Tuesday, February 23, 2016

We pahked the cah...

Eve Ewing
We visited Hahvahd yesterday, only to find Chicago students tearing it up academically and politically, as expected.

First, we went over to the Law School where dozens of students have been occupying the Wasserstein Lounge, (which they've renamed Belinda Hall) trying to create a learning environment more relevant and safe for students of color. Occupiers I talked with, including Chicagoan and Whitney Young alum Keaton Allen, want more focus on critical race theory and more faculty of color.

Yesterday's speaker at the protest was none other than Harvard law prof Lani Guinier. Who could be more relevant at a time when Republicans have sworn to stonewall any Scalia replacement chosen by President Obama? Prof. Guinier is the first woman of color ever appointed to a tenured professorship at that institution.

Keaton Allen & Amanda Klonsky
But in 1993, President Bill Clinton pulled back Guinier's nomination as attorney general in the face of a brutal and racist negative Republican-led media campaign, referring to Guinier as a "quota queen." One New York Times opinion piece falsely claimed that Guinier was in favor of "segregating black voters in black-majority districts." Guinier was portrayed as a racial polarizer who believed—in the words of George Will (Newsweek 6/14/93)—that "only blacks can represent blacks." But the key to Clinton's retreat was Guinier's abandonment by Democratic senators like Ted Kennedy and even Carole Moseley Braun. What a shame.

Having heard Guinier speak before on several occasions, I took off and ran over to the Ed School to hear a presentation to the weekly research colloquium by brilliant doc student and  Chicago's own Eve Ewing.  Eve's research dissects the discourse surrounding Chicago school closings, unmasking
immoral public policy. If you haven't followed her work, a good place to start is her recent New Yorker piece, “We Shall Not Be Moved”: A Hunger Strike, Education, and Housing in Chicago."

Must be something in the Chicago drinking water, besides lead.

FOR DESSERT I caught Michael Moore's latest film, "Where to Invade Next", in Brookline. Funny and hard-hitting at the same time. Could easily be taken as a promotion for Bernie Sanders. But it isn't.

Moore at his best. Don't miss.

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