shows that “teachers’ assessments are not aligned with test-score data, with greater gender disparities in appearing in grading than testing outcomes”. And the “gender disparity” always favours girls.
The American thinker Christina Hoff Sommers, author of the book The War Against Boys: How Misguided Feminism Is Harming Our Young Men, wrote that “the idea that schools and society grind girls down has given rise to an array of laws and policies intended to curtail the advantage boys have and to redress the harm done to girls.”
Sommers wrote in The Atlantic,“These are things everyone is presumed to know. But they are not true.” She notes an incident at New York’s tony Scarsdale High School in which, at a conference on student achievement, a male student presented evidence from the school’s own records showing that far from being pressed down, girls were far outstripping boys.
When the teachers checked the student’s data, “they found little or no difference in the grades of boys and girls in advanced-placement social-studies classes. But in standard classes the girls were doing a lot better.” The revelations, she said, were not well received. Scarsdale is a school that has thoroughly accepted the received wisdom that that girls are systematically deprived, and this belief has led their gender-equity committee to offer a special senior elective on gender equity that continues to preach the message.
“Why has that belief persisted, enshrined in law, encoded in governmental and school policies, despite overwhelming evidence against it?” Sommers traces it back to the work of one academic feminist, Carol Gilligan, a pioneer of “gender studies” at Harvard University. Gilligan’s speculations launched a veritable industry of feminist writers, citing little or no reviewable data, lamenting the plight of girls “drowning or disappearing” in the “sea of Western culture”
“Most of Gilligan’s published research, however,” Sommers points out, “consists of anecdotes based on a small number of interviews.”
Sommers has identified the work of Gilligan and her followers as “politics dressed up as science” and points out that she has never released any of the data supporting her main theses. Nevertheless, the idea that girls are lagging behind boys continues to lead the discussion at nearly every level of public policy on education, and not only in the U.S.
The global reach of American left-wing feminism has led to similar changes, and similar outcomes, in nearly every Western nation.
British children bullied because of their wealthy backgrounds, study finds
British class hatred smoulders on. Not even Britain's vast political correctness can erase it
Youngsters from affluent backgrounds are being targeted because of their accents, their parents “flashy” houses and cars and their hobbies, according to an anti-bullying charity. Some teenagers even reported trying to change the way they speak to stop being accused of being “posh”.
The poll of almost 2,000 students has revealed that those from wealth families are in a “high risk” category for being bullied.
Some 12 per cent from high-income homes said they had been targeted because of their wealth, with those from the £200,001 plus bracket most likely to say they had been persecuted.
The findings come as leading head teachers warn of a growing “posh prejudice” which is leading to “jealousy and hostility”.
In last week’s Sunday Telegraph, an Oxford University don revealed that admission tutors “crave a Geordie or Scouse accent after a few days interviewing the next generation of Borises and Daves.”
The study polled 1,800 16 to 26 year olds in about 20 state sixth form and further education colleges across the country. Most of those questioned were teenagers.
Seven in 10 respondents reported they experienced bullying before their 18th birthday: sixty per cent for their appearance, 36 per cent for their interests, 11 per cent for their sexuality and 2 per cent because of their wealth.
“Wealth has an impact on susceptibility to bullying,” said Liam Hackett, founder of the anti-bullying organisation Ditch the Label which carried out the survey.
“We found that students from the £200,001 plus household income bracket were more vulnerable to bullying than students from lower income backgrounds.
“Other young people may well be jealous of their backgrounds and lifestyle. There may be noticeable differences that young people from wealthier backgrounds can sometimes exhibit and others can target, such as accents. Differences in their interests, hobbies and lifestyles might be attacked - if their parents drive luxury cars, if they live in a big house, if they go on nice holidays to exotic places, go horse riding or sailing at the weekend, for instance.”
Jon Cross, 20, from Hampshire, who moved from independent school to a state school when he was 12, said he tried to change his accent to fit in. “I experienced a lot of verbal bullying and was targeted because of my voice and the way I pronounced words. I spoke “posh” and felt like I stood out and was called “posh boy”.”
Other pupils at the school tried to force him to behave badly to get him in to trouble.
“They once asked me to call a teacher fat and ask her who ate all the pies and I refused so the bullying got worse,” said Mr Cross, who is now at university. “I would occasionally get pens thrown at me and there were a lot of taunts. I didn’t want to tell a teacher because I felt embarrassed and thought the bullying would get worse. As time went on it became less frequent and eventually ended when I started college.”
One teenager posted on an education website recently that he was being bullied because his dad was a doctor and drove expensive cars.
“I get bullied because I’m “rich”. I live in a small village and my dad owns a GP practice and drives quite “flashy” cars (Audi R8, Range Rover and Mercedes S Class). I don’t want to tell my parents because it’s the only school in this village so my family will need to move somewhere else. My mum and dad love living in the house that were in now. I get called “rich kid” and get pushed around and all that stuff.”
Last week, Frances King, the headmistress of Roedean School, in Sussex, complained of hostility towards independent schools. She said that private schools had received a “bruising time” and that it was “hard working” being on “negative side of public opinion”. She is leaving the £30,000 a year boarding school to head a school in Switzerland.
Anthony Seldon, the master of Wellington College in Berkshire, said last month of “jealousy and hostility” towards private schools, saying positive discrimination in university admissions to favour state school pupils was “the hatred that dare not speak its name”.
Posted by jonjayray at 12:23 AM