Friday, June 03, 2016



Black girl couldn't handle  the Ivy League

She would probably have been much more at home at an historically black college

Nayla Kidd was an engineering student at Columbia University when reports that she had gone missing went viral. She was found perfectly healthy nearly two weeks later, only telling police she wanted to “start fresh.” But the 19-year-old’s reason for going off the grid, without informing family or friends, remained a mystery. Here, Kidd tells the New York Post’s Melkorka Licea, what triggered her brazen escape from the Ivy League, how she pulled it off and where she goes from here:

I found out I was a missing person on May 14.

I had been ignoring the avalanche of calls and texts from friends and family asking where I was and if I was OK. But that night I caved, turned on my phone and decided to look.

Scrolling down the list of messages, I saw one from a friend that read: “Just Google yourself.”

I typed my name into the search bar and a huge list of news reports with photos of my face stared back at me.

Shocked, all I could think was, ‘Oh my God, the police are looking for me’.

I was living two lives at once, and it was so surreal.

Two weeks earlier, I was almost finished with my second year at the Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science when I decided to start my new life.

I skipped my final exams, changed bank accounts, got a second phone number and deleted my Facebook page.

I needed to break from my old life of high pressure and unreasonable expectations.

I grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, where my mom, LaCreis, worked as a cancer research scientist at the University of Louisville. It was just her and I; she raised me as a single mom.

I was always very independent, even at a young age. Louisville bored me, so when I was going to start high school, I insisted on moving to California to attend boarding school.

My mom didn’t want me to move so far away but supported my ­decision.

I got into Thacher, a highly competitive prep school in Ojai (north of Los Angeles). Not long after I started, I became known as ‘The Science Girl’.

In my second year, my chemistry teacher announced to all 240 students at an assembly that I had scored highest on the Regional Chemistry Olympiad — a national chemistry competition.

The teachers also used my homework as an example of what other students should strive for.

I enjoyed the praise and self-worth I felt when I excelled in school, and I wanted to keep aiming higher.

The climax was when I got into Columbia. Because it’s such a prestigious school, it made me feel like I had proven to myself, and everyone around me, that I made it.

And it seemed natural that I would continue to study science in college.

I had always fantasised about living in New York, but the first day I moved it was also my birthday. I felt really alienated and alone and didn’t find the Columbia students very welcoming.

During my first year, I quickly went from star student to slacker.

School just wasn’t interesting to me anymore because I didn’t have any close connections with my teachers.

I came from a small, tight-knit community at Thacher, and at ­Columbia I was lucky if a teacher talked to me. I’m a social learner and Columbia didn’t provide me that opportunity.

I felt like I had to choose between living a life I was passionate about and doing well in school.

Even though I was wired to be a good student, I didn’t feel ­inspired.

I got through the year, getting B’s and C’s, but I didn’t care. I was just happy the summer had arrived.

On a magical night in July, my friend Charlie invited me back to her apartment in Brooklyn. While we were up on her rooftop, she confessed to a strange love of walking on dangerous ledges.

I started imagining if I would have the guts to walk the line ­between life and death.

The feeling of risk, freedom and fearlessness that she experienced while on the ledge were all things I yearned for. That night, Charlie didn’t actually walk the ledge, but the idea excited me.

When school started again in September, I took computer science classes and hated every minute of it.

I had been waking up every day for months with a feeling of dread and doom. I couldn’t keep putting my all into something I cared nothing about.

On a rainy day in early April, I couldn’t take it anymore. I broke down hysterically crying on campus while I was trying to study for a test. Completely overwhelmed, I didn’t stop sobbing for all 10 blocks to my apartment.

At 7am the next morning, I shot up in bed and told myself, “I’m ­going to change this.”

Feeling determined, I walked bought an olive-green notebook — the same colour as my birthstone and started plotting my escape.

I knew one thing for sure: I wasn’t going to tell anyone.

I stopped going to all my classes and only went to my work-study on campus.

I made $14 an hour filming lectures for the Columbia Video Network and put every penny into ­savings. I sold unworn clothes and school supplies through Facebook to make some extra money.

Then I started searching for a new apartment. I replied to at least 20 posts through Facebook groups.

The first person replied to me 12 hours later and I immediately went to take a look at the $750-a-month room in Williamsburg the next day.

When I popped out of the subway stop, I instantly felt like this was an area I wanted to live in. Art covers the walls, everyone looks interesting and there’s a fun vibe in the air.

The apartment mirrored the atmosphere of the neighbourhood perfectly. I was barely at the loft a few minutes when I said I’d take it. I felt like my plan was finally coming together.

On April 29, I moved out of my three-bedroom apartment where I was living with three former Columbia students who were all busy working jobs in computer science.

They didn’t ask any questions as I lugged all my belongings during multiple trips on the trains to my new room. At my new place, I live with two artists in their 20s who are both very easygoing.

The first night in my cozy new room, I was so relieved. I felt I had gotten over the main hurdle of my plan.

A few days later, I started to totally disconnect. I deleted my Facebook profile first, shut down my phone and got a prepaid number, took all of the money out of my Chase bank account and opened a new one.

I wanted the time to make sense of my situation alone and have the space to comprehend it. I felt like sharing would force me to explain something I hadn’t even figured out myself. It wasn’t normal to just quit school. But I never expected it to get so out of hand.

I spent the next week or so completely focused on myself. I got to know my new roommates, took walks around the neighbourhood and found my new favourite coffee shop a few blocks away.

But the more time that passed, the more people tried to find me.

I had given my new number to a few friends after I first left, but quickly stopped responding to them.

At the worst point, my new phone was buzzing off the hook ­every 30 minutes. Eventually, a friend must have given my new number to my mom because she started calling, too.

I was constantly worrying, and the more they tried to contact me, the more I didn’t feel ready to tell them. The longer I ignored them, the worse it got.

When Mother’s Day arrived, I felt guilty for not calling my mom, but I still couldn’t bring myself to do it. I couldn’t face her yet.

I never turned on the TV and stayed immersed in my own world. I had only seen the missing-person flyers online.

About two weeks later, I heard a loud knock on my door.

“Are you Nayla Kidd?” one of the officers said sternly.

“Yes,” I replied.

“It’s the police. Can we come in?”

My jaw dropped to the ground.

“Yes,” I said sheepishly.

Three big cops came into my room.

“You know we’ve been looking for you non-stop for the past three days?” said Detective Alex Argiro, who had dark hair and a piercing stare.

At that point, I knew I needed to face reality. They told me since my mom wasn’t picking up the phone, it would be best for me to come to the station house with them.

“Can you give me five minutes to get ready to go?” I asked. I threw my hair up in a bun and put on my jacket and shoes, taking a few extra minutes to wrap my mind around facing my mom.

On the way there, I sat in the back seat of the cop car with Detective Argiro, half-listening while he attempted to give me life advice.

We got to the Upper West Side station house, and my mom showed up shortly after.

She looked tired, but to my surprise she was very calm. Without talking, we embraced each other tightly and she asked me, “How are you doing?”

All the anxiety and guilt I was feeling washed away in that ­moment.

“I haven’t slept the last few days,” she said to me.

I couldn’t bring myself to say much. I just listened.

“Trust me, honey, I understand. You don’t have to explain anything,” she reassured me. I nodded and felt myself tearing up.

“An investigator told me you might be stripping. Even if you’re a stripper, you’re gonna be the best stripper out there,” she said to me.

I laughed and felt grateful for her support. And of course, that stripper tip wasn’t true.

I still don’t know how the cops found me. My mom and the police never said.

It’s now been over three weeks since I went off the grid, and I’ve learned a lot from my experience.

I realise now that I don’t need to prove anything to anyone else or myself. School isn’t for me, and I’m OK with that.

There are a lot of different things I would like to work on and ­develop now. I want to make and produce music and work on my writing.

I want to continue my modelling career and see if I can make money doing freelance gigs. I’m back in touch with my friends and family, but I’m not going back to how things used to be.

I’m going to keep living in my new apartment and have no plans to go back to school again. I always told myself I needed to find gratification through academia, but now I want to find it on my own through the arts.

I finally broke down because I was living a life I thought I should be living instead of living the life I want.

SOURCE 






New Evidence Supporting School Choice

A groundbreaking new study from the Department of Education Reform at the University of Arkansas provides state of the art data showing the benefits of school choice.

The bottom line: When parents have choice where to send their child to school, their children perform better in reading and math tests.

Patrick J. Wolf, one of the authors, summarizes the results:

According to their “meta-analysis of 19 ‘gold standard’ experimental evaluations of the test-score effects of private school choice programs around the world. The sum of reliable evidence indicates that, on average, private school choice increases the reading scores of choice users by about 0.27 standard deviations and their math scores by 0.17 standard deviations. These are highly significant, educationally meaningful achievement gains of several months of additional learning from school choice.”

The idea of school choice and school vouchers was pioneered in the 1950s by Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman. However, it has not been until recent years that the idea started picking up steam.

According to Wolf, “there are now 50 private school choice programs in 26 states plus the District of Columbia. Well over half have been enacted in the past five years.”

About 1.3 million students are in these programs, compared to 50 million students enrolled in our public schools.

There are various approaches to providing school choice: vouchers, education savings accounts, tax-credit scholarships and individual tax credits and deductions.

There has been much back and forth over recent years, with various studies claiming to show no benefits from school choice and even negative effects. Other studies have shown positive results and are supportive. The authors of this latest research report their results with great conviction and feel they have produced the most comprehensive, thorough, and unbiased work on this subject to date.

But no matter. Those opposed will most likely stay opposed because, like in many, maybe all, areas of public policy, it’s really about interests and ideology and not about science. Those who want to keep things the way they are will ignore studies and research or find ways to rationalize why the results are not conclusive.

However, a black mother, whose child is trapped in a failing urban public school, doesn’t need research to inform her that it is a good idea to give her control to pull that child out of that school and send him or her to a different one. It’s obvious.

Capitalism works so well because failure is punished and success is rewarded. Why should one of the most crucial institutions of our society — our education system — be shielded from the competitive forces that produce excellence? Why should failure be allowed to go on forever just because unions have power and parents don’t?

Furthermore, when we measure education we look at test scores in reading and math. But education is about more than reading and math. It is about transmitting principles and values. Where are the tests that measure whether children are learning the right values?

The progression of court decisions over the years extracting any trace of religion from public schools correlate with changes in attitudes among our youth about sex and family. Back in 1962, when prayer was banished from public schools, less then 10 percent of our babies were born to unwed mothers. Today, it is 43 percent.

Over the same period, the percentage of black families headed by a single parent jumped from 20 percent to 70 percent. In these troubled communities, the option to send a child to a Christian school, to learn and digest Christian values, can be a lifeline to the future. Why in our free country should this be prevented?

Now we have powerful research showing that competition improves test scores in reading and math. This just bolsters the intuitive notion that parents should have control over where they send their child to school.

SOURCE 






Poorly vetted Chinese students open the way for Espionage Activity

On Wednesday, May 25th, Reuters news agency released an investigative report on the academic fraudulence by international Chinese students at American universities. Their report, specifically outlining the fraud carried out by thirty Chinese students at the University of Iowa (UI), discusses the unique business system enabling Chinese students to pay for transcripts, essays, and other certificates necessary to enter into American universities as well as succeed in them.

The report follows a Chinese "tutoring firm," Transcend, as well as a specific foreign national that was found to have manufactured a false transcript and other academic documents using the firm. In addition to this specific case, the report discussed how the university's transcript evaluators failed to catch the fraudulent behavior because there are only four to five staff members available to review thousands of applications.

Reuters stated that the university caught these Chinese students after ProctorU, the online exam service, found discrepancies between the facial features of those taking the online exams and the students listed as taking the exams.

The Reuter's piece, as well as the falsification of documents by Chinese international students, is not a novel issue among American universities, but has instead been a long standing issue regarding immigration and national security.

In May of 2013, the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) found in a study that fifty-seven percent of Chinese students had assistance with the college and/or student visa application processes. The association also found that it was "not uncommon for third parties, including agents, to forge academic credentials and letters of recommendation for students applying to overseas schools."

In the last ten years, the number of Chinese students at American universities has tripled to around 200,000. During this time, the Chinese Ministry of Education approved approximately 450 agencies that offer support to students wishing to study overseas. With China being far and away the leading "sending country" of international students to the United States, concerns regarding the authenticity of their international students and the agencies enlisted to help them, helps raise questions about the US immigration system as a whole.

The student visa process is, and has been, largely dependent upon the credentials the students give the universities and government. It is thus extremely important that the schools carefully evaluate the background of the foreign nationals they wish to admit. If schools, such as the University of Iowa, dole out the task to very few people, then the evaluation of these students, their transcripts, and their legitimacy become difficult to confirm. Ultimately, the school's confirmation of legitimacy is essential in the processing of any student-visa application and a component of review the State Department heavily relies upon.

However, the NACAC report found that many universities don't employ review practices thorough enough to verify Chinese credentials. Much like the evaluation practice at UI, other American universities fail to provide enough oversight in their review process, which allows Chinese students to pay tutor agencies to aid them in their admittance process.

Coinciding with these lax admittance policies is the threat that stems from international students conducting espionage activities on United States' campuses.

In an April 2012 Bloomberg article, the former deputy director of FBI counter-intelligence, Frank Figluizzi, claimed that efforts by foreign countries to penetrate universities have been increasing since 2007, specifically citing China as a country that attempts to obtain classified information by means of "academic solicitation."

Though Figluizzi admitted that most international students, researchers, and professors come to U.S. with legitimate reasons, universities are often targeted as an "ideal place" for foreign intelligence services "to find recruits, propose and nurture ideas, learn and even steal research data, or place trainees."

Other FBI reports confirm Agent Figluizzi's claims that international students pose a threat to US national security. One investigative report, created in 2011, identified the targeting of universities to create foreign intelligence spy rings as a marquee threat. The report outlined FBI cases beginning in 2005 that showed the successes of international students engaging in spying on US technological and military operations.

Recent examples of these espionage acts occurred in July of 2014, when a Chinese national pleaded guilty to attempting to illegally export dense articles with military application to the People's Republic of China. The defendant was a 29 year old who was on a student visa.

Later that same year, in September, a Hawaiian man was arrested after he e-mailed classified information to a 27-year-old Chinese woman he had a romantic relationship with; she was a graduate student who had a J1 student visa.

The man was a high-ranking lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army, and she had used their relationship to convince him to release numerous classified documents, including the Department of Defenses' China Strategy and the U.S. Armed Forces Defense Planning Guide until 2018.

Between the NACAC, Reuters, Bloomberg, and the FBI, there appears to be a great threat stemming from the lack of oversight of the US student-visa system. Universities across the nation are failing to accurately identify the credentials, and even the identities, of many of the international students they extend admittance to. In return, this admittance has created a gateway to which China, and likely other foreign countries, can conduct espionage operations inside US borders, and ultimately steal vital military information and technology.

SOURCE 






Australian university suspends hate-filled Marxist

La Trobe University yesterday suspended Safe Schools co-founder Roz Ward, as a former ­member of Victoria’s gay and transgender advisory committee warned the program was untenable because it had been ­hijacked by radical gender theory.

The Australian revealed last week that Ms Ward had called for the “racist Australian flag” at state parliament to be replaced with a “red one”, prompting her to quit her advisory role with the Victorian government and sparking a university investigation.

That investigation resulted in the Marxist Ms Ward’s suspension yesterday for “undermining” public confidence in the program because she continued to push ideologies that were “unrelated”.

A spokesman for La Trobe University said: “We are following our normal HR procures and we will not make any further comment.”

The National Tertiary Education Union said La Trobe had charged Ms Ward with “serious misconduct over media commentary on her private Facebook post”.

NTEU Victorian secretary Colin Long accused the univer­sity of giving in to a “media campaign”, invoking the spectre of the Soviet Union that once incubated the world view Ms Ward has since adopted.

“That La Trobe University has apparently allowed itself to be cowed into participating in this anti-intellectual, anti-democratic attack reflects the dismal state of intellectual capacity at the senior management level in some Australian universities,” Dr Long said. “We are very concerned that La Trobe University management seem to think that political views should be a ­criterion for employment, as was the case in the Soviet Union.”

The NTEU said it “considers that this is discrimination on the basis of political opinion and will be considering all legal avenues of redress”.

Gay rights activist Rob Mitchell — who was sacked from his Victorian government advisory role in 2014, arguing that he lost his job because he was too ­publicly critical of the former Napthine government for its ­inaction on tackling homophobia in schools — now believes Safe Schools has gone too far.

“They are completely out of control,’’ he told The Australian.

The Ballarat farmer was frustrated while on the government advisory committee with the slow rollout of Safe Schools and other anti-homophobia programs and was pushing for more resources and government initi­atives. He said he threatened to make a bumper sticker saying that his boss — then ministerial advisory committee chairwoman Ruth McNair — was undermining the health of young people.

“The tragedy in all this is: when I was agitating for money to be put in anti-homophobia programs, the Safe Schools ­Coalition was what I would call a vanilla anti-homophobia program,’’ he said. “It seems to have been transformed into this queer theory sort of academic-driven lot of bullshit. As part of that process, they have lost their core constituency, which is parents of school kids. It has been completely hijacked, been derailed.”

He said the program needed to be replaced and that La Trobe University was too influential in gay and transgender research.

Mr Mitchell was instrumental in the AFL Players’ Association’s anti-homophobia campaign in 2010. “Safe Schools is now busted. The brand that is Safe Schools is now indelibly linked to this sort of out-there radical queer theory narrative,” he said. “It’s really out there academic theory about how people construct their gender identity. This is all just academic. We didn’t sign up for this.”

He said Safe Schools was meant to be about teaching children some people were gay, some were straight, some were bisexual, and they shouldn’t be abused. “Parents will get behind that and say, ‘I don’t want my kid ­abused at school for any basis’,” he said. “If they stuck to the basics and rolled that out, they might have got a bit of resistance (from right-wing radicals) but that resistance would not have got any traction.”

The Safe Schools Coalition, which is to be compulsory in Victorian secondary state schools by 2018, has been widely criticised by conservatives, particularly for its teachings on gender. Its mat­erial tells teachers not to refer to stud­ents as “boys and girls”, as the terms are “heterosexist”, and pupils­ as young as 11 are encouraged to role-play as gay teenagers. The program teaches that gender is not a binary male-­female stereotype but about “how you feel inside” and “may change over time”.

SOURCE


Thursday, June 02, 2016



Outrageous Tactics Used by DePaul University to Shut Down Conservative Speech

Back in March 2014, Stanford University’s Graduate Student Council revoked funding and demanded exorbitant security fees (over $5,000!) from the Student Anscombe Society related to its event on traditional marriage, which featured Heritage fellow Ryan T. Anderson.

Selectively charging outrageous security fees in order to make student leaders “voluntarily” shut down events that college administrations don’t like is a routine tactic for silencing dissent on campus.

But what happens when the students actually pay the fees and a speaker shows up? You’d think that at the very least you would have a number of bored security guards and one very safe speaker?

You’d be wrong.

After DePaul University in Chicago changed its policies and overcharged the College Republicans for security at an event on campus, it ordered the security providers to “stand down,” even as some Black Lives Matter advocates physically took control of a stage and threatened to punch the speaker in the face.

Here’s what happened.

The DePaul College Republicans were scheduling an event with a popular but highly controversial speaker, Milo Yiannopoulos, earlier this year.

They immediately hit a snag when they discovered that DePaul has a stated policy requiring a ratio of security to attendees of between 1:50 and 1:75. For their event of 550 attendees, DePaul was required to hire 8 guards for $960.

This might be difficult and might reduce the amount of events that occur on campus, because applying such a policy does place a burden on small student groups that have a hard time raising the money to fund such events.

Nevertheless, at least this policy was publicly available and evenly applied (except it wasn’t).

The DePaul College Republicans had to rely on crowdfunding and donations months in advance, only to have the university change the policy at the last minute, demanding hundreds of extra dollars for additional security less than a week before the event would take place.

According to Jorin Burkhart, an executive board member of DePaul College Republicans, “non-conservative groups are able to hold events without being required to have security.” At DePaul, the College Republicans hosting Yiannopoulos are stuck with an inflated bill.

The “security” meanwhile did nothing to stop attacks by assailants, one of whom even threatened to hit the speaker in the face. According to the event organizers, the administration had promised the College Republicans that it would remove disruptors from the event.

Chicago police were called to the scene, but they too were told by the DePaul administration to stand down, an order that made some of the well-trained police “irate” because they “wanted to do their job” and protect the students and speaker.

In a follow-up email to the student body, DePaul’s president made a tepid apology to the College Republicans—but only after expressing his intense dislike of “speakers of Mr. Yiannopoulos’ ilk,” who he claimed are “self-serving provocateurs,” whose “shtick” is “unworthy of university discourse.” This “apology” may provide some indication that the administration’s real goal in imposing costly additional security requirements on the College Republicans was to incentivize them to cancel the speaker’s appearance.

The university is supposed to protect its students physically as well as safeguard their rights on campus. DePaul not only failed to secure the students and the guest speaker, but they seemed to actively subvert the students’ rights and work against allowing the College Republicans to hold their event.

DePaul needs to ensure that security needs are provided by the university objectively and in a manner that is minimally intrusive on its students’ rights. And, of course, it needs to refund the College Republicans’ security fees.

SOURCE 






GREEN INDOCTRINATION AT SCHOOL

Federal attempts at Green indoctrination of children continue at a furious pace. The primary means are the Common Core State Standard Initiative and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), aimed at schools from K-12.

Common Core is intended to create uniform, one-size-fits-all, national education standards. It is a pet project of billionaire Bill Gates, whose foundation not only bankrolled the project but spent over $200 million to encourage widespread political support. It enjoys the support of the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO).

Despite claims that this originated entirely at state level, the U.S. Department of Education was heavily involved behind the scenes and provided incentives for states to adopt the standards via waivers from the No Child Left Behind Act upon adoption of Common Core and cold, hard cash through President Obama’s Race to the Top initiative.

To date 38 states have fully adopted the standards. This is down from a high of 45 as several states repealed Common Core when it became obvious how strings attached compromised local educational autonomy.

In December 2015 President Obama signed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the offspring of No Child Left Behind, which promises to be a source of funding for states that comply and enforce comprehensive so-called environmental literacy plans in K–12 schools.

The federal carrot and stick have enticed not a few states to kowtow. Maryland was ahead of the curve when, in 2011, it was the first state under Common Core to require something called ‘environmental literacy’ in order to graduate from high school.

The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) approved by the Kentucky Board of Education (BOE), and likely to be adopted in many other states, revolutionizes the classroom landscape for millions of students. Like Common Core it recommends that educators identify global warming as a core concept and stress the relationship between global warming and human activity.

That is ironic because the consensus is that there has been no global warming for (aside from the current short-term rise driven by a super-El Niño this year). Nevertheless, many textbook publishers are incorporating NGSS standards that insist unabated global warming is accelerating and is unquestionably caused by human CO2 emissions.

The West Virginia BOE recently took a lot of heat for suggesting changes to the NGSS they had unwisely adopted early in 2015. NGSS assumes human-caused global warming as a persistent feature of Earth’s climate, but the BOE voted in December for a more nuanced approach. Rather than assuming anthropogenic global warming, as NGSS insist upon, they want to encourage debate.

In March 2016 State Representatives Lynn Bechler and David Hale introduced a bill in the House to withdraw Kentucky from both NGSS and the Common Core Standards. Their concern is that Common Core and NGSS effectively remove state and local control of educational standards and surrender them to a private third party, deeply vested in federal visions of what good citizens should learn and think.

How times change. In 2013 the Huffington Post, a left wing internet site, crowed that the Kentucky Board of Education was on the side of the angels because they had swatted ‘deniers’ and backed the required teaching of evolution and climate change.

When I looked at the standards I found they lack any teaching of the physics of heat, or the relationship between radiant heat and energy. There is no appreciation of the role the sun plays in affecting climate (part of my specialty as a space physicist), or of the relative impact of human contributions. In practice, therefore, the national standards are simply propaganda fitting the party line of the global climate change alarmists. They are “Green” indoctrination of children.

The federal push to have everyone think the same approved thoughts, like a herd of cows, should be troubling to not only parents but also educators and others. What’s so wrong with a little diversity?

SOURCE 






Black British Students call for prisons to be BANNED

This doesn't say much for black IQ

An influential students' group has called for prisons to be abolished because they are 'sexist and racist' in the latest in a series of far-Left interventions by the student movement.

The National Union of Students black students' conference also voted to step up its fight against the Government's anti-extremism agenda.

The controversial votes at the conference in Bradford this weekend came after the current NUS black students' officer, Malia Bouattia, was elected president of the union, defeating the more moderate incumbent.

She has previously argued that it is Islamophobic to oppose ISIS and described one university as a 'Zionist outpost' because it has a large Jewish society.

One of the motions passed at the conference on Saturday was titled 'Prisons are Obsolete! Abolish Them Now!', and resolved to 'call for the abolition of the prison-industrial complex'.

The motion, which pointed to high rates of re-offending and the disproportionate number of black people in jail, concluded: 'Prisons are sexist and racist.'

Students also threatened to deploy 'direct action' to fulfil their aim of disrupting the current prison system.

The vote called for anyone detained under the Mental Health Act to be handed over into NHS care, but was silent on what should happen to other convicted criminals.

Last month the NUS women's conference passed a similar resolution, titled 'Prison Abolition is a Feminist Issue', which called for 'community and transformative justice' to replace incarceration.

In a separate motion on Saturday, the black students' conference voted to campaign against Prevent, the Government's main anti-radicalisation effort, being deployed in further education institutions.

Students compared the official campaign to 'Big Brother' and opposed attempts to teach 'British values' to sixth-formers and other FE students.

The black students' conference is supposed to represent the interests of all ethnic minority university and college students.

It is open to all students who consider themselves 'politically black' - and a motion to confine the definition of black to mean 'of African or Caribbean origin' was voted down by delegates this weekend.

The new black students' officer, Aadam Muuse, was endorsed by Miss Bouattia and has a track record of campaigning against Israel and Prevent.

In his manifesto, he vowed to fight 'the racists in Parliament wrecking black lives with impunity'.

He is currently an official at the students' union of Bradford University, which was responsible for proposing the anti-prisons motion at the conference.

The election of Miss Bouattia, 28, as NUS president last month prompted huge controversy because of her history of radical activism.

She once described her own university, Birmingham, as a 'Zionist outpost in British higher education', and opposed efforts for the union to issue a formal condemnation of ISIS because it would be a 'justification for war and blatant Islamophobia'.

Following her election, Labour MP and former NUS leader Wes Streeting said the union was 'lost', while his colleague John Mann said he was 'aghast' at her statements.

Several universities have since voted on whether or not to cut ties with the NUS, with Newcastle, Hull and Lincoln opting to disaffiliate from the union.

It was reported last week that Miss Bouattia was forced to write a letter of apology after an independent inquiry found she had been unintentionally anti-semitic.

SOURCE 



Wednesday, June 01, 2016



UMass Divests From Fossil Fuel Industry That 'Perpetuates Injustice'

The winters are cold in Amherst, Massachusetts, where the state university relies on a modern central heating plant that burns natural gas most of the time, switching to fuel oil when gas is not available.

But no matter.

Now that spring is here, the heat is coming from students who are horrified at the university's financial investments in fossil fuels.

Following protests (and student arrests) last month, the UMass System announced on Wednesday that it is the first major public university in the United States to fully divest from the fossil fuel industry.

The announcement on Wednesday said the Board of Directors of the UMass Foundation, which is responsible for overseeing the university's $770-million endowment, voted unanimously to divest all direct holdings in coal, oil and gas.

The money will be re-invested in projects and funds "on the frontlines of the climate crisis."

“This decision is not only an enormous victory for this campaign and for UMass, but for the global climate justice movement,” said Kristie Herman, a recent graduate and four-year "core organizer" of the campaign. 

"As the first major public university to fully divest from fossil fuels, we are showing the country and the world that our institutions have a responsibility to align their investments with the public interest, and to sever ties with industries that perpetuate injustice.

"We have pushed our leaders to act with the urgency of this crisis, which has already caused millions of climate related deaths and is making communities across the world uninhabitable every day.”

UMass said it is joining an international movement of more than 500 universities, religious organizations, retirement funds, and other institutions in committing to some level of fossil-fuel divestment.

The decision follows a recent week-long sit-in at a university administration building, where 34 students were arrested in what they describe as an "act of nonviolent civil disobedience."

Marty Meehan, president of the UMass System, said the divestment "is consistent with the principles that have guided our university since its Land Grant inception and reflects our commitment to take on the environmental challenges that confront us all.

"Important societal change often begins on college campuses and it often begins with students," Meehan said. "I’m proud of the students and the entire University community for putting UMass at the forefront of a vital movement, one that has been important to me throughout my professional life."

The UMass Foundation's Board of Directors has described climate change as “a serious threat to the planet.”

“Divesting from investments in any particular sector is not done lightly, and we have done so rarely,” said UMass Foundation Treasurer and Investment Committee Chairman Edward H. D’Alelio.

“The Foundation’s primary responsibility is a fiduciary one. Its primary mission is overseeing the endowment in an effort to maximize returns on funds donated for research, academic programs, financial aid and other purposes. That we took this step reflects not just our comfort as fiduciaries but the seriousness with which we see climate change.”

The UMass Board of Trustees is expected to endorse the Foundation’s divestment decision when it meets on June 15.

The UMass Fossil Fuel Divestment Campaign, the group that launched the divestment movement four years ago, said in a news release that the global "climate crisis" stems from "economic inequality and climate change."

SOURCE 






Confederate General Falls to Political Correctness in Texas Capital

Another historical Confederate figure fell to political correctness, this time, for the first time, at a public school in the Texas state capital.
On Monday, May 23, Austin Independent School District board of trustees voted 8-0, with one abstention, to rename the elementary school named for Gen. Robert E. Lee to Russell Lee Elementary.

This “Lee” is the acclaimed Depression Era social-documentarian who founded the UT-Austin photography program. He is best known for his U.S. Farm Security Administration images captured between 1936 and 1943. The university’s Briscoe Center for American History houses his extensive photographic catalog.

In April, Breitbart Texas reported on the 15-page list of names from which Russell Lee was chosen. However, the name that topped the list was Donald J. Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, real estate mogul and reality-TV star. The Campus Advisory Council (CAC), which oversaw the search for a new namesake, would not even consider Trump as a viable option, Austin’s KXAN (NBC) reported.

Russell Lee’s name actually came in third on that list, behind those in favor of keeping the school named after Robert E. Lee. The advisory council is made up of teachers, staff, parents and other members of the school community.

The photographer was not trustees’ first choice, either. Bettie Mann, the school’s first black teacher, was the sentimental favorite. Mann, 85, a CAC finalist, did not even appear on the April Top 10 list, although the Austin American-Statesman reported a community effort arose to rename the campus for the beloved educator. Another CAC pick was Wheeler’s Grove, the original name of Eastwoods Parks, the first Austin public space where the black community celebrated Emancipation Day, the freeing of the slaves, according to the Statesman. Even another “Lee,” the late author Harper Lee, made the CAC’s final list of eight candidates.

Previously, KXAN reported the CAC explained its list of finalists in a statement. It read: “What clearly emerged was that the most meaningful names must have local significance, must honor our history, and must reinforce our belief in diversity and education for all.”

Mann was present at Monday night’s board meeting. She told KXAN before the meeting she did not want to see the name Robert E. Lee change – until she became a finalist. Mann taught at the elementary school for 37 years. The school’s kindergarten wing will be named for her. A playground may be named to commemorate Wheeler’s Grove.

Trustee Ted Gordon shared that he worked at UT-Austin for 28 years, suggesting the “problem for me” with rebranding to Russell Lee was the name was chosen to retain the “Lee” name. He said, “It seems to me that the name Russell Lee was chosen precisely because it’s reminiscent of the previous name.”

He added, “In being reminiscent of the previous name, it is being chosen to protect the sensibilities of those who don’t care about the sensibilities [of those] who have been, in some sense, damaged or aggrieved by the Confederate name itself.”

Still, the board abided by CAC and community consensus that overwhelmingly desired keeping the name “Lee” as its moniker. Board member Amber Elenz said, “This name change is really only happening because the school asked us to make it happen.”

In January, an advisory panel estimated signage replacement costs at $14,000. Elementary school rebranding expenditures are significantly lower than high schools where sports related uniforms, equipment, booster and spirit wear drive up dollar amounts.

Robert E. Lee Elementary opened in 1939. It is one of five Austin ISD schools with a Confederate connected name. This marks the first public school in the Texas capital city of Austin to rebrand in response to last year’s horrific South Carolina hate-crime shootings, which left nine black church parishioners dead. The tragedy sparked a politicized movement to dump Old South symbology.

At the height of the nationwide crusade to remove all Confederate iconography, the University of Texas at Austin uprooted its main mall statue of Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy. It will instead become part of an educational exhibit at the Briscoe Center.

SOURCE 






Mexican-American textbook in Texas slammed as racist

A textbook proposed to help teach the cultural history of Mexican-Americans in Texas public schools is under scrutiny by scholars, some of whom decry the effort as racist and not a reflection of serious academic study.

The textbook, titled "Mexican American Heritage," describes Mexican-Americans as people who "adopted a revolutionary narrative that opposed Western civilization and wanted to destroy this society." It also links Mexican-Americans to undocumented immigrants, saying illegal immigration has "caused a number of economic and security problems" in the U.S. that include "poverty, drugs, crime, non-assimilation, and exploitation"

The State Board of Education voted to include textbooks on Mexican-American studies after activists last year demanded the subject be formally included in state curriculum. "Mexican American Heritage" is the first textbook on the subject included in a list of proposed instructional materials.

"Paradoxically, we pressed for the board to include texts on Mexican-American studies, and we achieved it, but not in the way we were expecting," Tony Diaz, host of Nuestra Palabra (Our Word) radio program in Houston and director of Intercultural Initiatives at Lone Star College-North Harris, told the Houston Chronicle. "Instead of a text that is respectful of the Mexican-American history, we have a book poorly written, racist, and prepared by non-experts."

The Texas Education Agency says it followed standard procedure for the call to submit instructional materials for Mexican-American curriculums for the 2017-2018 school year.

Texans have until September to submit comments on the proposed instructional materials, said TEA spokeswoman DeEtta Culbertson. She also said the proposed textbooks will undergo review by a committee that includes teachers and administrators and that committee will make recommendations to the board.

Ultimately, books adopted by the elected members of the Texas State Board of Education in November become part of the recommended instructional materials for statewide curriculums, but school districts aren't required to embrace them. Individual districts can use their state money to buy whatever textbooks they wish.

The book "is not a text that we have recommended nor we will be recommending," says Douglas Torres-Edwards, coordinator of a TEA-approved Mexican-American studies course that has been implemented in some Houston Independent School District schools. "Frankly, that author is not recognized as someone who is part of the Mexican-American studies scholarship and most individuals engaged in scholarship will not recognize her as an author."

The book is produced by Momentum Instruction, a company that appears to be owned or operated by Cynthia Dunbar, a member of the Texas State Board of Education from 2007 to 2011. Dunbar, a right-wing Christian activist who questioned the constitutionality of public schools in 2008, labeled the education system "tyrannical" when she published her book, "One Nation Under God," while serving on the board.

The Chronicle was unable to reach Dunbar or any of the books other authors. A phone message and email to Momentum Instruction from The Associated Press were not immediately returned Monday.

The Texas Board of Education's members sanction textbooks for use statewide in a process that has for years been marred by ideological fights over lessons on subjects including evolution, climate change and the influence of biblical figures such as Moses on America's Founding Fathers.

SOURCE 

Tuesday, May 31, 2016



Where Credentialism has led








Burlington College closes under unwanted spotlight

Burlington College closed its doors for good on Friday.

Burlington College, once a thriving school for artists, now looks abandoned and bereft. The huge red-and-white sign congratulating graduates remains, but faculty name placards have been pulled from the walls. Empty nails line the corridors, and the front doors are locked.

After 44 years of operation, the college closed for good on Friday. And the timing couldn’t be worse: As they salvage artwork and pack up classrooms, former students and faculty are under an unwanted national spotlight because of their former leader.

Jane Sanders, the college’s president for seven years, is campaigning across the country for her husband, Senator Bernie Sanders, who is running for president. She was the head of the college during a massive land deal blamed by many as the catalyst for closure of the school.

These last two weeks, students have been scrambling to transfer to other colleges and graduates have been rushing to save thesis projects promised to be archived in perpetuity as faculty members apply for unemployment while pulling together resumes for new jobs — all under the glare of a presidential campaign.

“It just has been a distraction,” Carol Moore, the college’s president, who was hired last year, said in an interview on campus earlier this week. “We’ve all been trying to focus all of our energies moving the college forward and to no particular end.”

But people want to talk about the “political race,” said Coralee Holm, the school’s dean of operations and advancement.

“We’re not really concerned about the political scene,” she said, sitting across from Moore in the president’s conference room. “So that’s been a real bummer. Neither one of us was here when Jane Sanders was here, and there’s no real connection, since we’ve been here as far as what’s going on at the institution.”

Jane Sanders served as president from 2004 to 2011, and during her tenure the school purchased 32 acres of nearby lakefront property from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington for $10 million. School officials said the goal was to expand the small, liberal arts school from about 150 students to 700 — or so was the thought. Administrators planned for tuition from the expanding student population to cover the cost of the new campus.

It didn’t. Burlington College never came close to the necessary number of students. Jane Sanders resigned as president in 2011 — about two years before her contract ended, according to the Associated Press.

The school sold about 80 percent of the new property to a developer last year, but Burlington College remained on probation from its accrediting agency because of its financial situation.

Even after the school sold the property, the debt from the land purchase and the property taxes were “crippling,” Holm said on Tuesday. Yves Bradley, chair of the school’s board of trustees, called the debt “crushing.”

The school came close to bridging the financial gap but ended about $350,000 short, said Moore, the college president. The bank pulled the plug in April.

“We were three months financially short of making it successful. We had a strong incoming class,” she said. “We would’ve had a surplus next year.”

Bernie Sanders’ campaign defended his wife’s tenure at the school, saying she helped it climb out of debt and become accredited as a “masters-level institution.”

“. . . She left the college with a detailed plan for the future, none of which was implemented,” said Michael Briggs, spokesman for Sanders’ campaign, in the statement, which did not specifically address the land deal. “Mrs. Sanders has tremendous respect for both the current and past Burlington College faculty, staff and students and . . . is terribly disappointed with its closure.”

Burlington College started as a group of nontraditional students — returning Vietnam veterans, single parents, and those seeking alternatives to higher education — meeting in Steward LaCasce’s living room in 1972.

And much of the school’s philosophy was the same when it closed. Faculty didn’t lecture, and students were practitioners of their studies — everything from film production to transpersonal psychology. Much of the study was self-guided, with professors acting as mentors.

Seventy students were registered to begin classes this coming fall — 30 of them new to the college.

But students were told May 16 that Burlington College would close. It was two days after graduation, where LaCasce gave the commencement address and Eric Farrell, the developer who bought part of the property, received an honorary degree.

Next semester would have been senior Jon Chamis’s last at Burlington College. The 23-year-old was wrapping up his bachelor’s degree in film production with a focus on screen writing.

Now, the Connecticut native will be completing his degree at Goddard College, a low-residency school that requires students to be on campus only eight days a semester. He had five days to find this alternative.

Chamis was part of a mock funeral students staged to mourn the death of their school. “I held the casket,” he said. “How do you process all this in five days?”

Recent graduate August Cyr resents that administrators sat through the graduation ceremony knowing it would be the last and students did not, saying it “ruined” her memory of graduation.

Cyr said she had become used to fielding questions about the health of her school given its negative publicity. Despite her love for her alma mater — and Cyr loves it — being a student there became stressful given the turmoil wrought by the land deal. That deal has also become ammunition for Vermont Republicans to use against Sanders.

The vice chair of the state GOP is asking for a federal investigation into the purchase of the land.

“I had a five-second conversation with myself: ‘Yeah, Jane and Bernie Sanders are connected and how do I feel about Bernie?’ ” Cyr said. Ultimately, she said, she’s still supporting his candidacy.

Dylan Kelley, a 2012 graduate of the school, wants to hear two words — “I’m sorry” — in response to what he described as a “real fracturing of the community.”

“We deserve an apology and some level of accountability,” he said.

But Sanders, for one, is not likely to apologize.

“Mrs. Sanders has not commented on Burlington College since she left in 2011, and she will continue in this vein,” said the statement from Sanders’ campaign.

SOURCE 






School Choice Now More Than Ever

Two things happened this past week that make the most powerful case ever for school vouchers.

First, the Department of Education’s ruling that public schools will soon have to allow transgender bathrooms and shower facilities.

Many parents around the country are so infuriated by this ruling that they see no other alternative than to pull their sons and daughters out of the public schools. The Obama ruling applies only to public institutions, not private schools. Schools should be places that promote family and religious values rather than undermine them.

One advantage of parental choice in education through vouchers or scholarships is that values issues are left to the parents not politicians. Schools can announce their policies on issues from condoms or sexual identity accommodations to the best educational curriculum, and parents pick the schools accordingly. No one’s civil rights are violated and everyone is happy.

The only problem is that many poor parents can’t afford private tuition on top of the taxes they pay to finance the government schools. A voucher allows them options beyond the assigned school they are required to attend. Blacks have traditionally been a demographic group highly opposed to gay marriage, so it is doubtful that African American parents will be thrilled with transgender ‎bathrooms and showers in public schools. Solution: Give them a voucher to opt out.

The second alarming event was the announcement on Tuesday that segregation in public schools is getting worse, not better. The study by the Government Accountability Office that the percentage of schools with “racial or socioeconomic isolation” has nearly doubled (from 9 to 16%) between 2001 and 2014. These segregated schools tend to perform worse. As Democratic Rep. John Conyers put it: “There can be no excuse for allowing educational apartheid in the 21st century.”

‎We have recreated an education system that is separate and unequal with the poor stuck in the worst inner city schools.‎ Inadequate spending is not the problem. Cities with some of the worst government-run schools in the country–places like Chicago and Washington, D.C.–spend $15,000 to $20,000 per student. Many catholic schools in these cities spend one-third to one-half less, and get much better results.

The obvious, and perhaps the only solution, is school vouchers. Free the children. This will allow the poorest kids to go to superior public, private, or religious schools that perform better academically. ‎We know in Washington, DC, where voucher programs already exist, voucher kids are more likely to graduate and go on to college than those stuck in the public schools.

One thing is certain. The unions hate vouchers because it means fewer jobs and union dues for the labor bosses. But who are the schools for? The teachers or the kids?

The findings in the GAO study remind us that one of the best ways to put our kid’s education first, is to offer universal school choice for all parents regardless of income or skin color. It is also a way to allow parents to choose schools that reinforce the values they want imparted on their children.

‎Thanks to the Obama administration’s radicalism, millions of children will be now stuck in schools that the parents believe are unsafe and immoral. Millions more are stuck in failing schools that are racially segregated. Fifty years ago George Wallace wouldn’t let minority poor children into the public schools. Now the unions and others on the left won’t let minorities and poor children out. ‎It’s hard to know which is worse.

SOURCE 






The Perils of Writing a Provocative Email at Yale

Last fall, student protesters at Yale University demanded that Professor Nicholas Christakis, an academic star who has successfully mentored Ivy League undergraduates for years, step down from his position as faculty-in-residence at Silliman College, along with his wife, Erika Christakis, who shared in the job’s duties.

The protesters had taken offense at an email sent by Erika Christakis.

Dogged by the controversy for months, the couple finally resigned their posts Wednesday. Because the student protests against them were prompted by intellectual speech bearing directly on Erika Christakis’s area of academic expertise, the outcome will prompt other educators at Yale to reflect on their own positions and what they might do or say to trigger or avoid calls for their own resignations. If they feel less inclined toward intellectual engagement at Yale, I wouldn’t blame them.

Nicholas Christakis will continue on as a tenured Yale faculty member. Erika Christakis, who gave up teaching at Yale last semester, recently published a book, The Importance of Being Little: What Preschoolers Really Need From Grownups.

She has no future classes scheduled.

The controversy that culminated in this week’s resignations began last October, when Erika Christakis was teaching a Yale class called “Concept of the Problem Child.”

An expert in early childhood education, she’s long been critical of ways that adults deprive children of learning experiences by over-policing their behavior. When Yale administrators sent an all-students email advising Yalies to avoid “culturally unaware or insensitive choices” when choosing their Halloween costumes, Erika Christakis responded with an email of her own, acknowledging “genuine concerns about cultural and personal representation,” lauding the “spirit of avoiding hurt and offense,” but questioning  whether students were well-served by administrators asserting norms rather than giving them space to shape their own.

“Have we lost faith in young people’s capacity—in your capacity—to exercise self-censure, through social norming, and also in your capacity to ignore or reject things that trouble you?” she asked. “What does this debate about Halloween costumes say about our view of young adults, of their strength and judgment? Whose business is it to control the forms of costumes of young people? It’s not mine, I know that.”

Many students were outraged by the email, particularly a portion that Erika Christakis attributed to her husband: “Nicholas says, if you don’t like a costume someone is wearing, look away, or tell them you are offended. Talk to each other. Free speech and the ability to tolerate offense are the hallmarks of a free and open society.”

SOURCE 


Monday, May 30, 2016



Harvard hearts gibberish

But Leftists love a black whiner.  As far as one can make out, the speaker is complaining about black oppression in the past and saying he has risen above that.  The idea that he personally has been oppressed is ludicrous.  Oppressed people don't usually graduate from Harvard.  He has in fact almost certainly been most privileged by Harvard's affirmative action policies.  Harvard's admission policies are heavily and consciously racist -- with Jews and blacks privileged and Asian enrolments kept down

Graduation speeches can be a torrid affair.  But not for those lucky enough to listen to Donovan Livingston, whose delivery of his awe-inspiring poem at Harvard University is going colossally viral online.

Nearly eight million people have now watched the powerful address since a video of his oration was posted to Facebook on Thursday.

Many have even hailed it as the greatest graduation speech ever.

The likes of Justin Timberlake and Hillary Clinton have even shared his heartfelt rendition of his own artistry.

Those lucky enough to hear the speech live, including Harvard professors, greeted Donovan's poem with a standing ovation.

He is now a social sciences research assistant at the university, and began his speech quoting educational reformer Horace Mann:

The speech/poem:

Education then, beyond all other devices of human origin,
Is a great equalizer of the conditions of men.'
At the time of his remarks I couldn't read — couldn't write.
Any attempt to do so, punishable by death.
For generations we have known of knowledge's infinite power.
Yet somehow, we've never questioned the keeper of the keys —
The guardians of information.
 
Unfortunately, I've seen more dividing and conquering
In this order of operations — a heinous miscalculation of reality.
For some, the only difference between a classroom and a plantation is time.
How many times must we be made to feel like quotas —
Like tokens in coined phrases? —
'Diversity. Inclusion'
There are days I feel like one, like only —
A lonely blossom in a briar patch of broken promises.
But I've always been a thorn in the side of injustice.

Disruptive. Talkative. A distraction.
With a passion that transcends the confines of my consciousness —
Beyond your curriculum, beyond your standards.
I stand here, a manifestation of love and pain,
With veins pumping revolution.
I am the strange fruit that grew too ripe for the poplar tree.
I am a DREAM Act, Dream Deferred incarnate.
I am a movement – an amalgam of memories America would care to forget
My past, alone won't allow me to sit still.
So my body, like the mind
Cannot be contained.

SOURCE 





Freedom From Religion Foundation Opposes Proposed Bible Class, Recommends 'The God Delusion'

The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation is opposing a proposed Bible class in an Arkansas school district.

The class is the idea of Bentonville School Board member Brent Leas, who has recommended adding an elective academic bible study class to the 2017-18 curriculum.

"This is just an opportunity for us to just have the Bible as an open elective course for those students who would be interested in knowing more about the Bible and its historical and literary context," Leas recently told 5News in Arkansas. Leas argues that the class would be permissible under Arkansas Act 1440, which was passed in 2013 and allows public school courses on the Bible provided that they are academic and offered as an elective.

On May 9 Freedom From Religion co-president Anne Lauie Gaylor sent a letter to the members of the Bentonville School Board. It reads in part:

We write to inform you that bible classes in Bentonville schools - even those proposed under state law - are legally problematic under federal constitution and at odds with the basic notion that public schools do not play religious favorites. It is also at odds with Article II, Section 24 of the Arkansas Constitution, which guarantees that "not preference shall be given, by law, to any religious establishment, denomination, or mode of worship above any other..."

Finally, the Christian bias implicit in this proposal is apparent. If the board believes that District students would benefit from a deeper understanding of holy books that millions of Americans find meaning in, then there is no reason not to also create classes studying the Koran, the Bhagavad Gita, the Tipitaka, or, perhaps, Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion.
The Bentonville School Board is expected to discuss the proposal for the new course at their next meeting in June.

SOURCE 






Australian university places still mainly filled by better-off students despite uncapping

This is a good example of shallow Leftist thinking leading to a result the opposite of what was intended.  A measure designed to help the poor has helped the rich.  Dumbing down university admission standards to help the poor sounds right for about 5 minutes -- until you look at the source of the problem. 

And the source is clearly the bad schools that the poor are forced to attend.  And you can't fix the schools by making university education dumber.  It is clear what is needed:  Restoration of discipline in the schools so that teachers are free to teach, no matter how poor the catchment area of the school may be.  As it is at the moment, a few disruptive students can hold back a whole class.

And student fees are another deterrent to the poor -- but not to the rich.  So a wealthy family can now get a university degree for their kid even though the kid might not be the brightest



AUSTRALIA’S universities ­remain the playground of the "rich and thick", who are gaining entry to degrees with low scores thanks to reforms ­designed to help the poor.

That has prompted one university head to warn that you don’t "change the make-up of the flock by leaving the farm gate open".

Thanks to former prime minister Julia Gillard’s decision to uncap university places, unis can enrol as many ­students as they wish, with the federal government funding the places and students running up $67 billion in uni loans.

It is estimated that one in four of these debts will never be repaid to taxpayers.

The number of students gaining university places with a tertiary entry mark under 50 is on track to hit 10,000 students this year.

But the target of 20 per cent of students from low-income backgrounds by 2020 is proving tougher to deliver.

The proportion of low-income students attending university had remained ­stable, at around 16 per cent, for nearly two decades.  Uncapping places has lifted it by only about 1 per cent.

University of Adelaide vice-chancellor Stephen Bebbington has previously warned the reforms had not done much to lift participation of disadvantaged kids. "As my father the farmer would have said, ‘You don’t change the make-up of the flock by leaving the farm gate open’," he said.

The Group of Eight (Go8) universities, Australia’s eight leading research universities, have previously warned that the reforms need a rethink. "Although the proportion of students from a low SES background has increased over the past five years, 80 per cent of growth still occurred in students from medium and high SES backgrounds."

There are also claims that wealthy public and private schools "inflate" entry scores with intensive tutoring that leaves those students struggling at third-level.

Curtin University researchers found that schools with higher socio-economic status inflate their students’ university entry scores and hence ­access to university.

Meanwhile, Grattan Institute director Andrew Norton said there was evidence that students from disadvantaged backgrounds who had defied the odds to make it to university performed better than their lower Year 12 scores predict.  "They are resilient and have the work ethic to succeed even if their ATARs are lower."

Some critics are calling for a new debate around whether a university education should be regarded as a prerequisite for all, citing the example of successful Australians, including Paul Keating and philanthropist and businessman Frank Lowy, who did not attend uni.

SOURCE


Sunday, May 29, 2016



The True Story of a Conservative Refugee

By Robert Oscar Lopez

Trigger Warning: This is a 100% true story.  No names have been changed to protect anyone.  You may be disturbed.  But I will not lie to you.

On April 23, 2016, I declared my independence.  The towers of the university where I work reflected the orange glare of L.A.'s sunset.  It was Saturday, but I'd driven all the way to campus to do something, I realized, I should have done eight years ago.  The office was empty, as one would expect.  The security cameras probably captured becoming footage of my lone figure walking down the seventh floor hallway and throwing open the door to my private office.

Then I climbed over the desk and let my arms dangle in the space between the desk and the wall.  Each of the connections was there.  I unplugged the power, the network cable, the printer cables, the Ethernet, and everything that allowed the world at large to stay connected to the computer in my office.  When all the connections were pulled, I lifted the computer up and hid it in a safe place.

The emails and social media of several prior weeks had gradually convinced me.  The urban legends about employers spying on employees were not paranoid fantasy.  It had become clear to me that someone had been going through the documents on my computer and hacked into my personal email accounts through the desktop at work.  Someone must have physically entered my office, having obtained the key from staff, or gotten into the hard drive through the network cables.  For years the coincidences had been too numerous and bizarre.  For a while, though, I didn't have proof.

In dozens of articles I had joked about the tribulations of a conservative professor in left-wing academia, but there was nothing funny about my life anymore.  Someone within the university was leaking personal details from my personal email (not the university email) to people off campus.  The door to my office still, after six years, bore the deep grooves left when someone dug a sharp blade through the wood to deface my Army stickers.  The vandalism had been hidden for a number of years behind posters, but in the time since, some of my posters had been ripped or disfigured as well.  People had slipped menacing Bible verses about repenting and preparing for the apocalypse under my door.  Then there were the barrages of obscene phone calls, emails calling me "vendido" and asshole, and the vandals who tore my American flag.

By now I had gone through several rounds of "investigations" because of frivolous student complaints, including charges that I "had erections while teaching," called Helen of Troy "promiscuous," and said that liberals were "nutjobs."  The epic Title IX tribunal over my conference at the Reagan Presidential Library is still now, to this day, open and undecided after 600 days.  The case was based on a gay student claiming he had a nervous breakdown because of anti-gay "targeting" at the Reagan Library and a woman who claimed I did not nominate her for an award because she alleged that the five female speakers at the Reagan Library were "anti-female."

By 2014 I could no longer trust any of my students.  I was teaching like a robot: come in, hook up the laptop, give one of my canned lectures, tell the jokes at all the right junctures, try not to screw up, and get out before students can get into any unsupervised conversations.  I had an inkling which of my colleagues were planting students in my class to annoy me – at first I thought I was crazy to suspect it – but when it was clear that most of the people lodging weird complaints had the same few professors as mentors, I knew that there were no real coincidences anymore.  You don't try to guess who the snipers are; just assume they are all out to get you, and never get close.

I stopped providing comments on papers.  I stopped accepting papers as hard copies and received them only through the online portal, so there would be a digital record.  No more arguments.  If students want to write a paper claiming that James Baldwin was braver than Malcolm X because Baldwin moved to Paris and had gay lovers, fine.  Want to write a paper about how Anne Bradstreet was really a feminist who hated Christianity?  Sure, why not?  Go for it.  No more bonding with students coming into my office saying, "I am a Christian who admires your work, and I want to say, it's so great to have you as a teacher."  Some of those heart-to-heart visitors were real, but others were fake, and the fake ones have made it impossible for me to help the real ones.

Keep the office door barely ajar if nobody's coming for office hours.  Open it wide if someone's in there.  Don't be personal, make it brief, thank them, and then close the door as they leave.

What am I hoping for, a corroborating witness?  My colleagues are just as likely to make up stories about me as my students.  In the last two weeks, I obtained proof that other professors (the lefties, of course) were spreading rumors that I was a CIA operative engaged in "government-backed agitation," I threatened to jump off a tower and kill myself, I stole a computer, and I was "racially profiling" students in the blind-copy section of an email.  (How you "racially profile" people in a blind-copy section containing white, black, Asian, and Latino recipients is really a curious mystery.  But there you have it.)

Every single colleague who was nice to me turned out to be luring me into traps of one kind or another.  I arrived in 2008 and thought they would be okay with me hanging one McCain-Palin sign, just a tiny little one, on a bulletin board inside my office.  But the cost of that one little sign was dear indeed.

I drove them insane.  They tried to make me crazy, but somehow just by coming to work each day and not converting to their cause or crumpling up in a ball of tears, I incited a powerful instinct in them: the instinct to hunt down the enemy.

What leads grown adults with Ph.D.s to stand before an office door and drag a sharp blade – was it an awl or a screwdriver? – over someone else's Army stickers while he is on military leave?  In eight years I lunched with colleagues a total of five or six times and never had conversations with the rest.  The people in that department had never listened to my speeches, read my work, or spoken to me at length.  They knew absolutely nothing about me.  How can you not know someone and yet be completely okay with telling all the Latino students that he's a CIA agent who has been sent by the government to do mean things he learned at the School of the Americas?

They wouldn't let me speak at meetings.  Every time I posted anything on the listserv, no matter how short or long, how opinionated or neutral, somebody would complain, and I'd have to worry about payback during peer review.  They wouldn't promote my work in the department newsletter, made a point to sabotage any students who chose me as a mentor, and kept me off all the important committees.

It was not long before I decided to strike a devil's bargain with my peers – you do your thing and leave me alone.  I will find money and research projects that have nothing to do with campus and won't taint liberal colleagues with the dreaded fear of complicity with the Koch Brothers (just kidding – I've never done anything with the Koch Brothers, regardless of what they say about me).  But they couldn't even let me do my thing and be left alone.

It was when I tried to go my own way that the most Lopez-obsessed parties on campus started ginning up the worst of the student complaints.  It was as if they could be happy only if they knew that I was being tortured by bureaucratic sadists somewhere in the state university's catacombs.

The administration turned against me as the weight of outside pressure and constant pestering from the faculty proved too much.  The provost who was favorable to me left, and a new pharaoh came who did not know Joseph.  Within days of his being sworn in, my enemies were gleefully preparing new complaints that would have to cross his desk.  A call came from my dean, someone I had scrupulously avoided dealing with, in September 2015.  She said she was forcing me to be on the college personnel committee with four people I had ample reason to fear.  I tried to get off the committee, but the dean insisted that this was routine procedure and I had no right to refuse service on it.  As if by clockwork, within six months there were he-said-she-said accusations against me, and I was stuck in endless conferrals again.

By the time a Chicano activist leaked an email revealing that one of my colleagues in English was still obsessed with convincing others I was part of the CIA, my sense of humor had dried up.  Student organizations with hundreds of members were included on the distribution list.  The emissary to Chicano Studies who'd brought the alleged information about my spy status was not a Chicano studies major, but a grad student in English who'd gotten a high-profile award.  I had never met him once, but he felt at ease inciting untold numbers of irascible militants that I was a deceitful enemy who could not be trusted in any way.  I didn't want police to escort me at my job.  But that was how it ended up.

As the olive in my martini, a professor sent me links to homosexual pornography secretly embedded in a heated email chain.  I am so lucky not to have clicked on the hyperlink.  At least some of my better instincts are still sharp.

I stood on my desk on that Saturday night and realized: I don't have to live like this.

Not long afterward, I closed out the year with a lecture on Thoreau and Whitman and told my students, "This is my last time teaching here.  I leave you with three lessons as young writers, which you should never forget.

"First, you will never become famous for the work you wanted everyone to read; it will be something you never expected and often something you didn't want to be famous for.

"Second, when your writing gets attention, own it.  Someone out there feels as you do, and you can't get scared, for their sake.

"Third, when you leave the university, there is no reward for nuance.  People draw lines and stick to them.  Almost any viewpoint you have is polarizing.  You have to survive.  So when there are two sides fighting with each other and you're caught in the middle, get out of the middle.  Pick the side that's protecting you, and stay away from the side that's attacking you – they can't be trusted."

With that, I left campus.  Some students wanted to speak to me as I walked out, but I raced past them and down the steps leading to a side courtyard.  I unfurled my tie and slowly unbuttoned my shirt so I could walk in my undershirt, blending in with the young Mexicans of Los Angeles.  After a few moments I looked at my feet and realized I was running.  I was literally fleeing, like a refugee.  And Lot's wife popped into my mind.

Don't look back.

The left is toxic.  Freedom is sweet.  Between tenure and happiness...farewell, liberal academia.

Robert Oscar Lopez can be followed at English Manif, Soundcloud, and Twitter.

Trigger Warning: This is a 100% true story.  No names have been changed to protect anyone.  You may be disturbed.  But I will not lie to you.

On April 23, 2016, I declared my independence.  The towers of the university where I work reflected the orange glare of L.A.'s sunset.  It was Saturday, but I'd driven all the way to campus to do something, I realized, I should have done eight years ago.  The office was empty, as one would expect.  The security cameras probably captured becoming footage of my lone figure walking down the seventh floor hallway and throwing open the door to my private office.

Then I climbed over the desk and let my arms dangle in the space between the desk and the wall.  Each of the connections was there.  I unplugged the power, the network cable, the printer cables, the Ethernet, and everything that allowed the world at large to stay connected to the computer in my office.  When all the connections were pulled, I lifted the computer up and hid it in a safe place.

The emails and social media of several prior weeks had gradually convinced me.  The urban legends about employers spying on employees were not paranoid fantasy.  It had become clear to me that someone had been going through the documents on my computer and hacked into my personal email accounts through the desktop at work.  Someone must have physically entered my office, having obtained the key from staff, or gotten into the hard drive through the network cables.  For years the coincidences had been too numerous and bizarre.  For a while, though, I didn't have proof.

In dozens of articles I had joked about the tribulations of a conservative professor in left-wing academia, but there was nothing funny about my life anymore.  Someone within the university was leaking personal details from my personal email (not the university email) to people off campus.  The door to my office still, after six years, bore the deep grooves left when someone dug a sharp blade through the wood to deface my Army stickers.  The vandalism had been hidden for a number of years behind posters, but in the time since, some of my posters had been ripped or disfigured as well.  People had slipped menacing Bible verses about repenting and preparing for the apocalypse under my door.  Then there were the barrages of obscene phone calls, emails calling me "vendido" and asshole, and the vandals who tore my American flag.

By now I had gone through several rounds of "investigations" because of frivolous student complaints, including charges that I "had erections while teaching," called Helen of Troy "promiscuous," and said that liberals were "nutjobs."  The epic Title IX tribunal over my conference at the Reagan Presidential Library is still now, to this day, open and undecided after 600 days.  The case was based on a gay student claiming he had a nervous breakdown because of anti-gay "targeting" at the Reagan Library and a woman who claimed I did not nominate her for an award because she alleged that the five female speakers at the Reagan Library were "anti-female."

By 2014 I could no longer trust any of my students.  I was teaching like a robot: come in, hook up the laptop, give one of my canned lectures, tell the jokes at all the right junctures, try not to screw up, and get out before students can get into any unsupervised conversations.  I had an inkling which of my colleagues were planting students in my class to annoy me – at first I thought I was crazy to suspect it – but when it was clear that most of the people lodging weird complaints had the same few professors as mentors, I knew that there were no real coincidences anymore.  You don't try to guess who the snipers are; just assume they are all out to get you, and never get close.

I stopped providing comments on papers.  I stopped accepting papers as hard copies and received them only through the online portal, so there would be a digital record.  No more arguments.  If students want to write a paper claiming that James Baldwin was braver than Malcolm X because Baldwin moved to Paris and had gay lovers, fine.  Want to write a paper about how Anne Bradstreet was really a feminist who hated Christianity?  Sure, why not?  Go for it.  No more bonding with students coming into my office saying, "I am a Christian who admires your work, and I want to say, it's so great to have you as a teacher."  Some of those heart-to-heart visitors were real, but others were fake, and the fake ones have made it impossible for me to help the real ones.

Keep the office door barely ajar if nobody's coming for office hours.  Open it wide if someone's in there.  Don't be personal, make it brief, thank them, and then close the door as they leave.

What am I hoping for, a corroborating witness?  My colleagues are just as likely to make up stories about me as my students.  In the last two weeks, I obtained proof that other professors (the lefties, of course) were spreading rumors that I was a CIA operative engaged in "government-backed agitation," I threatened to jump off a tower and kill myself, I stole a computer, and I was "racially profiling" students in the blind-copy section of an email.  (How you "racially profile" people in a blind-copy section containing white, black, Asian, and Latino recipients is really a curious mystery.  But there you have it.)

Every single colleague who was nice to me turned out to be luring me into traps of one kind or another.  I arrived in 2008 and thought they would be okay with me hanging one McCain-Palin sign, just a tiny little one, on a bulletin board inside my office.  But the cost of that one little sign was dear indeed.

I drove them insane.  They tried to make me crazy, but somehow just by coming to work each day and not converting to their cause or crumpling up in a ball of tears, I incited a powerful instinct in them: the instinct to hunt down the enemy.

What leads grown adults with Ph.D.s to stand before an office door and drag a sharp blade – was it an awl or a screwdriver? – over someone else's Army stickers while he is on military leave?  In eight years I lunched with colleagues a total of five or six times and never had conversations with the rest.  The people in that department had never listened to my speeches, read my work, or spoken to me at length.  They knew absolutely nothing about me.  How can you not know someone and yet be completely okay with telling all the Latino students that he's a CIA agent who has been sent by the government to do mean things he learned at the School of the Americas?

They wouldn't let me speak at meetings.  Every time I posted anything on the listserv, no matter how short or long, how opinionated or neutral, somebody would complain, and I'd have to worry about payback during peer review.  They wouldn't promote my work in the department newsletter, made a point to sabotage any students who chose me as a mentor, and kept me off all the important committees.

It was not long before I decided to strike a devil's bargain with my peers – you do your thing and leave me alone.  I will find money and research projects that have nothing to do with campus and won't taint liberal colleagues with the dreaded fear of complicity with the Koch Brothers (just kidding – I've never done anything with the Koch Brothers, regardless of what they say about me).  But they couldn't even let me do my thing and be left alone.

It was when I tried to go my own way that the most Lopez-obsessed parties on campus started ginning up the worst of the student complaints.  It was as if they could be happy only if they knew that I was being tortured by bureaucratic sadists somewhere in the state university's catacombs.

The administration turned against me as the weight of outside pressure and constant pestering from the faculty proved too much.  The provost who was favorable to me left, and a new pharaoh came who did not know Joseph.  Within days of his being sworn in, my enemies were gleefully preparing new complaints that would have to cross his desk.  A call came from my dean, someone I had scrupulously avoided dealing with, in September 2015.  She said she was forcing me to be on the college personnel committee with four people I had ample reason to fear.  I tried to get off the committee, but the dean insisted that this was routine procedure and I had no right to refuse service on it.  As if by clockwork, within six months there were he-said-she-said accusations against me, and I was stuck in endless conferrals again.

By the time a Chicano activist leaked an email revealing that one of my colleagues in English was still obsessed with convincing others I was part of the CIA, my sense of humor had dried up.  Student organizations with hundreds of members were included on the distribution list.  The emissary to Chicano Studies who'd brought the alleged information about my spy status was not a Chicano studies major, but a grad student in English who'd gotten a high-profile award.  I had never met him once, but he felt at ease inciting untold numbers of irascible militants that I was a deceitful enemy who could not be trusted in any way.  I didn't want police to escort me at my job.  But that was how it ended up.

As the olive in my martini, a professor sent me links to homosexual pornography secretly embedded in a heated email chain.  I am so lucky not to have clicked on the hyperlink.  At least some of my better instincts are still sharp.

I stood on my desk on that Saturday night and realized: I don't have to live like this.

Not long afterward, I closed out the year with a lecture on Thoreau and Whitman and told my students, "This is my last time teaching here.  I leave you with three lessons as young writers, which you should never forget.

"First, you will never become famous for the work you wanted everyone to read; it will be something you never expected and often something you didn't want to be famous for.

"Second, when your writing gets attention, own it.  Someone out there feels as you do, and you can't get scared, for their sake.

"Third, when you leave the university, there is no reward for nuance.  People draw lines and stick to them.  Almost any viewpoint you have is polarizing.  You have to survive.  So when there are two sides fighting with each other and you're caught in the middle, get out of the middle.  Pick the side that's protecting you, and stay away from the side that's attacking you – they can't be trusted."

With that, I left campus.  Some students wanted to speak to me as I walked out, but I raced past them and down the steps leading to a side courtyard.  I unfurled my tie and slowly unbuttoned my shirt so I could walk in my undershirt, blending in with the young Mexicans of Los Angeles.  After a few moments I looked at my feet and realized I was running.  I was literally fleeing, like a refugee.  And Lot's wife popped into my mind.

Don't look back.

The left is toxic.  Freedom is sweet.  Between tenure and happiness...farewell, liberal academia.

SOURCE 






Ohio Students Ignore Order to Drop Lord's Prayer from Graduation

Ohio news channel WTOV is reporting that students at a recent graduation refused an order to drop the Lord’s Prayer from their commencement ceremony.

Singing the Lord’s Prayer, or Our Father, has been a 70-year tradition at East Liverpool High School in East Liverpool, Ohio. This year the Wisconsin-based Freedom from Religion Foundation, which advocates for separation of church and state, told East Liverpool administrators they needed to stop their choir from singing the Lord's Prayer at graduation.

The school removed the song from last Sunday's program. School board president Larry Walton told WTOV that it was a matter of economics. "We said 'okay, we just won't do it anymore.' It was a decision made because we don't have a lot of money and we'd rather hire teachers than pay lawyers."

However, on the day of the commencement, students lead their own prayer. Valedictorian Jonathan Montgomery took the stage and led the entire class of graduates in reciting the Lord's Prayer.

"I know a lot of my student body was uncomfortable with it, just because it is tradition to have prayer at our school," Cami Post, class of 2016 vice president, told WTOV.

Walton said he is looking into having a non-denominational baccalaureate service next year.

SOURCE 






Ben Shapiro Fights Back Against College Campus Free Speech Crackdowns

The censorship of free speech on a college campus has caused a legal fight to brew in California

A lawsuit filed Thursday against numerous staff at California State University-Los Angeles claims that the university discriminated against free speech by trying to silence Ben Shapiro, 32, a prominent conservative voice who has spoken on college campuses around the country. 

“Free speech on college campuses, particularly publicly-sponsored campuses, it’s not merely a necessity, it’s a right,” Shapiro, editor-in-chief of the Daily Wire, said at a press conference Thursday in Los Angeles. “That right is being quashed all across the country by administrators who are significantly more intent on indoctrinating students and eliminating dissent than giving students the opportunity to hear different ideas and reach their own conclusions about those ideas. It’s time for that to stop.”

Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative, Christian legal organization, filed a lawsuit in a California district court on behalf of Young America’s Foundation (YAF), Shapiro, California State University-Los Angeles Young Americans for Freedom, and Mark Kahanding, a student at  the university.

“Public universities today don’t allow the full range of viewpoints to be expressed on campus,” Tyson Langhofer, senior counsel with the Alliance Defending Freedom, told The Daily Signal. “There are dozens and dozens of events and speakers and seminars that are put on on campuses from a liberal viewpoint. When the rare time comes up that students try to bring in a conservative speaker or a different viewpoint, those viewpoints are typically suppressed.”

“Students should be able to participate in the marketplace of ideas on campus without fear that the administration is going to suppress their ideas simply because they disagree with their viewpoint,” Langhofer told The Daily Signal. 

On February 25, Young America’s Foundation hosted an event called “When Diversity Becomes a Problem,” featuring a talk with Shapiro. According to Alliance Defending Freedom, the university wanted to charge YAF over $600 to provide security due to the “controversial” nature of the topic.

A few days prior to the event, University President William A. Covino emailed Young America’s Foundation members, informing them that the event was canceled, wishing to schedule a “more inclusive event” with Shapiro. When YAF and Shapiro refused to reschedule, Covino changed his mind.

“They don’t put those kind of roadblocks up for liberal viewpoints,” Langhofer said. “What parents need to be concerned about, what students need to be concerned about across this country is the unwillingness of administration to allow opposing viewpoints.”

Demonstrators and protesters tried to block the event at California State University-Los Angeles from happening, even linking arms to block entrances so that students could not get into the presentation and pulling a fire alarm midway through Shapiro’s speech, The Daily Signal previously reported.

“The university police officers did not take any action to stop the [protesters] from blocking access to the Free Speech Event or to otherwise assist interested individuals in gaining access to the event,” the lawsuit says.

Shapiro, who had to be escorted out by police after the event because of safety concerns, told The Daily Signal that he’s “never experienced anything quite like” what happened.

“The main problem at CSU-LA is that the administrators were not only not helpful, they were actively working to prevent the event from taking place and then taking their power to basically quash any attempt to clear a pathway. This is a unique situation,” Shapiro said. He added: “The administration was responsible for this getting bad. They should have allocated more police officers. Cal State- LA was a disaster from start to finish.”

Named in the lawsuit are Covino and Nancy Wada-McKee, vice president for student life, among other professors and faculty alleged to have helped encouraged and helped in the protest.

California State University-Los Angeles did not respond to The Daily Signal’s request for comment.

The lawsuit says:

The students voiced their desire to leave the theater but the university police advised that the students’ lives would be in danger if they left the theater and that they could not guarantee the students’ safety.

The safety of the students and other attendees would not have been threatened if the university police officers had moved the [protesters] away from the front and rear entrances to the theater, but Defendants Covino and Wada-McKee had ordered them not to do so.

The university police then escorted Shapiro through a secret exit while all of the attendees were forced to remain in the theater.

Shapiro cited the “failure of the administration to protect the safety of students who wish to exercise First Amendment rights,” as a concern for college students and parents regarding situations like what happened at California State University- Los Angeles.

Shapiro says that he has also encountered protesters at other college campuses he has spoken at. “When I spoke at the University of North Carolina there was a walkout in the middle,” he said. When he spoke at Penn State, “it was pretty crazy.”

At many other colleges he has spoken at, everything has gone “totally fine.”

“It’s hit and miss. Some of them are great. Some of them, the protesters show up in mass,” Shapiro says.

“The thing that I think was the most concerning about this situation is the level of involvement that the faculty had in organizing this protest and actually taking part in the protest and blocking the doors so that students weren’t able to go in and hear Ben’s speech and hear a viewpoint that they don’t typically hear on a campus,” Alliance Defending Freedom’s Langhofer said.

Three months after the event, some students organized a “healing” space to recover from Shapiro’s speech, according to Young Americans for Freedom Program Officer Amy Lutz. “First, most, if not all of these students, didn’t even attend the lecture,” Lutz wrote.

Shapiro said Thursday at the press conference announcing the lawsuit:

I pay taxes in this state. I help sponsor the tuition of the students who attend this university. I help pay the salaries of the administrators and the professors, and yet when conservative students on this campus merely wanted to hold an event on this campus at which I would speak basic, conservative ideas, the administrators first attempted to charge conservative students extra money. When that failed, they tried to shut me down.

Shapiro added: “Free speech needs a safe space.”

SOURCE