More Praying, More Learning … Really?

Home SchoolI have expressed my concerns for home schooling earlier on this site (see). In that treatment I was concerned about the reasons for home schooling, which often revolved around religious practices, and the lack of what I feel is the most important skill learned in grammar school: socialization. My post was triggered by the news of the death of an abused child that was being home schooled; the sadistic parents were able to conceal the abuse which would probably been noticed by the school administration if only the child want to school.

Of course I heard many responses about how that was an isolated aberration and how home schooling was far superior to public education. I saw lots of evidence that this was true and casually wondered why it seemed so.

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Pope Is Pretty Puissant

universityBack in the ’90s my daughter was showing her academic strengths at High School and, to the delight of her father, also developing in sports and social relationships. But so much of her direction was being primed by her father, the English Major and book reader. The Kid went on to college, earning a double major in English and French, admirable grades and honors, and went on to graduate school to get her PhD in Comparative Literature. She now teaches film studies and various humanities courses in the English Department at a major university. Along the way the idea of concentrating in the Humanities was considered so inane that I felt I had to lend my support.

When I was in Graduate School I studied literature (17th Century Restoration Drama) and learned to program computers at night in an effort to keep food on the table. You would have thought that the combination of Alexander Pope and FORTRAN was strange but the man who hired me explained that to be a good programmer you needed to think analytically and that was the type of thinking you learned in the Humanities.

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Why America Still Can’t Talk About Race

racismExcellent article at Salon by Elias Isquith titled, “It embarrasses them, they feel ashamed”: Why America still can’t talk about race. Salon interviewed Angela Blackwell, the founder of the progressive think tank: POLICYLINK.

One of the questions dealt with the inconvenient truth that racism is still alive and quite active in today’s America. Look at Ferguson, Missouri. Please go to Salon of read the complete article. But first, an excerpt or two:

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