Students Suspended for wearing Crucifixes

The school might be enforcing some rules that they have, but schools seem impervious to using an reason when evaluating these rules:

ALBANY, Ore. — A pair of Albany teenagers suspended for "gang-related behavior" because they were wearing crucifixes say they were only wearing gifts from their mothers.

Jaime Salazar, 14, his friend Marco Castro, 16, were suspended from South Albany High School recently after they refused to put away the crucifixes they were wearing around their necks. . . .



Fox's 24 falling to political correctness

The Wall Street Journal reports that political correctness hits "24":

Producers would later experience trouble casting roles, once some of the most desirable in television, because the actors disapproved of the show's depiction of torture. "The fear and wish-fulfillment the show represented after 9/11 ended up boomeranging against us," says the show's head writer, Howard Gordon. "We were suddenly facing a blowback from current events."

Last spring, Fox executives asked producers to come up with a plan for what to do with their onetime crown jewel. The producers decided to take the radical -- and rarely attempted -- step of reinventing the show. While some fans complained "24" had grown too formulaic, the producers also grudgingly saw the importance of wrestling the show from its ties to an unpopular conflict. . . .

If you look at the viewing data provided in the article, it seems very hard for me to discern a fall off in viewership because of opposition to torture. If you look at the last season, there was a drop that was already occurring before the New Yorker piece repersented by the orange dot in the 2006/2007 season (the vertical lines represent viewership). If you click on this link, you can use the interactive features in the WSJ picture.

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Should students be able to have a BB gun club?

A school in State College, Pennsylvania has denied students the right to set up a club for BB guns.

The idea alone has already divided the school board, with some members saying they are worried about sending mixed messages to kids about bringing BB guns to school.

You can vote on what you think about that at this link.

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Political balance at Princeton

Generally, Princeton isn't known for being particularly extreme leftwing politically (despite people such as Paul Krugman), many other more extreme schools come readily to mind. Yet, it is not too surprising that:

All Princeton faculty members who have given to 2008 presidential candidates so far have donated to Democrats, according to federal records of donations to presidential campaigns from Princeton University employees. . . .

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More over reactions from schools to students

The incident apparently happened last month. A six-year-old girl was seen kissing a second grade boy several times while they were riding in the school bus, and the boy was seen kissing her back. The girl's actions landed her in some hot water as her parents were called into the principal's office, and the girl was reportedly suspended from riding the bus for three days. . . .

Many parents believe, given the young ages of the students, a better approach would have been to simply sit down with the children and talk to them, "And say when you are in school it's not appropriate to kiss boys when you are in school, but find out from her exactly how it was meant and I'm sure as in this case it was a child being affectionate to another child, not anything sexual," says Smith.

As is too frequent these days, the school's response was overblown.



10-year-old girl for eating a steak with a steak knife

10-year-old girl facing felony. She was arrested for using 4 inch steak knife during school lunch The little girl was using the steak knife on, unbelievably, a steak.

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"Canada's Thought Police"

This will put a real damper on free discussion in Canada.

Celebrated author Mark Steyn has been summoned to appear before two Canadian judicial panels on charges linked to his book "America Alone."

The book, a No. 1 bestseller in Canada, argues that Western nations are succumbing to an Islamist imperialist threat. The fact that charges based on it are proceeding apace proves his point.

Steyn, who won the 2006 Eric Breindel Journalism Award (co-sponsored by The Post and its parent, News Corp), writes for dozens of publications on several continents. After the Canadian general-interest magazine Maclean's reprinted a chapter from the book, five Muslim law-school students, acting through the auspices of the Canadian Islamic Congress, demanded that the magazine be punished for spreading "hatred and contempt" for Muslims.

The plaintiffs allege that Maclean's advocated, among other things, the notion that Islamic culture is incompatible with Canada's liberalized, Western civilization. They insist such a notion is untrue and, in effect, want opinions like that banned from publication.

Two separate panels, the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission, have agreed to hear the case. These bodies are empowered to hear and rule on cases of purported "hate speech."



Canada's School Lunch Police


University of North Dakota might be forced to remove "Fighting Sioux" Logo

Fate of University of North Dakota 'Fighting Sioux' Logo Threatens Hockey Arena

I would think that the Sioux indians would be proud to have a team referred to as the "Fighting Sioux." Will their be an objection to the Army helicopters having indian names? What is the difference? Why does the NCAA find this objectionable?



Anonymous Reporting System for Reporting Bias at William & Mary

Political Correctness out of control:

A new system at the College that allows members of the community to anonymously report incidents of bias has come under fire, primarily from conservative news sites and blogs.

The Bias Reporting System was created several weeks ago by the College Diversity Committee and exists “to assist members of the William and Mary community who have been affected by incidents involving bias related to race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or other protected conditions.”

Sam Sadler, vice president for student affairs and co-chair of the Bias Reporting Team, said that “showing a willingness to look at issues is the best way I know to let people know that the community cares. I think it’s really the ultimate statement of community.”

Critics worry that the system is open to abuse because it allows anonymous reports. A full-page ad in The Flat Hat last week, paid for by FreeAmericasAlmaMater.org, brings up the possibility that students could make up allegations to get back at professors who gave them a bad grade or significant others who had broken up with them. . . . .

My son Maxim wrote this story up.



Second Grade Student Suspended for Drawing Stick Figure With Gun


Futures Market predicts Gore wins Nobel Peace Prize

Pretty depressing, Well at least a British court ruled earlier this week that Gore's movie can only be shown to British School Children if they have been told about 11 false statements in it.

Al Gore, the former US vice-president, on Thursday overtook Barack Obama in a closely watched futures betting market on the next Democratic nominee fuelled by speculation that he would pick up the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday.

Although the Nobel committee never informs the winner in advance, online speculators drew energy from the fact that Mr Gore cancelled his attendance at a global warming event in San Francisco on Thursday night, citing an unspecified overseas event on global warming. . . . .

Nine of the Eleven errors that the British Court found with Gore's movie can be seen here:

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So why is Columbia University refusing to turn over this video tape?

Could it be that it wasn't a white student who put up the noose? I don't know, but it is strange that for such a crime that the university would show any reluctance to release the tape. It will be interesting to see when the tapes are released what was on them.

The New York Police Department said Thursday that Columbia University has refused to voluntarily turn over security video that could help identify suspects in the case of a noose left on the office door of a black professor — a claim the school now denies.



Banning Tag at School


The Slippery slope: Banning Twisting Balloons into the Shape of Guns


The EU is upset that the Czech use castration in a few very limited cases

This is very weird. Murders who are repeat offenders for sex crime are asked to voluntarily get castration. The EU is upset because this isn't "voluntary" because if these creeps don't agree to the surgery, they will be locked up until they are no longer viewed as a threat to others. You can really see that most of Europe has no notion of deterrence or punishment.

Surgical castration was confined mainly to offenders who had committed murder, and only with their consent.

But the committee cast doubt on how free that consent could be, if the alternative for the prisoner was indefinite confinement in a psychiatric hospital.

The committee said it was concerned about the overlap between the doctors treating the offenders and the panel of experts responsible for approving the operation.

The Czech government said castration procedures were carried out according to law, but improvement in legislation would be debated this year.

One of the hospitals involved said the procedure was only used for repeat offenders, many of whom were alcoholics and individuals with learning disabilities.

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Showing Smoking will get movie R-rating

Let me get this straight. Movies with immoral behavior are OK. Movies with dangerous behavior are OK. Movies with other addictive products are OK. At least for now, movies with alcohol are OK. Is it just because smoking is considered politically incorrect? The US is obviously becoming a much less free country.

A girl and her grandparents have sued the Chicago Board of Education, alleging that a substitute teacher showed the R-rated film "Brokeback Mountain" in class.

The lawsuit claims that Jessica Turner, 12, suffered psychological distress after viewing the movie in her 6th grade class at Ashburn Community Elementary School last year. . . .



An over reaction by academics?

Using the "N-word" was a stupid error in judgment, but this guy was a kid when it occurred and he admitted responsibility and apologized. The kid was a teenager when it happened. I have also heard stories of what this kid has had to endure. Apparently at a conference at Yale last year, the Yale Law School Dean lead a walkout when this kid merely showed up in the audience. Are these reactions in proportion to what this kid did given that he has apologized and there is no evidence that the apology wasn't sincere.

What the kid said was wrong, but compare it to other statements that could have been made. Suppose that he had said that Bush was the same as Hilter or that Republicans were Nazi. Would he have been condemed in academia? I can even concede that these later attacks would not be nearly as hurtful, but I doubt that it would have been given even a brief notice by many academics. Surely even if it had been an issue, his age would have been raised as a mitigating factor. I would like to believe that I would be wrong about all this, but I doubt it. Surely, law deans would not lead walkouts on this person if he showed up at a conference under those circumstances.

Finally, let me note that this kid is some type of genius. It is not surprising to me that people who have these book smarts lack certain, shall we say, people skills (understanding when some things are a mistake).

Camara, a native Filipino who grew up in Hawaii and enrolled at Harvard Law School at age 16, had been on track to become an assistant professor at GMU's law school. But his candidacy was derailed after the law school's dean, Daniel D. Polsby, publicized the possible appointment so he could hear what students had to say before making a final decision.

During Camara's first year at Harvard Law School in 2002, he fueled a controversy when he wrote racist remarks in a voluminous summary of a 1948 Supreme Court decision that barred restrictive covenants based on race. He then posted the writing on a Web site designed to help other law students. . . .

This kid is now just 22. Show some compassion towards this kid who made a mistake and move on. I am disappointed that George Mason turned the guy down for a position.