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Berkeley's Unbearable Whiteness of Science
American Thinker ^ | January 04, 2010 | Thomas Lifson

Posted on 01/03/2010 10:27:06 PM PST by neverdem

The racial madness that has left-wing America in its thrall finds its apogee in the Berkeley, California public schools. Berkeley High School is now poised to eliminate science laboratory classes because "science labs were largely classes for white students." Eric Klein writes in The Easy Bay Express:

The proposal to put the science-lab cuts on the table was approved recently by Berkeley High's School Governance Council, a body of teachers, parents, and students who oversee a plan to change the structure of the high school to address Berkeley's dismal racial achievement gap, where white students are doing far better than the state average while black and Latino students are doing worse.

Five science teachers will lose their jobs if the proposal is adopted when the School Board meets next week:
It will come before the Berkeley School Board as an information item at its January 13 meeting. Generally, such agenda items are passed without debate, but if the school board chooses to play a more direct role in the High School Redesign, it could bring the item back as an action item at a future meeting.

All Berkeley High students, whatever their race, would lose the opportunity to get a solid grounding in science, opening up the door to achievement in higher education and life via scientific study. Notes Klein:
Mardi Sicular-Mertens, the senior member of Berkeley High School's science department ... who has taught science at BHS for 24 years, said the possible cuts will impact her black students as well. She says there are twelve African-American males in her AP classes and that her four environmental science classes are 17.5 percent African American and 13.9 percent Latino. "As teachers, we are greatly saddened at the thought of losing the opportunity to help all of our students master the skills they need to find satisfaction and success in their education," she told the board.

So in order to "help" black and Latino students, the idea is to eliminate the opportunity for said students to make something of themselves through science. Those students who excel will be disfavored, while those who do not will be given more resources. The problem is that science training is one of the elements of educataion least susceptible to the multicultural indoctrination that pervades education in Berekeley and far too many other places. Replacing science with something dreamed up by the education-school-trained "experts" is unlikely to bring any improvement, even for its purported beneficiaries.

The sheer racism of identifying science as something primarily for whites seems not to penetrate the addled minds of those who fancy themselves advocates for black and Latino students. The absence of any consideration of Asian students is also striking. The city of Berkeley has more Asian households (12,641) than black households (10,874) or Latino households (8,466).  

Consider that the university which makes its home in Berkeley and dominates both local employment and community's character has a majority undergraduate population of Asian students, thanks to the fact that California voters approved a state law eliminating racial preferences in state institutions. The science majors at the University of California, Berkeley overwhelmingly comprise Asian students. U.C. Berkeley also boasts 21 faculty members who have won Nobel Prizes, primarily in the sciences. The list of laureates includes two Asians and one Latino, all three science winners.

Aside from the repulsive racism of this move, the broader issue to be considered is whether society is better-served by cutting down the achievers and investing in the stragglers -- or whether everyone benefits from the achievements of those who apply themselves enough to excel. I have no hesitation in saying that I am in the latter camp. How does it benefit anyone to have an America made up of mediocre minds?

As a matter of simple justice, it makes no sense to favor those who do not adapt to the norms and expectations of schooling and persist in behaviors that lead to failure. Berkeley High's worse-than-average performance among black and Latino students almost certainly has something to do with the ideology informing its approach to racial problems. Teaching people that they are victims does nothing to encourage excellence. But rather than reconsider its failing efforts, Berkeley High is doubling the dosage of a medicine that isn't working, and which carries bad side effects.

If the Berkeley public schools go ahead with this plan, they deserve condemnation and ridicule on a national scale.

Hat tip: Larry

Thomas Lifson is editor and publisher of American Thinker.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: berkeley; lifson; science; thomaslifson
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1 posted on 01/03/2010 10:27:06 PM PST by neverdem
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To: neverdem

Bezerk-ley


2 posted on 01/03/2010 10:32:10 PM PST by ArmyTeach
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To: neverdem

The RACISTS are at it again! i.e.....the DEMONCRATS/COMMIES of schools.


3 posted on 01/03/2010 10:32:21 PM PST by goodnesswins (Become a Precinct Committee Person/Officer....in the GOP...or do NOT complain.)
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To: neverdem

Oh, I sense an opportunity for private schools in Berkley. This is craziness in spades: since one group isn’t doing well academically we will punish those who succeed.

Reminds me of Obama’s governing, doesn’t it you?


4 posted on 01/03/2010 10:35:14 PM PST by SatinDoll (NO Foreign Nationals as our President!!)
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This is the future: all must be reduced to the lowest denominator. Talent, hard work and productivity must be punished. God Help us!


5 posted on 01/03/2010 10:38:01 PM PST by Godwin1
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To: neverdem

This is an act of blatant racism against whites.


6 posted on 01/03/2010 10:42:09 PM PST by TheThinker ( Reverend Wright obviously cheered on 9/11. Did Obama?)
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To: neverdem

This will help minority students at BSHS do better on state mandated competency exams that include science.

Where’s the left now? They get all over Kansas for their science preferences but this is OK?


7 posted on 01/03/2010 10:44:09 PM PST by ActrFshr
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To: neverdem

Will they get rid of detention because it is largely for blacks?


8 posted on 01/03/2010 10:44:50 PM PST by Minipax
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To: neverdem

How progressive!


9 posted on 01/03/2010 10:46:09 PM PST by spodefly (I have posted nothing but BTTT over 1000 times!!!)
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To: neverdem
Unfortunately.. 97% of black voters voted for Barry Half-White..
3% of them are Smart..
10 posted on 01/03/2010 10:46:33 PM PST by hosepipe (This propaganda has been edited to include some fully orbed hyperbole....)
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To: neverdem

Berkeley & science. Gasp! How un-PC!


11 posted on 01/03/2010 10:47:03 PM PST by onedoug
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To: SatinDoll
Oh, I sense an opportunity for private schools in Berkley. This is craziness in spades: since one group isn’t doing well academically we will punish those who succeed.

Reminds me of Obama’s governing, doesn’t it you?

It's just another variant of reverse discrimination. These chickens will come home to roost too when they lose the independents who lean to the rats.

12 posted on 01/03/2010 10:47:45 PM PST by neverdem (Xin loi minh oi)
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To: neverdem
If the Berkeley public schools go ahead with this plan, they deserve condemnation and ridicule on a national scale.

Actually, they deserve condemnation and ridicule on a national scale, regardless of outcome of the decision.

13 posted on 01/03/2010 10:52:57 PM PST by Michael.SF. (At least Hitler got the Olympics for Germany)
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To: neverdem

Exhibit No. 101 - Liberalism IS A MENTAL DISEASE - as so elegantly diagnosed by Dr. Savage!


14 posted on 01/03/2010 10:54:24 PM PST by J Edgar
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School Board members need to read the “Bell Curve.” Some problems can’t be fixed.


15 posted on 01/03/2010 10:58:52 PM PST by Godwin1
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To: Godwin1

Socialism punishes success, as it was intended to.


16 posted on 01/03/2010 11:00:08 PM PST by darkangel82 (I don't have a superiority complex, I'm just better than you.)
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To: neverdem

...and the trees are all kept equal, by hatchet, axe, and saw.


17 posted on 01/03/2010 11:12:38 PM PST by Boucheau
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To: SatinDoll

“Oh, I sense an opportunity for private schools in Berkley.”

In a regular/normal town, yes, but Berkeley, I doubt it. Do you remember there was a thread on here not too long ago about a mural at BHS, pure commie stuff. Anyone who opposes this enlightened, progressive movement would have long since vacated that town. I wouldn’t even stay there with my kids in private school. How they expect their kids to be accepted into any decent college without science classes is well beyond me.


18 posted on 01/03/2010 11:13:47 PM PST by EDINVA
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To: neverdem
My wife is a high school teacher. The advanced studies program at her school was all white and asian. It was terminated because.....
I'll bet you can't guess :)
19 posted on 01/03/2010 11:17:20 PM PST by ComputerGuy (Thirty years in the field, and I never met a single black programmer)
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To: neverdem

Get rid of the dismal comparison between black and white in science classes by getting rid of science classes.

Huh. Makes a lot of sense. Not.


20 posted on 01/03/2010 11:25:42 PM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America (per bible: am in the world but not of it))
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To: EDINVA

A saner school would see if focusing tutoring on the at-risk students would improve matters.


21 posted on 01/03/2010 11:27:06 PM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America (per bible: am in the world but not of it))
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To: TheThinker

“This is an act of blatant racism against whites.”

No one is listening. It can’t happen here. Whites can never be victims of racism as they are the very definition of racist—it’s in their genes, don’t ya know.

Besides, they have all the money, so they have to be vilified before we can steal from them willy-nilly.

People are dumb sheep, save just a few. Until the pain gets unbearable, you can count on pretty much nothing happening, principle and justice be damned.

They should be rioting over this as they are attempting to STEAL the minds of humans with white skin, but that’s just my opinion—I am known as an extremist lately.

I mean, why would we fight for the edification of young humans with white skin, right? How silly!


22 posted on 01/03/2010 11:29:21 PM PST by Boucheau
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To: EDINVA; SatinDoll
In a regular/normal town, yes, but Berkeley, I doubt it.

It could be possible. UC Berkeley has a very strong science and engineering departments that receive lots of research funding. You'll get some liberals in those academic fields, but not nearly as many or to the same extent as the more useless fields (classic soviet literature, world studies, etc).
23 posted on 01/03/2010 11:30:40 PM PST by proud_yank (Socialism - An Answer In Search Of A Question For Over 100 Years)
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To: proud_yank

has a = has

I was travelling all day and my grammur skillses are lakking.


24 posted on 01/03/2010 11:31:52 PM PST by proud_yank (Socialism - An Answer In Search Of A Question For Over 100 Years)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

The school (and its students) seem to be a product of its local political environment and there isn’t any sanity there as you and I understand it. I’m all for having liberal ghettos. Keep them in one place. If they want all of their kids to fail, rather than a few, who am I to question their judgments? It’s egalitarian, you know! So very progressive.


25 posted on 01/03/2010 11:33:42 PM PST by EDINVA
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To: proud_yank

Science tends to be non political except in the voodoo sciences like today’s climatology. So why, normally, should a liberal care for science.


26 posted on 01/03/2010 11:36:09 PM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America (per bible: am in the world but not of it))
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To: proud_yank

You wanna bet the non-liberal science profs at UC Berkeley don’t LIVE in Berkeley, much less send their kids to public school there?

I absolutely believe science is critical to all students to learn, but I wouldn’t say it’s ‘useles’ to pursue studies in classic soviet literature, world studies, etc. We still need to have people who study the arts and humanities.


27 posted on 01/03/2010 11:41:13 PM PST by EDINVA
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To: neverdem

Social engineering. The Leftists are smarter than everyone else. They can fix all of our problems, even our bad thoughts, if we will just give them enough power.

They don’t need science, anyway. Whatever the Leftists declare about nature, that’s the way it is. Nature has to follow the orders of the Left. If you want to know whether gravity still applies today like it did yesterday, you need to consult with Big Brother.


28 posted on 01/03/2010 11:50:02 PM PST by Rocky (Obama's ego: The "I's" have it.)
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To: neverdem

Why don’t they just lock the kids in cages for 8 hours a day. Seems like it’s their goal, perhaps they should just announce it and get it over with.


29 posted on 01/03/2010 11:54:07 PM PST by Republic of Texas (Socialism Always Fails)
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To: HiTech RedNeck
So why, normally, should a liberal care for science.

Why, when it's so Eurocentric, so linear and all? How many on any given school board in the country, let alone Berkeley, have a Bachelor of Science degree?

Todays topic: Why Leroy can't solve acid-reduction equations.

30 posted on 01/04/2010 12:04:39 AM PST by ARepublicanForAllReasons (Give 'em hell, Sarah!)
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To: neverdem

Good. Maybe this will open some eyes in Crazytown and they’ll stop pulling the D lever like little drones.


31 posted on 01/04/2010 12:17:22 AM PST by Rastus
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To: neverdem

Why would you want to teach children critical thinking skills and the scientific method? They might actually USE those skills and realize the left is full of shit, based of bad science, bad sociology, and bad morals.

The money saved will no doubt be used to drill students in pseudo-scientific earth appreciation classes where children are told everything they do is evil and that we’re all doomed.


32 posted on 01/04/2010 12:24:39 AM PST by Hexenhammer ( The Spirit of '76!)
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To: HiTech RedNeck
Science tends to be non political except in the voodoo sciences like today’s climatology. So why, normally, should a liberal care for science.

People in scientific fields still have their views and tend to express them, many of my profs did, though they're usually not going to be as radical as profs in depts such as humanities. My point was that the science/technical side of UC Berkeley is esteemed and well-recognized, and they may offer opposition to what is being proposed in Berkeley schools.
33 posted on 01/04/2010 12:31:20 AM PST by proud_yank (Socialism - An Answer In Search Of A Question For Over 100 Years)
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To: Boucheau

at least that was a noble law 8-)


34 posted on 01/04/2010 12:32:57 AM PST by mitch5501 (Yeah,but is it shatterproof?)
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To: John-Irish; Jersey Republican Biker Chick

Too stupid to live ping!


35 posted on 01/04/2010 12:48:05 AM PST by Shimmer1 (illegitimi non carborundum)
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To: EDINVA
You wanna bet the non-liberal science profs at UC Berkeley don’t LIVE in Berkeley, much less send their kids to public school there?

Some yes, some no. Often times scientific & technical depts at a university will work with both public and private junior and senior high schools in the community to help develop students who show an interest and/or excel in those areas and to help schools develop a cirriculum, advisory boards and summer camps/classes. I did some of that when I was in school.

My point was that eliminating this from schools there may get some strong opposition from the university.

I absolutely believe science is critical to all students to learn, but I wouldn’t say it’s ‘useles’ to pursue studies in classic soviet literature, world studies, etc. We still need to have people who study the arts and humanities.

My attempt to be witty was pretty lame, and I shouldn't have written that. You're right & I agree that it is important to have expertise in those areas, and I do think people in scientific/technical fields should be well-rounded.
36 posted on 01/04/2010 12:52:34 AM PST by proud_yank (Socialism - An Answer In Search Of A Question For Over 100 Years)
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To: Rocky

Very well put. The laws of supply and demand clearly mean we demand it and the govt supplies it. With someone else’s money, of course.


37 posted on 01/04/2010 12:54:44 AM PST by proud_yank (Socialism - An Answer In Search Of A Question For Over 100 Years)
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To: neverdem

Great.
Turn Berkely into a Rap Music studio.


38 posted on 01/04/2010 1:17:50 AM PST by Bon mots
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To: neverdem

How ironic that the Lunatic Left tried to make hay by calling George W. Bush anti-science in defiance of reality. Now the Left reveals itself as being who is truly anti-science, first by perpetrating the global warming hoax and now with trying to remove the high school science curriculum from Berserkley.


39 posted on 01/04/2010 1:39:50 AM PST by Post Toasties
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To: neverdem

pi ain’t a squared, em’s is rounded - duh!


40 posted on 01/04/2010 2:28:19 AM PST by jamaksin
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To: neverdem

These people are insane.

Simply insane.


41 posted on 01/04/2010 3:19:48 AM PST by rlmorel (We are traveling "The Road to Serfdom".)
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To: neverdem

So! Instead of laboratory science we will have community organizing.


42 posted on 01/04/2010 3:20:11 AM PST by reg45 (Be calm everyone. The idiot children are in charge!)
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To: neverdem
The problem is that science training is one of the elements of educataion least susceptible to the multicultural indoctrination that pervades education in Berekeley and far too many other places.

Here's the answer as to "why," right here...

Mark

43 posted on 01/04/2010 3:43:37 AM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: neverdem
How does it benefit anyone to have an America made up of mediocre minds?

They will vote for Democrats, so guess who it benefits?

44 posted on 01/04/2010 4:21:48 AM PST by 17th Miss Regt
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To: neverdem
The School Committee has an insoluble problem, and their response is honest and reasonable, given the constraints they function under.

Most school districts do one of the following:

1) Water down classes to the point that they are worthless

2) Fudge the test results

3) Assign grades by race, with blacks given higher letter grades than whites.

All three of these maneuvers are causing public education to collapse, at least with regard to its ostensible purpose.

Most conservatives believe that if blacks were treated "equally", and furthermore were motivated (properly) to work hard and to adopt functional school behaviors, that they would succeed where they now fail, and, specifically, that they would have success in the upper grades of academic high school.

Most educators behave as if they know this is ridiculous.

The public schools have been given a mission to give an "equal education" to blacks. The meaning of this is a little vague - equal inputs, or equal results? But the mainstream conservative position seems to be, with equal inputs and proper conduct/student management, that the results will be equal enough to sustain the enterprise.

The Berkeley School Committee knows, obviously, that this is false. Given their mandate from a very broad spectrum of society, including conservatives, to demonstrate equal results across races, what else are they supposed to do?

45 posted on 01/04/2010 4:30:39 AM PST by Jim Noble (Hu's the communist?)
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To: neverdem

They’ll “educate” these liberals to the point where they won’t have a clue which end of the pistol the bullet exits. Disassembling and cleaning a rifle will take the better part of a week and parts will be left over. New marksmen stances will be invented where they’ll be taught that cranking your arm like a windmill while firing your weapon will make the bullet go faster.

Good for us.


46 posted on 01/04/2010 5:19:46 AM PST by sergeantdave
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To: neverdem
This will further guarantee that local students in Berkeley will not be competitive when it comes to admissions to the University.

What a tragedy.

47 posted on 01/04/2010 6:28:00 AM PST by nwrep
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To: neverdem

“No Child Left Behind” has been replaced by “No Child Gets Ahead”.


48 posted on 01/04/2010 11:22:27 AM PST by The Free Engineer
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To: neverdem

Un-F’in belivable!

And that’s the town I was born in.


49 posted on 01/04/2010 3:28:54 PM PST by editor-surveyor (Democracy, the vilest form of government, pits the greed of an angry mob vs. the rights of a man)
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To: SatinDoll
"Oh, I sense an opportunity for private schools in Berkley."

Berkeley has more than 40 private academies, and they are all even crazier than this.

50 posted on 01/04/2010 3:35:36 PM PST by editor-surveyor (Democracy, the vilest form of government, pits the greed of an angry mob vs. the rights of a man)
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