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jammerbirdi



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PostPosted: 08/11/15 4:47 pm    ::: The Coddling of the American Mind Reply Reply with quote

Ah the impact of political correctness. We actually covered this here earlier this year in a thread I started but now we have a new article from The Atlantic. Okay.

A couple of things first. People, I think, here, who read my rantings might come away from the experience thinking I'm picking up my stuff from some strain of right wing thought or media that I'm consuming some way or another. At least that's what I'm paranoid about. Wink But I can go back over and over again to articles in places like The Atlantic, New York Magazine, etc. LA freaking Weekly, if we're talking about media sources, that have fed my awareness and passions. etc. When I wax in a way that might seem xenophobic to some I could actually just be recalling an article I read in the Atlantic years ago about the rise of the new global elite and how fucking cold blooded their attitudes are about things like the little guy etc. quaint national concepts like The American People, etc. Anyway.


So...

Co-author and professor of business ethics at NYU Jonathan Haidt says this about this subject of PC on campus and trigger warnings and safe rooms.

"What might seem like a Left/Right issue... actually most professors are on the Left and they are sick of this stuff and horrified by this."

The Coddling of the American Mind

Something strange is happening at Americas colleges and universities. A movement is arising, undirected and driven largely by students, to scrub campuses clean of words, ideas, and subjects that might cause discomfort or give offense. Last December, Jeannie Suk wrote in an online article for The New Yorker about law students asking her fellow professors at Harvard not to teach rape lawor, in one case, even use the word violate (as in that violates the law) lest it cause students distress. In February, Laura Kipnis, a professor at Northwestern University, wrote an essay in The Chronicle of Higher Education describing a new campus politics of sexual paranoiaand was then subjected to a long investigation after students who were offended by the article and by a tweet shed sent filed Title IX complaints against her. In June, a professor protecting himself with a pseudonym wrote an essay for Vox describing how gingerly he now has to teach. Im a Liberal Professor, and My Liberal Students Terrify Me, the headline said. A number of popular comedians, including Chris Rock, have stopped performing on college campuses (see Caitlin Flanagans article in this months issue). Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Maher have publicly condemned the oversensitivity of college students, saying too many of them cant take a joke.

-----------

Okay, jammer here again. On Morning Joe Kattie Kay asks the professor if this is a isolated thing that will die out soon or if it's going to get a foothold and become the norm on college campuses.

OKAY STAY WITH ME.

So that's the question on the mind of the BBC's reporter. My question is what will this mean for other less educated Americans as they encounter generations of more privileged people who came through schools where these behaviors and attitudes held sway and what and how will the lives of those less-well off regular Americans be impacted by coming into contact with bosses, etc. who are combing their every social weakness and shortcomings through this strident new political correctness?

Back to Trump. All this guy has to do is keep hammering away on the subject of Political Correctness and he holds his position in the polls, IMO. As I said in another thread, IMO, the thing that is key to his popularity so far is that people, more than anything else, FEAR political correctness, as they should, and just want to see someone getting away with saying shit. Shocked



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pilight



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PostPosted: 08/11/15 5:40 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

These kids have seen this coddling all through their primary and secondary education, so they expect it to continue in their post-secondary education.

This is liberalism turned on its head. Classically the ideal of liberalism was not to take offense rather than not to give it.



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jammerbirdi



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PostPosted: 08/11/15 5:42 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
These kids have seen this coddling all through their primary and secondary education, so they expect it to continue in their post-secondary education.

This is liberalism turned on its head. Classically the ideal of liberalism was not to take offense rather than not to give it.


Kind of what the author said on Morning Joe. The faces on milk cartons generation. Must be protected. etc



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pilight



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PostPosted: 08/11/15 5:44 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

jammerbirdi wrote:
pilight wrote:
These kids have seen this coddling all through their primary and secondary education, so they expect it to continue in their post-secondary education.

This is liberalism turned on its head. Classically the ideal of liberalism was not to take offense rather than not to give it.


Kind of what the author said on Morning Joe. The faces on milk cartons generation. Must be protected. etc


Parents don't even let their kids out of the house. Even if they did, we now arrest parents who let their kids play in the park.



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jammerbirdi



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PostPosted: 08/11/15 7:52 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Well, here's something really wonderful from the piece. I think there may even be apps that take you through some of these steps.

"Cognitive behavioral therapy is a modern embodiment of this ancient wisdom. It is the most extensively studied nonpharmaceutical treatment of mental illness, and is used widely to treat depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, and addiction. It can even be of help to schizophrenics. No other form of psychotherapy has been shown to work for a broader range of problems. Studies have generally found that it is as effective as antidepressant drugs (such as Prozac) in the treatment of anxiety and depression. The therapy is relatively quick and easy to learn; after a few months of training, many patients can do it on their own. Unlike drugs, cognitive behavioral therapy keeps working long after treatment is stopped, because it teaches thinking skills that people can continue to use.

The goal is to minimize distorted thinking and see the world more accurately. You start by learning the names of the dozen or so most common cognitive distortions (such as overgeneralizing, discounting positives, and emotional reasoning; see the list at the bottom of this article). Each time you notice yourself falling prey to one of them, you name it, describe the facts of the situation, consider alternative interpretations, and then choose an interpretation of events more in line with those facts. Your emotions follow your new interpretation. In time, this process becomes automatic. When people improve their mental hygiene in this waywhen they free themselves from the repetitive irrational thoughts that had previously filled so much of their consciousnessthey become less depressed, anxious, and angry."



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mercfan3



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PostPosted: 08/11/15 10:51 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I've been on record with saying that language is important. And we've discussed this before, Jammer. I think it's fine to call others out for not being as sensitive as they should be about cultures, situations or people. And there are things I find less funny..things that some comedians say..because of some education I've had.

That being said, the tumblr generation takes this shit too far. There's a huge difference between acknowledging that language like "throw like a girl" or ethnic slurs..I can explain why that's dangerous, why it can impact society..but.."don't use the word "crazy" because it might offend someone." No. Or..someone might be offended by learning about rape law..(kind of necessary..)

I feel that there is some misunderstanding of mental illness. Perhaps that has to do with our education on the subject. But for instance, "triggers" are not for people who may get upset. Triggers..can trigger ptsd. For instance, if you are showing "Girl With The Dragon Tattoo"..you might want to give students a warning, because there are very graphic rape scenes in that movie in case someone has ptsd from sexual assault. However, I'm not sure the word "rape" would "trigger" that.

But even further, there seems to be sympathy that goes too far..for example depression. I've heard a lot of thoughts on the topic of depression that are..off. Sure, people who don't have depression don't understand what it's like fully. And sure, people treat mental illness like it's not real. But there doesn't seem to be a need to take responsibility and get better. A person who injures there knee goes to rehab. There are things depressed people can do..without a therapist..to help themselves. (Exercising, forcing themselves to continue with their daily routine...of course it's hard, but so isn't rehab...forcing yourself to move, be active, complete your responsibilities..actually helps. ) But that seems to be missing in this need to not hurt feelings or offend.

They are cultural relativists, afraid to make a criticism at anyone who is different..even if the criticism is earned. I read a great quote about how back in the sixties, people fought to not be labeled..and now everyone wants to be labeled. Empathy and understanding are wonderful qualities..and I'd rather people be too much than too little.. It's just gone too far.



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justintyme



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PostPosted: 08/12/15 10:49 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

The sweetest honey is loathsome in its own deliciousness. And in the taste destroys the appetite."

Shakespeare understood. Even the best of things are disastrous if taken too far, taken without sensible moderation. Political correctness is a very good thing, when used smartly. It is essential to understand that language shapes our world, that it creates our reality. Being mindful of this and choosing the type of world we want is huge.

But when we turn this mindset into a weapon by which to pull each other down, or use it to basically bowdlerize our existence, we turn this very good thing into something disgusting.



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jammerbirdi



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PostPosted: 08/12/15 11:44 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

justintyme wrote:
Political correctness is a very good thing, when used smartly.
Nothing as potent as the power to destroy is likely to be used 'smartly' by the socially and emotionally immature cabals that form on college campuses.

justintyme wrote:
But when we turn this mindset into a weapon by which to pull each other down...


You mean, when it's turned into a weapon to pull YOU down, as we see now this newest more strident version has been widely used to disinvite visiting lecturers and damage respected academics. Hitting a little close to home there, huh?

But when generations of PC zealots poured out of college and used it to stomp on (and in their minds, out) working class ignorance... social class and educational shortcomings that are manifested in misstatements or a careless comment... that was all okay I guess. Because apparently the well educated are here to bully those who are beneath them with the taunt that 'language is important.'



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norwester



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PostPosted: 08/12/15 2:10 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

So...when this country was formed (I just can't help the history lessons) different regions were...different. The people had different reasons for settling there. Different ways of seeing the world. Differing values from their adjacent regional settlements.

For instance, New York City was specifically founded by Dutch as a commercial enterprise. Diversity and personal freedoms were highly prized or tolerated. In fact, the reason the Bill of Rights exists, is that this region refused to ratify the Constitution until something like it was created. Their leaders were most often successful businessmen.

However, the NE was primarily a culture formed where education was one of the most prized things. More than money. They didn't value personal freedom; it was all about communal freedom. They didn't value letting their neighbors be (such as those in the farms of Pennsylvania, and eventually Ohio and across the middle of the US), but avidly and aggressively (in accordance with their dearly held beliefs about their superior way of life) proselytize their way of life as superior. Their leaders were most often also the most educated.

There were six or seven "regions" during the founding of this country, and each had a different view on commerce, education, personal freedoms, native americans, slavery, the role of government, etc.

I would submit that it's not the current culture we're defining as "PC run amok" that is pushing to alienate and disempower the common worker or lower class laborer, but rather it's always been this way in certain circles. We just talk about it on the internet now, so it's not as isolated. Think about it: Ivy League. Harvard. Yale. Etc. Seen as the ideal for education. Northeast. Of course they're going to use their education to feel and make you believe that they are superior. That's what they do!

Now, I agree with the points about moderation. And to a degree I wholly blame the institutions and their staff. Perhaps it's another symptom of the for-profit university system and the struggle for more and more money. But kids are supposed to push boundaries. Perhaps a young woman has a friend dealing with sexual assault PTSD and in the struggle to help starts presenting these ideas. But never gets pushed back on! It's like how my aunt runs her family: her feelings were hurt as a kid by her parents, so in a bid to avoid that for her kids she lets them run roughshod all over her! I guess the tuition of these students is more important that allowing open and honest discourse that might be uncomfortable.

The pendulum swings.



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norwester



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PostPosted: 08/12/15 2:35 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Duke professor, attacked for noxious racial comments, refuses to back down

So, what is racism? This guy compares the plight of blacks and asians in 1965 and says that asians have thrived while blacks have just felt sorry for themselves. Is it right to call out this guy? I mean, he's an 80 year old nearly-retired professor. But he's also throwing out opinions about how the world works that don't seem to be based on reality as I know it.
Quote:
But Hough, in an e-mail to an ABC affiliate, said political correctness is getting in the way of thoughtful and frank debate.

I am strongly against the obsession with sensitivity,'" Hough wrote. "The more we have emphasized sensitivity in recent years, the worse race relations have become. I think that is not an accident.

Anyway, guy received a bunch of backlash. He was officially rebuked by the university. He was retiring officially next year anyway, so I figure nothing more will come of it.

I agree that it's annoying to have someone's good points discounted just because you either don't agree with how they presented them. Something like don't miss the forest for the trees. A lot of discourse these days does seem driven by sound bites that you can fit into a tweet or headline or something, and it's easy to pick something random out of context and either make fun of it and the author, or stir some sort of furor off.



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mercfan3



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PostPosted: 08/12/15 8:49 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

jammerbirdi wrote:
justintyme wrote:
Political correctness is a very good thing, when used smartly.
Nothing as potent as the power to destroy is likely to be used 'smartly' by the socially and emotionally immature cabals that form on college campuses.

justintyme wrote:
But when we turn this mindset into a weapon by which to pull each other down...


You mean, when it's turned into a weapon to pull YOU down, as we see now this newest more strident version has been widely used to disinvite visiting lecturers and damage respected academics. Hitting a little close to home there, huh?

But when generations of PC zealots poured out of college and used it to stomp on (and in their minds, out) working class ignorance... social class and educational shortcomings that are manifested in misstatements or a careless comment... that was all okay I guess. Because apparently the well educated are here to bully those who are beneath them with the taunt that 'language is important.'


I think a major problem with the way educated people think..is that they believe that everyone else should be educated.

Look, language is impactful. It shapes our society and our culture. We should be sensitive and aware of what we are saying. Ethnic slurs are not okay. Language that makes groups of people second hand citizens are not okay. Cultural sensitivity is important.

However, people need to not be shamed for "not knowing" when it is totally reasonable for them not to know. Instead, educate them.



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pilight



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PostPosted: 08/12/15 8:55 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

mercfan3 wrote:
jammerbirdi wrote:
justintyme wrote:
Political correctness is a very good thing, when used smartly.
Nothing as potent as the power to destroy is likely to be used 'smartly' by the socially and emotionally immature cabals that form on college campuses.

justintyme wrote:
But when we turn this mindset into a weapon by which to pull each other down...


You mean, when it's turned into a weapon to pull YOU down, as we see now this newest more strident version has been widely used to disinvite visiting lecturers and damage respected academics. Hitting a little close to home there, huh?

But when generations of PC zealots poured out of college and used it to stomp on (and in their minds, out) working class ignorance... social class and educational shortcomings that are manifested in misstatements or a careless comment... that was all okay I guess. Because apparently the well educated are here to bully those who are beneath them with the taunt that 'language is important.'


I think a major problem with the way educated people think..is that they believe that everyone else should be educated.

Look, language is impactful. It shapes our society and our culture. We should be sensitive and aware of what we are saying. Ethnic slurs are not okay. Language that makes groups of people second hand citizens are not okay. Cultural sensitivity is important.

However, people need to not be shamed for "not knowing" when it is totally reasonable for them not to know. Instead, educate them.


Forget shamed, people are actually being punished for what they say. That's completely contrary to the American way.



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PostPosted: 08/13/15 7:17 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
mercfan3 wrote:
jammerbirdi wrote:
justintyme wrote:
Political correctness is a very good thing, when used smartly.
Nothing as potent as the power to destroy is likely to be used 'smartly' by the socially and emotionally immature cabals that form on college campuses.

justintyme wrote:
But when we turn this mindset into a weapon by which to pull each other down...


You mean, when it's turned into a weapon to pull YOU down, as we see now this newest more strident version has been widely used to disinvite visiting lecturers and damage respected academics. Hitting a little close to home there, huh?

But when generations of PC zealots poured out of college and used it to stomp on (and in their minds, out) working class ignorance... social class and educational shortcomings that are manifested in misstatements or a careless comment... that was all okay I guess. Because apparently the well educated are here to bully those who are beneath them with the taunt that 'language is important.'


I think a major problem with the way educated people think..is that they believe that everyone else should be educated.

Look, language is impactful. It shapes our society and our culture. We should be sensitive and aware of what we are saying. Ethnic slurs are not okay. Language that makes groups of people second hand citizens are not okay. Cultural sensitivity is important.

However, people need to not be shamed for "not knowing" when it is totally reasonable for them not to know. Instead, educate them.


Forget shamed, people are actually being punished for what they say. That's completely contrary to the American way.


In general I am for open speech in an educational setting for educational purposes. I also feel that we have become too PC on many levels. But free speech doesn't absolve you of the consequences. Discussion in a classroom or other educational setting is different than a newspaper editorial or post on social media. People who read also have a right to voice their opinions on your public comments. The institution that hired you can determine whether your free speech inappropriately reflects on that institution.

That said, I disagree with many parts of his commentary. Blacks with African names is not an attempt to "separate", but to accept and identify with a heritage which for years African Americans were made to feel ashamed of.

Asians were never forced (by economics) into the inner cities, in poverty and living on top of each other. The resulting poverty, lack of jobs and education systemically leads to a higher crime rate than in the suburbs. Look at the few small pockets of Asians communities (maybe San Francisco) in inner cities and I'm sure you'll find crime, gangs, violence, and the whole gamut of social ills.

There are several studies that show that the kids of first generation immigrants - regardless of ethnicity - do well academically and professionally. But then that success tails in subsequent generations.

In sum - you have free speech but you don't get a free pass.

PS - I remember several years ago, my ex-brother-in-law's (a college graduate) brother came with him to visit my family in Georgia. He was in his mid 30s at the time. It was the FIRST time he had EVER been outside the city of St. Louis, Shocked


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PostPosted: 09/15/15 10:33 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

http://www.vox.com/2015/9/14/9326965/obama-political-correctness

President Obama wrote:
Ive heard some college campuses where they dont want to have a guest speaker who is too conservative or they dont want to read a book if it has language that is offensive to African-Americans or somehow sends a demeaning signal towards women. I gotta tell you, I dont agree with that either. I dont agree that you, when you become students at colleges, have to be coddled and protected from different points of view.



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PostPosted: 09/15/15 2:15 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
http://www.vox.com/2015/9/14/9326965/obama-political-correctness

President Obama wrote:
Ive heard some college campuses where they dont want to have a guest speaker who is too conservative or they dont want to read a book if it has language that is offensive to African-Americans or somehow sends a demeaning signal towards women. I gotta tell you, I dont agree with that either. I dont agree that you, when you become students at colleges, have to be coddled and protected from different points of view.


my best class in college was the toughest, where the prof had us reading two (sometimes three) books a week by every imaginable philosopher from various eras, some whose writings were off the scale. we don't use 'philosopher' these days, but people like marcus garvey and thomas sowell came under that heading. collectively, we were too young and stupid to recognize when we should even BE offended. if nothing else, the most simplistic lesson was that fame, authority, distinction, etc., or the fact of being published, didn't automatically make someone knowledgeable or a clear thinker.

after tackling the issue of getting students to actual read something of substance, i'd want them to read as broad a range as i could muster.



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PostPosted: 02/12/16 9:51 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/liberal-but-not-tolerant-on-the-nations-college-campuses/2016/02/11/0f79e8e8-d101-11e5-88cd-753e80cd29ad_story.html

Quote:
Todays students are indeed both more left wing and more openly hostile to free speech than earlier generations of collegians.

Dont believe me? There are hard data to prove it.



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PostPosted: 02/12/16 11:46 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote




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Luuuc



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PostPosted: 02/12/16 11:20 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

<iframe width="640" height="360" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/j556MWGVVqI?feature=player_detailpage" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j556MWGVVqI



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PostPosted: 02/13/16 5:04 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Laughing


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PostPosted: 03/26/16 1:24 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3506491/Emory-president-Students-scared-Trump-2016-chalk-signs.html

Quote:
Students at Emory University claim they were frightened and 'in pain' after someone wrote 'Trump 2016' in chalk around campus.

Officials at the Atlanta school, which has an enrollment of more than 14,000, were forced to act after the youngsters claimed their 'safe space' was violated when the messages of 'hate' appeared on sidewalks and buildings.

One student even said she 'feared for her life' as she thought a 'KKK rally' was going on, while others were scared a mass shooting was going to take place and wouldn't walk alone.



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PostPosted: 03/26/16 1:43 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3506491/Emory-president-Students-scared-Trump-2016-chalk-signs.html

Quote:
Students at Emory University claim they were frightened and 'in pain' after someone wrote 'Trump 2016' in chalk around campus.

Officials at the Atlanta school, which has an enrollment of more than 14,000, were forced to act after the youngsters claimed their 'safe space' was violated when the messages of 'hate' appeared on sidewalks and buildings.

One student even said she 'feared for her life' as she thought a 'KKK rally' was going on, while others were scared a mass shooting was going to take place and wouldn't walk alone.

Just dumb. While Trump has said some disgusting things he is a legitimate political candidate. To equate his name alone to hate speech is eye roll worthy. The worst part about people taking such a ridiculous position is that they allow the "anti-PC" crowd to redefine what political correctness is about the same way the Islamophobes use the terrorists to redefine mainstream Islam.



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PostPosted: 04/27/16 2:57 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

This post probably doesn't belong here, because it's not about PC vs non-PC, and how we are or are not exposed to ideas that are different than our own. But I do feel like it is an offshoot in the "not everyone gets a medal for participation" world.

Most High School Seniors Aren't College Or Career Ready, Says 'Nation's Report Card'

I feel like the majority of students shouldn't go to college. I mean, if someone wants to, ok, but I feel like "the system" is skewed to encourage those who just aren't suited for college to go to college anyway, which often leaves students and families in debt and with no prospects for the future. I feel like high schools should emphasize trades more, and also design curriculums so that it's not a once-size-fits-all-take-these-classes-to-get-into-college type of deal. For instance, to go to a Utah state college (an example I use because I grew up in Utah) you need to have taken a certain number of foreign language courses. But what if I'm a student that has no intention of going to college? Pretty much everyone I knew had to take Spanish or French in middle school. What if they took a communication course? What if instead of pre-algebra, they took basic household accounting or something?

Why do we even have schools? Am I getting too existential?

Anyway, I don't think it's too alarming a statistic that 60% of students are not college or career ready, mostly because 60% of students probably shouldn't go to college, and we don't teach people actual life skills as a matter of course. Sounds like a pretty expected result, if you ask me.

My new soapbox about education: school districts funded by their own property taxes versus distributing them across a system. I.e. a "rich school" provides a much better quality of education than a poor school, and the rich school can provide all sorts of extra curriculars and perks while a poor school may not even have the basics like a roof that doesn't leak! But that's for a different thread, I guess.



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PostPosted: 04/27/16 3:33 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

norwester wrote:


I feel like the majority of students shouldn't go to college. I mean, if someone wants to, ok, but I feel like "the system" is skewed to encourage those who just aren't suited for college to go to college anyway, which often leaves students and families in debt and with no prospects for the future.

I actually agree. However, if this is going to be the case I think businesses need to stop requiring college degrees for advancement or even to get I the door. If the degree is actually needed to have the requisite skills needed for the job, then fine. It makes sense that a lawyer should have a law degree, or a doctor a medical one.

But the vast majority of employers just want to see a degree in something. Whether or not it is applicable to the field or not is inconsequential. Someone applies for a job in HR. A degree in History? Sure, come on in! No degree at all? Sorry, out of luck! Up for a promotion. Can do everything required expertly. Sorry, College Grads only.

College has stopped being about giving people the skills needed for their jobs and instead become a way to classify people. This makes social mobility much more difficult since a vast majority of the higher paying jobs out there require a degree.



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pilight



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PostPosted: 04/27/16 3:34 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

norwester wrote:
My new soapbox about education: school districts funded by their own property taxes versus distributing them across a system. I.e. a "rich school" provides a much better quality of education than a poor school, and the rich school can provide all sorts of extra curriculars and perks while a poor school may not even have the basics like a roof that doesn't leak! But that's for a different thread, I guess.


You mean like with vouchers?

As long as you fund schools with property taxes, neither the value of the property nor the quality of the schools will improve.



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norwester



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PostPosted: 04/27/16 3:49 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
norwester wrote:
My new soapbox about education: school districts funded by their own property taxes versus distributing them across a system. I.e. a "rich school" provides a much better quality of education than a poor school, and the rich school can provide all sorts of extra curriculars and perks while a poor school may not even have the basics like a roof that doesn't leak! But that's for a different thread, I guess.


You mean like with vouchers?

As long as you fund schools with property taxes, neither the value of the property nor the quality of the schools will improve.

I don't know. I don't think so. Just a different distribution of the pot of money. Aren't vouchers in place to help students pay for non-traditional or non-public schools?



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