Tag: wokeness

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That’s a phrase Mock and Daisy (Chicks on the Right) use when something is so stupid, words fail to come to mind.  Well, I saw this article this morning, and I just can’t: https://www.foxbusiness.com/politics/pepsi-unveils-cracker-jill-version-cracker-jack-promote-womens-sports Preview Open

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First Things editor Mark Bauerlein joins Brian Anderson to discuss the woes of Millennials and Zoomers, the technological roots of social dysfunction, and the elusive search for meaning in the twenty-first century. His newest book, The Dumbest Generation Grows Up, is out now.

Find the transcript of this conversation and more at City Journal.

Don’t Trust the Education Blob

 

In my state, the Republican-dominated legislature is moving toward a vote on two anti-CRT bills. Here, as in other places where similar bills are being considered, the state edu-blob is wringing its gelatinous nubs and screeching about censorship. Not long ago, Indiana teachers warned that a “CRT-inspired bill” could “drive them from the classrooms.” We can only hope! The College Board is threatening to withhold AP credit from schools in communities that adopt anti-woke policies. As bills like Ohio’s make it onto statehouse floors, I expect the controversy to ramp up.

Local media is behaving as you’d expect — holding a microphone up to the edu-blob’s mouth, publishing outraged op-eds written by professors, non-profit leaders, and “experts” on racism, sexism, ableism, disestablishmentarianism, and every other -ism under the sun. A typical example of the reaction is today’s episode of Today in Ohio, a news podcast produced by the Cleveland Plain Dealer. What do the hosts think of Republican anti-CRT bills? Here’s editor Chris Quinn:

Member Post

 

I’m going to pick on someone. Because I’m going to pick on someone, I’m keeping this post behind the membership wall. There’s no need to send a social-media mob after her. (Not that I have the power and reach to summon Twitter mobs, but still.) Today, I opened the Ohio Historical Society‘s website, as I […]

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Oversensitivity to Wokeness?

 

When we got into my husband’s car this morning, a cute but older Nissan, the battery groaned in pain. It’s been very cold for Florida (mornings in the 40s) and we don’t drive his car very much. After a couple of tries, the battery finally kicked in and the car started and we were off to do grocery shopping.

After finishing our shopping, it didn’t occur to us that we hadn’t run the battery enough. This time it didn’t moan; it just coughed and died. We sat there quietly for a moment, and then my husband got out of the car resignedly and looked under the hood. At that moment, a couple in a large white truck pulled in the space directly opposite ours, and when they exited their car—a young woman and a smiling, robust young man—my husband approached and asked if the fellow could give him a jump. The man agreed with a smile, and my husband pulled out his jumper cable. I saw him speak to the man, who frowned slightly, then smiled and they got the battery going. Meanwhile, they exchanged a few friendly words before Jerry got into the car and the young man went to join his wife in Publix.

Contra Robert George

 

Madison’s Notes is a good podcast, and the latest episode is an interesting one — interesting not so much for its content, but for what it reveals about the conservative intellectual establishment. What it reveals is, of course, futility.

This particular episode is a recording of an event held in September and sponsored by Princeton University. The event, which featured back-to-back talks by Robert George and Ryan T. Anderson, was titled “The Baby and the Bathwater: Toward a Recovery of the American Idea” and was pitched as a rebuttal to the growing contingent of post-liberals on the right: the likes of Sohrab Ahmari and Patrick Deneen. The right shouldn’t throw aside the small-l liberal constitutional tradition, argue George and Anderson. We must “stay the course” and “keep the faith.”

This week on “The Learning Curve,” co-hosts Gerard Robinson and Cara Candal talk with Bari Weiss, former New York Times op-ed editor and writer, and author of How to Fight Anti-Semitism. Bari shares what motivated her to write this book, its reception, and key lessons for teachers and students alike.

She also explains why we’re now seeing a rise in anti-Semitism, how educators can best combat it, and the connection she observes between the current upsurge in anti-Semitism and cancel culture. Bari discusses her experiences on the editorial boards of The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and her courageous decision to resign from the Times, as well as the public praise and criticism she’s encountered since her resignation.

Charles Fain Lehman and Aaron Sibarium join Theodore Kupfer to discuss the sociology of “wokeness,” the roots of the diversity, equity, and inclusion bureaucracy, and the future of identity politics in an increasingly multiracial America.

Find the transcript of this conversation and more at City Journal.

On this episode of “The Federalist Radio Hour,” Libby Emmons, editor-in-chief of The Post Millennial, joins Culture Editor Emily Jashinsky to discuss how the rampant wokeness promoted by unchecked leftism could be progressives’ downfall.

Karma Is Relentless

 

First, I know very little about professional sports. The only sports I ever paid attention to were the ones in which I had a child participating….Little League baseball, little kid soccer, etc. I only know all the rules for high school football because I attended every home game of my children’s schools because I was a Band Mom for 12 years. You know…marching band? Halftime shows? I’ve never watched sports on television because I’m just not interested in the pros.

However, tonight when I was driving home I heard on my truck radio that the Atlanta Braves had beaten the Houston Astros in game three of the World Series so the next game would be played in Atlanta on Saturday night.

Meanwhile, at Case Western

 

Since spring 2020, pro-life students at Cleveland’s Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) have tried to organize a chapter of Students for Life. Case Western is a university, a land of complimentary flavored condoms and helpful instructional pamphlets about proper masking procedures during sex, so the prospect of an anti-abortion organization receiving either official support or funding did not go over well. Not at all. After the student government approved the nascent group’s petition, the woke on campus complained, demanded a referendum, and voted the new pro-life club out of existence. Its members reorganized, renamed themselves Case for Life, and continued to seek recognition. To its partial credit, CWRU finally approved the group late this spring, albeit narrowly. And two weeks ago, irate student journalists took to the pages of The Observer, Case Western’s campus newspaper, to vent their spleens in a piece destined to become a classic in the annals of SJW-ist rhetoric. It begins:

Here we go again. The fight for reproductive rights and privacy happens consistently throughout the world, and it’s no different at Case Western Reserve University — even though institutions should not infringe upon people’s right to choose what to do with their bodies.

Begone, Harmful Language!

 

Having cataloged and re-cataloged their stashes ten times over, and apparently lacking anything better to do, America’s archivists and librarians have found a new shiny bauble to be distracted by: combing through the accumulated detritus under their care in search of “offensive” or “harmful” language. The old card catalog in aisle 32B uses the term “colored person” rather than “person of color”? Say it isn’t so! Colonel Ellsworth Pratt of the 14th Battalion said something unkind about women in a letter to Lieutenant Roger Drake of the 15th Infantry Regiment? Oh, the horror! We must warn the poor dears! Amid the general wokification of 2020 and 2021, archives across the land quietly updated their websites with groveling “statements” apologizing for the sexism, racism, ableism, colonialism, trans erasure, xenophobia, queerphobia, fatphobia, islamophobia, arachnophobia, and sesquipedalophobia of their collections. “We must do better!” shriek the hostage statements in unison. It seems there isn’t an institution that hasn’t jumped on this bandwagon. Not even good-old Hoover:

Our collections deal in subjects that encompass a broad range of human experiences, including tyranny, genocide, displacement, and political conflict. To engage with our materials is to acknowledge that one may encounter content that reflects racism, antisemitism, xenophobia, homophobia, sexism, and other forms of hatred and discrimination. In keeping with our mission, we believe that only through the retention and study of historical sources can the world hope to learn from its past mistakes and promote peace.

David French and the Dialectic

 

The left moves, and has long moved, by dialectic. The activist-academic class introduces a concept or word into the public debate and shoves with all its might, taking its own logic to its flashiest conclusion. This conclusion being nonsense, pushback inevitably follows, prompting the activists to scamper back to their safe, warm mottes. But things don’t snap back to the way they were. No. The terms, ideas, and slogans introduced by the activists stick around. They’re subsumed into the broader culture, their edges rubbed off. They become part of the scaffolding of political debate — the mental furniture of the American mind. It is by this process that figures like David French (who is no longer a conservative) will come, mark my words, to defend transgenderism against the onslaught of transhumanism sometime in the 2040s. It is because of this process that conservatism is all but a myth. Conservatives cannot conserve — not in our current culture, at least.

That David French is no longer a conservative will come as a surprise to nobody. I say this not because of his anti-Trump writings (there are perfectly good reasons to dislike Trump — I voted for him, and I can recognize that), but because David French, like the jolly band at The Bulwark, has shown himself eager to accept the terminology, framing, and general worldview of the cultural left. Just today, he published a piece titled “Structural Racism Isn’t Wokeness, It’s Reality.” French writes:

This week on “The Learning Curve,” Gerard Robinson and guest co-host Kerry McDonald talk with Naomi Schaefer Riley, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and author of several books, including Be the Parent, Please. They discuss findings from her book on how excessive technology use negatively impacts children’s intellectual, social, and moral development – which was even more of a challenge with the wide usage of remote learning during COVID-19. The conversation turns to Riley’s extensive commentary on the relationship between religion and education in American society, and lessons K-12 education policymakers should learn from higher education’s handling of faith on campus. She delves into why religion and church-state issues remain such a stark fault line across American K-12 education. They also talk about the development of anti-intellectual efforts on college campuses, and in the larger society, to use speech codes, political correctness, wokeness, and now cancel culture to shut down the free exchange of ideas, and why such campaigns to undermine the fundamentals of democracy persist.

Stories of the Week: EducationWeek reports that over 1.3 million American students did not return to school this year due to the pandemic-related closures. School districts are scrambling to lure them back, but will it work? Juneteenth, which honors the 1865 ending of slavery in this country, has officially become a U.S. federal holiday.

‘White Privilege’ in the US; ‘Black Privilege’ in Africa? ‘Han Privilege’ in China?

 

All the wailing and gnashing of teeth over “whiteness,” “white privilege,” and “white supremacy” in the United States, and the supposed problems “non-white” people has got me wondering – what happens in the parts of the world in which a particular group of “non-white” people dominate the culture and/or the power structures, such as sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, Central and South America. This is probably best answered by someone who has lived in areas other than the United States or Europe.

I am a 65-year-old pale-skinned man of English and German ancestry with blue eyes and a little blond hair remaining on my head. I live in Texas.

Findlay, Ohio: A Case Study in Wokification

 

This weekend, I traveled to the city of Findlay, Ohio, to see an old friend. I expected to find beautiful buildings and good conversation, and I did. What I didn’t expect to find was a corporo-civic woke propaganda campaign being waged on its streets.

First, I wandered around the older residential neighborhoods and saw a few of the usual yard signs and rainbow flags. This is to be expected. But downtown surprised me. Rainbow banners festooned the lamp posts along Main Street, and a rainbow blob (intended to be a rainbow Ohio, I gather) had been painted at the center of the main intersection, in front of the county courthouse. A large flag mounted to a coffee shop read “HATE HAS NO HOME HERE,” and a bulletin board at the local deli was covered with posters advertising a marijuana dispensary and various LGBTQWERTY clubs and activities. Two activists of some kind roamed the streets in their Pride Month shirts, handing out business cards, while a local eccentric, also clad in rainbow attire, muttered to himself and occasionally yelled indecipherable words at the joggers and dog-walkers going to and fro.

. . .

Night at the Woke Museum

 

For all of six picoseconds, I considered a career in public history. It’s my great fortune that fate instead sent me into the regulatory-industrial complex, where I can (for now) generate paperwork free of the taint of left-wing cultural politics. I know the world of public history reasonably well. I spent time in graduate school studying American architecture — a subject joined at the hip to public history.

One summer, I even interned at the institution formerly known as the Ohio Historical Society. (It is now known, officially, as the “Ohio History Connection,” a pointless and obfuscating name I prefer not to use.) Like all state historical societies, the Ohio Historical Society has a blog. Nobody reads this blog, save for the archivists and interns who write the posts (and one or two of their teacher friends), but that’s hardly relevant since the site still gives us a peek into the minds of the second-tier intelligentsia who staff such institutions. Their astroturfing reveals what matters to them — what they find interesting and inspiring. It tells us, in short, where the action is.

“There Is No Such Thing as Critical Race Theory”

 

At the moment, the left — and Charlie Sykes, but I repeat myself — is engaged in what could be the world’s clearest example of motte-and-baileying. The motte-and-bailey, named for a medieval fortification design, is an argumentative tactic: The arguer takes one position, then retreats to a different, less extreme position when attacked, often denying his support for the extreme position in the first place.

The cascade of anti-CRT bills passed by Republican state legislatures is engendering just this response. Critical race theory is a boogeyman invented by Trump’s stooges, the Very Smart People tell us. No, libraries across the land never hosted Robin DiAngelo book clubs. Medical conglomerates never told us to read anything by Ibram X. Kendi. Critical Race Theory: An Introduction was never published. Kimberlé Crenshaw never edited a tome called Critical Race Theory: The Key Writings That Formed the Movement. No! What are you talking about? There is no such movement. You’re crazy. Why do you care so much about race, anyway? Are you a racist or something? You must be, since you’re refusing to grapple with America’s racist past. You want to ban teaching about slavery? What kind of monster are you!?

The Pink Police of San Diego

 

I’d submit that the most important political observation of our time is James Poulos’s theory of the pink police state. A pink police state, as Poulos understands it, is a regime that abandons political freedoms in exchange for interpersonal ones — a regime that exists not to preserve political liberties as conventionally understood, but to guarantee social entitlements. The pink police state isn’t concerned so much with whether the trains run on time or whether would-be invaders are kept at bay. No, what really matters is whether the citizens are being sufficiently “nice” to each other.

It’s no surprise, then, that the old distinction between public and private has to go. In the world of the pink police state, your business is everybody’s business, and your self-fulfillment is everybody’s duty. Each citizen is entitled to liberation — liberation from the oppressive structures of traditional society, liberation from suffering, and liberation from risk.