The Democrat victimhood mantle, plus racial education madness

The story of the sweet beer guy and the doxxing reporter is a microcosm of Democrat behavior, plus racial — and racist — education madness in Seattle.

The first part of this post is about the way in which the Carson King and Aaron Calvin saga parallels the saga of Trump, the Democrats, the Russian Hoax, and the investigation into the origins of the hoax. The second part looks at education insanity in Seattle. I’ve done a podcast on the same topics, which is not identical to this post, but it’s close enough that, if you prefer reading, you won’t miss anything by not listening to the podcast.* And if you listened to the podcast, you’ll find in this post links to the things I mentioned in the podcast.

The Beer Guy, the nasty reporter, Trump, and the nasty Democrats. You’ve probably already heard this story, so I won’t go on at length about it. Carson King is a young man who, during ESPN game night, put up a sign asking people to buy him a beer and giving his Venmo account name. It was silly, audacious, and charming. People responded with cheerful vigor, eventually sending King $1.12 million. King promptly turned around and donated the money to a hospital in Iowa City, where it will be used primarily to help children with cancer. This is a nice guy.

Aaron Calvin is not a nice guy. He was a young reporter at the Des Moines Register. He thought it would be a good scoop to troll King’s twitter feed. After crawling back eight years, he found a tweet or two in which King quoted some movie or TV show in a way that is no longer considered politically correct. (Keep in mind that what’s acceptable changes on an almost daily basis now.) King gave the ritual apology.

Apropos these ritualistic apologies, I’m waiting for someone to say, “No, I won’t apologize. What I said or did 10 or 20 or 30 years ago was within the acceptable norms of the time at which I did or said it (including the norms for 16 year old boys at that time). I certainly wouldn’t do it now because values have changed (although it’s not clear whether for the better), but I will not apologize when I did nothing wrong.” Still, I totally understand that King, raised in cancel culture, felt that he had to apologize.

All of the above was the norm: Some ordinary person does something nice; some snarky, sleazy reporter doxes the person; and the person ritually apologizes.

Something different happened this time, though. While King bowed low, others fought on his behalf. They trolled Calvin’s social media and found him saying worse things (by today’s standards) than what King had said. Although the Des Moines Register refused to apologize to King, because being a media outlet means never having to say you’re sorry, it did fire Calvin.

At this point, Calvin could have said, “I’ve learned my lesson about doxxing and apologized.” He didn’t. Instead, he played the victim card!

Little Calvin, the narcissist, is going to have a lousy life, one in which he’s always the victim of other people being mean to him — and he’ll never understand that they are being mean to him because he was a vile pig to them. Or maybe he’ll mature and become the nice, decent person he can be if he puts aside this narcissistic mindset.

What fascinated me about the above story is that it is precisely the same story, except in microcosm, that’s been playing out nationally between Trump, on the one hand, and the Democrats in both Congress and the media, on the other hand.

Trump did a good thing — he convinced enough people that his values were in line with theirs that he ought to become president. These values were, up until about 20 years ago, completely mainstream American values. Trump is Carson King.

The Democrats were outraged that Trump won. They did everything they could to destroy him. The Democrats are Aaron Calvin.

Trump, however, did not do what King did, which was to apologize. Instead, he stood his ground.

Trump was shown to be innocent by the Democrats’ own anointed savoir, Robert Mueller. Now, Trump is doing what the third party warriors did on King’s behalf, which is revealing the bad motives behind the Democrats’ actions.

This means that he is approaching other countries and saying, “Please find out what role your country played in the 2016 meddling in the American election.”

Like Calvin, the Democrats are screaming their heads off that they’re the victims. It was only right that they should destroy Trump, but how dare Trump turn the tables on them!

Incidentally, although Anheuser-Busch cravenly pulled out of a contract with King, I have heard that King got a new, better one with another company. Also, I’ve heard that people are boycotting Busch for its cowardice, which is only right and proper.

Education madness in Seattle. I was talking to a young friend today who just got a lovely job offer. The interview came about because a friend recommended her to the company. The offer occurred because she’s smart, hardworking, personable, organized, and a perfect fit for the job.

It’s probable that, had there been 30 other equally qualified candidates, the company could have just pulled a name out of a hat but, instead, the company gave the job to my young friend because she came with a recommendation for a source they respected. That’s life. Life isn’t always fair. Not everyone has a friend who can help them with such useful specificity. In a sane world, when we have such a friend, we are grateful that this person knocked on the door for us, but it’s always our responsibility to prove ourselves worthy once that door is opened.

Most of my young friend’s own friends were happy for her. Perhaps they said, “I wish that would happen to me,” but it didn’t adulterate their pleasure in her good fortune.

One of them, though, found it unforgivable. Although white herself, she castigated my young friend for benefiting from white privilege and strongly suggested that she ought not to have gotten the job and, once she got it, she should have rejected it in solidarity with others less privileged than she is.

Almost immediately after that happened, a friend in Marin sent me a message the school sent to all parents from the high school principal. I thought it made for barfy reading:

As I mentioned in the September newsletter, the Redwood staff will continue our anti-racism, anti-hate and anti-bias work to make sure that Redwood is a school where diversity and a variety of experiences and perspectives are valued as beneficial to all of us in our learning community.

One of the key features of this work is upstanding. Upstanding is the opposite of bystanding. Upstanding is being active, not passive. Upstanding is standing up and saying something or doing something when we see or can prevent wrong or hurt. It is the opposite of “letting it go,” “looking away” and “turning a blind eye.” Upstanding is saying something when a racist, insensitive or stereotyping comment is made. Upstanding is helping someone who is being picked on or bullied or attacked. Upstanding is reporting a problem to an adult in our school or confidentially letting us know through our confidential tip line. Anti-racism, anti-hate and anti-bias work requires us to upstand if we are to make a positive difference to our school culture and community. If we want to appreciate each other and embrace and celebrate our differences, we need to upstand when we see or experience racism, hate or bias.

Upstanding is important in other areas as well as anti-racist work. It is important when we see sexual harassment, bullying and other mistreatment of others whether in person or online. Sometimes upstanding means saying something to others (always in a respectful and appropriate way). Other times, upstanding means sharing your concerns with a school staff member. Either way, the difference between upstanding and bystanding is the difference between doing something to make our school culture better for everyone at Redwood and ignoring the type of behavior that can hurt others, emotionally and/or physically.

My friend told me that the school has been shutting down extracurricular programs to fund all this social justice stuff.

Also, this school is not a hotbed of racial strife and hatred. It’s an ordinary school in a relatively affluent neighborhood, with families that are almost entirely Progressive, all of whom preach political correctness. This is virtue-signaling pure and simple.

Moreover, it’s a lie. If your child goes into the school and starts preaching about the Second Amendment, I can guarantee you that your child will find himself in a police station for being a threat. Conservativism, whether political or social, is not welcome there.

But the above message is where people like my young friend’s ill-wisher learn their ideas about “privilege.”

Once upon a time, if you came from a “privileged” background (which meant affluent and educated), you were grateful and, if you were well brought up, you believed it was your responsibility to share that privilege and to help other people.

Today, though, “privilege” is code for “white self-loathing.” These young people are being taught to hate themselves and, instead of sharing their blessings, they’re being told that they need to give them up. This is not about raising people up but about tearing people down. It’s the politics of greed and resentment written into our nation’s social fabric and our young people’s minds.

Which leads me to what’s going on in the Seattle Public School District. This is another school district in which black students are failing and the district, rather than teaching better, is doubling down on the politics of victimhood and resentment.

In May 2019, Stephan Blanford, a deeply Progressive former member of the school board launched an attack on those who failed to agree with the school’s Progressive strategic plan. I’ll get to the plan in a minute, but I just want to cite the statistics that Blanford and the Board felt justified the new plan:

Today, students in Seattle Public Schools lag behind students in other large school districts in our area. Only 53 percent of Seattle students meet grade-level science standards. Compared to nearby Bellevue and Lake Washington school districts, Seattle is underperforming by significant margins.

This statistic and others like it don’t capture the whole story. The achievement gap between higher- and lower-performing schools remains significant in Seattle. Our failures to address inequity have dramatic impacts on the lives of real kids, many of them students of color, whose parents are less likely to engage with our city’s power structure or follow online blog debates.

The District’s answer to a very real problem is victimhood. I’ve embedded the first page of strategic plan, below. The highlights are mine. You can click on the image twice to enlarge it:

The rest of the plan is here.

As you can see, while the goals are laudable, the method to achieve them is to drill into the students that they are victims of an inherently racist system. That’s bad. What’s really bad is the “math ethnic studies framework” the school district worked up for the kids. To understand what you’re reading, you need to know that “SWBAT” means “students will be able to. This time I’m embedding the entire document. Again, the highlights are mine and you can enlarge the images by clicking on them twice:

Translated: “Dear black children, everything that’s important about math predates the Greeks. The Greeks stole from Black Africans and Egyptians. Moreover, when this stolen math came Westerners compounded this theft by stealing Arabic numbers and the concept of zero from the Arabs (who first stole them from the Indian subcontinent). Since its origins in Africa and India, math has been used to destroy you, to oppress you, to demean you, to deny you opportunities to succeed, and to humiliate you. It is a vile instrument of white hegemony over the black man. Oh, and you’d better learn it because it’s a good thing to know.”

In California in the 1970s through the 1990s, there was a totally misbegotten “self-esteem” theory in education. This theory was premised on the observation that good students had high self-esteem. The idiocrats in education concluded that high self-esteem made for good students. It never occurred to them that hard work and the reward of learning created high self-esteem, rather than self-esteem driving hard work and learning. California ended up with several generations of children who felt great about themselves, but who could barely read, write, or do math, and who were completely ignorant about the world.

What’s happening in Seattle is worse. Seattle is create generations of children with a profound sense of victimhood, resentment, and rancor, and then expecting them to embrace education. Only a Progressive could think that this is a pathway to instilling a love of learning into children.

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*I’d originally tried doing identical posts and podcasts, but that wasn’t working for me. I seem to use different parts of my brain when I talk and when I write. I ended up simply reading my posts aloud for the podcast, which really killed the fun for me. I’m now trying a system I think will work better, which is to go in this order (1) thinking about things; (2) making notes and collecting documents; (3) podcasting in a more free-form way; (4) writing a companion/parallel post. As always, I value your feedback.

NOTE: In the podcast, I mentioned one of my favorite books, which is an early insight into the Leftist takeover of education and media. The book is Helen MacInnes’s Neither Five Nor Three. I wrote about it here.

No. 21 Bookworm Podcast: Democrat Victimhood and Education Madness

In my latest podcast, the story of the sweet beer guy and the doxxing reporter is a microcosm of Democrat behavior, plus education madness in Seattle.

My latest podcast is up and running. You can listen to it through the audio embed below, or at LibSyn, or through Apple Podcasts.

Here’s the brief summary:

1. I look at the way the Democrats’ new claim of victimhood, now that they’re being investigated, parallels the way in which Aaron Calvin, the reporter who doxxed Carson “buy me a beer” King, is crying victim now that he’s been doxxed and fired.

2. I look at the insanity of the Seattle Public School District’s decision to improve black students’ educational outcomes by telling them that they are oppressed victims of an inherently unfair system that has exploited them for hundreds, even thousands, of years. Maybe I’m naive, but I don’t see this working well.

I’ll be putting these same ideas in a post and will cross-link soon if you prefer reading to listening.

FIRST PRINCIPLES: FIRST IMPRESSIONS ABOUT AMERICA

Vassar Bushmills

Anyone, anywhere, who hears the name “America” already has a first impression about America; either positive or negative. It doesn’t matter if he/she is 18 or 80, and located anywhere in the world.

If abroad those impressions are a mixture of street talk, music, films, and of course, relatives who may have traveled there or live. One man from one village can go to America, and everyone in that valley has a impression of America that no government can conceal.

I knew such a family from Dayton whose father had come to America from a village in Slovakia before WWII, taking work in a steel mill. He left a wife and son back home. Just before the war he went back to bring his wife to America. But he had to leave his 6-year old behind with relatives to secure the family lands. Once in America, Papa and Mama Miluks started a new family, his youngest son my best friend for many years from the Army. In the late 1970s, while on duty in Germany, he was allowed to travel to Slovakia and meet his eldest brother and see the village and old home place, and of course, take gifts. When I visited his family in Dayton Mama Miluks showed me the special place she kept all her letters from her son, who she had not seen since 1940. But those letters! She wrote many-paged reports every week for over 40 years, giving a weekly account of things going on with his papa and brothers and sister, learning quickly to never speak of certain things, for by ’46 the Communists had moved in and her letters were first read and redacted by postal censors, cutting all references to the availability of consumer goods commonly available in America, especially food. Her son, in turn, would reply with heavily redacted letters. He would die in the early 1990’s of the general poor heath common to socialist countries so was never able to join his family. He never met his other two younger brothers or sister. And of course his last personal memory of his parents was when he was 6.

But I am quite sure every adult in that village had clear impressions of America because of Mr Miluks, who went to America.

I tell this story because one, it’s true, and two, it is, next to the Christian’s ideal of Heaven, an impression of America as a place that one has never been and most wants to go, which cannot be duplicated anywhere else. I have met people in several countries and four continents, including Palestinian Arabs (on an overnight sleeper in Russia) and from all I hear basically the same thing, “If only I could go to America.”

(This is not what we are seeing today on our southern border, by the way, so I won’t take this discussion in that direction, although just 30-40 years ago, down there, where I also lived, this was a common refrain, “If I can only get to America.” I deal with this subject in an upcoming conversation about Assimilation, which should be a topic of policy discussion if we can ever get fully in charge or our government again.)

So, abroad, America is viewed through two entirely different prisms, divided by two classes: 1) the political class and 2) all the rest[…]

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Instruction Page for Veterans’ Lecture Series

Vetarans’ Tales by Vassar Bushmills

These lectures are free. Print out and use as you please.

We’re putting these out into the public domain, as it will help get these lectures in front of the several veterans groups, civic organizations and interested school-parent groups.

If you’ve got a knack, and itch to teach young minds, and would like to make some spare cash a few nights a month, simply use at your pleasure.

It would be nice, but you don’t even have to say you’re part of our Program.

We have been sending messages to foundations and veterans groups, but since there are at least three levels of communication before our message actually gets in the hands of a decision-maker…well you know how that works out.

So we thought it best for to create a pipeline directly to the Veteran. After all, this is for the purpose of teaching young students at the community level, wherever a VFW post or American Legion lodge can be found. There are also dozens of parent groups, private schools, maybe even some public school teachers, who are concerned about all the necessary things about America students are no longer being taught.

Our first lecture is “The First Principle of Being American”. I recommend this as a first lecture for I used it for years teaching several college classes of inner-city mothers attempting to get a degree, and it laid the foundation for 24 hours of instruction in American history and government, which they had to have for a degree.

I simply threw the textbook out and taught the course as a series of things they never even considered about their country, and how those things are very relevant in their lives.

I used the same opening lecture for every class, because it made their jaws drop every time.

From this “First Principle of Being American” you can spin future lectures in several different directions. There is no necessary order. In fact, your interaction with your students may give you some ideas I haven’t thought of.  (Just call me.) .

I’ll provide several more Lessons here.

Cost: NONE

These Lessons are offered free of charge. You don’t have to pay us a penny. But once you get a regular paying client base or sponsor it would be nice if you’d send a little back to us through our Donor Page.

Subject Matter: Go to VeteransTales.org/ VETS IN CLASS, and review the articles already there. They explain why Veterans are needed in the classroom because of the things about Service to, and the Uniqueness of America are no longer taught in American public schools….and why this is so.

They also go on to explain why Veterans, above any other group, are most qualified to connect and teach these young students[…]

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OUR “VETS IN CLASS” TEACHING PROGRAM; LOOKING FOR SUPPORTING PARTNERS

Vassar Bushmills

Since its inception, VeteransTales.org has been movinging toward the establishment of a teaching program for veterans in order to fill in the growing gap between modern education in America’s schools about America’s history, and the reasons America was created in the first place.

It takes only three generations for those things to be lost to a culture, and we’re about halfway there.

I set this process of disintegration out in an earlier piece, “Conservatism, Those Other Guys, and the Vetetans”.

When the Soviet Union fell in 1992 virtually no Soviet citizen had any memory or knowledge of the nation (or family) that extended beyond 70 years. I know, I was there. Freed in 1992, they were still had no fixed stars in their heavens to guide them; no history, no church, no moral base.

For nearly two hundred years since our Founding the extant family, our public schools and universities, and our several religious institutions passed these culture-surviving ingredients onto the next generation. And the next. But since the mid-1960s those institutions have been under assault or reshaped as a matter of government policy.

Veterans are uniquely situated to help hold the line, and even pass it on, while public institutions no longer try.

Our Program has three objectives; Find & Recruit, Teach & Train, then Place veterans.

As you already know, finding veterans isn’t hard.

Every town, every school district has veterans. Most towns have a VFW and American Legion chapter. Wounded veterans have their own unique sponsors, Wounded Warriors Project, Disabled American Veterans (DAV), and dozens of service organizations from every branch.

We’ll contact virtually every one in coming days via email and social media. But in larger bureaucratic organizations as many now are, I doubt the right people will ever see or read this.

More than donations, if you know any of these people, you would be doing our Cause a great service simply by passing this forward, preferably with a “Deserves a look” or “Attaboy” attached..

it would also be nice if you would contact me (contact info below) as piercing many of your corporate veils is a daunting task without a personal reference.

Allen and I were never palm-grippers in those circles.

All we have to offer are programs that need some sponsorship and partners, and the skill to design them. And a little administrative jump start.

Our objectives are simple:

To put as many veterans as possible in front of as many school kids, aged 11-to-18, as possible, in public schools if allowed, and in other parent-approved settings if the public schools are not available….

And to develop from that open door, other programs.

Our mission will be to train vets to deliver Lectures and Q-and-A sessions about the essence of America, and its relevance to them in their lives as they go forward, beginning with why America is different from all the other countries throughout history; and why so many ordinary peoples in those countries love us and why their political class generally don’t.

(I found this very effective in teaching cynical and indifferent young inner-city black mothers who only needed my classes for a degree, having nothing to do with their degree program.)

These are First Principles and in these age groups veterans have more street cred than any other segment of American society to pass them on.

The political elites of most of the world have always felt negatively about America, even as it’s our shoulders that most of their stand on, and have for the better part of a century.

Only recently have many inside our own political and educational culture become equally hostile to the notion of American uniqueness, hence the current movement to erase that history for the next generations’ memory.

Our proposal:

At VeteransTales.org, in the VETS IN CLASS section (at the top banner), we’ve begun a discussion as to why veterans are uniquely qualified to carry out this mission; namely, they’ve invested skin in the game most other Americans have not.

Moreover, they volunteered that skin when they didn’t have to[…]

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