Tag: politics

“Everything in Moderation” Doesn’t Prevent Extremism

“Everything in moderation” (or EIM, for short) is a hegemonic commonplace in 21st century American culture. That means, it is a belief that is so commonly accepted as to be nearly unquestionable. And it’s a serious problem for supporters of democracy in the 21st century. The reasons for the phrase’s popularity are easy to see. … Continue reading “Everything in Moderation” Doesn’t Prevent Extremism

‘Remediation’ in the United States: A Brief History

‘Remediation’ in the United States: A Brief History San José State University Academic Retreat February 11, 2016 My area of research is the history of writing instruction in American higher education. More specifically, I study the functions that writing instruction plays in institutions of higher education. The organizers of today's event invited me to talk … Continue reading ‘Remediation’ in the United States: A Brief History

On Sadness after Ferguson, With Apologies to All the Victims of Injustice

For many years, prominent activists have meticulously documented the structural racism, sexism, classism, and other pervasive, systemic injustices that define the lives of Americans--all Americans, whether to their benefit or to their detriment--systemic injustices so well-worn that they can be hard to see even for people who suffer the consequences. Of course, people have been documenting … Continue reading On Sadness after Ferguson, With Apologies to All the Victims of Injustice

On Debates and Disappointments

Every season on American Idol, one of the heavy favorites goes home way too early. Chris Daughtry, for example, was sent packing even though he was apparently far more popular than the three contestants who survived him (including the winner, and subsequent flop, Taylor Hicks). So shocking have the departures been that the show instituted … Continue reading On Debates and Disappointments

What Really Scares Me About Evil, Deranged Lunatics

In the last 36 hours or so, Americans have been collectively weighing the shooting of 71 people in a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado. There are already volumes of commentary on the pertinent issues, a healthy dose of which I’ve wallowed in since I saw the first headline yesterday morning. Although there are many troubling … Continue reading What Really Scares Me About Evil, Deranged Lunatics

“Where Have You Gone, Joe Paterno?”

In the week or so since Jerry Sandusky was arrested for violations that don't need rehearsing here, Penn State officials have been under the microscope. In particular, Joe Paterno, the revered coach of Penn State's football team and apparent icon of moral righteousness, has been castigated for his inaction after learning in 2002 that an … Continue reading “Where Have You Gone, Joe Paterno?”

Liberal Overreach

In the recent months, I keep hearing conservatives Republicans talk about the inevitable “liberal overreach.” Essentially, the logic goes, liberals will allow their power to go to their heads, and they’ll pass all manner of social programs that undermine the very fabric of capitalism, Christianity, and privilege that America was founded on. Eventually, conservatives will … Continue reading Liberal Overreach