Saturday, April 11, 2015
Greetings! Forgive me for being so late, I have been busy getting educated. I’m continuing my classwork at the University of Massachusetts Amherst via e-mail, and it’s working out fine. Education is one of the most important things for personal enrichment and empowerment, and empowering communities. There is a war on science and intellect and education in general. This is found in the movement against vaccinating kids; denial of global warming by carbon-based fuels; religiously-based “creationism” as opposed to Darwinian evolution; gay to straight conversion “therapy;” alleged terrible health consequences for women having abortions; and abstinence-only “sex education,” which does not keep kids from going ahead with it. This is supposed to be based on religious belief about morality, how to raise children, and the origins of the world. Okay, religious belief is fine-but does “religious belief” have to be an excuse to be ignorant of the world, and to force your ignorance upon others? Just because you don’t want to learn and expand your intellectual horizons, you must prevent others from doing so? Much of the allegedly religiously based cramping on learning is a concession to the politically organized religious right, which scares politicians-not known to be an intellectual lot, with some honorable exceptions-into passing laws that prevent the teaching of Darwinian evolution in schools, or else they have to include some “theory” that accommodates the religious rightists; into passing laws mandating vaginal ultrasound procedures that might frighten women away from having abortions, although these procedures have no medical value; and also laws mandating “don’t do it” as their idea of sex education. (By the way, there have been surveys in the southern “bible belt” states that have “abstinence only” sex education, and those states lead the nation in out-of-wedlock births, sexually-transmitted diseases, and use of internet porn. The sex drive is so strong, it can’t be “educated” out of existence.) You can’t use religious beliefs to be ignorant of the world. We are creatures of God; would God want us to stunt our emotional and intellectual growth? No, the Deity would want us to grow to be the best human beings we can be, and education is the greatest way towards that goal-to attain social engagement and personal empowerment. I was appalled by the video showing the frat brothers of Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE) at the University of Oklahoma chanting their racist jingle and bragging “there will never be a N-----r SAE!” (Not that they’re missing anything.) Here are some observations: A woman identified as the frat’s housemother was shown in a video chanting the “N” word to a rap song; she MUST have heard the brothers singing and talking that racist stuff. It happens-when young people act up, there will be an “adult” enabler encouraging the kids in their dumb stuff, and participating in it, perhaps trying to be one of the gang. (So many “adults” try to be kids again by acting foolish, and stealing the childhood of others.) In the video, the brothers wore tuxes, on their way to a formal event in a limo bus; these could be the leaders of the community, lawyers, medical professionals, judges, corporate execs, politicians; men with racist attitudes passing judgment on the rest of the community, with some people of color. NOW the university administration heard of the jingle? They hadn’t heard anything of it before? And what’s this again about universities being “hotbeds of leftist propaganda?” What the hell are the SAE guys learning in OU? These SAE guys were as ignorant as any unlettered Georgia Klansman. The struggle for freedom goes on, there is no time limit. There have always been people who fight for their rights, and other people, of the once-dominant group, trying to take back their dominance, often acting like THEY are the oppressed minority. With a history of freedom-fighting behind us, we will continue the struggle, and we WILL win. BYE!