Politics and Society Notes and Quotes, April 2014

Latina actress faces public hounding, loses job after appearing in ad for conservative candidate.

New Zealand school ditches safety rules during recess; result:

Chaos may reign at Swanson Primary School with children climbing trees, riding skateboards and playing bullrush during playtime, but surprisingly the students don’t cause bedlam, the principal says.

The school is actually seeing a drop in bullying, serious injuries and vandalism, while concentration levels in class are increasing.

Real diversity in the face of one-dimensional stereotypes: gay Christians engage real world in discussions of chastity, marriage, identity, and larger cultural perspectives.

More diversity in the face of one-dimensional stereotypes: Multiracial conservative families respond to leftist snark about racist conservatives.

From Amy Chua’s “What Drives Success?” New York Times, 1/25/14

It turns out that for all their diversity, the strikingly successful groups in America today share three traits that, together, propel success. The first is a superiority complex — a deep-seated belief in their exceptionality. The second appears to be the opposite — insecurity, a feeling that you or what you’ve done is not good enough. The third is impulse control.

Any individual, from any background, can have what we call this Triple Package of traits. But research shows that some groups are instilling them more frequently than others, and that they are enjoying greater success.

It’s odd to think of people feeling simultaneously superior and insecure. Yet it’s precisely this unstable combination that generates drive: a chip on the shoulder, a goading need to prove oneself. Add impulse control — the ability to resist temptation — and the result is people who systematically sacrifice present gratification in pursuit of future attainment.

Ironically, each element of the Triple Package violates a core tenet of contemporary American thinking.



“Being Married With Kids And Young Now Deemed ‘Alternative Lifestyle’”

NYT columnist gives impressively reasonable proposals for improving family outcomes in US.

Narrative and logic show what used to be common sense: family brings more satisfaction in life than comfort and fun.

Liberal author admits divorce and unwed parenthood lead to inequality and suffering for children, but insults conservatives about it, anyway.



Gay marriage supporter calls out bigotry against traditional marriage supporters.

Gay writer who supports gay marriage calls out bigotry against traditional marriage supporters.

Gay marriage supporter defends idea that traditional marriage supporters are not all bigots.

56 pro-gay marriage writers sign statement condemning the persecution of those who disagree.

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