It’s easy to despair over the state of education from kindergarten through university these days. From public school teachers union presidents calling for strikes against in-person teaching via selfies taken in pandemic ridden Caribbean resorts, to an explosion of private school curricula teaching Critical Race Theory, to university professors criticizing MLK’s vision of color blindness. It is easy to believe that this strident group of so-called Progressives face little opposition. They’ve taken control, but we’ll see that they aren’t unopposed.

Exactly how over-represented Woke faculty is in these institutions is disputed. Most studies of this relate to higher education, where many Progressive academics say it isn’t really a problem. For them, it’s not. And, of course, they say also that about teaching a 6 year old white skin is the new original sin.

Wokeness to the contrary notwithstanding, freedom of conscience is a much rarer privilege in the ivory tower than it used to be. The screaming fits about pronouns, safe spaces, and… anything, really, they don’t want to hear, indicates that reducing that freedom has not gone far enough for the culturally over-caffeinated.

This survey, for example, shows an alarming (p.5) state of affairs for a temple of advanced learning.

The selfie taking, CRT teaching, MLK revisionists will interpret this as “2/3 of college students feel they are free to speak about politics,” and as a good thing. Surely, there is at least a third of students who should just shut up.

I do wonder how any of the topics except maybe “Non-controversial” can be separated from politics. When tenured professors describe mathematics and Abraham Lincoln as racist, belief in biological sex as transphobic, gender as a limitless spectrum, and at least one religion as a colonialist evil, what is there that isn’t political? So, what questions did they ask to produce this chart?

Here’s the question asked about each topic, where the topic (Race or Politics, for example) is in the blank ______.

Think about being at your school
in a class that was discussing a
controversial issue about _______.
How comfortable or reluctant
would you feel about speaking up
and giving your views on this topic?

How the hell can you tell what’s “controversial,” when “all lives matter,” is a racist statement; and what wasn’t controversial this morning suddenly is, because someone accuses you of cultural appropriation for wearing hoop earrings; or you use yesterday’s pronoun for someone who changed ‘gender’ overnight? And who knows when the discussion you were comfortable contemplating in a survey might go all pear shaped in a micro-aggression minute?*

The survey captures a squishy overall sentiment, and tells me not much about the real extent of the problem.

In today’s climate how does one distinguish a discussion about race, religion, gender, or sexuality from a political discussion? Survey takers did, or the percentages would be identical. The categorization is in the mind of the person surveyed, and is related to how “mainstream” they think their opinions are. How did they mentally segregate gay marriage? Sex or religion? It’s definitely about politics. I’d check all three boxes. In any case, that 1/5 to 1/3 of students are uncomfortable speaking about any of those topics is a massive failure of the institution they attend.

In terms of measuring faculty and administrative tendency to claim speech is literally violence, I’d suggest leftist party affiliation and political donations are a rough proxy. How many political donors and how much they give is an indicator of campus culture. Though, since voter registration and donations are public information, a sufficiently strong campus cancel-culture could skew results.

TOC’s “academiots” tag has 62 references as I write this. Today, I’ve added a new tag, “acadissidents,” because as few as there are, and as unreported their dissent, they deserve support and encouragement. You could start by joining the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) in defense of UCSD professor Tom Smith at the first link below.

You could also periodically drop by Heterodox Academy, Hillsdale College. Legal Insurrection, New Discourses, Victor Davis Hanson, and Carpe Diem, to name just a few. Links to all in the blogroll.

A professor is under investigation for criticizing the Chinese government. Defend his rights with two clicks.

I Refuse to Stand By While My Students Are Indoctrinated

When the social justice mob came for me

You Have to Read This Letter

Whistleblower at Smith College Resigns Over Racism

Professor Who Refused To Obey “Preferred Pronouns” Can Continue Lawsuit, Appeals Court Rules

The Targeting of Princeton Prof. Joshua Katz Continues

I try to stay aware of individual academics that might need financial support, and contribute a few dollars to them. This can be difficult, since GoFundMe will often cancel funding campaigns, but there are typically ways around that – like direct contributions through PayPal (not that PayPal isn’t “woke,” too).

There are people standing up for reason, at significant personal risk. We should have their backs. Many of them have experienced significant reprisals for exercising freedom of conscience; loss of employment, heavy legal expenses, doxxing, direct personal threats, and physical violence (see, for example, A Violent Attack on Free Speech at Middlebury) for daring to question SJW dogma.

*Since being on time is a white supremacist characteristic, maybe “minute” qualifies as a microagression.

And we’re working on the voting thing

China Launches Hotline to Report Online Comments That ‘Distort’ History or ‘Deny’ Its Cultural Excellence

Well, we’ve gone them one better. We’ve privatized this function, setting up entire industries dedicated to trashing our history and punishing those who object. In China, taxpayers fund it. Here, people volunteer.

A league of their own?

You know those very annoying CAPTCHAs – nine blurry images arranged in a 3×3 square that ask you to click on all the fire hydrants, or buses, or crosswalks, etc., etc. – to prove you’re “not a robot”?

CAPTCHA is a lame acronym, iteratively cross-dressed into: “Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.”

Well, today I’m giving you the first look at the “Other Club Turing test to Unautomatedly separate the Guys from the Gals,” or OCTUGG. TOC doesn’t employ a team of highly paid acronym inventors.

OCTUGG has only 4 choices instead of 9, and hi-res images so the yellow fire hydrant isn’t camouflaged by the school bus in the background. You might think it’s simpler and clearer than CAPTCHA.

We’ll see. Your job is is to think about which images below you’d click given the instruction: “Click on all the males.”

The correct answer is click all of them.

Upper left to lower right, they are Laurel Hubbard, Hanna Mouncey, Kataluna Enriquez, and Fallon Fox. All transwomen. Three of them claim to be female athletes. Three of them are narcissistic bullies. One is a paler, slimmer rendition of RuPaul.

Laurel Hubbard is a Kiwi weight lifter, who set womens’ world records – keeping an XX chromosome female off the medals podium. Hanna Mouncey is an Aussie rugby player (6’2″/220) who has significantly injured more than a few women. Kataluna Enriquez is a Nevada beauty pageant winner (Miss Silver State), about to compete for Miss Nevada. And Fallon Fox is an American MMA fighter who broke an XX chromosome opponent’s eye socket in a fight even Liz Warren would not have called fair.

So. It’s not as easy to identify who should be allowed to play on your collegiate women’s sports teams as the South Dakota legislature assumed.

I mean, Miss Silver State isn’t going to be recruited to the wrestling team even by some woke athletic director. If they had a female wrestling team. Only the males capable of crushing females would be of interest. Fleeting interest, once all the marginal males figure out they can be stars in strength and speed competition with females.

Let them compete, I say. With each other. Out and proud, right?

Emphasis mine in the following. Parker citation link omitted. The science is settled in the case of human sexual dimorphism. There are two sexes. The scientific definition of this is that human:

[f]emale gametes are larger than male gametes. This is not an empirical observation, but a definition: in a system with two markedly different gamete sizes, we define females to be the sex that produces the larger gametes and vice-versa for males (Parker et al. 1972), and the same definition applies to the female and male functions in hermaphrodites.

There is a longer discussion of this here: Gamete competition, gamete limitation, and the evolution of the two sexes

Why are there girls and why are there boys? We review theoretical work which suggests that divergence into just two sexes is an almost inevitable consequence of sexual reproduction in complex multicellular organisms, and is likely to be driven largely by gamete competition. In this context we prefer to use the term gamete competition instead of sperm competition, as sperm only exist after the sexes have already diverged (Lessells et al., 2009). To see this, we must be clear about how the two sexes are defined in a broad sense: males are those individuals that produce the smaller gametes (e.g. sperm), while females are defined as those that produce the larger gametes (e.g. Parker et al., 1972; Bell, 1982; Lessells et al., 2009; Togashi and Cox, 2011). Of course, in many species a whole suite of secondary sexual traits exists, but the fundamental definition is rooted in this difference in gametes, and the question of the origin of the two sexes is then equal to the question of why do gametes come in two different sizes.

The secondary sexual characteristics, of course, are where we get into errors like those of the South Dakota legislature. It isn’t always obvious who is male and who is female. They might as well have tried to set height and weight limits, akin to the strictures we place on youth sport by banding the competitors in age groups.

Or they could try a routine genetic test. No more intrusive than vaccine passports.

Newspeak Progressive Revanchists

South Dakota Governor Bars Transgender Sports Through Executive Order : NPR

“After failed negotiations between South Dakota Republican Gov. Kristi Noem and the state’s House lawmakers, the governor issued two executive orders Monday designed to limit participation on women’s and girls’ school sports teams to people assigned female at birth.”

After refusing to sign poorly drafted legislation preventing unfair competition in womens* sports from stronger, faster, heavier humans masquerading as female – supporting the clear intent of Title IX – South Dakota Republican Gov. Kristi Noem issued two executive orders Monday designed to prevent male assault on female athletes.

Fixed that for you NPR.

* Humans with XX chromosomes, AKA females.

Speaking truth to glower

Mike Solana watched a hearing (which should have been called a “telling”) so you didn’t have to. Here.

Leave it to Congress to convert Zuck, Jack, and Sundar into quasi-sympathetic figures.

Anything the Congressional morons do in terms of regulation will be worse than leaving those 3 CEOs the f*ck alone.

They need to get Mark Steyn in front of their committee, not because he’d change any Congresscretins into critical thinkers; just for the entertainment value.