Students

LA Teachers’ Union school reopening demands have nothing to do with COVID-19

Who knew? One might logically think that the main reason to keep schools closed would be to mitigate the risk of a secondary outbreak of COVID-19 even though there is no evidence that kids are super-spreaders. Over 40 countries around the world have kids back at school with no mass outbreaks reported. Australia is a case in point.

The LA teacher’s union (UTLA), a part of the LA United Schools District (LAUSD) has published a report titled, ‘The Same Storm, but Different Boats: The Safe and Equitable Conditions for Starting LAUSD in 2020-21

In order to ‘safely’ reopen, it says the following demands must be met:

  1. Defund the police
  2. End chartered schools,
  3. Wealth tax on billionaires
  4. Millionaire tax,
  5. More paid sick leave,
  6. Abolition of ICE,
  7. Supporting illegal immigrants financially,
  8. Medicare for all and
  9. and an additional $250 million to reopen schools.

Naturally, UTLA President Cecily Myart-Cruz pushed back saying it was just right-wing propaganda.

Note Myart-Cruz is the Chair of the CTA Civil Rights Committee, Chair of the NEA Black Caucus and member of Black Lives Matter Los Angeles. No bias there.

One can only imagine what kids in her care are being indoctrinated with.

Why wasn’t COVID-19 the focus of reopening? Why hasn’t the UTLA talked about the 30% of kids that haven’t logged in for distance learning once? Presumably money is the cure? Forget that kids are merely pawns in the UTLA’s sinister goals.

Don’t despair, Myart-Cruz said the following in a press release,

The astronomical amount of money that billionaires, charter school chains, and corporations have received during this crisis in comparison to the support given to healthcare and low-income communities is unconscionable and contributes to the skyrocketing infection rates…During the uprisings we have seen police in militarized gear while hospital workers beg for life-saving personal protective gear. The money is there for safer communities, but it is going to the wrong places. We cannot open school buildings during this crisis without the adequate support that our educators, students and communities we serve need.”

Forget finding a cure. Just hold kids to ransom. Keep them in perpetual poverty. Complain it is all to do with systemic racism and oppression.

Although there is a sense of irony to bash billionaires, many of the left in a city and state which are Democrat-controlled.

0% math proficiency in 13 Baltimore high schools

It has become apparent that maths proficiency across 13 city run schools in Baltimore, Maryland is ZERO. Nada. Zilch. This is up from 6 schools in 2016.

One might assume that it is a lack of investment. Not so.

According to the Census Bureau, this is the seventh consecutive year the state of Maryland has had four public school districts rank in the top 10 of per pupil spending.

So for all of the destruction of monuments and painting of Black Lives Matter on many street corners, perhaps one might question improving this metric will have a much bigger impact than virtue signaling.

Baltimore has had a Democrat mayor since 1967. Or with the exception of 1963-67 when it went Republican, Democrats have been in charge for the last 80 years.

Have black students demanded this?

A petition started by students at the University of Washington – which demands faculty staff mark black students more leniently – has gathered 26,000 signatures. Worse, the university believes it’s a good idea.

Nicole McNichols, UW Psychology Professor said, “Obviously, I support the petition and absolutely believe the accommodations it requests should be honored by all faculty. Students need all of the support and compassion we can afford to give them right now.”

What about Hispanic students? Don’t other minorities have a claim for leniency too? What about black trans students with disabilities? Should they get more marks?

If the students that signed up to the petition truly want to make it fair, perhaps the white students should agree to be marked down with a white privilege adjustment to atone for the sins of those they aren’t related to who may have committed crimes before they were born.

Ultimately, if these liberally minded students truly wish to stop discrimination, why demand a policy that actively encourages it? If they wish to stop systemic racism how does such segregationist policies help?

In closing, how many black students have demanded this? Were many consulted? We wouldn’t be surprised if many black students get frustrated at the basic tenet that these white liberal kids think without an artificial boost they can’t succeed on their own merits. That is about as condescending as it gets!

This is the perfect argument for why universities should be free. Absolutely no lessons about real life are being taught.

Rant over.

The Victim?

This is a picture of 88-yo May Boyce who was arrested for aggravated assault after shooting a man who tried to rob her liquor store. Her gun was confiscated by police.

Boyce has owned Murfreesboro Road Liquor and Wines in Nashville, Tennessee, since 1994. She opens and closes the store six days a week by herself.

Boyce claimed the victim, identified as Ramon Fisher, “lunged” at her after picking up a bottle and started to head for the exit.

Fisher originally confessed to police that he and his friend had intended to steal from the store, but later amended the story and said they intended to pay for it. Presumably they intended to pay for it after Fisher was shot.

Interesting how the police call Fisher the “victim.” Imagine if he just paid for it like a normal customer then he wouldn’t be nursing a bullet hole. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

Oh, and you’ll never guess what party the mayor of Nashville, who runs the police, is from. Democrat.

Should the 88-yo be given a life sentence or a medal for defending her business because two thugs thought she would be too frail to possess a Smith & Wesson snub nose .38 let alone fire it?

You’ll never guess who the BLM fundraising arm has as its vice-chair…

As the kneeling for Black Lives Matter continues at sporting events across the globe, why not let one of the BLM founders, Alicia Garza, enrich our understanding of the Marxist group some more.  Garza has repeatedly talked about how convicted cop killer and wanted domestic terrorist Joanne Chesimard, aka Assata Shakur, is one of her main inspirations. Shakur assassinated a New Jersey state trooper and now lives in exile in Cuba. She was also involved in bombings and several executions of cops in New Jersey, New York and San Francisco.

It gets worse.

Susan Rosenberg, the vice-chair for the left-wing Thousand Currents group, which handles the administration of the donations made to Black Lives Matter, is a convicted terrorist who was sentenced to 58 years for weapons and explosives charges while a member of the May 19th Communist Organization. She spent 16 years in prison before President Bill Clinton commuted her sentence on his last day. Among other things, Rosenberg was suspected of helping Shakur escape from prison in 1979.

Why does the mainstream media keep portraying the BLM organization as a clean, wholesome and noble organization with good intentions when it has such reprehensible beliefs and practices utter hypocrisy when it comes to ALL black lives?

Education could change forever

College

This piece isn’t so much about Trump’s plan to do the above, but a precursor to where education is probably likely to head. Going forward, skills will be more prized than some kid with a liberal arts degree in Marxist philosophy.

The education sector needs to take a long hard look at the changes heading for it.

The declining standards in education are one thing. They are morphing into ever more political campuses, encouraged by the universities themselves. Here are 10 examples.

  1. A Cambridge professor tweeted “whites they don’t matter.
  2. A Stanford law professor testified during the impeachment hearings that she crosses the road when she sees a Trump building.
  3. The University of Texas ran a MasculinUT program built around “restrictive masculinity” and tries to encourage men to drop traditional gender roles.
  4. Yale University’s Chaplain’s Office believes a $70,000pa education requires a bouncy castle and/or cookies & colouring to reduce anxiety for students.
  5. University of Manchester’s student union voted to say “applause” is not inclusive and can distress people.
  6. Cambridge University union students deemed Remembrance Day as something that glorifies war, not about respecting the dead and those who served.
  7. UTS thinks that lowering the ATAR requirements to get more girls into STEM fields makes sense.  
  8. Academia signed this open letter supporting the Extinction Rebellion which highlighted how poor the vetting processes were in trying to appear woke. The stats spoke volumes.
  9. Prof Peter Ridd won his court case for unfair dismissal against James Cook University for his challenging of the orthodoxy about the deterioration of the Great Barrier Reef.
  10. Sydney University students were being marked down by certain lecturers if students used language such as ‘mankind’, ‘workmanship’ or similar words in assignment work.

We could go on.

These much-prized institutions are hardly making a strong case for the fees they charge. We whole-heartedly agree with Bernie Sanders that education should be free. In our view if and only if this is the standard of the faculty staff. It is increasingly looking worthless against the exorbitant fees charged.

Australia makes a great case in point. It bet the farm on the surging ranks of foreign (especially Chinese) students paying exorbitant fees to get degrees from our tertiary institutions. So many thought the gravy train would never end that they expanded facilities and never made contingency plans for an exogenous shock – like coronavirus.

Downsizing of universities is inevitable. Good professors will be bid away to schools that can afford them. Many surplus-to-requirements faculty staff will be axed. With that morale will sink and internal finger-pointing will exacerbate the problem and standards will slip further.

The future of education may end up ditching $100,000s in student loans to an education business model which allows students to pick the academics they want in the fields they are interested in. We recall the MBA course taken 17 years ago. We were forced to pay $1,000s of dollars to take a course in basic economics, a subject we took 4 years to complete with distinction to attain a B Ec.

We are reminded post-GFC at the number of financial industry professionals who took up a CFA degree with the hopes of attaining a $200,000+ annual salary. Sadly, 85% of the job offers for people with that qualification were for $90,000 or less. Makes sense. Software sophistication is such that a lot of degrees have less value because AI can replace it.

Interesting that Aussie universities are planning to charge double for less useful degrees in liberal arts and less for traditional fields in economics, medicine or law. i.e. discouraging degrees that add little value in the real world.

The new model may end up looking like an educational supermarket. Someone who wants to get into marketing might want to take a course run by Prof. Michael Porter from Harvard University or someone in marine ecology could look to learn a course conducted by Prof Peter Ridd.

All we can say is that education in twenty years won’t look anything like today. Skills matter. Old systems run by faculties that push ideology over education will end up shooting themselves in the foot. The finance market has already moved to a new model where clients pay for “value” of the analyst, not the “firm”. Bring it on.

Demanding segregation at a university which scores high on diversity

us-news-2020-engineering.jpg | Rice Engineering | Rice University

Rice University (RU) administrators are being asked to establish a racially segregated non-residential Black House specifically made for Black students and Black organizations to congregate and hold events as a way to overcome “systemic oppression and inequity.” Only Black students would have access to this building.

The group has also demanded:

  • the removal of a statue William Marsh Rice, which the university was named after because he was a slave owner.
  • comprehensive decolonization of the curriculum with mandatory lessons for all students on systemic racial inequity that is built into our global and local society and how it affects Black people today.
  • an increase in Black chefs, tenured professors, as well as other members of the Rice community. Representation plays a key role in increasing the well-being of Black students on campus.
  • That RU cuts ties with Houston PD and decrease RUPD presence on campus
    with the goal of complete abolition. i.e. defund the police.
  • to allow black students to select their roommates based on race.
  • Other demands are included in this link.

We were a bit surprised that these race activists couldn’t spell “Ku Klux Klan” properly (at the bottom of page 2).

The two most interesting statements were:

  • This list is neither comprehensive nor does it speak for all Black students as a single, unified group…Neither did we collect names of Black students who gave suggestions, nor did we list the names of those we are aware of who “adamantly support” some of these items.

If they wish to make such demands, surely a plurality of black students would make a stronger case for those changes to be accommodated or at the very least considered (which RU is already doing). With little data to work with to gauge the extent of the problem, should RU blindly make investments based purely on identity which would undoubtedly come at the expense of some other areas which were benefitting the majority of students?

  • “This list is not littered with quantitative data or studies of peer institutions. Rather, we decided to use this moment in history to give a social statement.

Since the students freely admit that they haven’t done the homework, we decided to do it for them. Luckily for RU, they are well ahead of the pack and have grounds for congratulation, not censure.

First, College Factual (CF) notes that RU scores well above average for diversity in gender, ethnicity and geographic location. CF ranks RU a Top 5% university for diversity.

Diversity

Second, the enrolled student population at Rice University is as follows. Whites are the largest cohort but not the majority:

Undergrad

Third, the faculty staff at Rice University is as follows:

faculty

In short, white faculty staff are the majority but lower than their population cohort. Compare this to around 80% in high schools in America.

According to the 2017 data, in terms of graduation rates at RU, black females complete their degrees (95.3% vs 88.9% in 2012) at a higher level than whites (94% vs 92.1% in 2012). Hispanic women have a graduation rate of 97% (vs 94.5% in 2012) and Asian women 98.9% (vs 97.9% in 2012). Native Americans had a 100% pass rate. No evidence of racial profiling by teachers.

For men in 2017, in terms of graduation rates at RU, black males complete their degrees (76.9% vs 84.2% in 2012) at a lower level than whites (89.8% vs 90.4% in 2012). Hispanic men have a graduation rate of 86.7% (vs 90.9% in 2012) and Asian men 91.8% (vs 95.7% in 2012). Why have men across all cohorts seen a lower level of pass rates?

There is little evidence that systemic racism is working against students of colour. If the students are triggered by the university’s history, removing a statue won’t change the fact that it was founded by a slave owner. No doubt these students picked RU for its curriculum and the opportunities that will flow from that, which clearly in their minds supersede its past to study there.

In summary, it is concerning to see more of this tribalism be pushed in society, especially when the evidence is so inconclusive.  The biggest lesson these kids need to learn that merit, hard work and learning from history are far more important skillsets in the real world than lodging complaints that the equal treatment the institution appears to be showing is somehow discriminatory and that only special treatment will fix it.

Cambridge Professor wants to abolish whiteness

It used to be a source of pride to say one graduated from Cambridge University.

Cambridge University’s Churchill College Professor Priyamvada Gopal’s used Twitter to say “White Lives Don’t Matter” and “abolish whiteness.

Gopal’s areas of study include gender and feminism, Marxism, critical race studies, and the politics and cultures of empire and globalization.

How does the dean tolerate the divisive radical professor?

We don’t have a problem with her free speech because her words speak for themselves. We question why the university tolerates faculty staff who bring the reputation of a prized tertiary institution into disrepute?

Even worse, she doubled down

One thing about white racists, the ones who are emailing & tweeting about my losing my job. It REALLY gets up their nose that Cambridge–which they see as theirs, their Properly White Institution–has me in its teaching ranks. Deeply triggering.

No, they care about the legacy of the institution. The university should seek to protect it regardless of the identity of the individual who made such thoughtless comments.

We shouldn’t be surprised at the deterioration in education standards. Who could forget the Stanford law professor, Pamela Karlan, who said during her testimony at the impeachment hearings that she crossed the street so she didn’t have to walk in front of Trump buildings.

When the left demand free education, we finally understand. If this is the standard, why drop a fortune on something that increasingly has no value?

Cambridge University’s reaction will be telling.

DIY tips on decolonizing our bookshelves using tax dollars

Good to see that our own Australian government-funded ABC isn’t the only network that wastes taxpayer funds on pushing cultural Marxist narratives. NPR, a US taxpayer-subsidized media network, is offering its advice on encouraging whites to “decolonize their bookshelves.

We only hope the ABC doesn’t get ideas. We may have spoken too soon. It self-flagellated over the weekend over the lack of ‘cultural diversity’ on its Insiders program, especially as it had been discussing aboriginal deaths in custody.

We just wonder that after we’ve decolonized our bookshelves, should we continue to go a step further and ensure that there is a balanced representation of genders between the bookends. Surely any skew above 51% to male authors suggests unconscious toxic masculinity which should be purged at once. Will the wife’s Mills & Boon collection be deemed as too stereotypical of modern sexual orientation? As to the kid’s books? Well, NPR has told us that Dr. Seuss can be racist.

We have concluded that from tonight we will only watch films that support social justice, feminism and self-loathing, lest let Netflix profile the previously viewed titles as a reason to call us out to publicly apologize and atone for those socially unjust sins.

After we have done our DIY bookshelf purge, how will those supposedly oppressed by a bookshelf they cannot see, benefit? At this rate, we think taking a knee in front of a book BBQ and renouncing white privilege uploaded the video to Twitter ought to do it.

Cartoon police dog is now deemed offensive

Not even kids cartoons are safe from the BLM inspired cancel culture.

Chase, the German shepherd police dog in Paw Patrol, is copping flak for being portrayed as a good cop.

Despite Chase’s sidekicks Marshall, a firefighting Dalmatian and Rubble, a bulldog construction worker helping their community every episode, they aren’t deemed worthy to radical activists.

The NY Times wrote,

As the protests against racist police violence enter their third week, the charges are mounting against fictional cops, too. Even big-hearted cartoon police dogs — or maybe especially big-hearted cartoon police dogs — are on notice. The effort to publicize police brutality also means banishing the good-cop archetype, which reigns on both television and in viral videos of the protests themselves. “Paw Patrol” seems harmless enough, and that’s the point: The movement rests on understanding that cops do plenty of harm.”

Let’s deprive kids of any innocence. Let’s get Nickelodeon to turn Chase into a speciesist who kills declawed cats every episode and picks on dogs who live in low income junkyards. Maybe put Chase down for his brutality to push justice.

Where is the pushback against the cancel culture?!? Why are media outlets folding to nonsense and putting forward all these empty apologies stating how much they “must reflect and listen“? When will they stand up and tell a small band of radical activists that they see no need to apologize for things they aren’t guilty of? Don’t they realize that they embolden these idiots to go even further every time they submit to the mob mentality?

Stop legitimizing compelled vision.