Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Prominent Conservative Artists Blacklisted Because of Involvement with Alt*Hero Comics Series

Timothy Lim, a talented freelance professional illustrator and cover artist, has been fired from Mount Olympus Comics because he took a job to create the cover for the subversive right-wing comic series Alt★Hero. After Alt★Hero creator Vox Day announced Lim's contribution publicly, Lim received this message from his current employer.

Lim had begun work for Patriotika, Mount Olympus's answer to SJW comics, because he had heard it would be pro-American and the SJWs who have taken over DC Comics and Marvel would hate it. "I found out about Patriotika from friends who had positive things to say about it," Lim said. "I contacted the owner to volunteer my services for his next issue, free of charge, just to support a good cause. He decided to hire me for cover work on another title in the same universe, Valkyrie Saviors."

But the goodwill took a bad turn when it became public that Lim was working with Vox Day. "When he saw the work that I had done for Alt★Hero, he was not enthused. Three days later he messaged me to tell me he would not print the Valkyrie Saviors cover or the Patriotika one which I was going to finalize the following week," said Lim.

Conservatives are mocked in comics circles for claiming there is a blacklist in the industry, but the evidence points to work being withheld from writers and artists deemed too right-wing. Lim feels he is now on that list of unemployable deplorables. "I understand the decision, but it IS a blacklist. And these are things other writers and artists should know before taking on work," he said. Lim feels that an artist's job is to do the work he is hired for. "Recently I did two covers for a Bernie supporter for his book. Considering how political SJW Marvel is, practically every drawing I did for the company merchandise is a depiction of a narrative I disagree with. But I don't live in an echo chamber and I carve out a living by taking on work I am asked to do and I fulfill it to the best of my ability. Some people cannot separate the work from the worker. The artist acts as a de facto 'endorser' of the work," Lim explained.

Asked if Lim had ever been attacked by conservatives for drawing Bernie-themed covers, he laughed. "In seven years, not once has a conservative contacted me to shame me for my work or blacklist me for the clients that I had." Lim's major work includes Star Wars Adventures, Back to the Future, Street Fighter X G.I. Joe, TMNT and much more. He worked for seven years as a merchandising artist with properties that included Marvel, Lucasfilm, Valve, and Nickelodeon.

PJ Media reached out to Vox Day for his opinion of Lim's blacklisting from Mount Olympus. "The fact that a comics publisher, of any political stripe, would refuse to utilize the work of an accomplished illustrator like Timothy Lim simply because he worked with someone else they don't like is absurd, but more importantly, it is proof that they are less interested in producing quality content than they are in pursuing approval from social justice warriors."

Day released Lim's cover work for Alt★Hero to PJ Media saying, "We love Mr. Lim's work. He absolutely nailed the essence of Dynamique's character with the way he shows her sitting there so calmly despite all the devastation behind her."

Lim hasn't let the setback slow him down and has a new book coming out this month called "Thump:The First Bundred Days," a children's book about the election of Donald Trump shown through a tale of a tough-talking bunny. The artwork is fantastic and the book is a funny romp through modern American politics that would appeal to both adults and children. PJ Media was given an exclusive sneak peak and a sample of Lim's Melania and Thump.

The response to his project has been typical leftist screeching and calls for book burning. From an article entitled "Go Away Nazis, No One Wants to Read Your White Supremacist Children's Books," on the blog The Mary Sue:

"Looking through their catalogue, it’s almost tempting to reverse my feelings on book burning. We’ve got  Go the F**k to Jail: An Adult Coloring Book of the Clinton Scandals, The Social Justice Warrior Handbook with a cover pull-quote from Ann Coulter, and my personal favorite from the garbage heap:  Thump: The First Bundred Days, about the “winningest of bunnies” fighting all those “traitors and crooks and old establishment guard / And rabid media watchdogs unchained from their yard!”

The trouble is, Tim Lim is Asian. His response was epic.

Chuck Dixon, the Batman writer most known for co-creating the popular villain Bane and the man Bleeding Cool called "the most prolific comic book writer of all time," has also been attacked for signing on with Alt★Hero. PJ Media spoke to Dixon about it.

"A couple fellow travelers called me out on Facebook when the news came out that I'd be contributing to the Alt★Hero project. They had the echo chamber on their pages with all the usual assumptions and name calling," he said. A quick search on Twitter showed multiple sources calling Dixon a "Nazi."

Dixon's conservative politics have never been a secret. He wrote the graphic novel "Clinton Cash" during the last election, which hammered the Clintons for their dubious money-grabbing schemes. Dixon says the blacklisting began in the early 2000s. "I've experienced a steep drop in assignments since 2000. Primarily from the two largest comics publishers [Marvel and DC Comics]. The reason for this can only be my politics and a change in editorship at those companies," he said.  "Once upon a time, you could have a difference of opinion with an editor-publisher over political matters but still work together," he continued. "I write escapist fiction and never interject any kind of agenda in my work. I kept my politics strictly personal. But the new crop of editors, at both companies, view everything through the lens of politics, and even though I had written thousands of pages and hundreds of comic scripts for both companies I was quickly made persona non-grata and un-hireable."

Dixon has heard disturbing things from his former employers. "The editor-in-chief at one company proudly tells people that I will never work there again as long as he's in charge," he said. "A friend of people high up in both companies suggested that I apologize for my political beliefs in order to get assignments again. That's never going to happen," he promised. "I'm not playing victim here. I've found other outlets for my work and remain prolific, busy and creative."

Dixon has the advantage of having his career take off in the '90s before much of the political correctness took hold. Young artists like Lim are not so fortunate. "If it was like this when I started I would never have gotten started. Comics were all based out of New York then. ALL of my editors were left of center. But as long as I didn't try to put my political beliefs in my work, it was all cordial and cool," he remembered. "I got some of my biggest breaks from editors who despised my conservative views. None of that mattered when it came to making comics [back then]," he said. But it matters now. "Just being good at your job is no longer a guarantee of steady employment. There are lots of extremely talented comics pros who are either unemployed or way underemployed. They're being replaced by minimally talented hacks producing mediocre (to astonishingly amateurish) work loaded with left-wing and gender politics."

Dixon explained why he decided to work with Vox Day. "My decision to join with Vox on this project is because he offered me an interesting opportunity; a return to the kind of escapist superhero fantasy I used to be allowed to create at DC Comics and Marvel Comics. I've long lamented that the major comics publishers have walked away from their core audience over the past two decades," he explained. "They  ran from them by creating ham-handed preach-athons that scold the readers rather than entertain them. And just within the last year, the diversity movement in comics has ratcheted up to chase away even the last of the die-hard fans who were holding on to the hope that one day superhero comics would return to their core appeal as wish-fulfillment fantasies."


Boston: Organizers of free speech rally planned for next month will go ahead despite denial of permit

The organizers of a controversial free speech rally planned for Boston Common next month say they will move forward with the event despite being denied a permit by city officials over concerns it would interfere with a family-friendly 5K road race scheduled for the same day.

“We have a right to peaceably assemble under the 1st amendment of the Constitution and we will exercise that right,” said the group, called Resist Marxism, in a statement sent out Friday about the event planned for Nov. 18.

The group planned the event after an August free speech rally on the Common was overwhelmed by counterprotesters, who accused the organizers of providing a platform for racists. That rally occurred just a week after a deadly rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, where white nationalists clashed with counterprotesters, one of whom was killed.

Organizers of the August event in Boston had adamantly denied they were promoting a bigoted message, and Resist Marxism makes the same argument about its planned November gathering. The Resist Marxism website says the organizers of the August rally are a co-sponsor of the November event.

Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh said Saturday that the only reason the November event was denied a permit was because Camp Harbor View, which serves at-risk youth in Boston every summer, had been issued a permit back in March for the same day, to hold a large fund-raiser with a family walk and run on the Common.

The city offered the Resist Marxism group a permit for Nov. 19, instead.

The Boston Parks and Recreation Department,which is in charge of permitting, sent the group a letter denying the permit on Thursday.

The 5k will involve street closures, large tents, moving vehicles and hundreds of families, officials said, which makes another large event incompatible.

“They claim to have a positive message and not be a hateful group,” said Walsh of Resist Marxism. “Well if they are, let’s see if they can move it one day so Camp Harbor View can have the Common without interference.”

But in their press release, Resist Marxism organizers accused the city of dragging its feet on making a decision regarding the permit, and said that they had been forced to make plans without knowing whether it would be granted. By the time they were told the permit would be issued for the 19th rather than the 18th, the release said, flight and hotel arrangements had already been made and it was too late to cancel.

The group did not respond to a request for additional comment Saturday. The Resist Marxism website says the event, called “Rally for the Republic,” will “defend the republic and reclaim free speech in Boston.”

Speakers listed include Kyle Chapman, who gained notoriety this year after a video went viral of him smashing a wooden post over the head of an antifascist protester at a march for President Trump in Berkeley, Calif. Chapman had been scheduled to speak at the August rally in Boston until he pulled out.

Walsh said the city will not stop the rally from going forward on Nov. 18 despite its lack of permit, but organizers will not be able to bring sound amplification.

The Boston Police Department, which is not involved with permitting, will prepare for the rally as it does for any event, whether permitted or not, officials said.

“Our goal is to maintain safety and security for the public while those who may be in attendance at the rally demonstrate for their cause,” said Commissioner William B. Evans in a statement. “We encourage everyone who is gathering on the Common on that day to behave civilly and respectfully, and we remind the public that acts of vandalism, violence, and other illegal activity will not be tolerated.”


Rash Of ‘Knockout’ Attacks Has Some New Yorkers Worried

CBS below omits the very important fact that all the knock out victims are white and all of the attackers are not!

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There were warnings Friday about a possible upsurge in knockout attacks in which people are sucker punched for no good reason.

Video of one such incident shows a woman being suddenly kicked and then punched by a man. She was knocked out cold on the ground, but rather than help her several people took out phones to take pictures. Nobody called the police.

It happened in Pittsburgh more than a month ago, and something similar happened in Brooklyn on Thursday night.

“As he went to tie up his dogs to confront these kids, the group distracted him from the front and then one came up behind him and hit him in the head,” a witness said.

The witness who asked not to be identified, said a group of teens leaving a Shake Shack in DUMBO singled out a 43-year-old man walking his dogs. They tossed water and milkshakes at him before delivering a knockout punch to his jaw.

What happened next was even more disturbing. “One boy ran up and crouched down and posed for a photo next to the guy that was passed out and then the rest of the group just kind of ran off and scattered,” the man said.

Witnesses said the victim lay unconscious for some 45 minutes, but in this case bystanders did step in to help.

Another similar incident happened last month in Manhattan.

Police are looking for three men wanted for the knock out style attack that happened on Essex Street on the Lower East Side. It left a 53-year-old woman with a swollen and bleeding face.

With no arrests yet in either case, people are worried.

“The police last night were telling me that this group of kids, it was the second time they had done it last night, and this seems to be this ongoing contest or trend amongst these teens,” one person said.


Why Feminists Must Understand Evolution

A good exposition by Marta Iglesias of evolutionry biology as it applies to male/female differences. If your theories are wrong, you will not get the results you expect. The feminist push to alter male/female behaviour patterns has had very little success so far

I am a feminist but I am not here to offer opinions, nor to enter into an intra-feminist debate. For all their various ideological differences, all feminists basically advocate the same things: for women and men to have the same rights and duties as citizens, and for women and men to enjoy the same freedom to decide what to do or not to do with their lives. I am here to present empirical evidence which ought to interest feminists, and which can help to explain human behaviour.

It is my goal to explain why the causes of male and female difference are not merely cultural or the product of patriarchal indoctrination. Separate athletic competitions and distinct medical disciplines of gynaecology and urology testify to the most obvious biological differences between men and women. But the scientific method − a co-operative, critical, and self-correcting process which has midwifed huge technological and medical advances − can also help us to understand more subtle differences between the sexes in interests and aspirations. And it is understanding what we really are that will make us free.

*     *     *

The study of other animals has produced significant advances in our understanding of human biology. We have been able to understand how our neurons function from the study of sea slugs and squid; we know how our embryos develop from the study of sea urchins, toads, and quails; we understand how the circulatory system works, and how to repair it when things go wrong, because we have studied the circulatory systems of pigs and dogs. Human physiology textbooks are full of data obtained by studying other animals, and the application of this knowledge has allowed us all to live longer and better lives. But the study of animal models also indicates that male and female differences are not only physical but also behavioural, and that they are a product of our common evolutionary history.

All human beings have something in common: we are offspring. We are the result of individuals being able to reproduce, who in turn were the progeny of other offspring who have managed to do the same. This chain is theoretically traceable along a lineage of individuals who reproduced successfully, all the way back to our origins. Those who did not reproduce did not leave a copy of themselves, and so no longer exist. (A more meticulous explanation of the functioning of evolution through natural selection and genetic drift, or what is known as synthetic theory, can be found on the UC Berkeley website.1)

Accordingly, each living being is potentially reproductively effective, because it is the offspring of reproductively effective parents. But sexual reproduction depends not only on the capacity to produce viable and fertile offspring, but also on finding a suitable reproductive mate. To qualify, this must be an individual of the opposite sex or, more precisely, someone who can provide gametes of the kind usually produced by the other sex. One of the sexes produces big, static gametes (eggs, which are relatively ‘expensive’ to produce) and the other produces small, rapidly moving gametes (sperm, which are somewhat ‘cheaper’). In many species, the sex with the ‘expensive’ gametes (the female) takes care of many other costly facets related to reproduction. For instance, a female turtle will cross an ocean to lay her eggs on the beach, and a female spider will regurgitate her own innards so that her offspring can feed, literally eating her to death. (Compared to examples like these, waking up at 3am to breastfeed the baby does not sound too exacting.)

Of course, the onus of expenditure does not fall on the female in all species, but whichever sex bears the greater cost of, and makes the greater investment in, child-bearing and -rearing will always be more selective when choosing a mate. After all, it is they who will bear the heavier consequences of a mistake (for example, failing to leave descendants or leaving only a few in return for their investment). So the underlying mechanisms guiding mate selection are subject to great pressures to be effective, and these inevitably bear on behavioural differences between the sexes. These pressures have produced powerful discriminatory abilities which make us selective, even petty, and lead us to subject all possible reproductive partners to constant evaluation. Historically, this arrangement has been an effective and successful reproductive strategy, given that the descendants are alive to make copies of themselves today.

The reproductive cost is undeniably greater for the human female, and the morphological differences between the sexes imply differences in what has been selected for in each sex to make us more effective breeders. But it is also important to understand how the physiological and anatomical differences between male and female reproductive strategies impact our behaviour.

Among feminists, there exists a pervasive tendency to believe that animals and humans play different roles in the world, and are subject to different rules. Some ascribe this difference to ‘culture’ or ‘intelligence,’ while others ascribe it to ‘society.’ However, this alleged distinction between humans and other animals does not stand up well under scrutiny.

Certainly, our cultural dimension affects the way we reproduce, but we cannot modify it much. This is because the mechanisms we have evolved to choose a mate and to reproduce are a product of our biology, passed down a long lineage of successful breeders. It is therefore reasonable to expect humans to be a typical species in this respect, just as we are in the examples offered earlier (neuron and heart function, embryonic development, and so on). Evolutionary biology predicts that each individual will try to pursue the best strategy to contribute genetically to future generations, and to produce offspring who will, in turn, produce offspring of their own.

But this strategy will be different for men and women, due to their distinct reproductive functions. The efficacy of the strategies pursued by our ancestors has determined something as simple and fundamental as the very fact that we exist at all. These strategies, then, are a fundamental part of us, even if social and cultural relations modulate them. It is only a slight exaggeration to say that from the moment we awake until the moment we go to bed, most of our actions have the ultimate purpose of leaving a progeny (or keeping that progeny alive, at least until it is old enough to produce descendants of its own).

This process manifests itself differently in males and females, and produces different behaviours. Women, by virtue of our greater reproductive investment, are generally very selective. Men, then, are only truly selective if they consider they will have to make a strong investment of time and resources in a relationship.2 As a consequence, men and women all over the world, across cultures, tend to look consistently for different things in the opposite sex (though, logically, they have common preferences as well). Furthermore, each sex emphasizes very different aspects of their own personality and physique in the attempt to attract a mate.3 4 5 6 7 This, in turn, makes competition among men very different to competition among women; the former is generally more obvious8 and the latter is more subtle (and more pernicious, in my opinion).9 10 11 12 13 14 15

These differences manifest as the differences we observe in our daily lives: from the toys we prefer when we are small to the products we consume when we are adults; from the tendency to be the object of bullying or its perpetrator to the likelihood of causing a traffic accident; from the posture we adopt when we sit in the underground to the importance we attach to career status.

Intrasexual competition among women can manifest as disapproval of clothing or behaviour that signals sexual availability.
These behaviours occur without us being too conscious of why we do what we do (other than the fact we feel like doing one thing or another). But we do not need to know that we are implementing a reproductive strategy in order to carry it out.16 17 We simply feel like behaving in a certain way, without interrogating the true cause of our predispositions. (For example, when we crave a hamburger, it is seldom with the conscious awareness that the consumption of many fats and carbohydrates in a few grams of food is an efficient strategy for obtaining energy.)

The fact that men and women are different in these respects does not preclude feminists from striving for completely equal rights between the sexes. However, it is important to understand how things really are if we are to try to modify them, and history provides us with examples of the hazards associated with pursuing an insufficiently tested theory. Convinced that the differences between male and female brains were social, a medical researcher and his team persuaded the parents of a baby boy who had lost his penis in a botched circumcision to raise him as a girl. 18 In spite of a course of hormone injections and the parents’ best efforts to deceive their child, in the end they had no choice but to concede defeat (with terrible consequences for all involved).

But some feminists would prefer to doubt the applicability of evolutionary biology to the human species. They believe that equality of behaviour in the sexes would exist in nature, but culture generates our inter-sexual differences (for examples see Chapter 1 in A Mind of Her Own).19 20 Apparently, contradicting this line of thought means that one is adopting a ‘biological determinist’ position, undesirable because it is provides a justification for systemic inequality and gendered violence. However, coming to this conclusion requires a significant degree of scientific and historical blindness.

Resistance to acknowledging biological differences in behaviour arises from a fear of the consequences of tying these differences to three clearly erroneous assumptions: 1), that what is natural is good, 2) that what is natural is correct, and 3), that what is biologically-based is impossible to modify.

If all natural things were good, then companies making orthodontic braces would have gone bankrupt long ago, we might die of an intestinal infection at the age of 19, and we would have as many children (or almost as many) as we have orgasms. The same naturalistic fallacy pertains to the justification of behaviours based on a natural tendency to carry them out. It might be natural to have sex with 13-year-olds who are already sexually mature, or to simply take what we find along our way as we see fit, or to use other species cruelly for our personal benefit. And yet, most of us do not do these things, nor do we excuse those who might. That a form of behaviour has its basis in biology does nothing to recommend it. Cultural norms are agreements about conduct and ethics, and they need not be justified with reference to what is and is not natural. Finally, with regard to whether all phenomena with a basis in biology are immutable, we can refute such a statement with reference to the improper and infrequent behaviours itemised above, or by observing that guide dogs refrain from marking their territory at every corner.

If our common goal is to encourage reciprocal respect for other individuals, in spite of average differences in group proclivities, then that goal cannot be well served by ignoring the basis for such differences. The imposition of respect may work in certain cases, but it does not seem to have made much impact on the number of deaths women face at the hands of men, which has remained remarkably stable year-on-year. We can more productively fight gender problems if we acknowledge naturally occurring differences upon which we can work, instead of imposing rules that only increase misunderstanding, allow fallacies to proliferate, and instrumentalise fear as a motor for change.

Some feminist authors insist that it is injurious to consider sex-based differences in the fight against gender inequality.21 But asking people to ignore the existence of biologically grounded sex-based differences only makes the disparities produced by those differences more difficult to understand and address. Other feminists argue that the very fact of being female authorises them to opine on the motivations of women with absolute certainty. But this is simply to generalise on the basis of one’s own particular example without the benefit of systematic evaluation.

It is better to generate our opinions and judgements based on observations that conform as closely as possible to objective reality, because our goals are political and we want them to affect each and every one of us. It is therefore imperative that we understand the nature of the reality we are trying to change, and the reasons why attempts to encourage complete parity of the sexes in all walks of life through social policy have not yet been successful and have, in some cases, led to the widening of disparities. Political action cannot be founded on opinions about how we would like the world to be (of which there is one for every person). It must instead be built on the foundation of our best understanding of natural reality as it is.

The good news is that information has never been more freely available. If we make the effort to learn a little English and master basic statistics, each one of us can draw her own conclusions based on the work others have already completed. What’s more, those who are not persuaded by this work can try to disprove it using the very same tools of investigation and analysis. Others may simply choose to discard measurement and reason, electing instead to behave much like those who reject the efficacy of vaccines, or insist that humans never went to the moon. But such behaviour does not allow us to build anything; it is only good for yelling into the wind and promoting norms which have nothing to do with reality, and which therefore can contribute nothing to the process of effecting meaningful change.

We may prefer to believe that the differences leading us to behave in sexist ways stem from culture, and not from a lack of it. But, by so doing, we will continue to try to impose norms not commonly shared, which will only aggravate the differences between us, making the society we co-inhabit increasingly hostile and founded upon ever more artificial human relations. Ideological ideas accepted a priori by many feminists, such as “language is sexist and changing it will reduce differences”, have not been properly evaluated as instruments for achieving equality. This matters because, in order to change the world, we must first study what we are, and why we behave as we do.

If the goal is not the pursuit of knowledge and understanding, but the promotion of dogma which insists that only socialisation generates sexism, I am afraid the glass ceiling will remain above women, the number of femicides will remain unchanged, and our efforts to improve society will be a perpetual source of disappointment and frustration. We must strive for a synthesis of the scientific knowledge of human behaviour and the political objectives of feminism. It is up to us to keep an open mind so we can better understand one another, the societies we have built, and the world we share. By these means alone, can we create the conditions necessary for real equality.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


Monday, October 30, 2017

White Fragility Is Keeping Racism Alive (?)

Unlike Leftists, I am always interested in hearing points of view different from my own.  So I read Leftist emissions with interest.  One such is below.  They want to inject "brown" authors into "white" literature. Like all Leftist  writing that I know, it leaves out half the story.  In its characteristically Leftist obsession with race, it does not concede that the issue might not be about race at all

Lovers of classical literature (I am one) see large differences between different types of writing.  They find (for instance) the stories of Chaucer to be of much higher quality in various ways than writing on the back of a cereal packet.  And in a world where there is so much to read, it pays to know where to look to find quality writing.  And that is where classical literature comes in.  Classical literature is simply that literature that has stood the test of time -- literature that many people over many years have read with pleasure and recommended to others.  It is literature that comes with some guarantee of quality.

And that is valuable.  It helps to ensure that your reading gives you pleasure.  So any attempt to inject into the canon of classical literature writing that has not stood the test of time is to mislead.  It can lead you into wasting your time on stuff that is not worth reading.

So that is what is at issue: An objection to introducing racism into a selection of literature that is normally concerned only with the quality of the writing.  The authors below seem unwilling to allow that some people might not be concerned with race and therefore object to having it introduced where it is not relevant.  Leftist racial obsessions simply pollute something to which race is irrelevant.  There is more to life than the colour of someone's skin and that needs to be acknowledged by all parties.  So a course of study designed to introduce students to great literature would simply be degraded by basing the selection of literature on race rather than on the quality of the writing.  It would make a useful course less useful.

So it is not "white fragility" that fuels objections to racist proposals.  It is a desire for quality and an objection to its dilution.

Let me however concede that there may be some sense in what is proposed below.  Someone might say:  "But there are good non-white authors and changing the curriculum might introduce you to something you would enjoy reading"

That is surely true but the key word is "might".  One asks for more than a maybe when one sets out to find literature with some guarantee of quality. If one suspected that some racially defined author or group of authors may be worth reading, by all means read them but don't try to mislead others into thinking they are classical literature.

But the fundamental objection below is simply unhappiness that the modern world is largely the creation of Northern European people and their descendants worldwide.  People who are not of that ilk may understandably regret that.  They may wish that their own forebears had been prominent in the creative changes that have given us modern civilization.

But is a lie the solution to that?  Do we change history by insisting on rewriting it?  Many people do just that but I doubt that such actions really console anybody in the long run.  The way Leftists rage against hearing what conservatives have to say surely tells us that they know that their fake history is fragile and easily taken away from them. 

Many people, conservatives particularly, don't judge things by racial criteria and surely that is to be encouraged, not attacked.  Minority people can and should learn to do the same.  Thinking that you can defeat racism by being racist is surely brain dead.  Racism can only be defeated by encouraging  people to judge others on their own individual merits, not on the colour of their skin. 

And that is not blue sky.  The ethnic group in America that has the highest average income is Indians, who are notably brown.  Skin colour does not have to matter.  Do Indians have "brown privilege" or do they just work and study hard?

Recently, a group of Cambridge students petitioned the world-renowned university to "decolonize" the English syllabus by adding black and minority ethnic (BME) writers to the reading list. Once the media caught wind of the letter, written and signed by students, they began a frenzy of outrage at white authors being replaced on the reading list.

The British newspaper, the Telegraph, placed a black student, Lola Olufemi, on the front cover with the headline "Student forces Cambridge to drop white authors." The paper has been criticized by a senior lecturer at Cambridge University for "what looks like incitement to race war," and rightfully so. The placement of one student alongside such a misleading title made it seem like this was the work of a black woman on a crusade to rid the world of white men. The article totally ignored the fact that the majority of students who'd signed the petition were in fact white. The author pandered to a growing sentiment more and more white men are beginning to hold -  that white culture is being erased. As a result, Lola Olufemi was subjected to a tirade of hate from trolls on social media who saw themselves as being under attack by blackness.

In reality, the university had no intentions at all to replace any white authors with BME authors. The letter written by students was merely a suggestion for more diversity in reading and in no way did it advocate for the removal of authors based on the fact that they're white. Cambridge University released a statement addressing the subject in defense of the students.

Whilst it's great to see the university defending a black student against harassment, the harassment itself is very telling of the age we live in today. As we make more progress in the representation of BME people and fight against discrimination there has been a pushback from white people who feel unsettled by the very topic of race or don't want `political correctness' shoved down their throats. In this instance, we saw a group of young people saying they wanted to learn more about the global south through literature, and white people, for some reason, were offended by this. This is the white fragility that prevents people of color from speaking out to protect the feelings of white people.

White people often join discussions about race with no intentions to listen but instead wish to play the victim. They say things like `why does everything have to be about race?' or `if you keep dividing yourselves racism will never go away.' A culture of victim blaming has developed in which people of color are told they are asking for too much by simply asking to be included. White people feel attacked by this because, whether consciously or subconsciously, they see it as a threat to their dominance. They've been able to live so long without having to experience racism that anything which works to dismantle racism and bring equality is seen as anti-white.

The problem with this kind of attitude towards people of color is that it leaves us with two options: to accept our low status in society or to fight it with the consequence of being demonized in the media and brutalized for our efforts. White fragility is another way of upholding racism through self-victimisation. It is a more subtle form of racism that exists today as it can exist among those who see themselves as `not racist.' Not being a racist does nothing, it simply is a way to make yourself feel better about the racism of other white people. It's a way to distance yourself from your kin so you don't have to feel bad whilst still leaving room to complain about people talking about race because you're able to say `I'm not racist.'

For racism to be dismantled there must be an acknowledgment of privilege amongst white people. There must be an awareness that being anti-racism or pro-black isn't anti-white. There must be a realization that racism is a bad thing and people of color experience it which, therefore, makes them best qualified to talk about it and well justified in their asking for inclusivity. White people need to stop playing the victim and see that people of color want nothing more but to exist alongside them without fear of exploitation or brutalization, is that too much to ask?


George Washington's own church is removing a plaque in his honor because he owned slaves

It's an Episcopal church so has no respect for the Bible. Expecting respect for other people from them is therefore ambitious
A church once attended by President George Washington will take down a memorial honoring him, its leaders have decided.

The Christ Church in Alexandria, Virginia, announced this week that it will remove a stone plaque that reads 'In memory of George Washington' currently displayed on the left side of the altar in memory of the first president of the United States.

A plaque on the right side of the altar honoring confederate leader Robert E. Lee will also be removed, according to the Washington Times.

'The plaques in our sanctuary make some in our presence feel unsafe or unwelcome. Some visitors and guests who worship with us choose not to return because they receive an unintended message from the prominent presence of the plaques,' the church leaders said.

'Many in our congregation feel a strong need for the church to stand clearly on the side of "all are welcome - no exceptions,"' they added.

The first president became a slave owner at the young age of 11, after his father died and left him 10 slaves along with the 280 acre family farm near Fredericksburg, according to the Mount Vernon website.

He went on to purchase more slaves, and at the time of his death, Mount Vernon's slave population consisted of 317 people - although the website claims less than half of them were owned by Washington, with the others having been owned by his wife's first husband, whose possessions went to her after he died without a will.

According to Rev. Noelle York-Simmons, the rector of the church, the decision was made by a unanimous vote of the vestry.

Although the Washingtons were generous with the church, the president's main worshiping place was Pohick Church, south of Mount Vernon

Lee, on his part, attended Christ Church since he was three, and the church was so important to his family that his daughter Mary Custis Lee left it $10,000 in her will, which was used to begin the church's endowment.

The plagues are scheduled to come down next summer, but where they'll go is still unclear. 


Book on the importance of motherhood hated by the Left

Motherhood used to be as American as apple pie. Nowadays it can be as antagonistic as American politics. Ask Erica Komisar.

Ms. Komisar, 53, is a Jewish psychoanalyst who lives and practices on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. If that biographical thumbnail leads you to stereotype her as a political liberal, you’re right. But she tells me she has become “a bit of a pariah” on the left because of the book she published this year, "Being There: Why Prioritizing Motherhood in the First Three Years Matters".

Christian radio stations “interviewed me and loved me,” she says. She went on Fox & Friends, and “the host was like, your book is the best thing since the invention of the refrigerator.” But “I couldn’t get on NPR,” and “I was rejected wholesale — particularly in New York — by the liberal press.” She did appear on ABC’s Good Morning America, but seconds before the camera went live, she says, the interviewer told her: “I don’t believe in the premise of your book at all. I don’t like your book.”

The premise of Ms. Komisar’s book — backed by research in psychology, neuroscience and epigenetics — is that “mothers are biologically necessary for babies,” and not only for the obvious reasons of pregnancy and birth. “Babies are much more neurologically fragile than we’ve ever understood,” Ms. Komisar says. She cites the view of one neuroscientist, Nim Tottenham of Columbia University, “that babies are born without a central nervous system” and “mothers are the central nervous system to babies,” especially for the first nine months after birth.

What does that mean? “Every time a mother comforts a baby in distress, she’s actually regulating that baby’s emotions from the outside in. After three years, the baby internalises that ability to regulate their emotions, but not until then.”

For that reason, mothers “need to be there as much as possible, both physically and emotionally, for children in the first 1,000 days.”

The regulatory mechanism is oxytocin, a neurotransmitter popularly known as the “love hormone.” Oxytocin, Ms. Komisar explains, “is a buffer against stress.” Mothers produce it when they give birth, breastfeed or otherwise nurture their children. “The more oxytocin the mother produces, the more she produces it in the baby” by communicating via eye contact, touch and gentle talk. The baby’s brain in turn develops oxytocin receptors, which allow for self-regulation at a later age.

Women produce more oxytocin than men do, which answers the obvious question of why fathers aren’t as well-suited as mothers for this sort of “sensitive, empathetic nurturing.” People “want to feel that men and women are fungible,” observes Ms. Komisar — but they aren’t, at least not when it comes to parental roles. Fathers produce a “different nurturing hormone” known as vasopressin, “what we call the protective, aggressive hormone.”

Whereas a mother of a crying baby will “lean into the pain and say, ‘Oh, honey!’ ” a father is more apt to tell the child: “C’mon, you’re OK. Brush yourself off; let’s go back to play.” Children, especially boys, need that paternal nurturing to learn to control their aggression and become self-sufficient. But during the first stages of childhood, motherly love is more vital.

Ms. Komisar’s interest in early childhood development grew out of her three decades’ experience treating families, first as a clinical social worker and later as an analyst. “What I was seeing was an increase in children being diagnosed with ADHD and an increase in aggression in children, particularly in little boys, and an increase in depression in little girls.” More youngsters were also being diagnosed with “social disorders” whose symptoms resembled those of autism — “having difficulty relating to other children, having difficulty with empathy.”

As Ms. Komisar “started to put the pieces together,” she found that “the absence of mothers in children’s lives on a daily basis was what I saw to be one of the triggers for these mental disorders.” She began to devour the scientific literature and found that it reinforced her intuition. Her interest became a preoccupation: “My husband would say I was a one-note Charlie,” she recalls. “I would come home and I would rant and I would say, ‘Oh my God, I’m seeing these things. I’ve got to write a book about it.’ ”

That was 12 years ago. She followed her own advice and held off working on the book because her own young children, two sons and a daughter, still needed her to be “emotionally and physically present.”

She uses that experience as a rejoinder to critics who accuse her of trying to limit women’s choices. “You can do everything in life,” she says, “but you can’t do it all at the same time.” Another example is Nita Lowey, a 15-term US representative from New York’s northern suburbs: “She started her career when she was in her 40s, and she said to me she wished she’d waited longer. She said her youngest was 9.”

Ms. Lowey is a liberal Democrat, but she was born in 1937 and thus may have more traditional inclinations than women of the baby boom and later generations. Ms. Komisar tells of hosting a charity gathering for millennials at her apartment. One young woman “asked me what my book was about. I told her, and she got so angry. She almost had fire coming out of her eyes, she was so angry at my message. She said, ‘You are going to set women back 50 years.’ I said, ‘Gosh, I wouldn’t want to do that.’ ”

The needs of children get lost in all this — and Ms. Komisar hears repeatedly that the hostility to her message is born of guilt. When she was shopping for a literary agent, she tells me, “a number of the agents said, ‘No, we couldn’t touch that. That would make women feel guilty.’ ” Another time she was rejected for a speaking gig at a health conference. She quotes the head of the host institution as telling her: “You are going to make women feel badly. How dare you?”


Leftist race obsessions invade Halloween   

The Left has done a fine job of taking the fun out of just about everything by injecting movies, television, sports, holidays and so much more with its politically correct groupthink. Halloween appears to be the latest target of its manufactured rage.

Writing for a blog called “Raising Race Conscious Children (the title alone says it all),” Sachi Feris goes on at length about how she twisted herself in knots over whether her daughter should dress as Disney’s Moana for Halloween. Her issue was that she feared her white daughter would be engaging in “cultural appropriation” by dressing up as the Polynesian character. Then Feris wondered if her daughter should be dressing up as Elsa from “Frozen,” because that would be flaunting white privilege.

As a side note, you may be wondering what the heck “cultural appropriation” even means. Wikipedia defines this leftist concoction as follows: “Cultural appropriation is the adoption of the elements of one culture by members of another culture. … Cultural elements which may have deep meaning to the original culture may be reduced to ‘exotic’ fashion or toys by those from the dominant culture.”

Well then.

Feris’ article sparked both imitation and mockery across the Internet. Redbook wrote a piece later republished by Cosmopolitan that scolds parents about the dangers of racism inherent in letting your kids dress up as characters of another race for Halloween. Redbook’s editors pontificate, “This isn’t about putting a damper on your kid’s creativity; it’s about exercising sensitivity towards anyone who doesn’t get to choose how the world at large sizes them up. Whether or not your kids get that is up to you.”

This seems like a lot of stress over a holiday that is basically about letting kids dress up as comic characters and going door to door in their neighborhood begging for candy. But to the “microaggressed” Left, it’s just one more opportunity to try to exercise control over society.

For years, Disney was the target of race-baiters for not having enough diversity in its character catalogue. Now that the entertainment conglomerate is expanding its range of characters, the race-baiters are saying that white kids should not pretend to be those characters because it’s cultural appropriation. This is typical of leftists, though. They are constantly moving the goalposts because their philosophy feeds on and thus foments discord and hatred.

For any adult who stops and thinks rationally for two seconds, labeling parents as racially insensitive for letting their children dress up as a character from a different race for Halloween goes too far. It doesn’t show respect for different racial groups. In fact, it further segregates them. It doesn’t celebrate different cultures or show respect for them. It just keeps people divided in politically convenient little tribes.

Why shouldn’t a kid be allowed to dress up as Moana if she’s white? Does this also mean that black girls can’t dress up as Elsa? Does a boy have to be of Northern European heritage to be Thor? (Never mind that Thor’s now a woman in Marvel’s comics…) Where does it end?

On the humorous side, blogger Matt Walsh has 9 Tips To Avoid Being A Racist Bigot This Halloween. From avoiding costumes of characters outside your race to avoiding them within your race, from avoiding costumes made in historically oppressed regions to avoiding costumes you buy at the store, Walsh eventually gets to the “logical” conclusion of leftist insanity: “Avoid costumes.” But not only that, you have to “Avoid avoiding costumes.”

Feris, Redbook and their ilk insist that parents have conversations with their children about race. But what they are really asking parents to do is teach their kids that skin color is everything; that you must constantly be thinking about a person’s race. This is not the world we want to raise children to live in. The real lesson here is that the amount of melanin in someone’s skin is not a basis for judging their character or for making decisions about how you treat them. And let kids be kids. If they want to dress up as Moana or Elsa, let them do it. And have a Happy Halloween.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Bake This Particular Cake, Bigot
The American media would have you believe there is a concerted effort among Christians in America to discriminate against gay Americans. “No gays allowed,” they claim small Christian business owners are saying. It is a fiction created to avoid dealing with the facts. The fact is I am unaware of any Christian business that refuses to serve gay customers, but I am aware of many gay activists targeting Christian small businesses for persecution.

The latest issue is also the one where the Left has most dramatically overplayed its hand. Jack Phillips, a baker in Denver, CO, has been compared to a Nazi participating in the holocaust. A member of Colorado’s Civil Rights Commission said that. What crime did Phillips commit? He dared to offer a cake to a gay couple for their same-sex wedding.

You may need to read that last sentence again. Phillips is both a committed Christian and a renown artist. His cakes are elaborate creations. Phillips was willing to provide a cake for the same-sex wedding, but Phillips was not willing to provide his extra artistic talents for the particulars that the couple wanted. They could have the wedding cake, but he was not going to customize it the way they wanted it. For that, Phillips had to be prosecuted.

Before going further, it would be helpful for you to know just how committed a Christian Phillips is. He will gladly bake a cake for a gay person, but he will not bake a cake for a Christian who wants a Halloween-themed cake. Phillips believes Halloween is a pagan holiday that dishonors God, so he will not lend his artistry to its celebration. He will not bake cakes for anyone’s second wedding, even if a church is willing to do the wedding. Divorce is a sin. Phillips will not bake cakes celebrating other religions’ religious holidays.

But Phillips was willing to bake a cake for the gay couple for their wedding. Still, he must be prosecuted because he would not customize it the way they wanted. For that, he must be shamed, boycotted and compared to a Nazi. His case is now before the Supreme Court. He goes in the company of Baronelle Stutzman. She regularly provided flowers to a gay couple in Washington. She had a long list of gay customers that she lovingly served. But Stutzman would not provide flowers for the same-sex wedding of her longtime customers. The couple did not file charges against Stutzman. They were, after all, friends and longtime customers. But the state of Washington pursued her anyway.

Stutzman was found guilty of discrimination by the Washington State Supreme Court and risks losing her home, her business, and even her dog because of the judgment unless His Majesty Anthony Kennedy, the supreme ruler of the United States, deigns to carve out some small exception for Christians in private enterprise.

It really all comes down to Anthony Kennedy, who decided the Supreme Court had the power to change the multi-thousand-year-old definition of marriage, despite the government not having created it. Now Kennedy will tell us whether the First Amendment’s “free exercise of religion” language means we can actually freely exercise our religion or only believe it without living it.

What the Christians before the United States Supreme Court want is not a ruling that says they can discriminate against gays and turn away a gay couple from their business. All they want is a ruling that says their artistic talents are speech and their speech cannot be compelled to endorse a religious ceremony they disagree with.

The compromise here should be obvious. Just as we should abhor the idea of forcing a black printer to print the fliers for a Klan rally or forcing the Muslim butcher to carve a pig for a church barbecue, we should not force the Christian to provide goods and services to a religious ceremony their religion decries as sin. You may disagree, but who are you to tell someone else how to live his faith? Anthony Kennedy, though, is our supreme ruler and he will tell us all.


Black Church Leaders Defend Baker in Wedding Cake Case

A Colorado baker has a right not to make a wedding cake celebrating a same-sex marriage that is against his faith, and the LGBT agenda is not a new civil rights movement, black Christian leaders said Monday outside the U.S. Supreme Court.

The nine leaders spoke in support of Jack Phillips, whose lawyers will ask the high court Dec. 5 to affirm that his free speech and religious liberty rights under the First Amendment allow him to turn down a request by two male customers to create such a cake.

“The First Amendment gives us the freedom of religion, not the freedom from religion,” Garland Hunt, senior pastor at The Father’s House, a nondenominational church in Atlanta, said at the press conference in defense of Phillips, who was not there. “The freedom of religion is an inalienable right that comes from God.”

In 2012, Phillips declined the business of two men who visited his bakery in Lakewood, Colorado, and asked him to create a cake celebrating their wedding in Massachusetts.

His Christian faith, Phillips has said, teaches that marriage is the union of a man and a woman. He also has said he doesn’t design and make cakes that go against his faith in other ways, such as being sexually suggestive or depicting Satan.

Persecution of Christians is real and “coming for America,” Hunt said.

Dean Nelson, co-founder of the Frederick Douglass Foundation of North Carolina and senior fellow for African-American affairs at the Washington-based Family Research Council, said Phillips is being attacked because he is a Christian.

“Jack is an honorable man who has served his community through his business for all people, regardless of their race, creed, color, gender, or sexual identity,” Nelson said. “Jack as a Christian is compelled to love all people, and this is what he has done for decades.”

The Frederick Douglass Foundation, which promotes Christian and conservative values,  sponsored and organized the press conference, according to Alliance Defending Freedom, a Christian legal group that defends religious liberty and represents Phillips.

The foundation also has launched a website in support of Phillips called We Got Your Back, Jack.

Janet Boynes, author of “Called Out: A Former Lesbian’s Discovery of Freedom,” said the civil rights movement started to help blacks gain their rights and sexual behavior is not the same as skin color. “I resent having my race compared to what other people do in bed,” Boynes said.

LGBT activists want special rights, she said, and she is concerned that people are falling for the idea that homosexuality is not a choice. American culture is in a “downward spiral,” she said. “God only condones and blesses sex between a man and a woman in marriage,” she said.

William Avon Keen, president of the Virginia chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, an organization co-founded by civil rights hero Martin Luther King Jr., said activists for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans have hijacked civil rights.

Unlike many LGBT activists, Keen said, he dealt with separate and unequal public facilities when he was growing up.

Keen said the Bible calls homosexuality a sin.  “We as Christians, we feel that murder is a sin. … We feel that marriage is ordained by God between a man and a woman,” Keen said. “We don’t believe in the third gender.”

He said the civil rights movement of the 1960s was “anti-sin,” and that today Christians are “too quiet” on societal issues and need to speak up.

“It is an injustice for our nation or anyone to try to force an individual to deny their faith,” Keen said.


Abortion: people are becoming more pro-life – despite the liberal media hegemony

When Jacob Rees-Mogg was interviewed by Piers Morgan and asked for his views on abortion, he was condemned, stigmatised, mocked and reviled for opposing it in all circumstances – even when women have been victims of rape or incest. He was called ‘bigot‘, ‘misogynist‘, ‘backwards‘… “extremely rightwing and reactionary“… “He belongs in the 18th century“…

Except according to an ICM survey for the BBC, he belongs foursquare in the 21st century, because only 46% of people support abortion in cases of rape, and just 41% in cases of incest:

Not that the BBC told you that: they suppressed ‘inconvenient’ statistics from their programme ‘Abortion on Trial‘ because it’s important for them not so much to convey facts impartially, as to inculcate the necessity for liberalising abortion laws further while persuading the public that the BBC are mere facilitators of an impartial debate.

Fatima Salaria is the BBC new head of Religion & Ethics (tweets protected – no response to ‘follow’ request in over six months), and according to the Mail she promised an impartial programme. Yet “No experts were filmed giving alternative viewpoints…”

“It is completely wrong to suggest that the BBC suppressed the results of the poll,” protested a spokesperson. “They were released to the press prior to transmission, were referred to throughout the programme and have been published in full on the ICM website.”

Which may be true, but the medium is the message: in a visual age where films are truth and the telly is a guru, people aren’t much bothered by academic footnotes. The point is that ‘Abortion on Trial’ failed even to mention that less than half of respondents to the ICM poll favour abortion in cases of rape.

So the bigoted, misogynistic, backwards, right-wing, reactionary, 18th-century Jacob Reees-Mogg is actually with the majority on this. But don’t expect the left-liberal media to report that.

Perhaps more significantly, only 13% support abortion for Down’s Syndrome:

And perhaps even more significantly, the proportion of Roman Catholics who advocate abortion in certain circumstances is not significantly different from the proportion of Protestants, which will come as rather a shock to a great many. Is that a result of the lack of episcopal leadership on the issue over generations, or the ubiquity of Professor Tina Beattie?

Either way, the takeaway fact from these stats which needs trumpeting and blogging to the four corners of the United Kingdom is that the ‘pro-choice majority’ which the mainstream media keep banging on about simply doesn’t exist.

But don’t expect the BBC to tell you that.

This Friday (27th October) marks the 50th anniversary of the passing of the Abortion Act 1967. Among commemorative events, the Life charity will be holding a minute’s silence at 11.05am – the precise time at which the Act received Assent – to remember the 8.8 million souls lost to abortion since that day. There will be a large Abort67 display in Parliament Square, so those who wish to reflect will be gathering in Old Palace Yard by the statue of King George V at 10:30. Lord Alton will be among speakers. All are welcome.


2 States Ravaged by Opioids Show Difference Faith Makes

There is a strong correlation between lack of religious attendance and illicit drug use, research shows in contrasting two states hit hard by the opioid crisis.

The parallels are demonstrated by two comparative studies of New Hampshire and West Virginia.

West Virginia suffers from an ailing economy, while New Hampshire has a strong economy, noted J. Scott Moody, CEO of the Granite Institute, a conservative think tank. The institute takes its name from the fact that New Hampshire is known as the Granite State.

“It’s not just economics causing the overdose problems. There are other factors,” Moody told The Daily Signal.

Moody and Wendy P. Warcholik, co-directors of the American Conservative Union’s Family Prosperity Index, issued the West Virginia report in September and the 2017 Family Prosperity Index report in February.

The February study reveals a regional problem.

A large and growing body of evidence shows that not only can religion help prevent people from using illicit drugs, but it also plays a strong role in effective treatment programs. … The northeastern states dominate the upper-left quadrant of the chart [see page 123], where low religiosity is correlated with high drug use, while deep southern states and Utah dominate the lower right quadrant, where high religiosity is correlated with low drug use.

Moody noted that New Hampshire has a serious problem, not only with opioid addiction, but also a related problem with a high suicide rate. One in 10 young adults say they have had suicidal thoughts.

“You have to ask, why is that? Our economy is booming. We’re pretty much at full employment. Anybody who wants a job can find a job,” Moody said. “So we looked at more social-type issues. For example, New Hampshire is one of the least religious states in the country. It’s New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine. It’s a race to the bottom. … We suggest there is a strong correlation between illicit drug use and religious attendance.”

By contrast, data seems to be showing some improvement in West Virginia, he said.

“Ironically, West Virginia is much more religious than northern New England, and that has actually suppressed their illicit drug use, which was a positive for West Virginia, but they still have a suicide problem along with it,” Moody said.

The Family Prosperity Index found that “[b]etween 2000 and 2015, New Hampshire’s drug overdose rate increased by 724 percent to 0.033 percent (2nd highest) from 0.004 percent. Over the same time period, the national average grew by 148 percent to 0.017 percent from 0.007 percent.”

West Virginia’s illicit drug use rate as a percent of population exceeded the national average in most years; however, the state has seen some reversals.

The study released in September says, “In 2014, West Virginia has the 20th-lowest illicit drug use rate (except marijuana) at 2.5 percent and the second-lowest regionally, just ahead of Virginia (2.3 percent, 14th-lowest).”

The findings show:

While West Virginia’s current low ranking is encouraging, the recent bounce-back between 2013 and 2014 suggests continued vigilance is needed, as it may indicate a return to a higher illicit drug use rate (except marijuana) in the years ahead (perhaps to levels of the near past between 2004 and 2010).

A significant reason for why West Virginia’s illicit drug use rate is relatively low is due to the state’s above-average religious attendance. In 2015, 44 percent of West Virginians attended church at least once per week (tied for the 17th-highest with Missouri and Indiana), which is 16 percent above the national average of 38 percent.

Regionally, West Virginia had the second-highest level of religiosity trailing only Kentucky (47 percent, 10th-highest). All other neighboring states were lower in religiosity: Virginia (42 percent, 22nd-highest), Ohio (40 percent, 23rd-highest), and Pennsylvania (38 percent, 31st-highest).

The research measures religiosity using Gallup data, which has tracked weekly church attendance since 2008.

Other national research backs this up more broadly on drug use.

The reports point to a 2001 study, “So Help Me God: Substance Abuse, Religion and Spirituality,”  from the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse that found:

“[A]dults who never attend religious services are almost twice as likely to drink, three time likelier to smoke, more than five times likelier to have used an illicit drug other than marijuana, almost seven times likelier to binge drink and almost eight times likelier to use marijuana than those who attend religious services at least weekly … .

“[T]eens who never attend religious services are twice as likely to drink, more than twice as likely to smoke, more than three times likelier to use marijuana and binge drink, and almost four times likelier to use illicit drugs than teens who attend religious services at least weekly.

A 2005 study, “Faith Matters: Race/Ethnicity, Religion and Substance Use,” from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, a research center focused on education and opportunities for young people, found:

Religion is an important protective factor against substance abuse and an important support for persons in recovery. Religious people are less likely than others to use drugs and less likely to experience negative drug-related consequences.

The office of Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, is also conducting the Social Capital Project, a multiyear research effort looking at “associational life,” which includes families, communities, workplaces, and religious congregations. The report doesn’t single out religion as a mitigating factor to addiction, but notes that isolation is a major cause.

“Studies show that social networks influence the behavior of their members, affecting whether they are obese or fit, happy or sad,” the Lee project says. “The stark fact is that socially isolated people and others without social support die younger. Even among people with adequate social support, health status is connected to the health of their friends, family, and co-workers.”



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


Friday, October 27, 2017

It's not just a joke anymore: They're actually claiming math is racist

Naturally, you've heard the joke about political correctness run amok -- that pretty soon, people are going to start claiming math is racist. Well, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but ...

Math actually is racist, according to Rochelle Gutierrez, an education professor at the University of Illinois. The following excerpt from a Campus Reform write-up is not a joke unless this professor is putting on an admirably epic long-term hoax:

"On many levels, mathematics itself operates as Whiteness. Who gets credit for doing and developing mathematics, who is capable in mathematics, and who is seen as part of the mathematical community is generally viewed as White," Gutierrez argued.
Gutierrez also worries that algebra and geometry perpetuate privilege, fretting that "curricula emphasizing terms like Pythagorean theorem and pi perpetuate a perception that mathematics was largely developed by Greeks and other Europeans."

The thing is, a good deal of math was developed, or improved, or at least passed on to us today by Greeks and Europeans. And there's nothing wrong with that. We can acknowledge it, the same way we tip our hats to the Arabs (perhaps unwittingly) each time we say the Arabic word "algebra," even though algebra predated its modern Arab invention by several thousand years.

The word "mathematics" is itself a Greek word for "that which is to be learned." Euclid's geometry book is still in print and useful. Eratosthenes first calculated the circumference of the earth in the third century B.C., with what we now know to be surprising accuracy. And it would be absurd to deny the significance of Pythagoras and his mysterious mathematical cult, even if he was not the first to know of or to prove the theorem we have since named after him.

And that's only scratching the surface, of course. Ancient Greece is remembered for its flourishing of learning, science, literature and philosophy, a surprisingly large amount of which survived the ages. We're all better off for it.

Unfortunately, the Greeks are also credited with inventing the academy. If that means we have them to blame for Professor Gutierrez's scholarship, then perhaps she has a point after all.


Milo Yiannopoulos tells Studio 10's Jessica Rowe she can be 'cured with chemotherapy' after she told him she is 'a proud feminist'

Far-right activist Milo Yiannopoulos has branded Studio 10's Jessica Rowe a 'half-bald feminist' after a heated clash on live TV.

The British-born champion of free speech was outspoken about his dislike of feminists when he appeared on Studio 10 this week to peddle his upcoming tour of Australia.

When co-host Jessica Rowe told Mr Yiannopoulos she was a 'proud feminist', he said 'that's OK, I'm sure they'll cure you soon, there's a chemotherapy for that'.

Mr Yiannopoulos' likening of feminism to cancer drew criticism from Ms Rowe.

'No no no,' she began. 'Everyone's entitled to a view, but you seem to stir up hate for the sake of it, because you want to provoke.'

Mr Yiannopoulos defended his opposition to feminism and said he did not say it to be controversial.

'It's perfectly fine if you're a feminist. My problem is with those feminists who say we all need to be feminists when we might not be, and we might think feminism has run its course,' he said.

'It's very difficult to describe yourself as 'not a feminist' if you're in the public life. That's an enforcement of a particular political orthodoxy that is not shared by the public majority.

'These ideas being enforced in popular culture and on TV are not views reflected in the public. 'The gap between media and the public is growing all the time.'

Mr Yiannopoulos went on to say free speech was a right, even if it was controversial or offensive. 'If I want to say that feminists are fat and ugly, which most of them are, I will,' he said.

The controversial commentator later uploaded the interview to his Youtube channel under the headline 'Milo slays half-bald Australian feminist'.

Mr Yiannopoulos has built a career on divisiveness.

Once a senior editor of far-right site Breitbart News, Mr Yiannopoulos was fired when he was accused of being a paedophile apologist.

The commentator previously said sex between 'younger boys' and older men could serve as a 'coming-of-age relationship in which those older men help those younger boys discover who they are'.

He vehemently denied the accusations saying 'I didn't technically advocate paedophilia'. 'I regret the things that I've said. I don't think I've been as sorry about anything.'  


Restaurant boss advertises for female part-time staff because ‘women are better at cleaning than men'

Ridvan Das, owner and manager of Mediterranean restaurant and takeaway Mazi in Croydon, south London, spoke out after a notice appeared on the recruitment website Indeed.

The advert included a picture of a sign in one of the restaurant's windows which says 'part time staff required (female)'.

The businessman said his rationale behind the controversial advert was simple. Ridvan said: 'The reason was we needed to hire a dishwasher and women are obviously better at cleaning than men - that's what I think anyway.

The 24-year-old denied that the advert was sexist, and stressed that he did hire men and women - but when it comes to roles involving cleaning, he preferred women.

Ridvan said: 'That's just how I feel; I'm messy myself and a lot of the males I know are messy themselves and their wives, girlfriends, mum or auntie will keep them neat.'

Ridvan said the single vacancy - which was posted on Indeed by someone else - had already been filled.

When asked whether he was aware of UK discrimination laws and whether he would have considered a man for the role, Rivdan added: 'We hire as long as they have had this type of job before and as long as they have experience in the trade.

'It's not discrimination; we have 14 people who work here and it's pretty much equal numbers. There's a few more men than women.'

When pressed further on his view that women are better at cleaning, Ridvan pointed to the fact that the restaurant has the highest possible food hygiene rating. After a Food Standards Agency inspection on May 24, the restaurant was given a rating of five out of five.

Ridvan, who lives on London Road, said: 'I'm not taking any chances when it comes to the food and cleanliness of the restaurant.

'I have four people who work only to keep the restaurant clean; three female and one male. The male will help the women pull the fridges around.

'There is a woman at the head of this team and she will come and check everything is spotless and, if not, they start again.'

The law in the United Kingdom is quite clear on discrimination both during recruitment and employment.

The office and kitchen are situated downstairs at Mazi, while the diners eat upstairs. Food is brought upstairs through a food lift.

Men and women wait on tables at the London Road restaurant, with all the men upstairs and all the women downstairs.

Rivdan said: 'We took over the restaurant about six months ago, and it was like that (all men upstairs and all women downstairs) so we kept it like that.'


Racist "whiteness" concept flourishing among elite Australians

The Left are obsessed with race and racial differences

Is there a collective noun for those who make a living out of publicly decrying the evils of whiteness? Consider for example, a cacophony of virtue-signallers, a soliloquy of self-flagellants, a dirge of self-loathers, a nursery of penitents, and a turgidity of neo-Pharisees.

For such zealots the crusade against racism — or more accurately to be seen as crusading against racism — is a secular calling. Its central philosophy is the disparaging and loathing of whiteness. Are you thinking irony or downright hypocrisy? To describe it so would be correct, but those terms do not illustrate the degree of cognitive dissonance in the crusader’s mind. To describe it as Orwellian doublethink, however, does.

What featured in last week’s episode of ABC Radio National’s The Minefield served as a stark example, its subject title “Wrong to be ‘White’: Is Racism a Moral Problem?”. Apparently rejecting the notion that racism is an aberrant element of whiteness, host Scott Stephens mused that it was innate. “A great many more philosophers and a great many political theorists … would see the persistence of racism not as a moral topic but in some ways as foundational, as fundamental as in some ways infecting and rendering us complicit in pretty much everything we do,” he said. “What do you think”, he asked co-host and Deakin University lecturer Dr Joanna Cruikshank.

You might think the correct answer, after suppressing an outburst of derisive laughter, would be to say this secular construct of original sin was both simplistic and sweeping. But Cruikshank did not demur. “As a historian I think I’m constantly struck by the way the structures of many modern nations have been racial right from the start,” she said. “I think I would even say white supremacist from the start.”

It is a term that Cruikshank resorts to frequently, particularly in respect to self-loathing. “I am a white supremacist,” she wrote in June this year. “I sing a national anthem that proclaims Australians to be ‘young and free,’ directly excluding the ancient nations of this land and their people — people who, for most of the century this anthem has been sung, have been anything but free. I work in institutions and walk on streets named after men who authored the White Australia policy.”

The list of self-indictments is a long one. “I watch television and movies where white people portray almost all of the heroes, while people of colour play the feisty friend, the wisecracking sidekick, the super-strong villain or the treacherous terrorist. If I watched sport more often, I would see players of different races, but almost all white managers and coaches.”

The purpose of telling us this, she writes, is not “to indulge in self-flagellation.” Whether she is trying to convince us or herself of that one cannot say. “No doubt people of colour around me could point to many more examples of the way my words and actions reflect and perpetuate white supremacy,” she adds. “I am working to change this.” These changes, however, do not appear to go so far as the reluctant white supremacist giving up her taxpayer-subsidised job to make way for a person of colour, but that’s by the bye.

The two co-hosts could not be more alike in spirit. “Like you, I’ve been rather troubled by the political response as well to the National Constitutional Convention at Uluru,” said Stephens, who then added the indigenous resolutions such as a treaty and a so-called truth and reconciliation commission to be “clear and unequivocal” and “morally rich”.

As with Cruikshank, Stephens appears to regard the ABC studios as the nation’s confessional. He deplored the “grubby public debates about things like the Australia Day date,” describing them as a reaction to “historical truth-telling.” The protests were a “reassertion of a muscular white nationalism,” he went on to say. “This for me is really the symptom of something that remains very deep and very wrong with who we are.”

You could be tempted to argue in response to such strong sentiments that the attempt by socialist and Greens-dominated councils to change the date of Australia Day is an aggressive form of cultural cleansing. Alternatively, you might suggest that this whole notion of whiteness and inherent racism is sanctimonious piffle, as well as an exercise in attention-seeking.

Ah, but Stephens had anticipated this. “It‘s now common for people to come out and to deny that they themselves are racist while engaging in either forms of speech or patterns of behaviour that would be I think rightly morally described as racist.” To assume that a denial of racism from one accused of such behaviour is evidence of guilt is truly a Kafkaesque mindset.

These views are disconcertingly similar to those of the Australian Human Rights Race Discrimination Commissioner, Tim Soutphommasane. “Not to put too fine a point on it,” he observed only two months ago, “but we must be prepared to say that if people don’t wish to be called racists or bigots, they shouldn’t blame others; they should begin by not doing things that involve racism or bigotry.” But what about the right to a fair hearing? For a cultural Marxist, that is merely a bourgeois anachronism.

Given Stephens and Cruikshank’s controversial and near identical views on whiteness, surely we could expect their only guest would provide a challenging and robust counterargument? After all, ABC editorial policies require The Minefield to “Present a diversity of perspectives so that, over time, no significant strand of thought or belief within the community is knowingly excluded or disproportionately represented.” So how did that work out with this guest?

“I’d like to start off actually by acknowledging that here in Sydney, in the ABC studios, I am actually sitting on lands stolen from the Gadigal people,” began Alana Lentin, associate professor in Cultural & Social Analysis at the University of Western Sydney. Does that give you some indication of how much balance you can expect?

Lentin is also the president of the Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association. Its charter is to “critically investigate and challenge racial privilege and the construction and maintenance of race and whiteness, both past and present.” In respect to the assertion that denial of racism is equivalent to an admission of guilt, Lentin takes an even more extreme view. “The assertion of ‘not racism’ that accompanies many structurally white discussions of and pronouncements on matters of race is itself a key form of racist violence,” she wrote for ABC only last week.

Not surprisingly, it was a very cosy little chat among the three, with acclaims along the lines of “Absolutely” and “Wow”. “We know that white people in this country are not jailed for unpaid fines,” said Lentin, commenting on the death in custody in 2014 of West Australian indigenous woman Miss Dhu. This is a blatantly absurd fiction, yet neither Stephens nor Cruikshank corrected Lentin.

Judging by her Twitter account, one sees that Lentin has a tendency to weaken labels through overuse. According to her Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is a “fascist”.

Fascist Turnbull presides over same racist policies as Trump regime is trying to install https://t.co/2guTeBlIqS

— alana lentin (@alanalentin) January 30, 2017

So too is his cabinet colleague Scott Morrison, but he is a “total fascist”.

How very fascist: Tony says 'families, jobs, economy, secure nation' and 'I love this country' http://t.co/13NRC20lm1

— alana lentin (@alanalentin) February 9, 2015

On what basis? It turns out that Abbott had espoused the importance of “families, jobs, economy, secure nation”, and had said “I love this country.”

Her accusatory outbursts do not end there. Lentin frequently refers to immigration detention centres as “concentration camps”.

Her most revealing tweet was one sent on the eve of Australia Day this year. “Does anyone seriously think that #changethedate will resolve the pesky fact that Australia was stolen? No to nationalist days!” Never kid yourself in thinking that the progressives’ campaign to change the date of Australia Day will end there.

As for episodes like that of The Minefield, what does it say of the ABC’s adherence to its statutory charter? Only this month managing director Michelle Guthrie claimed the government’s legislative proposals to amend the charter — including a requirement that coverage be “fair” and “balanced” — amounted to a “political vendetta”.

Finally, one should reflect on the words of Stephens, who linked the concepts of race and whiteness to “products of capitalism itself”.

Capitalism, he asserted, “produces subjects who are willing to profit off the back of the misery and the immiseration of others,” he said. He’s absolutely right. It is called the Grievance Gravy Train, and it is publicly funded through taxes paid by capitalists. And it is not only its drivelling passengers who enjoy such a lucrative run at the expense of others, but also those who stoke its fires and drive it.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


Thursday, October 26, 2017

Facebook user hits back at friend who told her she only got into Yale med school because of her 'white privilege'

White privilege is evident in society whether or not people choose to see it but in the case of a student who got into medical school, the accusation was misplaced.

In a Facebook post that has since gone viral a determined student was cruelly shamed after she shared her excitement over getting into Yale medical school, saying, 'Thank you everyone for all your support!! I'm so happy to say after years of hard work I have been accepted into Yale med school!!!'

But instead of a congratulatory post, one friend on the platform commented that she only got into the prestigious university program because of her 'white privilege'.

She said: 'Good job, might I add a shout out to your white privilege for you,' followed by the hand clapping emoji.

But the accomplished graduate wasn't having it and defended herself in a series of posts shedding light on her incredibly troubled upbringing, revealing how she has remained resolute in her studies throughout the years.

In a Facebook thread, she told Melissa, the girl who accused her of getting into med school because she was white, that she had grown up in a foster home after her alcoholic parents gave her up when she was five years old.

'Melissa, I grew up in a foster home. Both my parents were alcoholics and gave me up when I was five,' she wrote.

She continued: 'I had to take care of my brother for two years until we got adopted and even then we were both abused by that family and had to go back into the orphanage for another two years.'

But even through her less than ideal upbringing, the hopeful doctor still managed to get good grades, go to a decent college and get scholarships to help pay for her tuition.

'I spent long nights studying and working part-time in high school just to support myself and my brother,' she said. 'I was lucky enough to have good grades to get into a decent undergrad.'

She spent her high school and college careers staying up late but rather than at parties, she lost sleep during study groups and her job until she 'finally got accepted to her top choice' medical school. 

And instead of taking this as a moment to apologize or simply explain her point of view on a controversial topic she continued to patronize the med student.

She said: 'Umm okay sweetie, you claim to understand privilege but you can't even self critique [sic] buh bye.'

People took to Facebook to share their disdain toward Melissa who felt the need to diminish her friend's accomplishments.

One Facebook user said: 'Oh my gosh this p****d me off so bad. She didn't get into Yale because she is white. She got into Yale because she worked her butt off and earned it.'
You deserve it: And other shared his disgust for those who try to make people feel like they don't deserve their achievements

You deserve it: And other shared his disgust for those who try to make people feel like they don't deserve their achievements

Another said that med school admit should be congratulated for achieving 'all she has' because she worked hard to get where she is. The post continued by advising her to not listen to negative comments.

But all comments weren't negative as another person bothered by the exchange, shared the thread and their frustration over the situation saying, 'Congrats to this girl for getting into Yale Med. Simply disgusted by whoever is trying to make them feel like they don't deserve it.'

In the Facebook thread defending herself, she mentioned that instead of being helpful and explaining her perspective, Melissa was being 'condescending' when she said she understood the concept of white privilege. 


The brutal truth: The demise of the stay-at-home mother IS harming children... and I'm as guilty as any working mum, writes SARAH VINE

Sometimes in life you just have to smash the glass and pull the emergency brake, even if it means incurring the wrath of some of your fellow passengers.

That is precisely what Esther Rantzen, founder of Childline, did the other day when she wrote an article outlining in stark terms the psychological repercussions on children of having both parents who work.

‘Time is the greatest gift we can give our own children, yet in Britain today it is the scarcest resource we have, especially for working parents,’ she said.

‘These days most parents work, often long hours,’ she continued. ‘I remember speaking to a teenage boy who was suffering very serious problems. I suggested to him his mother would want to know.

‘He replied: “When she gets home from work she’s so tired she can’t talk to me.” I asked if the weekends might give them the chance to talk. “She works in a shop,” he told me. “She never has a day off.” ’

I don’t imagine Rantzen’s comments will have won her many fans among hardline feminists. But her concerns bear serious consideration. After all, her experience in the field of troubled children is unique.

Childline is 30 years old, the first initiative of its kind — a dedicated service for children where, free from adult influence, they can talk openly and honestly about their problems. It is perfectly placed to have an unbiased view of what troubles them and of the cause of those troubles.

Barely a week seems to go by without another report claiming rising levels of anxiety and depression among young people. And unlike when Childline began, these feelings are not so much triggered by abuse or neglect (although that still happens far too often) but rather a generalised sense of unease and worry.

So what’s causing this?

According to the experts at Childine, there are a number of factors at play, not least the impact of the internet and social media on the developing mind.

But there is something else, too, a far less headline-grabbing but in many ways more complex problem: parental absence and, in particular, the absence of a mother figure.

A loving, nurturing, caring person in their lives, someone to set boundaries, lend structure, provide support and encouragement — and create a calm, safe environment in which they can flourish.

Childline carried out 22,456 counselling sessions in 2016 with children as young as ten who were suffering suicidal thoughts, up 15 per cent from the previous year. This sharp increase points to one thing: children simply don’t know who to turn to any more.

In the past, there was never much confusion about who was in charge of pastoral care in the home. Such a person used to be called a housewife, and many women saw it as a privilege to carry that title.

It meant being a home-maker, a mother, a matriarch, shaping the lives of those around you, passing on your wisdom and knowledge, nurturing — and yes, at times putting others before yourself.

As Rantzen points out: ‘My mother proudly called herself a “housewife”. A clever woman, she never had the chance to test her talent in the workplace and while I have no desire to turn the clock back, as her child I always knew that she was focused on us, her daughters. That we came first.’

Women such as Rantzen’s mother used to be the norm; now they are the exception. Decades of feminism have seen to that, combined with the changing economic landscapes.

And while the stereotype of the emancipated female, forging ahead in the workplace, challenging the men at their own game in many cases still stands, the reality is that many of these mothers work not because they want to but because they have to.

Rising living costs, soaring house prices and a changing employment market in which manufacturing jobs have been replaced by the service sector, mean the old-fashioned model of a father who works and a mother who stays at home is becoming less viable.

Most families need two incomes just to keep a roof over their heads, and even then they find themselves struggling.

Little wonder that more than 70 per cent of mothers have some form of paid employment, and that number is rising.

While concerns about the possible impact on younger generations have been rumbling on for decades — when I was young I remember endless debates about ‘latchkey kids’ — it remains one of those subjects that is very hard to debate objectively.

The reason is simple: working mothers such as myself are quick to defend our choices and highly sensitive about any suggestion that the way we conduct ourselves as parents might in any way prove detrimental to our children.

We are role models aren’t we? We make up for times away from our children in other ways, don’t we?

And at the end of the day, we are intelligent women: work is what keeps us sane.

But while mothers such as myself, who enjoy fulfilling careers and contribute to the income both of our own families and the national exchequer, would die in a ditch to defend the right to work, I would be lying if I didn’t admit there have been times when my family has suffered.

My husband was filling in an online form for a new NHS surgery.

In answer to the ethnicity question he chose ‘white Scottish’ from the drop-down menu.

Whereupon the next question was: ‘Do you require an interpreter?’

How often have I been too tired to help my children with homework? Or too stressed to hear that small voice? Or distracted at the very moment I could have made all the difference?

Now they are 13 and 14, they tell me themselves. It is they who have to snap my laptop shut; they who have to make themselves supper if I’m working late, or run to the shops to get milk.

Only the other night, my son — who had been waiting patiently for help with an English essay while I was working — lost his temper through frustration and exhaustion. By the time I had finished, he was too tired to do any more homework. There was no getting around it: I had prioritised my work over his.

I have no idea if either of my children have ever called Childline — although they have threatened (I think, hope) in jest. But my situation is emblematic of what Esther Rantzen is talking about.

Even though I am lucky enough to have flexible hours and can work from home, there are times when my work is all-consuming.

I tell myself, of course, that by not acting as their slave, I am teaching them self-sufficiency. But I simply don’t know how else my job might be affecting them.

Because while most people assume the early years are the hardest for working mothers, given the unique pressures of 21st-century living that is not longer the case. Admittedly they don’t need so much practical support as they get older; but emotionally they are much more vulnerable.

The life of a modern teenager has never been more fraught in terms of mental health. Last week, a study by the University of Manchester revealed self-harm among teenage girls had increased 68 per cent in the past three years.

Both of my children experience a range of anxieties I would never even have dreamt of when I was their age, and there is no doubt social media and technology play a significant role in this.

The irony is that at a time when more mothers than ever are in work, it is becoming more vital that our children have someone at home who can offer a shoulder to cry on.

There is one simple truth: in the 21st century children need their mothers more than ever; but we are simply not there for them.

The time has come for women like myself to admit what we all secretly already knew. When it comes to the question of how we reconcile our duty as a mum with our intellectual ambitions, we don’t have a satisfactory answer.

Whenever someone raises it, the various factions rush straight to their battle stations — perpetuating the great feminist lie: that women can have it all.

Among young women of my generation at least, this has always been the assumption. It was our job to take up the opportunities gifted to us by the previous generation of feminists. The focus was on pursuing a career first, marriage and motherhood second.

Cooking, cleaning and choosing curtains was beneath us; instead, we studied hard and worked long hours alongside the men.

The upside was that the world finally began to take us seriously.

The downside — which we never saw coming — was that something had to give. That something, it is increasingly becoming apparent, was the mental health and well-being of subsequent generations.
BBC double standards

A Conservative MP cautiously and politely questions university attitudes towards Brexit in a carefully worded letter; BBC reacts with hysteria across all channels.

Labour MP Jared O’Mara viciously insults gay people and calls women ‘fatties’ and ‘ugly bitches’, Spanish, ‘dagos’, Danes, ‘pig shaggers’. Barely registers a blip on the lunchtime news.

For, as the NSPCC and other child-focused organisations are forever reminding us, the past three decades have seen a gradual decline in happiness among children and the quality of childhood. Generation X has given rise to Generation Neglect. One of the most heartbreaking things Rantzen pointed out is that many young people shield their parents from what’s going on in their lives because they either don’t want to add to their burden, or think they will be too busy to help.

‘They protect their parents from knowing they are being badly bullied, or abused,’ she said, adding, ‘perhaps that is why they turn to online friends or strangers, to have someone to talk to. But the online world brings new risks and pressures: cyber-bullying, online groomers, the culture of “sexting” explicit images of themselves, and the easy availability of porn.’

We think of the internet as something that reaches into children’s lives; but the notion of children reaching out online to strangers because the emotional landscape at home is so barren had never occurred to me.

In 2015, a study by Harvard Business School found that in two-parent families with reasonable incomes, children of working mothers were at a distinct disadvantage. It said: ‘Employment was associated with negative child outcomes when families were not at risk financially (i.e., when families were middle or upper-middle class).’

Young children need to play and explore in an environment where they feel safe, special and loved. For infants, this means with care-givers to whom they feel they belong. Quite simply, their mothers.

No one wants to return to the days when married women weren’t allowed to work. But between that and feminism’s utopian dream must lie a place where mothers can be mothers and children can be children without either losing out. Perhaps that starts with recognising the value of working for something more than the money and the glory: a happy, stable home where the next generation can grow and flourish.

A novel concept indeed.


A study reveals overwhelming MSM pro-Clinton bias as they speak about limiting "fake news."

If one blatantly dismisses all accusation of bias as patently false when data would suggest otherwise, one will find little sympathy to accept one’s accusation of another as guilty of the same sin. Or to put it in more common parlance, it’s the pot calling the kettle black.

Robert Epstein of the American Institute for Behavioral Research and Technology, in the run-up to the presidential election, ran an experiment to determine just how biased toward leftist politics were the nation’s leading social media giants. As Frank Foer, a writer for The Atlantic, describes, “The social media companies are the gatekeepers. Whatever choices these companies make to elevate or bury information is very powerful and will have a big impact on what people read.” Epstein found that Google searches returned twice as many pro-Hillary Clinton news articles as did Yahoo. Even more disturbing was Google’s targeting tactic. Men in blue states saw more than double the pro-Clinton articles than did women in red states. Epstein charges that Google’s search algorithm ranked pro-Hillary articles ahead of any positive articles on Donald Trump.

Another study conducted by Nicholas Diakopoulos, a professor at Northwestern University, found that in December 2015 Google search results of presidential candidates showed seven out of every 10 articles were positive toward Democrats, whereas less than six out of 10 were positive for Republican candidates. We’re surprised it was that high. On election night, only 1% of 113 featured Google election-related searches produced articles from conservative news sources.

Meanwhile, in spite of the mainstream media’s overwhelmingly negative coverage of Donald Trump, he won the election, which prompted the MSM to immediately lob charges of a dubious Trump/Russia collusion conspiracy as well as the “major” problem of “fake news.” Facebook later announced that it would be looking to develop programs to limit fake news, especially from the Russians. But conservative media outlets began to see more of their content limited on leading social media sites, such as Prager University witnessing much of its content on Google-owned YouTube being labeled as restricted for no apparent reason other than the fact that it promotes conservative ideology.

So, is it really the Russians that the MSM and the social media giants are seeking to stop? If it is, they don’t seem to be doing a very good job. The Wall Street Journal reports that the Russian state-run news network RT is thriving on YouTube and Facebook. RT’s English language YouTube channel has garnered more than 2.1 billion views and has 2.2 million subscribers, putting it on par with CNN’s YouTube channel. Add another 3.3 billion views from 20 other RT-related YouTube channels and one can clearly see that the Russians are having little trouble getting their message into American media.

The Journal reports, “Unlike other government-funded news outlets, such as the U.K.‘s BBC or the U.S.’s Radio Free Europe, researchers say RT is more overtly political, with a goal of undermining Western institutions and democracies. … Researchers and former RT employees say the outlet highlights conflict in the West, questions prevailing narratives in Western media and promotes conspiracy theories.”

Humorously, CNN has just launched an ad campaign entitled “Facts First” designed to sell its brand as genuinely real news from a trusted source as opposed to fake news. The ad features an apple with a voice over telling viewers not to believe those who would say it is a banana. CNN, dost thou protest too much?


ACLU aims to stop transgender bathroom initiative in Montana

The ACLU of Montana filed a lawsuit Tuesday challenging the constitutionality of a proposed ballot initiative that would require transgender residents to use public bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their sex at birth.

The lawsuit was filed in District Court in Cascade County on behalf of seven transgender Montanans, the parents of a transgender 9-year-old and the city of Missoula. The Bozeman City Commission voted Monday to join the effort.

"This proposed measure legalizes discrimination," said Alex Rate, legal director for the ACLU of Montana.

The ACLU and the plaintiffs argue the Locker Room Privacy Act would deprive transgender Montanans of equal protection under the law and violate their rights to privacy, dignity and due process.

The lawsuit asks the court to declare the initiative unconstitutional and to prevent Secretary of State Corey Stapleton from placing it on the November 2018 ballot.

The Montana Family Foundation is sponsoring the initiative. Foundation president Jeff Lazloffy has argued that predators claim they are transgender to access public bathrooms used by the opposite sex.

"High school girls shouldn't be forced to shower in front of a boy, even if he does think he's a girl," Lazloffy said in a statement Tuesday. "Boys shouldn't have to change clothes in front of a girl, even if she thinks she's a boy. It's just common sense."

Lazloffy said Initiative 183 offers solutions such as single-stall changing facilities.

While his arguments center on locker room use, plaintiffs focused on the initiative as it would apply to public restrooms.

"This morning, I walked down the hall and used the women's restroom," transgender plaintiff Roberta Zenker told those gathered at the Capitol Rotunda. "It was not lost on me that if I-183 passes, I would not be able to use that restroom."

The law would force her to use the men's restroom and face possible harassment, humiliation and embarrassment or risk breaking the law by using the women's restroom, she said.

"What better way to discriminate against a class of people than to effectively exclude them from public places," said Zenker, who transitioned to a woman 11 years ago.

Lazloffy argued the lawsuit is premature because the initiative has not yet qualified for the ballot. Supporters have until June to gather the nearly 26,000 signatures needed.

Rate noted that in an earlier case challenging the constitutionality of a ballot measure, former Montana Supreme Court Justice Jim Nelson wrote that placing a facially invalid measure on the ballot would be a waste of time and money for all involved.

The high court ruled last month that the ballot language approved for the initiative needed to be re-written because it did not include the initiative's definition of sex and was otherwise vague.

Rate said he hoped the judge would rule before the November 2018 election.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here