Is “grit” racist?


Bookmarks:
Is “grit” racist?Left-wing hate speechLacey Spears On Trial After Allegedly Poisoning Her Son With Sodium

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Don’t click on the link; I’m providing it for reference only.

Is ‘Grit’ Racist?

I will deal only with the portion I’m quoting below; for reason that, to read any more of it, Education Week requires that one “register,” which I don’t want my readers to have to do.

“Grit” has in recent years captivated the imagination of educators and policymakers, leading many to embrace the idea that schools should seek to cultivate in their students a set of personality traits demonstrated by researchers to be closely tied to academic and personal success.

Increasingly, though, critics are offering a different take, arguing that grit is a racist construct and has harmed low-income students by crowding out a focus on providing children with the supports they deserve and the more-flexible educational approach enjoyed by many of their more affluent counterparts.

On the one hand, I’ve never head of “grit” before.  I am wary of paying too much attention to what appears to be merely the latest educational fad, a one-dimensional attribute apparently being trumpeted mainly by a single individual.  “Grit” does not seem necessarily to correspond to what I have variously called autonomy, self-esteem, emotional intelligence or emotional maturity.   Moreover, as I remarked in two items in my January 19 post (Schools should teach against date rape?Individualization in the classroom) I don’t know where this would fit into the curriculum, and it seems to me teachers have enough to have to teach already.

On the other hand, check it out: on the face of it, some people oppose equipping black children with “a set of personality traits demonstrated by researchers to be closely tied to academic and personal success.

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Left-wing hate speech

Don’t click on this link, either.

When wingnut cavemen attack: The right turns on Renee Ellmers with stunning misogyny

We don’t need to look any farther than the headline itself.  This is Salon.com.

From Free Speech Handbook:

The Guidelines
  1.   Judge the thought, not the thinker.
  2.   Avoid categorizing.
  3.   Avoid characterizing.
  4.   Avoid name-calling.
  5.   Avoid pejoratives.

I don’t need to say any more.

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Lacey Spears On Trial After Allegedly Poisoning Her Son With Sodium

The news for me in this article is that she apparently administered the poison day after day for some time, rather than as a single, one-time dose.

This is a very attractive woman, who could easily have had a normal family life. Something, somewhere, sometime, went horribly wrong.

I find no reporting about her parents or siblings. Nor do her social media posts seem to have included any reports about — normal things in the life of a normal boy — his activities, his favorite things, his friends.

Previous headlines:
2014-07-25: Social media fuels Munchausen by proxy, experts say
2014-06-18: Woman accused of fatally poisoning son in Munchausen case

The News Journal, a regional paper serving several counties in downstate New York, ran an extensive, five-part series on the case:

Part 1: Boy’s death reveals mom’s lies

A little blond boy beams in dozens of photos on Lacey Spears’ MySpace page with captions like “My World My Everything” and “He Completes Me.” There’s just one problem with this maternal picture: It isn’t true. That boy is not her son.

Subsequent post:  Lacey Spears update

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