Sunday, July 30, 2017

Marxist group disbands because members were too rich, white

A Marxist student group at Swarthmore College disbanded itself earlier this year after realizing that its members were too rich and too white to be real commies.

A farewell letter from a former member complains that the group's founders where "entirely white, with the exception of one person of color," and that none of them came from "low-income and/or working class backgrounds."

A Marxist student group at Swarthmore College disbanded itself earlier this year after realizing that its members were too rich and too white to be real commies.

According to screenshots confidentially provided to Campus Reform by an individual with access to the group’s private Facebook page, the demise of the Swarthmore Anti-Capitalist Collective (SACC) came in the wake of a farewell letter from a member who had decided the group could never be an effective proponent of “unproblematized anticapitalist politics” due to its “history of abuse, racism, and even classism.”

“From my understanding SACC disbanded because they realized the makeup and tactics of their group was at odds with their espoused principles,” Swarthmore Conservative Society President Gilbert Guerra told Campus Reform. “Their main support base was middle-upper class white kids who enjoy jogging.”

The farewell letter corroborates Guerra’s understanding, asserting that “SACC’s fundamental failure” was that “at its formation, it was made up of entirely white, with the exception of one person of color*, students,” and to make matters worse, “not one of [the founding members] are from low-income and/or working class backgrounds.”

Arguing that “low-income people of color should never be an afterthought in a group whose politics supposedly focus on their liberation,” the author then went on to accuse SACC of having a “history of abuse, racism, and even classism that was never adequately addressed or recognized despite constantly being brought up as an issue.”

The screenshots provided to Campus Reform do not include dates, but the SACC Facebook page suggests that the group may have folded at some point in late-March or April. The page has seen no activity since March 26, prior to which posts had been added on a fairly regular basis.

Campus Reform reached out to other former SACC members for their take on the group’s disbandment, but none were willing to comment.

Guerra agreed strongly with the letter-writer’s assessment that SACC was ineffective, telling Campus Reform that “SACC didn’t do anything noteworthy during their existence,” and had little impact on campus discourse.

“If anything,” he said, “I think the legacy of that particular group will turn out to be motivating some apathetic students to become involved in the Conservative Society.”

As for the future of Marxist groups on campus—which the SACC letter optimistically predicted would provide a “future for anti-capitalist organizing on this campus”—Guerra said that he expects there will be a “new Maoist group on campus in the fall,” but didn’t seem terribly concerned about its prospects.

Saying that such a group is “a foregone conclusion” because there are many leftist students at Swarthmore who want to actively “resist during the Trump Presidency,” Guerra noted that the only question now “is whether this new group will be any more sustainable that [sic] the past couple of leftist groups that have splintered and fizzled out.”


Lawmakers hope to undo English-only education in Mass.

Another Leftist attempt at disruption.  Perish the thought that Hispanics might asssimilate

Fifteen years after Massachusetts voters pushed bilingual education out of most public schools, lawmakers are on the verge of allowing school systems to teach students academic subjects in their own languages if they’re not yet fluent in English.

The changes could affect more than 90,000 Massachusetts students classified as “English language learners,” a steadily growing portion that now represents nearly 10 percent of the state’s public-school enrollment.

Lawmakers are responding to growing calls from educators, parents, students, and immigrant-rights advocates who argue that the requirement voters approved in 2002 to teach all academic classes to non-native speakers in English is harming their classroom performance.

For many advocates, the issue boils down to a simple question: How can you expect students to learn complex concepts in math, science, and other subjects when they don’t even yet know how to speak, read, or understand English?

The Senate is scheduled to vote on the proposed changes Thursday. The House approved a similar measure last month, 151 to 2.

“This is an important move by the Legislature to correct a wrong,” said Senator Sal DiDomenico, an Everett Democrat. “Kids are falling through the cracks and are not getting the education they need.”

Supporters of the measures are optimistic that bilingual education, in which students can learn academic subjects in their native tongue while gaining English fluency, can be a regular feature again in Massachusetts schools. Some advocates say they don’t necessarily favor one version of the bill over the other.

“We just want a bill that passes that gives kids a better chance,” said Marion Davis, spokeswoman for the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition. “Schools and parents should be able to work together and decide what is the best approach for each student.”

Brendan Moss, a spokesman for Governor Charlie Baker, said Baker has not taken a position yet on the bills but will carefully review any legislation that reaches his desk.

Massachusetts schools have been struggling for years to boost the performance of students who lack fluency in English — a population that has nearly doubled over the past 15 years as more immigrant families settle in the state. On average, students lacking English fluency have among the lowest standardized test scores and graduation rates.

But some students overcome those dismal statistics. In Boston, for instance, many high school valedictorians each year are immigrant students.

Many educators, advocates, and families blame the so-called English-only law for the low achievement of most students who aren’t yet fluent. They argue the law is too restrictive, creating a one-size-fits-all approach to a population of students with vastly different academic needs and fluency levels in English.

On one end of the spectrum, some students who are classified as English-language learners were born in the United States in immigrant households where English is not the primary language, but those students may have gained some understanding of it from relatives who speak English or from TV or neighbors.

On the other end of the spectrum, students themselves may have arrived in the country with no knowledge of English. Some may not even have had any formal schooling for several years and could be suffering trauma from war, political strife, or natural disasters in their home countries.

Under current law, school systems must teach all courses in English and can use a student’s native language only occasionally to check for understanding. The law provides some exceptions, such as allowing dual-language programs in which English-speaking students and non-native students learn each other’s languages.

But students lacking English fluency also performed poorly under bilingual education, prompting voters in part in 2002 to dismantle that program and replace it with what is officially known as “structured English immersion.”

Rosalie Pedalino Porter, a former bilingual education director for the Newton schools who supported the ballot question, said she thinks it would be a mistake to bring back bilingual education wholesale.

“I do not believe there is any problem with the law as it is written,” said Porter, who is chairwoman of ProEnglish, a Washington, D.C., organization that advocates for laws that make English the official language. “Any changes to that law is going to be harmful to children.”

DiDomenico said he expects the Senate will pass the bill Thursday. He noted that the Senate passed a similar bill last year, and so did the House, but the votes came at the end of the legislative session and time ran out for a compromise.

This time, he said, the two chambers will have up to a year to iron out their differences.

The main difference between the two bills is the amount of flexibility given to school systems. The House measure would loosen current requirements for school systems to seek waivers to the English-only rule, while the Senate bill would abolish the waivers and instead give school systems a choice of specific programs, including English immersion and bilingual education.

Adding urgency for a compromise is a desire among lawmakers to make Massachusetts more welcoming at a time when President Trump’s administration has tightened immigration rules and Trump himself has continued anti-immigrant rhetoric.

And the growing presence of English-language learners in school systems across the state makes it tough for policy makers to ignore, some academic experts said.


Australia. Powerful ‘after rape’ pics show university problem (?)

I don't quite see why pictures of young women holding signs is "powerful". Given the pro-female bias in the educational system, I doubt that the story is true.  University culture from top down is pro-female so the claim that universities have a rape culture and even cover up rapes on campus could not be true per-se, but making the claim fits perfectly with university feminist mentality. It is an example of feminist detachment from reality and a needing to see things in a negative way, even the opposite of how they really are.

So the women with signs are just attention-seeking, more likely. 

And as we see from many British court cases, false rape cries are common so --  in that context -- at least initial skepticism displays proper caution.  Many innocent men have had their lives ruined by false accusations -- even after being exonerated

RAPE survivors and other university students have launched a powerful social media campaign to expose how Australian universities have mishandled rape and sexual assault complaints.

Holding messages condemning university inaction and cover-up, the survivors and other students are photographed holding signs calling out their institutions.

“My university punishes plagiarism more harshly than rape” wrote one student from the University of Sydney.

“I was sued for defamation for speaking out against a college covering up rape” wrote another. has confirmed the woman’s claims.

End Rape On Campus Australia, along with myself, designed the campaign to ensure that the voices and views of students are not sidelined next week, when a national report into rape at universities is released by the Australian Human Rights Commission.

After all, it’s often all too easy to forget that behind every statistic there lies a real person.

All too often, the temptation is to reduce sexual assault survivors to mere numbers without recognising the horror and complexity of each survivor’s story.
Students’ powerful plea to #EndRapeOnCampus

University students pose with signs in support of the End Rape on Campus campaign.

By putting a face on the issue, we not only humanise students’ stories, but importantly, it makes it much more difficult for universities to dismiss concerns via damage control strategies aimed at whitewashing the issue and protecting their own reputations.

And some of the stories we have heard at End Rape On Campus are absolutely harrowing.

One rape survivor called out her head of college for disbelieving her when she reported her rape to him.

“This does not sound like a boy who just raped a girl” the head of college allegedly remarked.

As for me, having spent a solid year reporting on sexual assault and rape at Australian universities — including revealing cases where staff members have raped students — the message I most want to send to all survivors next week is a very simple one:

I believe you. It’s not your fault. You’re not alone.

We’ve got your backs.


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