Category Archives: politics

Know Your Enemy

Don’t Look Now, but the 2020 Senate Map Is Brutal for Democrats (vice.com) Attempting to define the word “democracy” beyond its most abstract sense often proves incredibly difficult. The mechanisms we humans have devised to try to enact democracy, like all our other creations, are subject to imperfections and errors, some more glaring than others. When this country realized that its initial governing document, the Articles of Confederation, were working so poorly that civil war seemed imminent, our founders reunited to write the Constitution in…

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Number Numb

Roughly 80 Percent Of Americans Scared Political Incivility Will Lead To More Violence (wesa.fm) As the 2016 election taught us all, probability is not certainty. Maybe those of us who love crunching numbers (I know, I’m an English teacher, but I was drawn more to math when I was younger because the assholes who were “teaching” me back then couldn’t mess with my grades when they had to be calculated objectively), and follow along with the websites and television talking heads that do the most…

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Tick Tock …

We have 12 years to save the world. What do we do now? (The Weather Network via msn.com) In one of my classes earlier this semester, my students and I spent a long time brainstorming the advantages and disadvantages of taking classes online. Although I’ve taught online before, and would welcome the chance to do so again, my teaching style is better suited to in-person classroom environments, and the discussion I had with my students that morning was a prime example of how some teaching…

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Bad Faith, Worse People

What the “Grievance Studies” Hoax Actually Reveals (slate.com) Growing up in a city has a way of making you acutely aware of any time that city’s name is mentioned in a national setting, at least if that’s a relatively rare occurrence. Given that I’m old enough to remember when M*A*S*H was winding down its original run on CBS, you’d think that I would have been inured to mentions of Toledo at an early age, but that just didn’t happen; I can still remember watching the Fox…

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Totalitarian Teaching

Trumped up anti-Semitism charges at Rutgers designed to chill free speech | Editorial (nj.com) My experiences of being targeted for special treatment by my high school teachers, just because I had political opinions that differed from theirs, have influenced my teaching career in more ways than I could possibly list in a blog like this; putting aside the positive influences in my life (Mom and the good teachers I had in college), they may be my primary motivation to be a teacher, and to always…

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