Last week The Ryersonian reported on an incident that involved two first-year journalism students who were turned away from an event organized by Racialized Students’ Collective because they are white. Since then there has been a lot of commentary on the piece and a lot of debate — a lot of the criticism is valid.
There are two sides to the story: 1) the media has a right to attend public events and report on matters that are in the public interest. The student media needs to cover initiatives that are happening on campus so that we draw attention to them and in turn create awareness (The Ryersonian reported that one student said he was covering the meeting for an assignment). 2) Marginalized groups have a right to claim spaces in the public realm where they can share stories about the discrimination they have faced without judgment and intrusion from anyone else.
I am a person of colour and a journalist and so there are two conflicting voices inside my head. But in this case one voice, that of a person of colour, is louder and my conscience does not allow me to be impartial. I have to take a side.
And if you were not a person of colour, you would immediately be labeled a racist and never be allowed to post at HuffPo, or anywhere else for that matter, again.
But Aeman Ansari is allowed to be a proponent of “separate but equal” accommodations, despite the disgusting nature of the idea.
And by “safe spaces”, she means places where no one will call her preferred shade of racists out on their behavior.
A faction of Republicans in the House of Representatives wants to stop poor people from buying junk food with food stamps.
Under proposed new legislation, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program’s 45 million enrollees would only be able to use their benefits for lean meat, poultry and food products approved under a separate federal nutrition program that supports nutrition for pregnant women, infants and children. Energy drinks would be out; Enfamil in.
“Over the years, the nutrition portion of food stamps has become obsolete,” Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C.), who authored the legislation, said in a statement. “Today, beneficiaries can use taxpayer dollars to purchase nearly anything in the grocery store. Meanwhile, families barely living over the poverty threshold are pinching pennies and clipping coupons to make ends meet.”
Link goes to the HuffPo, where they are “outraged!!!” that someone would try to limit the kind of freebies taxpayer monies pay for.
So good, in fact, that I’m going to have to agree with him.
We need to think about every move in the direction of Mars with one priority above all others: accumulation of technology and infrastructure that will create the conditions to allow permanent human habitation. A trip to Mars in the style of the Apollo Moon landings is not a step in the direction of permanent habitation. Rather it would be a huge waste of money that could have been spent laying the groundwork for permanent habitation.
So what do we need to do? Develop robots that can go to Mars ahead of us, work for many years unassisted, and build up infrastructure to support humans. Here’s the real kicker: we should not send our first humans to Mars until we’ve accumulated enough robots on Mars to justify a trip by robot repair techs and heavy equipment maintenance specialists. Yes, mechanics and repair techs should be the first humans to visit Mars.
Let the machines that aren’t so environmentally needy go first and set us up some living spaces and then go there when they need service or conditions are more likely for success.
Over at NRO, George Will asks about the current push to suppress, or as he calls it, a “crackdown”, on the practice of so-called “free range parenting”.
As an answer, I suspect that it is because these “helicopter parents” know that their children will not be able to compete with the “free-range” children and seek to even the odds using the power of the state.
The Beta parents are raising Beta children, and they know it. Alpha parents are raising Alpha children and they don’t know it. They just think they’re raising children.
The Beta children will have a tough acclimation to life outside of the Beta-bubble placed around them by mommy and daddy and will likely have a psychological collapse if they ever set foot in the real world. Or outside of a modern university.