The Corner

Culture

Twelve Things That Caught My Eye: Syria, Myanmar, Schools & More

1. New York Times: ‘I Will Die Protecting My Country’: In Myanmar, a New Resistance Rises

“I see the military as wild animals who can’t think and are brutal with their weapons,” said a woman from Yangon, Myanmar’s biggest city, who was now in the forest for a week of boot camp. Like others who have joined the armed struggle, she did not want her name published for fear that the Tatmadaw, as the Myanmar military is known, would target her.

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3. Star Parker & Charles Donovan: Repealing the Hyde Amendment would endanger black babies

Measuring pregnancy outcomes after an initial event, abortion, miscarriage, or childbirth, the authors found, “Women whose initial pregnancy ended in abortion were also increasingly more likely to experience another abortion at each subsequent pregnancy.” An abortion does not simply defer the beginning of family life; instead, the authors conclude, “abortion begets abortion.”

Repealing the Hyde Amendment will only deepen this disparity and perpetuate its tragic effects. It will tell the poor that their hopes are limited, their children are disposable, and their communities are unwanted. Every abortion is a tragedy from which we dare not turn away.

4. Crux: Syrian bishop calls economic sanctions ‘crime against humanity’

In Aleppo, the fighting has stopped, but now thanks to economic sanctions intended to squeeze Syrian President Bashar al-Assad out of office, there is a grave lack of basic necessities such as food, gasoline, diesel fuel, and medicine.

Electricity is on only for 2-3 hours a day, and inflation has soared, Khazen said, noting that before the war the one dollar was worth 50 Syrian lira, whereas today it is equivalent to around 1,500 Syrian lira.

5. Joel Zinberg: Open Schools Now

Senate Democrats previously rejected a Republican proposal requiring schools to reopen as a condition of receiving the new funds. Biden should not only push for this legislation but also direct his Department of Education to issue regulations requiring local education agencies to activate their in-person instruction plans within a short timeframe.

Meantime, the president needs to reassure parents that it is safe for their children to go back to school — and pressure teachers’ unions to get back to work. Health-care workers have labored for the past year in facilities with known Covid-19 cases. Some have died. For teachers, many of whom are already vaccinated, the risk of infection in schools is practically nil.

Enough. President Biden, open the schools now.

6. Jonathan Butcher, Lindsey Burke, Ph.D.: Seven Steps to Combatting “Critical Theory” in the Classroom

K–12 and postsecondary school officials are spending significant amounts of taxpayer money on so-called anti-bias training. Such “diversity” training has been common in the corporate world for decades. A significant body of research, however, finds that such training has no positive effects on participants.

Harvard researchers who surveyed hundreds of reports on bias training say that the sessions are “likely the most expensive, and least effective diversity program around.”Researchers have found that diversity training provokes resentment among participants, and while it is possible to measure individual attitudes, studies find that changes among participants are “weak” and do not last.

Educators should focus on teaching civics and history content that prepares students for life after school. Rigorous civics curricula exist, including materials produced by 1776 Unites, the Institute for Classical Education, the Jack Miller Center, the Bill of Rights Institute, and the Ashbrook Center. This material recognizes the importance of facts and acknowledges the periods in history when Americans failed to live up to their ideals while not allowing these periods to eclipse the national character and culture of freedom and equality under the law.

7. Richard Ostling: Keeping up with the times: If schools nix ‘Mom and Dad,’ is mainstream journalism next?

Reporters and editors want to be sensitive to personal and minority-group concerns alongside their professional duty to be clear, accurate and non-partisan.

How to handle this balancing act amid the West’s fast-evolving verbiage to accommodate feminist or LGBTQ+ advocates? The media need to consider that proposed prohibitions now go well beyond replacement of “binary” pronouns with the singular usage of they-them-their (which breaks strict grammar in English and creates ambiguity on antecedents). 

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9. Reuters: Greece marks 200 years of independence with hopes of rebirth

France, which will be represented at the parade by its defence minister, has also donated a magnificent tapestry depicting Renaissance painter Raphael’s “The School of Athens” of ancient Greece’s great thinkers.

“The School of Athens symbolizes all of our commitment to democracy,” French Ambassador Patrick Maisonnave said. “It reminds us of all the Western Republics owe to the Greek Republic.”

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11. This is the homily Óscar Romero was delivering when he was killed.

12. Nation’s Murderous Psychopaths Undecided On Whether They’ll Follow New Gun Laws

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