Category Archives: professors and intellectuals

“Traditional Masculinity” is Harmful, American Psychological Association Says

Well, it’s finally happened. Teaching a boy to be a man is now deemed harmful for the boy.

I’m not making this up. This assessment is not the ranting of a rabid libtard feminazi, but the considered opinion of the august organization, the American PsychologicalAssociation (APA).

The APA said it could be damaging to teach boys about “traditional masculinity.” In its recently released report titled, “APA Guidelines for the Psychological Practice with Boys and Men,” the APA said the “traditional masculinity philosophy not only is ‘harmful’ but also could lead to homophobia and sexual harassment.”

The U.S. News & World Report said the APA cited traditional masculinity as including elements of “anti-femininity, achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, and adventure, risk and violence.”

Fox News this week quoted an APA press release stating, “The main thrust of the (APA’s) subsequent research is that traditional masculinity – marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression – is, on the whole, harmful.”

The Daily Caller wrote that the APA report held that “traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful and that socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage that echoes both inwardly and outwardly.”

“Traditional masculinity ideology has been shown to limit males’ psychological development, constrain their behavior, result in gender role strain and gender role conflict, and negatively influence mental health and physical health,” the 36-page report says, Fox reported.

Further, the report proposes that “masculine boys may put their energy toward disruptive behaviors such as homophobia, bullying and even sexual harassment rather than strive for academic excellence.”

The report suggests that psychologists relinquish any predisposition when treating boys, and offers tips on how to do that while also advising them to teach them how “power, privilege and sexism work both by conferring benefits to men and by trapping them in narrow roles.”.

Never before has the APA delivered guiding principles to aid psychologists to “specifically address issues with men and boys,” According to a U.S. News & World Report article.

Ronald F. Levant, Ed. D, a professor emeritus of psychology, told Fox, “Though men benefit from patriarchy, they are also impinged upon by patriarchy.”

The APA published statistics to support their research, “including that men are four times more likely than women to die of suicide worldwide, are ‘far more likely’ than women to be arrested and charged with intimate partner violence in the U.S., and commit about 90 percent of all homicides nationwide.”

Stephanie Pappas, writing in an APAP article said that, “[M]en still dominate professionally and politically: As of 2018, 95.2 percent of chief operating officers at Fortune 500 companies were men. According to a 2017 analysis by Fortune, in 16 of the top companies, 80 percent of all high-ranking executives were male. Meanwhile, the 115th Congress, which began in 2017, was 81 percent male,” the Daily Caller reported.

~ Grif

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#BelieveAllWomen: Climate change expert charged with choking fiancé, woman fears for her life

Aaron Doering can’t control his passion…

From NY Post: A well-known climate change expert and professor at the University of Minnesota choked and brutally assaulted his fiancée, who told cops she fears he will kill her, according to a criminal complaint.

Aaron Herbert Doering, a 47-year-old tenured professor and the director of the Minneapolis University’s Learning Technologies Media Lab, was charged Thursday with two felony counts of domestic assault by strangulation in Hennepin County District Court, the Star Tribune reports.

Doering — who also serves as a fellow for the Royal Canadian Geographic Society and regularly appears on media outlets to discuss climate change, sustainability and related topics — had to be separated from his fiancée by responding officers when they got to the couple’s apartment in Minneapolis, according to a criminal complaint obtained by the newspaper.

The woman, who had bruises on her neck and red marks on her forehead, told police Doering had dragged her through the apartment by her hair before beating her and choking her to the point that she thought she would lose consciousness, the complaint shows.

“Victim believes [Doering] will kill her if he returns to the apartment,” according to the court document.

The woman claimed that the alleged assault was not the first time she had been victimized by Doering. She also provided police with photographs to back up those claims.

Doering, who remains jailed in Hennepin County on $40,000 bond, is set to make his initial court appearance Friday afternoon, county records show.

Doering’s status at the university remained unchanged as of late Thursday, a spokeswoman told the Star Tribune.
“We’re aware of the situation and will be reviewing the matter,” director of public relations Lacey Nygard said. A message seeking additional comment from university officials was not immediately returned early Friday.

Doering’s website bills him as an explorer with a “passion for education and change” and details some of his lectures to more than 15 million students, as well as his dog-sledding trips and more than 5,000 miles exploring the Arctic since 2004. His latest project, “The Changing Earth,” is an Emmy-nominated documentary about a 137-mile trek through the Arctic wilderness into Iceland.

“Aaron has received millions of dollars in grants; has published more than 80 journal articles, books, book chapters, and conference proceedings; and is the coauthor of two books, The New Landscape of Mobile Learning: Redesigning Education in an App-based World and Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching,” the website reads.

Doering’s Twitter account, which has nearly 4,000 followers, identifies him as an adventurer and is peppered with photos of extreme Canadian Arctic locales, as well as his young son.

DCG

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Virginia school board fires Christian teacher for refusing to use ‘transgender’ pronouns

The new tyranny in America.

Graham Moomaw reports for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Dec. 6, 2018, that the West Point High School in West Point, Virginia, fired French teacher Peter Vlaming for refusing to go along with the madness of ‘transgenderism’ by addressing a female 9th-grade student who imagines herself to be male with the Left-mandated “correct” male pronouns.

Note that FOTM‘s recounting of Moomaw’s report for the Richmond Times-Dispatch refers to the biologically-female student as “girl,” “she” and “her,” instead of “boy” and male pronouns employed by Moomaw, which is now mandated for journalists in America’s insane Left-dominated media.

Vlaming, 47, who had taught at the school for almost seven years after spending more than a decade in France, told his superiors his Christian faith prevented him from using male pronouns for a student he saw as female.

A year ago, the student was in Vlaming’s class, at which point, she had identified as female. Then, over the summer, the girl’s family informed the school system of her “transition” to being male. Vlaming agreed to use the student’s new, male name, but avoided using any pronouns — he or him, and she or her — when referring to the student in her presence. But Vlaming did use female pronouns to refer to the female student in conversations with others. According to “witnesses,” during a class activity on Halloween involving the use of a virtual reality headset, the student was about to run into a wall, and Vlaming told others to stop “her.”

In other words, the school relied on spies and informants.

The student said that Vlaming made her feel uncomfortable and singled out. And the school’s administrators sided with her. They recommended that Vlaming be fired for violating the school system’s nondiscrimination and harassment policies that were updated a year ago to include protections for gender identity.

West Point’s principal Jonathan Hochman said he had told Vlaming to use male pronouns in accordance with the student’s wishes, and hyperbolically condemned Vlaming’s refusal as “I can’t think of a worse way to treat a child than what was happening.” West Point schools Superintendent Laura Abel said that Vlaming’s gender “discrimination” created “a hostile learning environment” which made the student and her parents feel “disrespected.”

Although the school district’s attorney, Stacy Haney, justifies Vlaming’s firing on the basis of a school employee’s refusal to follow policies, Vlaming’s lawyer, Shawn Voyles, said the school district’s nondiscrimination and harassment policies contain no specific guidance on the use of gender pronouns, and that even as a public employee, Vlaming has constitutional rights of his own, specificially the right “to be free from being compelled to speak something that violates your conscience.”

Speaking in his own defense, Vlaming said he loves and respects all his students and had tried to reach a solution based on “mutual tolerance.” But the effort was rejected, which put him at risk of losing his job for having views held by “most of the world for most of human history.” Vlaming said, “That is not tolerance. That is coercion.”

Vlaming’s hearing drew an overflow crowd, made up largely of parents and students who support him. They describe Vlaming as a model teacher who does extra duty as a soccer coach and bus driver. They had brought to the hearing “Justice for Mr. Vlaming” signs, but school officials forebade the signs in the meeting room with the ridiculous excuse that the small room did not have space for the signs. So the signs were left in a stack outside the meeting room’s doors.

During the hearing, to highlight the pitfalls of rules against “misgendering,” Vlaming and his lawyer pointed out that school principal Hochman himself used the “wrong” pronoun for the student during his testimony. Describing his conversation with Vlaming after the incident on Halloween, Hochman testified that he told Vlaming: “You need to say sorry for that. And refer to her by the male pronoun.”

Despite the support from many students and parents, the school board chose to terminate Vlaming’s employment. Superintendent Abel released this brief statement after the vote: “As detailed during the course of the public hearing, Mr. Vlaming was recommended for termination due to his insubordination and repeated refusal to comply with directives made to him by multiple WPPS administrators.”

Vlaming has asked the School Board to reconsider their decision — the “absurdity” of punishing a teacher for discrimination on the basis of pronoun usage alone, with no accusation of overtly malicious behavior. He said, “I am being punished for what I haven’t said.”

Vlaming is considering a wrongful-termination lawsuit and is consulting with his attorney. He said: “I have to research how we would do that, what that would entail. I do think it’s a serious question of First Amendment rights.”

Contact information for your protests:

Jonathan Hochman
Principal, West Point High School
Phone: (804) 843-3630 x104
Email: jhochman@wpschools.net

Laura K. Abel
Superintendent, West Point Public Schools
Phone: (804) 843-4386
Email: label@wpschools.net

There is a petition asking Superintendent Abel to reinstate Vlaming. To sign, click here.

See also:

~Eowyn

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Stanford University fraternity told to remove American flag because it’s intimidating and aggressive

The next time we find ourselves despairing about the future of America, remember the young people of Sigma Chi and the Stanford Review.

The Stanford Review is an independent newspaper staffed completely by Stanford University undergraduates. It describes itself as “a political magazine that promotes independent thought at Stanford. We aim to promote debate about campus and national issues that are otherwise not represented by traditional publications.”

Stanford Review‘s executive director Antigone Xenopoulos reports on Nov. 28, 2018, that the Sigma Chi fraternity was on probation last year. So the fraternity tried to improve its image with the university so that the probation would be lifted and the fraternity be allowed to continue.

According to senior Pablo Lozano, class of 2018, as well as other students who asked not to be named, a Stanford University administrator “encouraged” Sigma Chi to take down the American flag flown in front of its house in order to improve its image on campus.

The administrative – let’s call him Mr. Z – was assigned to serve as a liaison between Residential Education and Sigma Chi. At first, Mr. Z was supportive and helpful, explaining to the fraternity often obscure bureaucratic processes.

But his demeanor changed one night in Autumn 2017.

The fraternity had invited Mr. Z to dinner, during which he “offhandedly suggested” that the American flag flown in front of the Sigma Chi house be removed.

Mr. Z urged Sigma Chi to consider the image being presented to the rest of campus by flying the flag out front. Lozano understood the administrator to imply that the American flag was intimidating, aggressive or alienating, and made others uncomfortable, and that Mr. Z found the mere sight of the American flag to be offensive.

Lozano recounted that the more the house talked about Mr. Z’s suggestion, the more it bothered them. Many found his proposal to take down the flag “weird”. The remark was out of the blue and incongruent with the rapport the fraternity had shared with Mr. Z. Furthermore, the fraternity wondered since when is an American flag flown at an institution in the United States offensive?

In fact, American flags adorned buildings near Sigma Chi and on campus, including:

  • Stanford’s Post Office right down the road from Sigma Chi.
  • Green Library’s Bing Wing.
  • Memorial Auditorium, which commemorates fallen Stanford soldiers since WWI.

Furthermore, Lozano noted that Mr. Z raised no objections to the Dominican flag flown by a student from his bedroom window in Sigma Chi or to the Palestinian flag hung across the street at Columbae.

To Sigma Chi’s credit, the fraternity not only declined to remove the American flag from its house, they replaced it with an even bigger one — from a 3×5 ft. flag to a 4×6 ft. flag. The former flag was then framed and placed on display inside the house. In Lozano’s words, Sigma Chi’s decision was a “silent but visible protest” against the classification of the American flag as a potentially stigmatizing symbol by a member of the Stanford administration.

And the upshot?

Sigma Chi is gone. The fraternity was shut down last May and no longer exists at Stanford University. (Breitbart)

Stanford Reviews executive director Antigone Xenopoulos concludes:

This series of events, known to few, is concerning on multiple levels. One can imagine a justification for opposing a foreign flag being flown on one’s own soil, though I believe that such a condemnation would be ultra-nationalist and antagonistic. One could also reasonably consider the display of an authoritarian regime’s flag to be insulting and hostile – be it a flag representing Nazi Germany, The Confederacy, or Apartheid South Africa. One can likewise anticipate the classification of a sectarian flag as illegal – be it that of Catalonian or Chechen separatists. However, there is no reason why hoisting the American flag, on American soil, at an American institution, is offensive.

Every individual – American or not – has a right to take issue with any and all policies and actions that the U.S. government takes. I am not discouraging criticism of, protest against, or opposition to U.S. government policies. In fact, I encourage such scrutiny. To classify the American flag on American soil as offensive or jingoistic, however, is an entirely separate phenomenon which implies the condemnation of the United States at large.

There is an evident aversion amongst private institutions in the Bay Area to affiliate or partner with the American government. Be it Google employees protesting collaboration with the military on AI development, the absence of the national anthem at Stanford’s 2018 graduation ceremony, the elimination of the American flag from student organization logos, or Stanford’s framing itself as a global rather than American institution, the pattern is clear. Affiliation or partnership with the U.S. government is neither popular nor sexy. Patriotism in the Bay [San Francisco Bay Area] is not praised; indeed, at this rate of pariah-hood, it may soon perish.

However, the presently taboo nature of national pride is shortsighted. The distinction between our timeless political institutions (and their hallowed symbols) and the country’s leaders and policies at any given moment in history is elementary but crucial. Condemnations of patriotism fail to recognize that the United States’ institutions have and will continue to outlive unpopular leaders. This fact alone is cause for significant national pride. The vilification of our nation and its symbols is damning for the social fabric of American society. The current political climate has destroyed the last remnants of civic unity and patriotism.

But enough with the ominous platitudes. Next time you hear someone degrade a symbol of the United States – whether in the form of a flag, the Constitution, or the national anthem – you can defend the principles of this nation through oration or just go out and, like Sigma Chi, buy a bigger one.

To donate to The Stanford Review, go here.

~Eowyn

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Berkeley professor wants an end to using student evaluations because they favor white males

Marissa Gentry reports for Campus Reform that Brian DeLay, an associate professor of history at the University of California, Berkeley, claims that schools and universities must stop using student evaluations for hiring, promotion, and tenure decisions because the evaluations are inherently biased against female instructors and people of color.

In a series of tweets on Nov. 26, 2018, DeLay writes:

Over the next few weeks, students will get the chance to evaluate their professors and TAs. They’re going to get it wrong. They’ll be harder on women and people of color than on white men. Tenured white male faculty, in particular, should help their students understand this.

Several studies have revealed the limitations of student evaluations of teaching (SETs). Berkeley’s Philip Stark, Statistician & Associate Dean of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, co-authored a major study on this question a couple of years ago. It found:

*SET are biased against female instructors by an amount that is large and statistically significant. *The bias affects how students rate even putatively objective aspects of teaching, such as how promptly assignments are graded.

*The bias varies by discipline and by student gender, among other things. *It is not possible to adjust for the bias, because it depends on so many factors.

*SET are more sensitive to students’ gender bias & grade expectations than they are to teaching effectiveness. [Read that again!] *Gender biases can be large enough to cause more effective instructors to get lower SET than less effective instructors.

“Instructor race is also associated with SET….minority instructors tend to receive significantly lower SET scores compared to white (male) instructors. Age, charisma, and physical attractiveness are also associated with SET.”

I’ve often gotten valuable feedback in student evals, feedback that has improved my teaching. We have a lot to learn from our students, obviously. But given the well-documented shortcomings of SETs, we shouldn’t be using them for hiring, tenure, or promotion decisions.

In the meantime, tenured faculty – especially tenured white men – should explain this stuff to our students before each evaluation season. Help them understand why evals matter to peoples’ careers, & how implicit bias affects the results. They’ll listen.

Here’s the study conducted by UC Berkeley statistics professor Philip B. Stark.

On RateMyProfessors, Brian DeLay has 13 student evaluations, with an overall 4.7 (out of a 5.0 maximum) rating.

I had served on my department’s annual faculty review committee, and can attest that the three consistently worst-evaluated professors in my department were white males.

H/t John Molloy

~Eowyn

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College faculty are being trained to fight active shooters with…hockey pucks

Liberal logic: We have a “no weapons” policy. Criminal breaks rule and comes to school with weapon to shoot people. University police: Arm yourself with a hockey puck!

I get that some people are afraid of guns. Yet I just don’t understand the mindset that one would choose to be defenseless.

There has been two sexual assaults in my neighborhood during the past month. My revolver is within my reach. I choose to have an equalizer if a criminal breaches my safety.

A hockey puck IS NOT an equalizer.

From Fox News: How do you stop a bad guy with a gun when there’s no good guy with a gun around? Maybe throw a hockey puck at him.

A university in suburban Detroit is distributing hockey pucks as a form of self-defense against potential active shooters, according to reports.

Because Oakland University has a no-weapons policy, university police Chief Mark Gordon suggested using a hockey puck to distract a shooter.

The first thing that came to my mind was a hockey puck. I was a hockey coach for my kids growing up. I remember getting hit in the head with a hockey puck once and it hurt,” university police Chief Mark Gordon told Detroit’s FOX 2.

Gordon said to fight effectively, faculty and students need to be prepared to throw heavy objects that will cause a distraction. Gordan said pucks fit the bill and can conveniently be carried in brief cases or backpacks.

It was just kind of a spur-of-the-moment idea that seemed to have some merit to it and it kind of caught on,” Gordon told the Detroit News.

Upon Gordon’s suggestion, Professor Tom Discenna, president of the faculty union, spearheaded an effort to purchase 2,500 hockey pucks for union members and students, the Free Press reported.

“Eight hundred of them have been distributed to our faculty members and there’s an additional 1,700 that I’m working with student congress to distribute to our students,” Discenna told FOX 2.

“It’s just the idea of having something, a reminder that you’re not powerless and you’re not helpless in the classroom,” Discenna told the paper.

The black discs were distributed earlier this month, and are part of a campaign to raise money for interior locks on classroom doors, the report said.

The effort, spurred by the need for safety education after the Virginia Tech rampage in 2007, will “empower faculty and students to have a plan to have something to defend themselves rather than just freezing in place,” Gordon told the Detroit News.

In May, poll results showed that nearly three-quarters of Michigan’s teachers opposed efforts to arm teachers, the Free Press reported.

DCG

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Fault line in the Left: Progressive playwright is blacklisted for dissenting from transgender groupthink

Libby Emmons is a New York playwright, writer and feminist whose play, “Wanting It,” was produced by the New York City theater company Working Man’s Clothes.

She now finds herself blacklisted because she refuses to subscribe to the Left’s totalitarian groupthink on malleable gender identity and “transgenderism”.

Below are excerpts from her essay, “Writing for Quillette Ended My Theater Project,” November 20, 2018:

It was suggested that I apologize, and that an apology might help. This wasn’t an assurance, but an idea—if I walked back what I had written, there might be a way forward. I looked around the table at these four women who knew me too well to believe that I would apologize for something I had written. Before each of us sat the full length script on which we’d spent several months collaborating. I’d formed this theater collective precisely to make a play based on a killer idea I’d had, and I’d asked each of these talented, thoughtful, intelligent, creative women to work with me.

We were only in the first few months of what was meant to be a year-long residency in a theater space in downtown Manhattan. What I wanted most of all was to develop this project. By the time it was suggested that I apologize, I knew full well that I wouldn’t, and that the project, the theater company, and the residency were all dead in the water.

At issue was an article I’d written for Quillette, entitled “The Transhumanism Revolution,” about three undercurrents of transhumanism presently circulating beneath Western culture: bio-hacking or grinding, AI, and trans gender ideology….

The lack of heterodoxy in Western universities has been extensively documented … many of the extreme ideas that percolate in universities then boil over into the arts, and, in the arts, dogmatic positions on gender identity are now the norm. Trans ideology has been met with a loving embrace, complete acceptance, and fighting words for any who dares to disagree in public….

In the arts community, as well as in universities, it is assumed that a specific gender, racial, sexual, or community identity determines opinions. It is widely believed that traditionally dominant identities produce opinions and ideas that must be considered suspect (i.e. those of the deplorable white women who voted for Trump), and taken with a tablespoon of salt. This is especially true when those ideas or opinions are interacting with ideas or opinions that are considered the purview of those whose identities have been historically disenfranchised. The higher up the privilege ladder you are perceived to be, the less you should have to say about any group occupying a lower rung. For example, my perceived identity as a cis straight white woman is a clear indicator that I should neither have nor express opinions about trans queer white men.

Women like me aren’t supposed to say that men aren’t women. We’re supposed to believe that some men are women. We’re supposed to believe that these men who really are women really believe that they are women, and that we should believe it too. Women like me are not supposed to speak about female erasure, because trans erasure is more important. Women like me aren’t supposed to express the opinion that womanhood is defined by more than mere appearances or performance. We’re supposed to defer to those men that really are women and respect their perspective of what it means to be a woman more than our own.

“You’re punching down,” my director announced from across the table, our scripts and a selection of snacks between us. She said that she’d been contacted my members of our theater community who had let her know that I had hurt them. These theater people wanted to make sure that she knew about the article I’d written and what people on social media were saying. The director reviewed the thread on my Facebook timeline from July, and determinedfor herself that I had participated in “trans erasure,” and hurt people by equating medical gender transition to rapidly growing trends in AI and body hacking….

“You are cis gender,” she informed me. “You need to educate yourself.”

“I am not cis gender,” I replied.

Note: Cisgender is a term for people whose gender identity matches the sex that they were assigned at birth.

Women like me are supposed to understand that we are privileged to be women in women’s bodies. Did I get that right? Privileged to be females who are perceived to be females? Is that it? Wait, privileged to be women who like being women? Maybe that’s it. We’re supposed to understand that it’s different for those who don’t like being in women’s bodies. Or who don’t like being in men’s bodies. I am supposed to understand this because I am a “cis gendered” woman.

For someone like me, who is identified as (as opposed to identifying as) a cis straight white female, to have ideas or opinions relating to trans ideology that are contrary to the progressive narrative recited by rote is already enough for me to be chastised by my community. I knew this, and I often kept quiet during conversations with others in the arts community when these topics arose. But, by espousing them in public, and then doubling down on social media, I had crossed a line drawn to keep my identity separate from certain contentious subjects.

If anything, it is the knowledge that I don’t identify with those things stereotypically female (high heels, makeup, being quiet while the men are talking) that has led me to believe that what society defines as belonging to the domain of women or the domain of men are not what make women and men what they are. Instead, it is our bodies that have the job of determining male and female, and the mind that is free to do as it pleases no matter the confines of the physical form. Yes, the physical form has its limits, and we ignore those limits at our peril. In college, I knew a PCP user who once uttered this truth: if there’s two of you, you can fly; if there’s one of you, well then you can’t fly. Because ideally one of the two will remember that the body has limits, and no flight capability.

“I don’t want to debate this with you,” my director said.

And that, of course, is the problem. No one wants to debate trans ideology. No one wants to talk about it at all other than to say it’s literally as glorious as unicorns shitting rainbows. I explained that I have no problem with pronouns, or bathrooms, or how people want to live, but that I don’t accept the identifier of “cis gendered,” I don’t think kids should be transitioned, and I don’t believe men can change into women or vice versa. I believe being a femme man doesn’t make you female and that men should be more accepting of their femme brothers. I argued that gender is performative and sex is innate, and that gender is not the soul, living somewhere deep inside us waiting to be realized.

“Don’t judge people,” my director advised, and went on to remark that I’d “really hurt people, you made them hurt, especially in a week where Trump said they didn’t have the right to exist.”

My exploration of the ideas behind transgender ideology was painful for people. But it was only a discussion of ideas. Because I had written about the ideas behind the social movement of individuals chemically and surgically altering their bodies so that they appear to be a member of the opposite sex, I was no longer welcome in the feminist theater company I had founded, and no longer welcome among those I had thought of as friends. Exploring a new idea in a longstanding philosophical debate regarding the interconnected nature of human mind and body was hurtful because it did not uphold the delusion that biological sex is malleable. I had committed apostasy against the new gender religion.

All of us around the table had attended liberal East Coast undergraduate universities, and had four graduate degrees between us, two of them held by a professor and a friend of over 20 years. This was an educated group. Stumbling into any downtown indie arts enclave will land you in the presence of enough degrees to warm the planet right out of existence. In the arts, bachelors degrees are standard, masters degrees are commonplace, and progressive orthodoxies are strictly enforced.

The basis of this enforcement is a kind of groupthink, derived from a politics of compassion, moral relativism, and privilege theory. Divergent opinions are not censored, they are self-censored. Artists who disagree do not speak up. To do so is to risk losing funding in an industry that relies almost entirely on philanthropic donations from organizations that routinely signal their virtue to one another, the artists they supposedly serve, and the progressive milieu at large. Artists who value their careers and industry friendships will not express views that put those things at risk. But I did. I knew what I was doing when I wrote it, although I must admit that I thought more highly of my intimate colleagues’ tolerance for controversy than was exhibited at our last meeting, or since.

Do we really think our era is so fraught and divisive that we must abandon our principles in order to achieve something that we absolutely will not achieve if we abandon our principles? It is neither reasonable nor possible to force everyone to believe a given ideology. People can be forced to espouse it, primarily through punitive measures such as imprisonment, blacklisting, gulags, etc., and social measures such as the denial of funding, denial of camaraderie, and denial of resources. But they can never be forced to believe it. It is to precisely this kind of ideological authoritarianism that my work has been opposed since I began writing.

The other women had been pretty quiet up until now. An old friend spoke up.

“Do you think you’ve done something wrong?” She asked.

“No,” I said.

“Then why would you apologize?” She asked.

“I wouldn’t,” I said.

And I won’t.

See also “American College of Pediatricians speaks truth on transgenderism

~Eowyn

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Ethics philosophers argue for ‘after-birth abortion’ of babies

We were warned about the slippery slope of legalizing abortion.

Legalizing abortion has already led to legalizing euthanasia, euphemistically called “physician-assisted suicide”.

The latest in the slippery slope is a call for infanticide.

In an article, “After-birth abortion: Why should the baby live?,” published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Medical Ethics, two philosophers propose that mothers should have the right to kill their newborn, which the two philosophers call “after-birth abortion”. The two authors are:

  • Alberto Giubilini, who was at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics, Charles Sturt University, Australia, and is now a post-doctoral research fellow at the Centre for Practical Ethics, University of Oxford, England.
  • Francesca Minerva, who was at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics, University of Melbourne, Australia, and is now a post-doc research fellow at the University of Ghent, Belgium.

Here is the article’s Abstract:

Abortion is largely accepted even for reasons that do not have anything to do with the fetus’ health. By showing that (1) both fetuses and newborns do not have the same moral status as actual persons, (2) the fact that both are potential persons is morally irrelevant and (3) adoption is not always in the best interest of actual people, the authors argue that what we call ‘after-birth abortion’ (killing a newborn) should be permissible in all the cases where abortion is, including cases where the newborn is not disabled.

The authors begin their article by arguing that “the same conditions that would have justified abortion,” such as Down’s syndrome and other severe mental and/or physical impairments, should also be “applied to killing a newborn human” because “children with severe abnormalities whose lives can be expected to be not worth living and who are experiencing unbearable suffering.”

But the authors then go further, arguing that even if severely disabled children are happy, they should be “aborted” after birth because of the problems they create for the mothers and for society:

[H]aving a child can itself be an unbearable burden for the psychological health of the woman or for her already existing children,1 regardless of the condition of the fetus. This could happen in the case of a woman who loses her partner after she finds out that she is pregnant and therefore feels she will not be able to take care of the possible child by herself….

[T]o bring up such children might be an unbearable burden on the family and on society as a whole, when the state economically provides for their care. On these grounds, the fact that a fetus has the potential to become a person who will have an (at least) acceptable life is no reason for prohibiting abortion. Therefore, we argue that, when circumstances occur after birth such that they would have justified abortion, what we call after-birth abortion should be permissible.

Playing word games, the authors say they eschew calling “after-birth abortion” either “infanticide” or “euthanasia” because “the moral status of the individual killed is comparable with that of a fetus (on which ‘abortions’ in the traditional sense are performed) rather than to that of a child,” and because “the best interest of the one who dies is not necessarily the primary criterion for the choice, contrary to what happens in the case of euthanasia.”

In short, the authors justify “after-birth abortion” on the grounds that the newborn infant is just like the unborn fetus in that “neither can be considered a ‘person’ in a morally relevant sense” because neither has “the potentiality to become a person” in the sense of forming any future aims.

By “person” the authors mean “an individual who is capable of attributing to her own existence some (at least) basic value such that being deprived of this existence represents a loss to her.”

By that definition, “many non-human animals and mentally retarded human individuals are persons,” but newborns and fetuses are not persons because they “are not in the condition of attributing any value to their own existence”. At best, newborns and fetuses are only “potential persons”, which means that the interests of “actual people” (parents, family, society), no matter how weak their interests, always “over-ride” the interest of “merely potential people”. The latter “cannot be harmed by not being brought into existence” because the interest of non-persons “amounts to zero”.

Giublini and Minerva even argue against adoption of unwanted newborns if the mothers could be “damaged” by giving up their newborns for adoption.

The authors do allow that since newborns and fetuses are “only capable of experiencing pain and pleasure,” they “have a right not to be inflicted pain.”

How humane and generous of Giubilini and Minerva. /Sarc

As to how old a newborn would be when killing him/her is no longer “permissible”, Giublini and Minerva refuse to specify. Instead, they leave the cut-off threshold open-ended. In their words:

[W]e do not put forward any claim about the moment at which after-birth abortion would no longer be permissible, and we do not think that in fact more than a few days would be necessary for doctors to detect any abnormality in the child. In cases where the after-birth abortion were requested for non-medical reasons, we do not suggest any threshold, as it depends on the neurological development of newborns, which is something neurologists and psychologists would be able to assess.

You can read their short article here.

According to the Daily Telegraph, the editor of the Journal of Medical Ethics, Julian Savulescu, a professor of practical ethics at the University of Oxford, said the article had “elicited personally abusive correspondence to the authors, threatening their lives and personal safety”. He said some of comments included:

“These people are evil. Pure evil. That they feel safe in putting their twisted thoughts into words reveals how far we have fallen as a society.”

“Right now I think these two devils in human skin need to be delivered for immediate execution under their code of ‘after birth abortions’ they want to commit murder – that is all it is! MURDER!!!”

“The fact that the Journal of Medical Ethics published this outrageous and immoral piece of work is even scarier”

“Alberto Giubilini looks like a muslim so I have to agree with him that all muslims should have been aborted. If abortion fails, no life at birth – just like he wants.”

Savulescu defended Giubilini and Minerva on the grounds that their arguments are not new and in the interest of academic freedom. He said:

“The novel contribution of this paper is not an argument in favour of infanticide … but rather their application in consideration of maternal and family interests. The paper also draws attention to the fact that infanticide is practised in the Netherlands…. More than ever, proper academic discussion and freedom are under threat from fanatics opposed to the very values of a liberal society”.

See also “Celebrated moral philosopher Peter Singer: It’s okay to rape the mentally disabled”.

~Eowyn

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European Jewish Congress: Bible should contain warnings about antisemitic passages; governments must fund fight against antisemitism

Founded in 1986, the European Jewish Congress (EJC) is an umbrella organization of 42 national Jewish communities in Europe, representing more than 2.5 million European Jews. Affiliated to the World Jewish Congress, the EJC is one of the most influential international public associations. It works with national governments, European Union institutions and the Council of Europe. Based in Paris, the EJC has offices in Brussels, Strasbourg, Berlin and Budapest.

The Jerusalem Post reports that on November 21, 2018, the EJC convened a high level conference in Vienna, Austria, on “Europe beyond antisemitism and anti-Zionism – securing Jewish life in Europe”.

The conference was arranged by the Federal Chancellery of Austria led by Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz who, in his opening address, said “Antisemitism and anti-Zionism are getting blurred, but they are two sides of the same coin.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave a recorded video speech at the conference, in which he said that antisemitism was resurgent again “throughout the world,” and that a new antisemitism has arisen which attempts “to demonize the Jewish state and prevent the Jewish people the right to self-determination in the homeland of our forefathers, the Land of Israel. Netanyahu said that “The Holocaust did not begin in the gas chambers of Auschwitz. The Holocaust began with the spread of hate speech, the burning of books and the smashing of shop windows.”

EJC president Dr. Moshe Kantor said at the conference:

“Today, on European streets, people are being killed again simply for being Jewish. Jewish communities in Europe are increasingly concerned about their security and pessimistic about their future. Europe doesn’t have a monopoly on antisemitism anymore. No Jewish community anywhere in the world, however strong and well organized, is now immune from Jew hatred. Fighting antisemitism deserves much more than simple statements of good will – we need concrete policies and reinforced legislation.”

To that end, the conference produced a Catalogue of Policies to Combat Antisemitism — detailed proposals and recommendations for combating antisemitism in Europe, drawn up by the EJC with the assistance of academics from universities in Vienna, Tel Aviv and New York. (Daily Mail names Israeli historian Dina Porat and New York University professor Lawrence H. Schiffman as among the academics.)

Chancellor Kurz said he intends to bring the document before the European Council, the body comprising the 28 EU member heads of state that determines policy direction, at its next summit in December. Raising the issue at the European Council would be prelude to the adoption of the recommendations by the EU and Europe’s national governments.

On its website, the European Jewish Congress identifies the following recommendations of the Catalogue of Policies to Combat Antisemitism:

  1. Adoption and implementation of the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism by all countries, institutions and businesses;
  2. Governments and intergovernmental organizations should condemn the blatant state-sanctioned antisemitism that exist in a number of countries, such as Iran;
  3. All countries should appoint an envoy for combatting antisemitism;
  4. Every country should commit to a percentage of its GDP, annually, to fund the fight against antisemitism;
  5. Creating new legal frameworks to combat antisemitism effectively and strengthening existing ones;
  6. People who express or hold antisemitic views should not be allowed to be members of political parties or occupy a position of power;
  7. Companies should be advised not to do business with countries or organizations that support antisemitism in any way;
  8. Governments should commit financial and operational resources to ensure the security of Jewish communities;
  9. Internet companies should be liable for antisemitic content on their platforms.

Curiously, left out of the above recommendations is the call for new editions of the Bible and Koran to carry warning messages about anti-Semitic passages.

James Wood reports for Daily Mail, Nov. 23, 2018, that the recommendation is in the EJC’s conference document, An End to Antisemitism! A Catalogue of Policies to Combat Antisemitism, in a chapter entitled “Recommendations regarding Religious Groups and Institutions”. The document reads:

Translations of the New Testament, the Qur’an and other Christian or Muslim literatures need marginal glosses, and introductions that emphasize continuity with Jewish heritage of both Christianity and Islam and warn readers about antisemitic passages in them. While some efforts have been made in this direction in the case of Christianity, these efforts need to be extended and made consistent in both religions.

The Catalogue of Policies to Combat Antisemitism also calls for:

  • The identification and rejection of all antisemitic texts and passages in the heritage of Christianity and Islam.
  • Religious leaders and thinkers to public denounce as “unholy writ”  all canonical or quasi-canonical writings of religious anti-Semites.

The Catalogue‘s justification for these changes is because divine messages are always communicated through human beings and therefore subject to error. It reads:

God’s revelation is thus marred by human fallibility. Beginning with the New Testament, divine revelation expresses itself in Christian holy texts that also express a form of hatred. The manifestations of this hatred resulted in a tradition of antisemitism that gave moral legitimacy to crimes against the Jewish people, the epitome of which is the Shoah.

Several themes in the New Testament have come under fire for being anti-Semitic. These include blaming Jews for the death of Jesus, and negative remarks about the stubborn nature of the Jewish people and their disloyalty to God.

So what is the IHRA working definition of antisemitism?

On May 26, 2016, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) — of which the United States is a member — adopted the following the “non-legally binding working definition of antisemitism“, which is used by the U.S. State Department:

Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.

Alas, the working definition does not define what “hatred toward Jews” means, but that meaning can be gleaned from what the IHRA considers to be contemporary examples of antisemitism, including:

  • Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective—such as, especially but not exclusively, the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.
  • Denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (e.g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of National Socialist Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust).
  • Accusing the Jews as a people, or Israel as a state, of inventing or exaggerating the Holocaust.
  • Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nations.
  • Using the symbols and images associated with classic antisemitism (e.g., claims of Jews killing Jesus or blood libel) to characterize Israel or Israelis.

What the IHRA, European Jewish Congress and its Catalogue of Policies to Combat Antisemitism conveniently omit is that the Talmud, which supercedes the Torah (Old Testament) in religious authority for Jews, is rabidly anti-Christian.

Written in Hebrew between the third and sixth centuries, the Talmud is a collection of 63 books that together codify the oral law that Jewish rabbis claim was handed down from Moses. Jesus, in Matthew 15, however condemns that oral law when he said: “By the traditions of your elders you make void the Word of God.”

English translations of the Talmud have been watered down so as to conceal from the Gentiles the “satanic verses” contained in the original Hebrew. Those “satanic verses” can be classified into three categories:

  1. Jewish supremacy
  2. Hatred for “goys” or Gentiles
  3. Hatred for Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary, and all Christians. Some examples:
    • Jesus (“Yashu”) is in Hell being “boiled in hot excrement” (Gittin 57a); Jesus was sexually immoral and “worshipped a brick” (Sanhedrin 107b); Jesus was cut off from the Jewish people for his wickedness and refusal to repent (Sotah 47a).
    • Mary (“Miriam the hairdresser”) was a prostitute who “had sex with many men” (Shabbath 104b, Hebrew Edition only); “She who was the descendant of princes and governors played the harlot with carpenters” (Sanhedrin 106a).
    • “Christians who reject the Talmud will go to hell and be punished there for all generations” (Rosh Hashanah 17a); “All things pertaining to the Goim are like a desert; the first person to come along and take them can claim them for his own” (Babha Bathra 54b).

Sources:

See also:

~Eowyn

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Triggered: Study finds that 25% of college students could get PTSD because of the 2016 election

From Washington Post: Are college students “snowflakes” — triggered, traumatized and all together too delicate for the real world? Or are they apathetic — so unconcerned that they can’t be bothered to purchase stamps to send in their absentee ballots?

The two characterizations of young Americans are in conflict, observed Melissa Hagan, an assistant professor of psychology at San Francisco State University. Her research has led her to believe that neither captures what’s going on in the minds of young people. Their intense reaction to political events runs contrary to the charge of apathy, she said, while the emotional trauma they report should not be dismissed as hypersensitivity.

With a team of researchers, she surveyed 769 introductory psychology students at Arizona State University in January and February 2017, asking about their satisfaction with the 2016 election, whether they were upset about the outcome and whether the results of the race had affected their close relationships.

The results were published Monday in an article, “Event-related clinical distress in college students: Responses to the 2016 U.S. Presidential election,” in the Journal of American College Health, a bimonthly, peer-reviewed public health journal. The article finds that 25 percent of students had “clinically significant event-related distress,” which it argues can predict future distress as well as diagnoses of PTSD, commonly associated with veterans and defined by the Mayo Clinic as “a mental health condition that’s triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it.”

The research speaks to the personal toll of partisan battles, and it offers insight into the perspective of young Americans coming to political consciousness in the era of President Trump.

Hagan, the article’s lead author, said she believed it was the first of its kind examining an election’s psychological impact on college students. She was motivated to conduct the study by what she saw in her classes the day after Trump clinched the presidency.

Her students were “visibly upset,” she recalled in an interview. “Some were even crying.” They told her that they were scared and anxious about policies that had been discussed on the campaign trail, she said, as well as about the elevation of “a candidate who had an audio recording of him describing sexual assault.”

The analysis reveals that women, racial minorities, people from working and lower-middle social classes, Democrats, non-Christians and sexual minorities reported significantly more election-related distress. Accounting for connections among various factors, the most useful predictors of stress were sex, political party, religion and perceived impact of the election on close relationships — more so than race and social class. Controlling for party affiliation, other demographic factors still influenced stress symptoms. In other words, Hagan said, it wasn’t just a case of sore losers.

Read the whole story here.

DCG

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