EppsNet Archive: Kids

Ilhan Omar Forcibly Separating Children From Parents?

Ilhan Omar files for divorce from husband Ahmed Hirsi amid affair allegations — New York Post Why aren’t we hearing more about the Ilhan Omar extramarital affair and divorce? I remember when it was reported that Donald Trump had an extramarital affair with Stormy Daniels . . . that was a national news story for MONTHS! There was a period of time when her attorney, Michael Avenatti, was getting more airtime on CNN than the actual CNN hosts, for no reason other than to make derisive remarks about Trump. Unlike the Trump case though, where there was no divorce and everyone went on with their lives, Omar has filed for divorce, as has the wife of the man she had the affair with. Both families have minor children, who will be forcibly separated from their parents, and if there’s one thing the progressive left hates, it’s children being forcibly separated… Read more →

NYC to Eliminate Gifted and Talented Programs?

Last week, a school diversity task force in New York issued a report recommending the elimination of New York city’s gifted and talented programs. The “problem” being addressed is that white and Asian students dominate the selective programs, leaving black and Hispanic students in highly segregated schools, so instead of figuring out how to bring underachievers up to the mark, let’s eliminate the programs. Critics of the plan worry that middle class (i.e., white and Asian) parents will either move out of the city or send their kids to private school, making the New York schools even more segregated than they are now. An NYU professor weighs in to say that many parents in cities like New York value diversity and want to send their children to schools that serve everyone. “Many parents” = the parents of the dumb kids. Nobody else gives a shit about “diversity.” I assure you that… Read more →

SAT to Give Students ‘Adversity Score’

SAT to Give Students ‘Adversity Score’ to Capture Social and Economic Background The Wall Street Journal We’re not even done reviling everyone involved in tilting the academic scales based on students’ social and economic background when the College Board announces a plan to . . . tilt the academic scales based on students’ social and economic background. Read more →

See You in Hell, Charlize Theron

[See You in Hell is a feature by our guest blogger, Satan — PE] Warmest greetings from Hell! I was leading a hot yoga class when Access Hollywood came on one of the TVs . . . they were raving about Charlize Theron as Mother of the Year if not Mother of All Time because her 3-year-old son announced “I’m not a boy” and this dingbat decided to roll with it and raise him as her “daughter.” Even a crackpot celebrity trying to make noise and draw attention to herself must realize that a 3-year-old has no conception of what “I’m not a boy” means. Right? Maybe he means he’s a space alien. Maybe next week he’ll decide he’s a golden retriever — then what? Put him on a leash and go for a walk? See you in Hell . . . Read more →

The Moral Compass Oscillates

Following up on the college admission scandal . . . Now that we have faces and names, sums of money, and details on specific subterfuges, the level of anger, shock and indignation is much higher than I would have expected regarding what I thought was already taken as a truism: that parents with money and influence can get their kids into colleges that they couldn’t get into on their own merits. Everyone also knows that students are routinely admitted to colleges based on various forms of diversity rather than on academic achievement. Moreover, virtuous Americans agree that tilting the system in this way in favor of academically unqualified individuals is a good thing. I would have thought that the moral question is whether it’s right to tilt the admissions process at all based on non-meritorious criteria such as demographics, including the demographic of having rich parents. If everyone agrees that… Read more →

Are We Agreed That Rigging the College Admissions Process is a Good Thing?

Outraged parents are filing lawsuits in the college admissions scandal . . . One parent, Jennifer Kay Toy of Oakland, believes her son Joshua was not admitted to some colleges because wealthy parents thought it was “ok to lie, cheat, steal [steal?] and bribe their children’s way into a good college.” She has therefore filed a $500 billion lawsuit (sounds reasonable) accusing 45 defendants of defrauding and inflicting emotional distress on everyone whose “rights to a fair chance at entrance to college” were stolen through their alleged conspiracy. Not reported: where (or if) Joshua is actually attending college, or which colleges Ms. Toy thinks he would have been admitted to if not for the aforementioned skulduggery. There are also students filing suits, alleging among other things that their degrees have been devalued by skepticism over the validity of the admission process. I think these lawsuits founder on at least a… Read more →

Why is Sexual Harassment the Only Workplace Malfunction That Merits National Attention?

Many workers in Silicon Valley have said tech companies aren’t doing enough to promote women and minorities, or to stamp out misogyny and harassment. — wsj.com “Not doing enough” . . . I remember last year a female engineer at Uber wrote in a blog post that she was being harassed and mistreated and Uber actually hired the former attorney general of the United States to launch an investigation. One woman! The assertion that Uber in particular and Silicon Valley in general are cesspools of misogyny is based on confirmation bias and small sample sizes. Uber has more than 16,000 employees in 600 cities and 65 countries. If you’re inclined to believe that women are more virtuous and vulnerable than men, then the reported experience of one person out of 16,000 may be enough to confirm you in your view of the world. A man (or woman) hears what he… Read more →

How Our Careers Affect Our Children

Mothers spending time on themselves — on relaxation and self-care — and not so much on housework, was associated with positive outcomes for children. It’s not just a matter of mothers being at home versus at work, it’s what they do when they’re at home with their non-work time. If mothers were not with their children so they could take care of themselves, there was no ill effect on their children.  But to the extent that mothers were engaged in housework, children were more likely to be beset by behavior problems. — “How Our Careers Affect Our Children”, Harvard Business Review We’re studying the effects of working mothers, mothers spending time on themselves, mothers engaged in housework . . . I wonder what is the effect of mothers actually spending time with their children? Read more →

Student Loan Debt Sets Record

U.S. Student Loan Debt Sets Record, Doubling Since Recession — Bloomberg What happened to parents saving up to pay for college? Is that not a thing anymore? I don’t find it morally defensible to encourage a kid to incorporate academics into his or her life from an early age, to emphasize the importance of education, then when the kid is admitted to college to say “Congratulations, here’s your student loan application. Have fun paying that off till you’re 60.” Read more →

The Time for Song and Frivolity is Over!

A colleague went to see his son’s Christmas pageant, a day care thing where the kids try to sing “Jingle Bells.”  He says once his older daughter got to kindergarten, the school didn’t do singing Christmas shows anymore . . . THIS IS KINDERGARTEN! THE TIME FOR SONG AND FRIVOLITY IS OVER! DO YOU HEAR YOUR PARENTS GOING AROUND SINGING ALL THE TIME? THAT’S WHAT GROWING UP IS ALL ABOUT! ALL JOYOUS ACTIVITIES ARE SURRENDERED OR STRIPPED AWAY FROM YOU! Read more →

Competitive Programming: POJ 2318 – TOYS

Description Calculate the number of toys that land in each bin of a partitioned toy box. Mom and dad have a problem – their child John never puts his toys away when he is finished playing with them. They gave John a rectangular box to put his toys in, but John is rebellious and obeys his parents by simply throwing his toys into the box. All the toys get mixed up, and it is impossible for John to find his favorite toys. John’s parents came up with the following idea. They put cardboard partitions into the box. Even if John keeps throwing his toys into the box, at least toys that get thrown into different bins stay separated. The following diagram shows a top view of an example toy box. For this problem, you are asked to determine how many toys fall into each partition as John throws them into… Read more →

Doesn’t Tell Me What I Need to Know

A co-worker is telling another co-worker that you have to make sure day care providers are insured and bonded. Actually, being insured and bonded is no guarantee that I want you taking care of my child . . . “Mr. So-and-so, your son wouldn’t stop crying so we taped his mouth shut. The bad news is: he died. The good news is we’re insured and bonded!” Read more →

Thomas Jefferson Explains Family Separations

My fellow Americans — The reason families are separated at the border is that the United States, like many countries, has laws governing border crossings by non-residents. When an adult is apprehended crossing our border illegally, they go into the criminal justice system and are placed in a detention center. Keep in mind that an American citizen apprehended in the commission of a crime is not processed any differently. If you are placed in a detention center, I assure you that your children will not be in there with you. A note on rhetoric: A strong line of argument should not require violent metaphors and manufactured hysteria — families “ripped apart,” children “torn from their mother’s arms” — to be persuasive. Read the Declaration of Independence, for example. Read more →

Separation of Families Considered Harmful?

Here’s a photo showing two girls in a “cage” watching a World Cup match, amongst dozens of other kids who are for some reason wrapped in foil. I’ve seen this photo and others widely circulated online recently as evidence of the Trumpenfuhrer’s crimes against humanity. But guess what? The photos were taken in 2014, when some other guy was president. Many people have a single standard for evaluating political activity: Is it being carried out by Team Red or Team Blue. Nothing is good or bad on its own merits. I don’t remember anyone on Team Blue being outraged about kids in “cages” in 2014, but in 2018 it’s a humanitarian crisis has to be denounced mercilessly, even if the evidence has to be faked. I haven’t heard anyone propose a viable alternative to separating parents and children at the border. I’m not sure Team Blue wants to find a… Read more →

Philip Roth, 1933-2018

The final question assigned to the class was “What is life?” Merry’s answer was something her father and mother chuckled over together that night. According to Merry, while the other students labored busily away with their phony deep thoughts, she — after an hour of thinking at her desk — wrote a single, unplatitudinous declarative sentence: “Life is just a short period of time in which you are alive.” “You know,” said the Swede, “it’s smarter then it sounds. She’s a kid — how has she figured out that life is short? She is somethin’, our precocious daughter. This girl is going to Harvard.” But once again the teacher didn’t agree, and she wrote beside Merry’s answer, “Is that all?” Yes, the Swede thought now, that is all. Thank God, that is all; even that is unendurable. — American Pastoral RIP Philip Roth Read more →

Alfie Evans, 2016-2018

Thank god this could never happen here in the US . . . at least until Bernie Sanders is inaugurated. RIP Alfie Evans We're heartbroken, say the parents of 23-month-old Alfie Evans, as they announce that the toddler died overnight https://t.co/HuaJV9UFIE — BBC Breaking News (@BBCBreaking) April 28, 2018 Read more →

If You Act Like an Idiot, I’ll Kill You

When my son was growing up, I found a lot of opportunities to point to someone else’s kid and say, “You see what he just did? Don’t do that.” When I saw a kid acting like an idiot, I assumed the parents were idiots . . . the kid either learned it from the parents or the parents allowed it to happen. So if my kid were to act like an idiot, I assume other people would think I’m an idiot. A friend of mine recently shared some advice he got from his dad growing up. I’ve paraphrased it as the title of this post. Of course killing your own children is going too far, but in a figurative sense, I believe this is good advice and I endorse it . . . Read more →

Empowerment and Accountability for 5-Year-Olds

This is a real thing I just read: I tasked my 5-year-old with cleaning up the blocks from the floor, after he was done playing. A few times, he did not do it, and I ended up doing it for him. Later on, I realized that when I did it for him I was not empowering him to do the task and be accountable for it. This situation can be easily improved by exhibiting Empowerment and Accountability. For a 5-year-old? You’re overthinking it. Even with adults, “empowerment” and “accountability” are overused: I’m empowering you to complete this task. I’m not giving any of the resources you need but I’m empowering you. And as with the 5-year-old, when he doesn’t pick up the blocks despite being “empowered,” you’ll soon realize there’s no “accountability” without consent. Read more →

Some Links on Effective Communication

Busting myths on gender differences in the brain (Article) Nora Caplan-Bricker, “The Idea of a ‘Male Brain’ and a ‘Female Brain’ Is Likely a Myth,” Slate, November 2, 2015. Challenges and strategies for creating safe communication spaces at work (Article) James R. Detert and Ethan R. Burris, “Can Your Employees Really Speak Freely?,” Harvard Business Review, vol. 94, no. 1 (January/February 2016): p. 80-87. Communication comes in all shapes and sizes (Video) Nancy Lublin, “Texting That Saves Lives,” TEDvideo, 5:24, February 2012. Do men and women communicate differently? (Article) Deborah Cameron, “What Language Barrier?,” The Guardian, October 1, 2007. Find out the meaning behind emojis (Website) “Emojipedia.” Game-changing communication developments (Article) Amber Leigh Turner, “5 Trends Disrupting Communication,” TNW News. How the medium of communications can change what we say (Article) “Tweets From Mobile Devices Are More Likely to Be Egocentric,” International Communications Association press release, October 1, 2015. Leaders can change their power… Read more →

Theological Question

I hear people say that bad things happen to kids in schools because God isn’t allowed in schools. Why do bad things happen to kids in churches? Read more →

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