College Crapola-Fest: Math=’White Privilege’

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Tell me again: you sent your kid to this university because________? You wanted to make sure he or she grew up to be an idiot?

In the race for the bottom, the University of Illinois has lunged ahead with some published blather by “an admired scholar” claiming that teaching and learning mathematics “perpetuates white privilege” (

I cannot explain why white people do not seem to have gotten tired of hearing stuff like this, nor why they send their children to college, at great cost, to hear more of it.

“On many levels,” prates the jackass, “mathematics operates as whiteness.” What crap. But I suppose getting things right is somehow racist, nowadays.

Way back in the 1950s I learned–in a public school, no less!–that you can’t have a civilization if you can’t do math. “Gol-ding it, the freakin’ pyramid fell down again!” “Oh, no! We’ve run out of supplies halfway through the winter!” We learned about Hindu-Arabic numerals, which sort of implies that Hindus and Arabs knew math, too. Somehow we managed to learn that there were other civilizations outside of Europe that probably were able to do a bit more than just count on their fingers and toes.

But now getting the right answer to a math problem is “whiteness.”

Hey, sunshine! Why don’t you find some place where they don’t do math and there are no white people around to blame for everything, and go live there? No one will care if they can’t solve a quadratic equation. No one will even notice.

Meanwhile… hey, parents! I hope you like what college is giving you for your money. You’re paying enough for it.

14 comments on “College Crapola-Fest: Math=’White Privilege’

  1. Heck, if I were non-white, i’d be insulted that math isn’t.
    I’m sure the banks just love dumbing down the people’s math, in light of the “coming” digital economy. Blacks will be begging whites to explain their accounts to them.

  2. First off, let me compliment you on your very apt and effective use of artwork in this post. I fear, however, that you may have inadvertently complimented academia and insulted horses. 🙂

    I for one, am tired of white vs. any other color. Let me clarify, I am mostly Caucasian, but also have Asian blood, so I am not, strictly speaking, “white”. I am responsible, good at math and hardworking. This isn’t a natural product of my primarily Caucasian ancestry. It isn’t natural at all; I had to learn my work ethic by years of effort, in spite of “whiteness” and a dash of Asian blood.

    Civilization developed as it did. Most, though not all, of the major historic influences came from near the Mediterranean basin, much of it Caucasian, although some of the people involved were dark-skinned Caucasians. (I have met persons of middle eastern extraction whom were very dark skinned, but most definitely Caucasian. Are these people “white”?)

    Mathematics developed alongside other elements of civilization and no one group can claim a monopoly. While Arabic and Greek contributions are frequently noted, I don’t think that the people in the Far East were counting on their fingers and toes. They obviously made some serious contributions to the world’s fund of knowledge throughout history. But there are many who are incapable of seeing anything but color, and that is there loss.

    (While only a few people would ever notice any Asian features in my mostly Scandinavian appearance, I have a cousin who looks quite Asian and I find this delightful. I also had forebears whom were blonde-haired and blue-eyed, but those eyes were quite Asian in shape. I think I have experienced diversity and don’t need some college professor to lecture me on the subject.)

  3. Western civilization had a good run, and it was fun while it lasted. But now it seems we are on the precipice of a true dark age.

    1. I fear that your words may be starkly true. The last few years have seen a rise in superstition and a retreat from reasoning. I don’t want to be a pessimist, but I can come to no other conclusion than that our civilization is in its death throes.

      I take no pleasure in this; I would be quite content to live out my life as peacefully and my parents and most of their generation did, but it seems that may not end up being the case. The only redeeming aspect is that this may we’ll be the final generation before the Thousand Year Reign of Christ, which will offer its benefits equally to all peoples, earthwide.

  4. Actually my son graduated from that school with a physics degree. As I recall there were some minorities in his graduating class. I agree with you on this one, Lee. I’ve posted my frustration on this before…

    I am apparently a W.A.S.P.

    1. I am not a black American, hence I have no idea about how they feel in their struggles for racial equality.
    2. I am not a Native American… yada, yada, same reason. In fact, my race was responsible for evicting them from their traditional lands and I should carry the guilt.
    3. I am not a Hispanic to fully comprehend the immigration issues.
    4. I am not gay, lesbian, or bi to fully understand their feelings…
    5. I still have my original equipment of the manufacturer (OEM human parts) and hence I am unable to fully understand those humans who have feelings to change their genders under the knife…
    6. My life is not dominated by religion so I am unable to fully understand evangelical conservatives…
    7. I was raised a Lutheran, hence I will never understand being Jewish, Muslim, Catholic, et al.
    8. I am of white and of European ancestry so I am apparently a receiver of “white entitlement” and as such I can’t identify with any social struggle, and in fact, I should have social guilt.
    9. I am the same racial and ethnic cross-section of the Founding Fathers, who founded this country for white people only… and for that I should carry the guilt of the white Founding Fathers declaring independence for self-serving means.
    10. I am of the same racial and ethnic cross-section as were the slave owners in this country. Hence, I should have guilt for slavery in America.
    11. I am of the gender that victimizes and/or objectifies women… since time began (or Adam & Eve). I should feel guilt for that.
    12. Because I am not a female I have nothing to say about abortion…
    13. ..and of course, the undeniable, because I am not female I will never know what it’s like to give birth. Therefore anything I experience in life will never compare or exceed that experience.

    So when it comes to having identity issues you’ll have to pardon me for apparently being responsible for all the social ills… and unable to discuss any of them given my social isolation. But please, flog away.

    1. Well said, Doug.

      This nonsense has to stop, and the sooner the better. Since it seems the universities are the most responsible for it, they ought to be the ones to bear the consequences.

  5. My eyes are still giving me a bit of a problem, so it took a bit to read this post and all the excellent comments. Me? – I like the photo! 🙂

  6. My late Uncle Arcus, an engineer, tried teaching engineering for a while but gave it up because he found himself saying repeatedly, “In the real world, 95% accuracy isn’t an ‘A.” It’s a collapsed bridge.” Now he’d be castigated for his “whiteness” in (a) assuming there’s such a thing as a real world, and (b) insisting that accuracy is something to strive for.

    Actually, some years ago the big feminist thing was to complain about patriarchal astronomy. And I understand that now some snowflakes are complaining that males have an unfair advantage in physics because boys begin to learn trajectory plotting much earlier than girls do, in the course of their potty training. I’m not making this up.

    1. Phoebe, you just provided me with my daily dose of “laughter is the best”-medicine – “…males have an unfair advantage in physics because boys begin to learn trajectory plotting much earlier than girls do, in the course of their potty training…” Actually, my daughter, at age 2, tried to copy what she saw her older brother and cousin do in the garden, and today she is excellent at maths, so maybe there is some skill involved that does help, hahaha!

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