Are the humanities easier than STEM subjects?


Some of y’all may wonder why bigWOWO tolerates debate and discussion in the comment section, especially when so many people get their feelings hurt from time to time. The reason is and has always been the comments. By having relative freedom of speech, people bounce around new ideas and educate one another. And when something interesting comes up, sometimes I’ll front page it. A good example is this question: Are the humanities easier than STEM subjects? I double majored in Comparative Literature and Chemistry, so I have a background in both. Plus, it’s relevant since we’ve had two podcasts on the issue, here and here. So here’s my opinion, and as usual, feel free to add your own in the comment section.

Harvard and UNC being sued over racist admissions policies, and why we need to put Asians front and center

So let me first start by being blunt: I’d be surprised if we win this lawsuit. If your university has a racist de-facto quota designed to keep out high-scoring Asians, if you regularly exclude Asian men from your movies, if you talk about an Asian American athlete with the word “chink,” if you push an Asian man in front of a moving subway car, our culture just tends to shrug and urge people to move on. In fact, if you have a de-facto racist quota against Asians, the supposedly sensitive far-left will call you a racist for demanding equal rights and fighting against your status as a second-class citizen. But that doesn’t change the fact that it’s the right thing to do.

Illegal Pete’s

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Photo credit: Theo Stroomer for the NY Times

Story from the NY Times: In Colorado, there’s a chain of Mexican restaurants called “Illegal Pete’s.” The chain has been around for twenty years. It was no big deal when it first opened, but now, with all the discussion about illegal immigration and undocumented workers, it’s a political firestorm. People are asking him to change the name. It’s similar to the debate over Chink’s Steakhouse and the Redskins. The owner of Illegal Pete’s says that the name of his restaurant has nothing to do with immigration, and that he supports immigrants.

The importance of rote memory in Asia and everywhere else

The battle over school testing continues. As I’ve said many times, I think that standards are important. I think it’s good to rate students, and I think it’s great to rate teachers so that schools can promote the good ones and fire the bad ones. My oldest is going to undergo some Common Core testing this year, and while I can understand the nervousness that testing can create, it’s the right thing to do for public schools. Every child should have age-appropriate goals. Of course there should be a reasonable amount of testing–kids shouldn’t be tested every day, and schools shouldn’t waste three weeks on a single test because they don’t have computers–but the idea is right. Kids should be able to pass tests.

When a society suffers from slow social change

Eurasian Sensation sent me this story about a PUA who teaches his nuthugging disciples about PUA in Japan. The PUA tells his gang of idiots (who supposedly pay $3,000 for the seminar, just showing that evolution isn’t weeding out the pathologically stupid) that the best way to do PUA in Japan is to grab a woman’s head, force her towards your crotch, and yell “Pikachu!” In his words, “if you’re a white male, you can do what you want.” Eurasian said that this is big news in Australia, as Australians are trying to stop this douchebag from having a platform to speak.

GOP takes the Senate

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Mitch and Elaine, Photo credit: Reuters/John Sommers II

It’s a historic day. For the first time ever, we’ve got an Asian woman married to a Majority leader, and they’re Republicans. Maybe now they can help put some good laws into place to stop affirmative action from discriminating against Asian kids! And cut government spending! In other news, Tim Scott became the first African American Senator to win an election in the South since Reconstruction. He’s also the first African American in history elected to both the House and the Senate. He’s a Republican.

Last days of James Foley

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Photo credit: Nicole Tung

There’s a really beautiful New York Times article on the last days of James Foley. Read it here. It’s really amazing how he was able to summon such strength under the torture, starvation, and abuse he suffered at the hands of ISIS.

After the first proof-of-life questions, Mr. Foley was hopeful that he would be home soon. As his second Christmas away from home approached, he threw himself into organizing a jailhouse version of Secret Santa, a tradition in the Foley household.