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E-Pluribus | October 21, 2022
Creeping critical race theory in schools, gender preferences down under, and the State Department diversity, equity, and inclusion celebration.
A round-up of the latest and best writing and musings on the rise of illiberalism in the public discourse:
Zach Goldberg, Eric Kaufmann: Yes, Critical Race Theory Is Being Taught in Schools
Advocates of Critical Race Theory often protest that anti-CRT efforts in schools are superfluous because CRT isn’t actually being taught to students but rather is simply an academic theory. Presenting their new research at City Journal, Zach Goldberg and Eric Kaufmann report that, according to the students themselves, this claim is far from accurate.
While only scratching the surface of what will feature in the full report, our findings have several important takeaways.
First, the claim that CRT and gender ideology are not being taught or promoted in America’s pre-college public schools is grossly misleading. More than nine in ten of our respondents reported some form of school exposure to at least some pt central to CRT and contemporary left-wing racial ideology, with the average respondent reporting being taught two of the five we listed. A majority were taught radical gender ideas. Given the sheer size of these numbers, the promotion and teaching of “white privilege” and “systemic racism” in America’s public schools can hardly be regarded as a rare or isolated phenomenon. It is the experience of a sizeable share of pre-college students.
Second, educators are presenting CSJ ideas to students uncritically. If such concepts were presented only as perspectives—and in conjunction with competing others—then their introduction into the classroom could very well be defensible. But our data suggest that this is not the case. Instead, most are receiving them as undisputed “facts”—or at least facts only disputed by bigots and ignoramuses. This is indoctrination, and governments should act swiftly to put a stop to it. More-detailed policy recommendations must await the full report. But schools and teachers that wish to teach about these concepts should be given the option of either teaching the diversity of thought surrounding them or being barred from teaching them altogether.
Read the whole thing.
Lawrence M. Krauss: Anti-Male Bias at the NHMRC
Institutions aiming for equity often violating the very principles of fairness they say they are trying to put in place and Lawrence Krauss writes at Quillette that Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council is no different. Even clear progress is no match for quotas, it seems.
[T]he activists behind the “Fund Women in STEM Equitability” petition demanded a systemic gender bias in favor of females (and, without any obvious rationale, in favor of non-binary applicants as well) by the NHMRC. That bias has now been officially instituted. Last week, the NHMRC announced plans to award half of its research grants for researchers at the mid-career and senior level to women and non-binary applicants.
[. . .]
The NHMRC is no stranger to gender preferences for female applicants, however. In 2017, it introduced “structural priority funding,” which reserves additional money—around eight percent of the overall grant budget—for high-quality “near-miss” research applications led by women. Amazingly, they are continuing this policy, even for junior-level researchers, where the gender imbalance has already been reversed! From 2019–21, more applications for investigator grants at the earliest career stage came from women, who were awarded 137 grants compared to 123 for men. Remarkably, with regard to this latter statistic, CEO Kelso stated, “We found that we hardly needed to use any structural priority funding for the more junior levels.”
Gender politics seem to have trumped basic standards of fairness when it comes to support of STEM research, at least in Australia. The inclusion of non-binary applicants in the new regulations offers a clear indication of this shift. Nowhere in the claimed disparities has there been any evidence of bias for or against this group. The inane preoccupation with bean counting based on gender or identity may seem appealing on the surface as an attempt to ensure “equity,” but equity really ought to imply equal treatment of all individuals, irrespective of their gender or other aspects of their self-identity.
Read it all.
Jimmy Quinn: State Department Plans Ten-Day DEI Fest, Promoting ‘Psychological Safety at Work’
Jimmy Quinn reports for National Review that the Biden administration’s top foreign policy official Antony Blinken is laser-focused… on diversity, equity, and inclusion. The State Department is planning 10 days devoted to the cause for all of its employees, continuing in the direction taken by the president soon after he took office.
The State Department is planning a massive DEI-focused event expected to involve more than a dozen federal agencies and up to 50,000 government employees, National Review has learned. The overarching goal is to mobilize department employees around diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) principles and “psychological safety at work,” and it’s a “mission imperative,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken told NR in a statement.
[. . .]
“Mental health and diversity equity inclusion and accessibility (DEIA) are closely connected,” reads an overview of the event posted on the State Department’s website. “Employees from diverse backgrounds can face a lack of representation, micro-aggressions, unconscious bias, and other stressors that impact their mental health and psychological safety at work.”
The launch of this event comes amid a highly visible push by the Biden administration to implement DEI principles throughout the federal bureaucracy. Over the past year and a half, the State Department has hired a chief “diversity and inclusion officer,” appointed a “special representative for racial equity and justice,” and mandated that U.S. diplomats “advance” DEI as part of the criteria for promotions. The department has also pledged to take further steps to “embed intersectional equity principles” in its communications.
Read it all here.
Via Wesley Yang, some thoughts on identity: “who” versus “what”. Click though for more:
Does the ends justify the means? No. But Jesse Singal points out that some justify the means even when the ends aren’t actually even being achieved:
And finally, Matt Yglesias on Kanye West’s latest stumble on the public stage: