THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2023
The way we may look to others: On Monday, we noted a survey from which our tribe might learn a political lesson.
Uh-oh! Here's the question respondents were asked:
"Do you support or oppose allowing public school teachers to provide classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity to children in elementary school (grades 1 to 5)?"
Personally, we wouldn't answer a survey question that vague. You'd have to show us the instruction in question. Even then, we might not be totally sure what we thought.
For better or worse, most respondents went ahead and responded to that question. And uh-oh! By a large margin (70 to 27 percent), respondents said that they oppose offering such instruction to kids in grades 1-5.
Down in Florida, Ron DeSantis and the Republican legislature have only forbidden such instruction in kindergarten through grade 3. Presumably, opposition to such instruction would have been even larger if the survey question has restricted itself to that earlier range of years.
We'll take a guess! We'll guess that many members of our tribe might be surprised to see that so many people seem to agree with DeSantis on that particular matter. So it may go when a group of people—in this case, those of us in our own blue tribe—spend an increasing amount of time speaking to pretty much no one but themselves.
If that NYT/Siena survey was reasonably accurate, a lot of people seem to agree with DeSantis on that particular measure. Our blue tribe may seem to be out of touch when we start calling people names with respect to such proposals.
In today's New York Times, another news report might help us contemplate the way we may (sometimes) look to others. Headline included, the news report starts like this:
Why New York City Is Buying Bus Tickets for Migrants Headed to Canada
New York officials, who once condemned Texas leaders for busing migrants from the southern border, calling the treatment inhumane, are buying bus tickets for newcomers who want to go north and seek asylum in Canada.
Mayor Eric Adams had originally welcomed the migrants, but he has since begun echoing the points of southern leaders, saying the city was buckling from the strain of absorbing more than 42,000 people in need.
Now, city officials are assisting the relocation of a growing number of migrants traveling to New York’s northern border, where crossings are surging.
The arrival of the migrants has set off concern among officials in Canada, which has traditionally been welcoming to immigrants but is trying to discourage illegal crossings.
Oof! Here within our tribe, we "once condemned Texas leaders" for busing migrants north. We called them inhumane.
Now, Mayor Adams and other Gotham officials are doing the same thing, with Canada as the new destination of choice.
Gotham was being overwhelmed by the influx of all those migrants. We find that perfectly understandable—but then, we also found it understandable when officials in Texas said that they were being overwhelmed by this tragic situation.
We condemned the Others, but now we've flipped! Are you able to see the way this sort of thing might make us look to others?
Back in the day, those Texas officials had what seemed like an obvious point. We trashed them and called them some of our favorite names.
Now we're doing the same thing ourselves! Can something be learned from this tragic tale, with so much real suffering involved?
"By a large margin (70 to 27 percent), respondents said that they oppose offering such instruction to kids in grades 1-5."
Makes sense, dear Bob. Last we checked, 27% is exactly the proportion of self-identified liberals.
...y'know, those good-decent brain-dead fellas (like yourself) who see wimmin trapped in men's bodies...
Russia needs immigrants.Delete
Nobody has “flipped” because what Adams is doing is not the same as what Abbott and DeSantis did. Somerby is being dishonest when he equates them. For example, was any migrant seeking asylum in Canada when they went to Nantucket or Washington DC (VP Harris’s home)? Would anyone willingly go to a snowy state without a coat? Somerby’s claim is ridiculous.ReplyDelete
Anonymouse 4:19pm, this is priceless.Delete
Emigrate to Russia.Delete
Go to hell.Delete
6:13: That’s what 5:42 said. Yep.Delete
Hell doesn’t need me. Russia needs Cecelia.Delete
Anonymouse 9:10pm, would that I could have set Russia straight from their socialist uprising, that was defended by American leftists, to when Democrats were laughing at Romney for considering Russia a threat.Delete
mh, no, I said it. He thought he’d just insinuate that I’m a traitor.Delete
You aren’t a traitor, you’re a moron. The Russian revolution was Marxist communist, not socialist, you ignorant piece of shit.Delete
Anonymouse 10:44pm, the only people who deny that the USSR was socialist, are stupid *American socialists.Delete
If socialism means that workers control production, the USSR was not socialist.Delete
"Anonymouse 10:44pm, the only people who deny that the USSR was socialist, are stupid *American socialists."Delete
And historians, and economists, and Russians. In fact, anyone who isn't a moronic right winger.
Somerby’s poll question responses illustrate why parents should not vote on specifics of school curriculum. And yes, question wording does matter.ReplyDelete
What experts could do for humanity if damn parents didn’t have a say in it.Delete
“Experts”…sometimes called “teachers”. I don’t know why conservatives don’t just push to disband public schools, so no child will ever be exposed to anything their parents don’t want them to hear. Also, parents aren’t by and large typically well-trained experts in science and mathematics. So go figure.Delete
mh, you seem to have bought into the myth that schools are more open-minded than parents. That's because the schools have so much control that there's seldom a controversy about what the schools choose to omit. (Or what they choose to censor, if one wants a harsher word.)Delete
Let's take race. The schools don't teach that the leading conservative intellectual is a black man. They don't assign readings from this brilliant intellectual. They don't teach the truth about how crime rates differ by race. They don't teach about the slaughter of black murder victims by other blacks.
Take economic. They mention the most fundamental law, namely supply and demand, but do they show how it applies to current ordinary situations. In particular, rent controls reduce the number of available rental units and minimum wage laws reduce the number of low-paid jobs.
Teachers don’t use classrooms as their personal soapboxes. That’s a good thing. They teach consensus knowledge in the subjects they are hired to teach, giving students a sound foundation in what they will need to know in later grades and college, should they wish to go further. Sociology is a college subject, as is economics.Delete
Astonishing that a black man would be a conservative thought leader. Let me guess: Thomas Sowell? The same dude whose balanced mind came forth in 2020 with the prediction that a Biden presidency would usher in the equivalence of the fall of the Roman Empire? LMAO. He is right up there with Dinesh D'Souza. It is amazing what conservatives, in their sad requirement to be triggered 24/7 define as thought leaders.They gave Arthur Laffer a medal of honor a couple of years ago for his "contribution" to economic thought. False idols indeed. A few months back, that towering example of manhood, Tucker Carlsen, offered up his disparaging commentary about the decline of the American male. I take it that DIC took all this to heart and is regularly sunbathing his testicles. Or is there a line not to be crossed by even the most gullible of rubes?Delete
The leading conservative intellectual is not black. He’s Jewish, a retired actuary.Delete
Anonymouse 7:32pm, based on some information presented in the blog, you should consider that teaching elementary kids about gender and sexual orientation is not considered to be a foray into “consensus knowledge”.Delete
Unamused, I don’t think it’s Thomas Sowell who needs to consider who and what triumphed over the Roman Empire.Delete
mh, but those parents of elementary kids, who you say are not trained in math and science, do understand that gender theory is not math and is questionable science.Delete
“gender theory” sounds like right wing vocab. Kids learn gender between ages 3-5. Do you consider developmental psychology questionable too?Delete
“Around age two: Children become conscious of the physical difference between boys and girls. Before their third birthday: Most children can easily label themselves as either a boy or girl. By age four: Most children have a stable sense of their gender identity.”
DeSantis’s legislation prohibits teachers from helping kids during the period when it is most relevant, early childhood. By the terms of the law, schools should do away with all that pink and blue color coding that teaches kids about gender.
Along similar lines, there are Republicans and there are Democrats, but there is an even larger group of people who do not identify with either political party, calling themselves Independents. Sometimes they vote Republican, but sometimes they vote Democrat. If the two main political parties were to ignore such people instead of trying to attract them, they would lost elections.
Given that even the least flexible conservative understands that Independent votes are important, recognizing that some people do not have a strong political identity, why can they not also understand that some people have a more fluid gender identity, attracted to elements of both genders (or maybe none, preferring androgyny)? And why cannot such people understand that a person's identity as one sex or the other might change across a lifespan?
I think the key word is "flexible" and I suspect that conservatives are conservative because flexibility is hard for them, especially when it leads to change. Inflexibility generally entails resistance to change. And I have no problem with conservatives deciding to resist change in their own lives. I object when they try to impose their own preferences on other people, especially when it hurts other people and is done for no good reason. Adopting a fluid or different gender identity is surely a victimless crime. Our society has made progress getting rid of other victimless crimes, but this "last stand" being made by Republicans as a political stunt, attacking a group of people who hurt no one, is evil.
Cecelia, regarding 9:54: please put away the box wine for the night. Has anyone put forward an example of a first grader being schooled in gender identity or is this just another instance of a right wing fetish? A few months back an acquaintance informed me that at the world renowned Boston Children's Hospital surgeons were performing sex change operations on fetuses in utero. It takes an astonishing amount of willful ignorance to buy what right wing outlets sell to their high market share audiences, some of whom ultimately threatened doctors at that facility, with pizza- gate like conviction. So any talk of gender identity scholastics for 5-7 year olds is bullshit plain and simple until.proven otherwise. That is not to say that inappropriate sexualizing and flat out abuse of children does not occur, only that it is well documented in the Roman Catholic Church, an organization with a long history of predation (and hiding of such) that no thoughtful adult, conservative or otherwise, would ever consider be a member of. But no problems with Catholic schools, oh no.Delete
Anonymouse 10:40pm, it is not the job of teachers to assist pre-kindergarteners in discovering their gender identity,Delete
You’re a complete kook.
Unamused, look at Anonymouse 10:40pm idea as to the role of teachers in facilitating their pre-kindergarten age students in their arrival at gender identity,Delete
As usual, you folks can walk right past this sort of rhetoric as you declare it to be conservative fever dreams.
Similarly, Boston Children Hospital completely scrubbed their site after they fell under scrutiny over a video saying that children are aware of gender from the womb and from a video of a physician hailing the monetary potential of gender affirming care.
I’m not surprised that you think it’s a neat trick to put every critic into the same box with people who make outrageous claims, but no halfway intelligent person buys it.
It is no small leap of faith for you to assume that kindergartners are being schooled in sexuality from a comment made at 10:40. Right wing outlets commonly make up shit that many buy because they are predisposed via their innate prejudices to fall for that crap. That you would like to turn that observation into some neat trick on my part is cute. My acquaintance wasn't told that some doctor said trans people were born that way, nor that there was a space to fill/market in providing surgery to them. You can try to discredit those statements to your heart's content if that makes you happy. They have no bearing on my point stated above.Delete
Children are schooled in gender identity from the moment they are put into pink vs blue onesies. They are given certain toys, their rooms are decorated to match their gender, they are even handled differently based on gender. Their teachers continue that indoctrination. I am fine with a law that prevents that, except that isn't what this law intends. But the idea that teachers do not already teach gender is ridiculous. The right just wants gender taught the way they dictate, not based on the needs of children.Delete
8:53 I said "schooled in sexuality". You can give a few examples of your kindergarten teacher indoctrinating you I am sure. They may be complicit on some level in accepting societal norms but this is not what we are talking about here as you well know.Delete
Pamela Paul, wife of David Brooks, is campaigning for DeSantis, pretending liberals liberals can learn from him, just like Somerby has done. But we aren’t Donald Trump. We won’t read something just because she puts our name in it.ReplyDelete
Her son, well~schooled as he was by this conservative pair of parents, left this country to join the Israeli army. Well played. Could be training his sight on a Palestinian or two at this moment.Delete
How many wives does David Brooks have?Delete
You're correct, I should not have written "pairs of parents". Well played.Delete
An egg cell doesn’t know its gender, but a sperm cell does.Delete
Sperm cells are not conscious. Children are.Delete
Sperm cells are alive. Human sperm cells are human life.Delete
Here's a good-decent person that desperately needs help from your tribe, dear Bob,:
"A killer who transitioned from male to female while in prison has demanded guards hold her hand while outside her cell because she identifies as an infant.
Sophie Eastwood, 36, was named Daniel when she was jailed for life in 2004 after using shoelaces as a garotte to strangle her cellmate."
She’s obviously aiming for a psych eval.Delete
She should emigrate to Russia.Delete
“We condemned the Others, but now we've flipped!”ReplyDelete
Somerby needs to read more liberal blogs. There is no love for Adams, because he has turned out to be less than progressive in so many ways. Liberals aren’t suddenly supporting his policies.
But it sure makes a nice narrative for Somerby.
mh, so you agree with Somerby as the mayor’s hypocrisy.Delete
Oh, why can’t you just say that Bob is right about this?
Because “liberals aren’t suddenly supporting his policies”. Why are you so desperate to have someone agree with Somerby? That’s just weird.Delete
This comment has been removed by the author.Delete
Anonymouse 10:35pm, I’m not. I’m quoting an mh post back to him.Delete
I don't think you know what the word "quote" means.Delete
Is the mayor doing "the same thing?" doesn't sound like it. One key phrase would be "want to." Is the mayor of New York sticking them on buses not understanding what is going on? Bob once again plays his readers as rubes.ReplyDelete
"Back in the day, those Texas officials had what seemed like an obvious point. We trashed them and called them some of our favorite names."ReplyDelete
We trashed them because they were blaming Biden for an influx that originated elsewhere due to conditions in other countries over which Biden had no control.
We trashed them because their solutions involved putting children into cages, separating them from parents without keeping proper records so that families could be reunified later.
We trashed them because they allowed armed vigilantes to harrass and mistreat people at the border. And we trashed them for their unworkable policies that showed no regard for the human beings in desperate circumstances seeking asylum.
Of course the migrants at the border are a serious problem. Serious people find reasonable solutions, instead of mistreating the ones who arrive so that the word will spread and deter more from coming (Trump's approach), which was not possible given the dire circumstances in the places the migrants had left.
But answer this -- why is it that California was able to deal with its border problem competently and Texas could not? And how do stunts like shipping migrants to the homes of politicians solve anything, especially for the migrants? And why didn't Trump help Abbott and the other governors when he had the chance?
Somerby's simplistic view of the immigrant situation is a bit late. He said nothing when children were being mistreated at the border, not even when 14 year old girls were being mistreated. Now, when it is to his political advantage, Somerby is suddenly concerned about immigrants, because now it is a stick to beat McAdams with, to chastise New York. Canada is underpopulated, and if the migrants want to go there, that seems like a win-win, not an act of hypocrisy. Whereas the Republican governors used their buses to harrass Democrats at the expense of migrants who were unprepared and underinformed when they were shipped off like so many steers in cattle cars.