Our friend Ammo Grrrll forwards a special edition of her thoughts occasioned by our series on the war on standards. She titles her column “The War on Standardz.” Here it is:
Yeah, I know, “standards” is the so-called “correct” spelling. But, I just felt like spelling it that way, and if that’s, like, you know, my experiential way of interacting with the world, then, that should be good enough for you middle-class privileged good spellers. My grandparents were – truly – sharecroppers and that entitles me, like Frank Sinatra, to do it My Way.
John Hinderaker’s excellent, disheartening piece on the imminent collapse of college debate attracted as much commentary as anything I’ve seen in a long time. (John’s father and my mother grew up in the same town of 237 souls in the ’20s and ’30s in South Dakota. What are the odds? Beats hell out of me, you figure it out. I flunked Statistics in college, but I’m a woman, so the test must have been sexist.) Fight the rape culture that tried to force me to actually attend class where I was in danger of learning something!
Like an alcoholic on an endless bender, our beloved country thinks it has “hit bottom”, but the scary little secret is that there IS no bottom. Mark Steyn asserts that politics is downstream from culture. Woe to a country downstream from “Urinetown.”
So, we now have cops who can’t carry standard .40 caliber handguns because a certain percentage of female officers cannot handle them. Celebrate diversity!
We have firefighters in New Jersey who can’t pass the exam, but who get promoted anyway because of “disparate impact,” which is to say, instead of studying, all they had to do was be a darker shade than the ones who did study. Suh-weet. (Thank you, wise Latina Sotomayor for your objective judgment in this case.) Standards, schmandards!
If students fail tests, then either give them the answers in advance, or attack the very concept of testing. Dumb down the SAT. Everybody gets an 800! Down with disparate impact!
After the first slaughter at Ft. Hood, the Army concluded it was an unfortunate incident of workplace violence. A regular schmo went postal and spewed something that sounded an awful lot like Allah Akhbar, but was probably “Ah’ll axe you to a bar.” And The General assured us that nothing would affect our recruitment of more of Major Hassan’s co-thinkers because that would be a worse tragedy than the mound of unarmed dead.
If female Marines cannot do 3 pull-ups, then let’s just not, O.K.? Who could possibly imagine a situation in combat where a Marine would have to pull his or her weight up to climb over something anyway? Never gonna happen in this CIC’s Marine “Corpse.” Hey, the smartest guy in any room did not accidentally say Marine Corpse: he means to downsize the U.S. Military until it IS a skeleton.
And now we learn that debate cannot favor the prepared. Whistle, rap, recite poetry, change the topic, use obscenity, go over your time. All in a day’s work. Smash linear thinking!
Our infrastructure should be interesting when these “standerdz” finally spread to Engineering. Which they will. Remember, there is no bottom.