links for 2010-01-26

  • "And what's this about bar graphs? You're saying here that… kids are getting low test scores… because they're on free lunch? Yeah, that makes sense. We all know how increasingly unhealthy our nation's school lunches are, and it's hard to achieve without those basic building blocks.

    Just kidding! You're saying kids are on free lunch because their parents are too lazy to work! Why would they need to, if their kids are getting lunch for free? Of course! And said parents are also too lazy to care about their kids at all — far too lazy to come in for a parent-teacher conference."

  • Both the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards have generally been viewed as credible predictors of the Oscar winners, and surely, as the ceremony approaches, Mo’Nique’s role will come under more scrutiny and debate. Many believe that African-American women (and men for that matter) only receive awards for negative roles, believing a larger conspiracy of sorts exists within the studio system of Hollywood.

    But is this really true? Are negative roles the only way black actresses achieve the awards and recognition of the Academy and their peers?

  • In Massillon, Ohio, south of Cleveland, Jackson High School started its Chinese program in the fall of 2007 with 20 students and now has 80, said Parthena Draggett, who directs Jackson’s world languages department.
    “We were able to get a free Chinese teacher,” she said. “I’d like to start a Spanish program for elementary children, but we can’t get a free Spanish teacher.”
    (Jackson’s Chinese teacher is not free; the Chinese government pays part of his compensation, with the district paying the rest.)
  • "[T]hat is where Peta fails. They don’t care when their actions reinforce oppressive systems, they don’t care when their actions cause those of us who don’t agree with those oppressive systems to turn away from campaigns, or even caring about animals. Peta doesn’t view it as pragmatic to care."
  • "There is a huge chasm between white women who frame their experience in terms of feeling pressure to live up to a harsh set of standards versus women who live on the margins yet are still expected to adhere to the same standards that do not even recognize their existence. The former often focuses on specific traits such as blondness, thinness without much critical examination, with the expectation that intersectionality should have no bearing on the discourse."