The last few weeks have been a flurry of activity related to my “day job” and the many responsibilities that I have (voluntarily) taken on there. I’ve spent a lot of mental time trying to figure out how to maintain the conversation here that I value so much personally and professionally, while slogging through the day-to-day joys and challenges of being a middle school teacher.
An idea that I’ve come up with is a new type of post called That’s What I’m Talking About or TWITA, for short. I plan to use this type of writing from time to time to share the work of other authors that jives so well with my thinking that I wish I wrote it. In each case, I’ll add some commentary of my own and try to start up some interesting conversations here.
In the first installment of TWITA, I have to showcase a recent piece from the Huffington Post Education section by Cody Gault. In his piece, he lays out the case for the harm being done to America by Evangelical Christians and some Republicans. I’m going to go ahead and apologize to anyone offended by what follows, but I usually keep my own political and religious views out of this space. This is a situation that demands I mention both.
I am jealous of the way that Gault lays into those who value ignorance over rationality. Take this line, for example:
Evangelicals fear their children learning about evolution because they suspect that such knowledge would serve as the gateway drug to critical thinking and eventually — gasp — skepticism.
He quotes President Obama, refers to survey data, and even jabs at the vast majority of Americans who believe in God. But the best part is when he writes:
It is a troubling trend in America: a cultural aversion to thinking and a celebration of intellectual mediocrity. In many circles, going with your gut is better than using your brain, ‘common sense’ is code for ‘the first thing that pops into your mind,’ and Sarah Palin is a folk hero.
I so badly wish that I wrote this.
The question that came to mind while I was reading Gault’s post was this: What can we do to fix this problem?