The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.
“Intelligence plus character-that is the goal of true education.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
“To educate a person in the mind but not in morals is to educate a menace to society.” – Theodore Roosevelt
“In the first place God made idiots. This was for practice. Then he made school boards.” – Mark Twain
This week’s winning essay,Stately McDaniel Manor’s Racism In The Public Schools: Dead Or Alive? Is a professional educator’s look at rampant racism in the public schools..to wit, the racism and bigotry of low expectations. Here’s a slice:
Lyndon Baines Johnson was an old school, bare knuckles politician, hard-edged and bluntly obscene. He was very much reflective of his Democrat party, a party dedicated to segregation and the superiority of the white race. He is widely reported, in speaking about his “Great Society” plan, to have said:
“I’ll have those niggers voting Democratic for the next 200 years.”
Some claim Johnson never said such a thing, but it is certainly in line with his everyday speech and demeanor, and he certainly expressed similar sentiments. Johnson died in 1973, and thus far, he has been successful. Hook a people on government handouts, reward them for anti-social behaviors, convince them that hard work, honesty, reliability and obeying the law are for suckers, and they’ll support those that feed those beliefs–and their pocketbooks–with few exceptions. Black Americans, circa 2016, vote at rates of 90%, sometimes more, for Democrat candidates making those kinds of promises.
But how does a political party ensure that kind of support? By destroying generation after generation, and the destruction falls most grimly on young, black boys, the majority of whom grow up without fathers, and the young men they become–if they live long enough. That process of destruction begins in school, where black children are convinced they are untouchable. They don’t have to behave, learn, or accomplish anything. There are many examples, but a brief, preliminary lesson in human nature is necessary:
The “broken windows” effect is nowhere more operative than in schools. The term refers to not only a correct understanding of human nature, but its application in a broad social context. Classically, it refers to the reality that if the windows of a building, say a warehouse in an industrial area, are unbroken, if the building appears to be occupied and maintained, it will tend to stay that way. However, let one window remain broken for even a brief time, and soon, every window will be broken, the building will be entered, and its contents stolen or destroyed. Obviously, honest citizens won’t break the windows, steal or destroy, but some portion of any population inevitably will.
This understanding has an obvious application in policing. When New York City, under Mayor Rudy Guliani, adopted broken windows policing, that meant that the NYC Police aggressively pursued less serious, quality of life violators. They arrested people for urinating and defecating in doorways, they employed stop and frisk (Terry stops) to let criminals know they were being watched and were likely to be caught, and the quality of life in NYC dramatically improved. The concept is simplicity itself: when criminals know they’ll be caught for smaller crimes, they tend not to commit larger crimes. Now, under Progressive Mayor Bill DiBlasio, broken windows policing has been abandoned, and crime is once again running rampant. The decline in the overall quality of life in the City has been rapid and dramatic.
The human nature lesson is obvious and striking: let criminal personalities get away with smaller offenses, and they’ll inevitably escalate to serious offenses. Its application to the school setting should be obvious, and urgent. Unfortunately, all too often, it’s not.
Imagine, gentle readers, a group of human beings with little impulse control, people who tend to be selfish, unable to defer gratification, aggressive, enormously immature, even cruel. Put those people in an institutional setting surrounded by potential victims, and make it plain to them—and to their victims–their behavior, no matter how outrageous or criminal, will have few or no consequences. What could possibly go wrong?
The St. Paul school district supplies the predictable answer. Katherine Kersten, at the Weekly Standard, writes:
The most dangerous places in St. Paul, Minnesota, these days may not be the city’s tough East Side or Frogtown neighborhoods, but its public schools.
At Como Park and Humboldt high schools, police have been called to quell riots involving dozens of students. At Central High School, a teacher was body-slammed by a student and hospitalized with a traumatic brain injury. ‘Classroom invasions’ by students settling private scores have become a fact of life.
At elementary schools, meanwhile, out-of-control kids overturn chairs and attack their classmates, as teachers stand by helplessly. A teacher caught in a fistfight between two fifth-grade girls was knocked to the ground with a concussion.
Public schools should be among our communities’ safest places. Why do St. Paul’s schools increasingly resemble Lord of the Flies?
The transformation dates from 2011, when superintendent Valeria Silva launched her ‘Strong Schools, Strong Communities’ initiative. The plan sought to engineer a dramatic reduction in the suspension rate for black students, who here, as nationally, are far more likely to be suspended than white students.
That Progressives routinely label their supposedly transformational programs opposite of their reality is a terrible irony. The “Affordable Care Act,” provides neither care, nor is it affordable. Even progressives have exposed every promise about it made by Mr. Obama as a lie. Silva’s “Strong Schools, Strong Communities” initiative is no different.
Silva’s ‘Strong Schools’ initiative was at the forefront of the crusade for racial ‘equity’—a top priority of the Barack Obama administration’s Department of Education. Equity in this context does not mean fairness, but racial statistical parity in school discipline rates, regardless of students’ actual conduct.
Equity proponents claim that teachers’ racial biases are the primary cause of the discipline gap. Silva maintains that ‘defiance, disrespect and disruption’ are ‘subjective’ student behaviors, which teachers perceive and punish in discriminatory ways.
Silva is not alone in perpetrating such destructive nonsense. The Obama Administration has been relentless in its attempts to impose the same kind of racist destruction on schools and children.
[In 2014,] Education Secretary Arne Duncan made clear that his department considered racial differences in discipline rates ‘simply unacceptable’ and a violation of ‘the principle of equity.’ ‘It is adult behavior that needs to change.
Powered by that kind of defective, racist reasoning, the pattern developing across the nation is easily recognizable:
Silva’s campaign to eliminate racial disparities had two components. First, she retained a ‘diversity’ consultant called the Pacific Educational Group [PEG]—at a cost of at least $2 million to date—to compel teachers to confront their ‘white privilege’ and develop ‘a true appreciation’ of their students’ cultural ‘differences.
Ah! And would this be an ancient, unique and valuable culture characterized by wearing baseball caps sideways or backwards, the crotch of one’s pants around one’s ankles, heavy drug use, unrestrained violence against members of the same culture (and others), and absolute defiance of authority and the law?
Much more at the link.
In our non-Council category, the winner was Professor Glenn ReynoldsAKA Instapundit in USA Today with Dear attorneys general: conspiring against free speech is a crime submitted by Stately McDaniel Manor.
In it, Professor Reynolds notes a disturbing trend among various ‘progressive’ attorneys general to conspire – there is no other word for it – to use taxpayer funded resources to unconstitutionally prosecute thought crimes and political stances they disagree with. Fascism is alive and well in its original home on the Left.
Here are this week’s full results. The Right Planet was unable to vote and one member submitted only a first choice in each category, but neither was subject to the usual 2/3 penalty for not voting :
- Third place with 1 1/3 votes –Heather MacDonald/City Journal–When Pieties Collidesubmitted by Bookworm Room
- Fifth place *t* with 2/3 votes –Elliot A. Cohen/The American Interest –The Westerplatte Moment submitted by The Razor
See you next week!
Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!
And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.
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