Questionable Motives

August 14, 2020

What is this ‘Woke’ movement and what does it have to do with me?

Filed under: Uncategorized — tildeb @ 12:01 pm

As Princeton mathematician Sergiu Klainerman, an immigrant to the US and refugee from Nicolae Ceausescu’ Communist  Romania (anyone who has lived or spent time in and under a totalitarian regime knows why this history matters) describes ,

American colleges and universities, as well as many other institutions, are under attack by an ideology that I cannot but describe as insidious. This ideology is built on a combination of “critical theory” (an offspring of Marxism); a weird type of moral-cultural relativism that generates its own opposite, namely, fierce moralistic dogmatism; deconstructionism; and intersectionality. The net result of this stew is to view people as irredeemably divided by race, sex, sexual preferences, etc. into grievance groups, all suffering under various forms of oppression. Having evolved from this noxious mixture of implausible but influential academic theories, the ideology has succeeded in taking over many departments in the humanities and social sciences and is now making inroads into the sciences. By an extraordinary stealth quality, it has continued to move, largely undetected until now, into society at large, producing the “Woke” phenomenon.

How does it work at a university like Princeton, world renowned for its mathematics faculty? As a faculty member there, he describes that the administrators and faculty heads,

are constantly on the defensive, making great efforts to correct a racism that they themselves know does not exist, as a way of covering themselves against ever expanding accusations of racism. Paradoxically, these institutions are thus fighting the ghost of racism in their middle by abetting the racialist agenda of their accusers.

Yeah, so? Why does this matter to the rest of us? Klainerman understands better than most, having come from an equivalently totalitarian system. He says,

We are facing something we did not seek and by no means welcome, namely, the moral equivalent of war. This has been clear to the aggressors in the struggle from the beginning. They embraced it in a revolutionary spirit and as a quest for power. Those of us who want nothing more than to preserve traditional ideals of academic freedom, integrity, and civility have been reluctant—and therefore slow—to acknowledge it. Here is a call to action.

The tools we need:

Our weapons in this war of ideas are simply the belief in the old ideals of the American revolution: equality under the law, our freedoms enshrined in the Bill of Rights, the power of reason and reasoned debate, the scientific method.

The front line:

We academics and educators are facing an uphill battle to reverse the decay of our most badly compromised institutions, schools and universities.

The tactics:

We should utterly reject the centerpiece of our adversary’s ideology—the notion that our society is irredeemably racist.

The misguided targets, those who hold an incorrect assumption that the lack of equity (the same results, or results statistically aligned by percentage of groups populations) proves systemic racism are factually WRONG, namely those who argue behind:

any manifestation of disparate or unequal outcomes. Differences of any kind—whether in income, education, or life expectancy—are all defined as manifestations of systemic racial animus.”

Disparity does not justify the claim of discrimination. I cannot stress this point enough because this tactic has fooled almost all of the people who support this Woke movement almost all of the time. It is not true, It is a falsehood. It is almost always a lie. Disparity does not prove discrimination. Those who believe it does are factually WRONG. This is a logical fallacy.

To unite against this totalitarian and Marxist push under the banner of ‘social justice’ he says,

We should reject any attempts from the Right or the Left to politicize our fight, even as we should attempt to form a broad coalition of conservatives, traditional liberals, and civil libertarian progressives supported by our immigrant citizens.

And he concludes with a call to each and every one of us to be responsible citizens, unite, and rise to this deeply anti-American threat against secular western liberal democracy:

Above all, though, we have to stop being frightened, intimidated, and afraid to fight back. No matter how dangerous the present cancel culture is, it offers no match to the reign of terror of Nazism or of Soviet and Chinese Communism. If truly courageous dissidents like Solzhenitsyn and Sakharov could oppose the Soviet system, it behooves every one of us to take on this weaker but insidious form of oppression—before it becomes still worse. As a first step we can start by defending each other based on the principle that a woke attack on one is an attack on all.

An attack against one is an attack against all. That’s an understanding that needs to wake us all up.

August 10, 2020

Is censoring reality to support a BLM narrative causing real harm to real people in real life?

Filed under: Uncategorized — tildeb @ 10:25 am

From Heather McDonald, one of those pesky well educated people who thinks reality should have some say…

YouTube has already taken this video down for breach ‘community standards’, which is why there is a link here instead.

This is what happens when narrative trumps reality. We are fooled. And we are the easiest people to fool when we think we are being virtuous, acting as champions of the supposedly downtrodden. That’s why all of us need a reality check from time to time, to allow reality to arbitrate our beliefs about it, and to stop presuming a narrative can be believed first because it makes us feel good about ourselves and then have reality submit. That’s not how reality operates – it is, in fact, delusional thinking – but it is how faith-based thinking leads away from what’s true.

August 4, 2020

Social construct? Too perceptive not to post

Filed under: Uncategorized — tildeb @ 12:31 pm

August 3, 2020

What is today’s social justice movement and where does it come from?

Filed under: Uncategorized — tildeb @ 9:07 am

James Lindsay, who has also published several books about this topic with co-author Helen Pluckrose, explains what and where the Woke’s movement’s Critical Theory base is and comes from (yes, it really does have roots to the Baptist Social Gospel of the 1800s):

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