Kansas Middle School Displays Student-Made “KKK Board Game” During Open House

by matttbastard

Wow.

Just…wow.

A KKK Board Game. Proudly on display at a Kansas middle school open house. In 2009.

Seriously?!

Yes, seriously–a KKK board game:

Er, huwhut?!

Clean your...wha?!

Ok, that's just straight up motherfucking DOIN IT RONG!

Oh, and just to fully complete the cycle of racefail, meet the motherfucking asstacular principal of the motherfucking school:

Andover Middle School principal Brett White said today that a seventh-grade student who created a board game based on the Ku Klux Klan as part of a class assignment was not trying to be offensive.

Kevin Myles of the Witchita NAACP Blog nails it:

Given that this was a middle school, you could surmise that the student who created the “game” was probably between 12 and 14. So while it is distrurbing that he or she may have thought this appropriate, the problem is not the student, the failure clearly rests with the school. They should have challenged the students thinking, they should have corrected him or her and explained why this was inappropriate, they should have taken advantage of that “teachable moment” and helped the student understand the real lessons of history.  But to the contrary, they chose to reinforce the students cultural and historical myopia by displaying the “game” at a public forum, an Open House, to be ‘appreciated’ as something representative of their body of work.

And simultaneously reinforced deep-seated cultural stereotypes about endemic racial injustice in rural communities.

Way to be, folks!

h/t Sassywho via email

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers

On Medical Procedures and Limited Choices

by matttbastard

Via Lauren @ Feministe, WaPo looks at the difficulty US med students face if they want to seek out abortion training:

She had joined Medical Students for Choice, an abortion education group with chapters on 135 U.S. campuses, as soon as she arrived at Maryland. The nation’s abortion doctors were graying, and unless a new generation took their place, the right to abortion might be rendered meaningless. Lesley imagined herself being part of that new generation. But would her support for abortion translate into action?

“I won’t know until I’m faced with doing it, but I think I would absolutely be able to provide [abortions],” she said. “It’s walk the walk, instead of talk the talk. I want my actions to be consistent with my words.”

How medical students choose to become abortion providers is in some ways no different from how they choose to become cardiac surgeons or pediatric neurologists. They explore the specialty and test themselves in it, finding some connection to a patient or a mentor that ignites their passion. Except for one difference: Medical students must explore abortion largely on their own.

Thirty-five years after the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion in Roe v. Wade, any mention of abortion is rare in the first three or four years of medical school, when students must zero in on a specialty and eventually apply for residency training. Even in Maryland, where about 61 percent of voters approved a referendum guaranteeing abortion in 1992 and which has the fourth-highest abortion rate in the country, abortion is not taught in any formal lectures at the state’s flagship medical school. The subject is viewed as too controversial, despite the fact that, according to the nonprofit National Center for Health Statistics, abortion remains among the most common surgical procedures for reproductive-age women. Nevertheless, many people, including some of Lesley’s friends, believe abortion is the murder of an unborn child and should not be legal, much less taught to future doctors.

Make sure to read the whole damn thing.  As Lauren aptly points out, “a lack of doctors willing and able to perform the procedure will render the right to abortion meaningless.” And, as previously noted, the situation isn’t much better here in the Great White North.

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers

Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (Med School Edition)

by matttbastard

Star-Tribune columnist Charles Quimby on how access to abortion in the US isn’t just being threatened by anti-choice legislative measures:

I don’t have firm statistics, but I would say most of the physicians providing abortion services in Minnesota today are my contemporaries or older. That is, people who experienced the days of illegal abortion and the complications that ensued. That is, doctors within a decade of retirement. The late Dr. Jane Hodgson, who tested Minnesota’s law by deliberately performing an illegal abortion in 1970, continued to perform abortions until age 76, traveling from St. Paul to Duluth, because doctors there would not. She was born in 1915 and reached reproductive maturity about the year nearly 2,700 women in America died from reported self-induced or illegal abortions.

Most of the subsequent generations of doctors, including those who completed OB-GYN residencies in the early ’80s who will soon be leaving practice, received no training in terminating pregnancies, and the attitude in medical schools still seems to be “don’t ask, don’t tell.” Residents who want to learn about the full range of women’s health issues are free to arrange their own training, if they can find someone to provide it. The barriers don’t just involve learning medical procedures that are not mentioned in class; there are also issues about malpractice coverage and getting institutional approval.

Today’s medical residents were born in post-Reagan America, went to college in during the Rehnquist/Scalia era and have only known a post-Roe existence. Faced with roadblocks in their already stressful training regimens, even strongly prochoice residents may not pursue this on their own.

Meanwhile, practicing physicians who believe in choice may advise patients about all their options in handling a pregnancy, but they aren’t going to provide all the options — especially without having the training. But also because of outright harassment, fear of bad publicity or concern for their family’s safety, they have quietly decided to let reproductive freedom become not just the patient’s decision, but the patient’s problem.

As they say, read the whole goddamn thing.

Related: Via Vicky Saporta, Pamela Pizarro examines how the “lack of trained abortion providers in Canada is huge problem and is keeping women in our country from accessing adequate sexual and reproductive health services”:

When you consider that up to 40% of women will have an abortion during their life time, it is astonishing that the abortion procedure is not required to be taught in any medical school curricula. In fact in a study conducted by Medical Students for Choice, 40% of 50 schools that they surveyed “do not teach any aspect of abortion in the pre-clinical years.”

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers

Stop Touching Those Altar Boys!

by matttbastard

More from the ‘you can’t make this shit up’ file:

New York’s Roman Catholic Church is trying a novel approach to alert children to the danger of being sexually assaulted by a priest, with an abuse-themed coloring book, officials said Tuesday.

“Being Friends, Being Safe, Being Catholic,” was distributed earlier this year to several hundred schools in the New York area as part of the church’s Safe Environment Program, a spokeswoman from the city’s Archdiocese said.

One image in the book features a guardian angel hovering over an altar boy with a priest lurking in the background.
“For safety’s sake, a child and an adult shouldn’t be alone in a closed room together,” the angel counsels.

More from the NY Times’ City Room blog:

The comic book, for schoolchildren from the sixth through eighth grades, tells the stories of a girl and a boy who have been victims of sexual abuse in separate incidents, and how they handled the situations. The comic book urges children to tell a trusted adult if they have been abused. The books were illustrated by Charles Barnett, an artist in Lake Katrine, N.Y.

While the books carry messages that are widely echoed in other educational programs for children, they also arise from the context of the sexual abuse scandals that have roiled the Catholic Church.

“It is sad, but it is a reflection of the times,” said Edward T. Mechmann, a former federal and state prosecutor who was hired in 2005 to direct the archdiocese’s Safe Environment Program. “We have to protect the kids and make sure when they deal with adults that it’s within the proper boundaries.”

Here’s a novel idea: why not simply purge the Church of known abusers? Gasp–I know, crazy talk. Still, a bastard can dream (while the Onion weeps).

h/t JJ Hippie

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers