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buzzed, B&W

Alcohol Could Be Listed as Date-Rape Drug in Wisconsin

While I'm obviously opposed to date rape, this seems pretty extreme to me. It would make it very easy for someone who drank a bit to much to press a suit against another person, using alcohol as an excuse. So much for these posters . . .

Originally uploaded by hairylunch.

Americans know Bart better than 1st Amendment (registration required, or use BugMeNot)

Sad . . . so very sad . . . granted I couldn't name all five protected rights - I would never remember the right to petition government, and freedom of press would take a bit of effort to recall - religion, speech, and assembly are easy ones for me.

But really, 1 out of 5 thinking that there's a right to own pets? 17% thinking there's a right to drive? There's the argument that people don't know this because it's not practical knowledge, but how are people going to be active, engaged citizens if they don't know their rights? Oh wait . . . people aren't active, engaged citizens . . .

Teacher to return after having sex change

Interesting for a number of reason - for the idea of having a sex-change at 71, for the issues it raises of how kids will handle this, and how the community responded . . . I'd be curious to know how the community felt as a whole. It's hard to say from the article if it's a vocal minority that was opposed, or if it was the community at large.

Photos reveal decrepit state of city schools

This is awesome - kids actively involved in fighting for their rights, and in a way that's engaging, not just some boring letter writing campaign or something like that. These kids are excited about what they're doing - both because they enjoy the photography, and also because it lets them advocate for themselves. It's a shame only 11 out of 188 legislators attended. The last two paragraphs hit home:
Some photos in the exhibit show that learning takes place in the city schools despite the surroundings. One shows a blackboard filled with meticulous cursive writing. In another, a girl stands by a sign that says, "I AM COLLEGE READY." A third shows a wall of paintings in an art classroom, beside a caption that states, "Despite the lack of funding in our schools, as well as the fact that the arts and music programs are the first programs to lose funding, we keep painting."

Lever, the state school construction chief, expressed disappointment when he learned that the exhibit would be taken down Saturday, saying it should stay up for the duration of the legislative session. Pointing to a photo of a broken bookshelf, he said, "When kids see that and they have the sense that adults don't care, they won't care. ... It's amazing the effect that a well-built school can have on behavior."
Send in the math homework relief

The author expresses concern with the idea that any particular knowledge (in this case math and science) be tied to high wage jobs. This seems to be a rather weird point to latch onto from Bush's statement: "I propose to train 70,000 high school teachers to lead Advanced Placement courses in math and science, bring 30,000 math and science professionals to teach in classrooms, and give early help to students who struggle with math, so they have a better chance at good, high-wage jobs."

Admittedly, I'm a math/science geek. I tutored physics and calculus throughout my college career, and when I was teaching, I taught high school math (everything from pre-algebra to calculus). When I heard that Bush had said this during the State of the Union, I was thinking it was just raising the bar for teacher qualifications. In fact, I ignored the high-wage job part - it's about getting qualified teachers as a whole. Education isn't solely so that one can get a job, it's not a means to an end - education and learning are fundamental into developing as an engaged and active citizen.