It's unfortunate you spend sleepless nights fretting over this forum. Get some Melatonin, you'll sleep better.
But, seriously, Mike. I only brought up the Simpson trial to speak about mathematical literacy. You made the racial connection and that was very unfortunate. Of course, you absolutely ignored my saying that the connection of race and innumeracy were a manufacture of the Dream Team and not God. You ignore anything I write which doesn't allow you to go for the throat.
I accept the Simpson verdict. Do I accept the jury only spent three hours deliberating nine months of testimony? I think it's preposterous, but I accept it as I accept you. I accepted the Rodney King verdict although I thought it was a miscarriage of justice (not on the order of the Simpson thing).
Do I think the jury made a conscious racist verdict? No, I don't as I don't think the Simi Valley made a conscious racist verdict.
My school serves the area King was beaten in and served by the now-infamous Foothill Division of the LAPD. We lose lots of kids to gangs, drive-bys, and assorted other crimes. I spoke with a CHP officer recently. She patrols that stretch of road where King was caught speeding. Her impression was the LAPD completely blew that one. I accept her view. She also told me an LA cop unholsters their gun at least once a day (compared to her average of once a week.) Can you imagine what kind of pressure that puts on a person? But, it's obvious the LAPD has a way to go, as do us math teachers, as do some university types.
BTW, Mike. It appears you had some real trouble with the Simi Valley verdict. How come it's OK for you to have trouble with that one and I can't have trouble with the Simpson verdict? Little bit of a double standard, eh, Mike? (I know you won't reply to that, but I thought I'd stick it to ya' since I like you so much.)
Connecting this to math education is not difficult. There is an overwhelming imperative of the Left not to ask anything from anyone. So issues like teenage pregnancy and personal responsibility and even real education standards become taboo and approaches which might seek to improve things are dismissed as "mean" and "unfair". Welfare is accepted as a lifelong entitlement, even though there is overwhelming belief that it destroys the people it seeks to help. Even the miscarriage of judgement concerning an ex-football star is applauded by some on the Left as justifiable "payback". Yes, America must accept this because of past real injustices. Well, the old adage holds, "Two wrongs don't make a right." Even the idea of "right" and "wrong" are dismissed by our friends as too judgemental and absolute. Does this mean the conservatives are 100% OK. No, they have exactly one thing going for them; they're not the Democrats.
On the issue germaine to this post, real content standards, supported by a rigorous exam schedule are dismissed mainly because these folk don't have the guts to ask anything of anyone. (They insist standardized testing isn't authentic, but they don't seem to give much of a damn when something they ostensibly care about is proposed. Witness the flood of posts about the Assessment Standards. NOBODY CARES!!).
What animates many of these people is primarily politics. They sit in their ivory towers explaining to us poor chalk stained wretches the errors of our ways and what evil sorts we are for using something that appears to work a little with kids we care about teaching. Mike, why not get a job in inner city Detroit, put your theories to work, write a book which cannot be replicated by anyone, then lead us to nirvana.
Instead, you'll probably stay at the university cooing at your liberal friends, living in some marvelously liberal environment where everything seems possible and there is no time for unpleasantness, where no one can tell the truth or stand to hear it spoken.
And what we need to hear is that all American kids need a structured system of schooling with special consideration (such as tutoring and special summer programs)given to those at the bottom of the economic ladder so they might meet the same standards as everyone else. Standards that can be met regardless of race and ethnicity.
But what do we get instead of reasonable people of all races coming together to find common ground and standards? We get the Left assuring us everything will be OK if we just teach differently. Can you imagine the absurdity of this position? If we only change our pedagogy all American schools will become Etons or Sidwell Friends.
And, unfortunately, the merit of much they encourage is dismissed by most because of their transparent politics. Reasonable reforms in math education are dismissed because the reformers have gone too far. The "leaders" have lost touch with the led. Almost every math teacher feels these folk are full of it and they're not to be trusted. I've never talked to someone who teaches in the inner city who doesn't believe my position is long overdue. Who's the only ones who disagrees? The ones in charge of the "Standards"!! Is this "Alice in Wonderland"? Standards? Who are they kidding?
So who becomes the teller of the truth now that liberalism has lost its common sense? Some reasonable Truman-esque liberals like Al Shanker, in my opinion, a great man. And some folks in New York who've seen it get bad enough, they'll start getting honest. But how's about our friends in the ivory towers? Does it ever get real bad there, fellas? I mean, hell, you've even got your own sports teams, playing for room and board. What could be nicer than a bivouac at the U of M or U of H?
But who else tells some truth? We're reduced to depending on a fellow like Farrakhan to tell the truth. Only he can preach common sense values of decency, virtue and hard work to save those of his people who need saving (along with a lot of non-Blacks). Louis Farrakhan whose other side is blatantly racist and despicable. Yet, he's the man telling ALL Americans what we need to hear. Very troubling.
But like I said we've the Left to thank for it. You can't blame Rush Limbaugh for this one, pals.
PS I apologize to the rest of you, but I felt I needed to make this post public. At some point in the near future after Mike and his buddies have completed their say, I'll fade away. I've found spending the same amount of time writing politicians with my concerns is a more useful means ofwasting my time. Ciao.