Currently browsing the archives for October 2011

Eph Tea Party?

From Inside Higher Ed:

As the midterm elections saw a handful of Tea Party-affiliated candidates vying for major offices, student clubs sprouted this fall at the University of Pennsylvania, West Virginia University, George Mason University, Brandeis University, Lynchburg College, Hampden-Sydney College, State University of New York at Stony Brook, Butte College, and Ohio State University at Newark. This according to — a website seeking to confederate the student groups under its banner.

Any Tea Party activity at Williams? Let us know! You would be welcome to post at EphBlog (as is every other student at Williams).

At Brandeis, an associate professor of American history, Jerry Cohen, says he e-mailed Perdichizzi and told her that he admired her courage after he saw she had put up Tea Party fliers. It is healthier for students who disagree with Tea Party principles to actually engage with their fellow students than to whack at straw men, he says.

“Whether it will prove to be a positive presence on campus or not, I think that overwhelmingly — and notwithstanding the habitual use of the word diversity four times per sentence coming out of the administration — there’s very little real commitment to intellectual diversity,” Cohen says.

Former Williams Trustee (and EphBlog participant) Fred Lawrence ’77 takes over as Brandeis’ president this year. I bet that he will demonstrate more of a commitment to intellectual diversity than the current president.


Williams, Yale, or Harvard

This week’s seminar will focus on the affirmative action bake sale held at Wesleyan last year.

Loved this comment from The Wesleyan Argus discussion board.

Kudos to all who penned this articles. I am sorry that the people who are quoting the courts and/or voicing seemingly racist decent didn’t have the scores to get themselves into Williams, Yale, or Harvard. Check yourself before you wreck yourself.

Every time that someone uses a phrase like “Williams, Yale, or Harvard,” the College is better off.


Honest Discussion

This week’s seminar will focus on the affirmative action bake sale held at Wesleyan last year.

This letter from faculty members in support of affirmative action is extremely weak.

We write in support of affirmative action as a legal policy with a specific history. On October 26th, the Cardinal Conservatives sponsored an “affirmative action bake sale” to protest affirmative action because it supposedly “perpetuates racism,” according to the group’s founder who was quoted in The Argus (“Political Bake Sal Sparks Debate,” Oct. 29, 2010). This claim is one of the most common responses to Affirmative Action. As such, it is part of a broad political backlash that misrepresents the intent behind and the historical development of the policy.

Maybe. But the professors do a horrible job of explaining anything. Read the whole letter, if you like.

These institutional commitments have been misconstrued as a system of “racial preferences” (or worse, a “racial quota” system). We support open and honest discussion and debate about such matters, but we oppose as mere race baiting any and all efforts to scapegoat people of color among the students, faculty, staff, and administration on this campus and to undermine the University’s commitment to equal opportunity and diversity.

I doubt that these professors “support open and honest discussion and debate about such matters.”

Which professors at Williams would? I can’t think of any that have publicly stated that they favor such a discussion. The costs of doing so are just too great.


Tenured Radical

This week’s seminar will focus on the affirmative action bake sale held at Wesleyan last year.

The e-mail exchange between Wesleyan professor Claire Potter (who blogs wonderfully at Tenured Radical) and student organizer Victoria Rowe is fascinating. Read the whole thing.

Potter: The announcement about the affirmative action Bake sale was forwarded to me by a colleague. I cannot tell you how hurtful this event was to many of your fellow students, whose admission to this university, and presence in our classes, is an honor to them and a privilege to our community. At Wesleyan, faculty are charged with valuing *all* of our stiudents, from the moment of admission to the day they depart, BA in hand. Such events as the one your organization mounted are mere stunts that do not promote dialogue. Rather , they are intended to promote solidarity among young conservatives at different campuses. Actual speech promotes dialogue, not mocking others and implying that some students are less accomplished and less deserving than other students; or that some faculty must not belong at Wesleyan because they might have been appointed with attention to faculty diversity.

Without speaking the word race, you and your group are in fact stigmatizing students of color and their allies without mustering any facts that these fellow students *are* less “qualified” to attend a competitive university than you and your political allies are.

Do you think Professor Potter would be in favor of Wesleyan making “any facts” public? For example, the average difference in math+critical-reasoning SAT score between African-Americans and Asian-Americans (like Rowe) at Wesleyan is probably around 300 points. I bet that Professor Potter would, rightly or wrongly, prefer to keep these sorts of facts secret.


Only One Side

This week’s seminar will focus on the affirmative action bake sale held at Wesleyan last year.

At first glance, students walking past the Cardinal Conservatives’ bake sale in Usdan on Tuesday might not have thought there was anything unusual about their table, covered with rows of cookies and brownies. Upon closer inspection, though, they would have noticed that the Affirmative Action Bake Sale sold its products on a sliding cost scale depending on the customer’s race, ranging from free for Native American students to $2 for white students. The Cardinal Conservatives held a student forum the following day, while discussion of the bake sale heated up around campus.

“The point of the bake sale was political satire, to draw attention to our message and to start those conversations, creating a dialogue,” said Tori Rowe ’13, who founded the Cardinal Conservatives group earlier this year. “We believe that if you only have one side, you aren’t actually having a dialogue.”

Exactly correct.

But where is the other side of the debate at Williams? I can’t think of a single student or faculty member who publicly questions the College’s affirmative action policy with regard to either admissions or hiring. Can you? Pointers welcome.

Perhaps the Williams policy is perfect just as it it . . .


Satirical Political Protest

This week’s seminar will focus on the affirmative action bake sale held at Wesleyan last year.

Before diving into the details, a background question: When was the last conservative “protest” at Williams? I could tell some stories about the 1980s, but surely there have been more recent events . . .