A Killing on the F Train
For The New York Times, FAIR Advisor John McWhorter writes about the recent death of Jordan Neely in a New York City subway car.
Another thing that worries me about having such unstable and potentially dangerous men on the subway is that in my experience they are disproportionately Black, like Neely was. I do not see this as evidence of something pathological about Black men; I am very well aware that this racial breakdown can be traced to inequities both historical and current. But one can know this and yet worry that one’s kids, too young to understand what is called societal racism, will start making simplistic generalizations. And not only one’s children: I fear that the current situation on the subways may foster racial bigotry more broadly.
As to the pairs of cops now so common in the subways, I have never seen them do a thing about these men. This includes an instance when I explicitly asked a couple of police officers to intervene when a man was trawling the cars threatening to beat up one person after another, each potential victim looking up helplessly, wondering whether he meant it. It was especially hard to watch when he got to a Latina mother with two small kids.
What is missing from the transgender bathroom debate
For FAIR’s Substack, Leigh Ann O’Neill, FAIR’s Managing Director of Legal Advocacy, writes about the deterioration of sex-based modesty and privacy in America, and how we can more thoughtfully address these contentious issues.
The basis for the Massachusetts law was likely aimed at keeping women, who were newly entering the public workplace, from disturbing men in the spaces they had previously enjoyed without the interruption of women—who, at the time, were often seen as “dramatic” or even “hysterical.” Regardless of the genesis of sex-segregated bathrooms, it is clear that Americans have grown up, for several generations now, in a society where the norm is that you go to the bathroom and change in locker rooms with humans who share your same anatomy. This is why I find it utterly confounding that concerns over sex-integration of bathrooms and locker rooms are often brushed off and even ridiculed by prominent leaders and thinkers as frivolous.
In 2020, the Supreme Court handed down its decision in Bostock v. Clayton County, which held that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act protects employees from being discriminated against not only on the basis of their sex, but on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity as well. Despite the Court’s explicit statement, “we do not purport to address bathrooms, locker rooms, or anything else of the kind,” the Bostock decision has served as the justification for allowing, and in some cases even requiring, Federally-funded entities such as schools to allow individuals to use the bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identity.
The Free Speech Case for Section 230
For Persuasion, Aaron Terr writes about why he believes Congress mustn’t revoke the internet’s secret weapon.
In the last 25 years, the internet has democratized the exchange of ideas on an unprecedented scale. Section 230 was—and remains—essential to that democratization. It has fostered the creation and growth of a wide variety of online communities and platforms for people to speak their minds and trade ideas, information, and creative content. Without it, these communities would be rarer and less freewheeling, with controversial and unpopular speech facing the greatest risk of suppression. Big Tech’s competitors and other websites—those less able to afford litigation and content-moderation costs—would suffer most. If there’s any doubt about this, pay attention to which market participants are inviting or advocating Section 230 reform. Spoiler alert: It’s not the upstarts and new entrants.
Is Justice Still Blind in Canada?
For The Free Press, Rupa Subramanya writes about how Canadian judges are increasingly factoring race into sentencing.
It seems odd that liberals, who spent decades trying to deracialize society, are now re-racializing it.
Jonathan Simon, a University of California–Berkeley law professor, explained that, when it comes to criminal justice reform, it’s hard to sidestep race.
“The criminal-legal system is the equivalent of a toxic-waste disaster with over decades of institutional focus on communities of color,” Simon said. The public, Smith added, tends to view “crime” and “blackness” as one and the same. “There’s overwhelming evidence from psychologists that blackness and crime are fused in a cognitive way,” he said.
It was necessary to acknowledge that “the criminal-legal system has been jacked up on racism,” so society—in Canada or the United States—can start down the long path of decarceration, Simon said. That was the point of IRCAs, its defenders explained.
Speak of the Devil
For The Ethical Educator, Dissident Teacher writes about teaching in an atmosphere of ideological conformity.
So, how do you cope in a post-objective reality school?
I’d be remiss and hypocritical if I didn’t point out that it’s my belief that a teacher does not have the right to prioritize her own ideology over that of the parents who send their kids in, the taxpayers footing the bill for the schooling, or the children who sit before her. So, when a teacher is faced with a student who claims that police should be defunded, trans people are undergoing genocide, that whites owe reparations, that children of color need to recognize that systemic racism will drive their lives and limit their success, that all student debt should be forgiven, that minors can consent, etc., what can a teacher do?
Simple: question them.
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