Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Archive for December 16th, 2021

A new winecup

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You’ve seen several species of the wildflowers known as winecups here before. On December 8th in Balcones District Park we came across a tall winecup that looked different from the standing winecup I’m used to. Ryan McDaniel from the Texas Flora group identified it as Callirhoe leiocarpa. Today’s two photographs show what a difference the background can make in a portrait; likewise for whether the light transluces, as above, or reflects, as below; also whether you look at a flower from the back or from the front.

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Political correctness didn’t decline and fall. It went underground and then rose again. If anything, it’s stronger than ever today. Yet some influential figures on the left still downplay the problem, going so far as to pretend that the increase in even tenured professors being fired for off-limits speech is a sign of a healthy campus. And this unwillingness to recognize a serious problem in academia has helped embolden culture warriors on the right, who have launched their own attacks on free speech and viewpoint diversity in the American education system.

We’ve fully entered the Second Great Age of Political Correctness. If we are to find a way out, we must understand how we got here and admit the true depths of the problem.

That’s an excerpt from Greg Lukianoff’s new article in Reason magazine. The article’s title is “The Second Great Age of Political Correctness” and its blurb is “The P.C. culture of the ’80s and ’90s didn’t decline and fall. It just went underground. Now it’s back.” And look at these figures from the article:

…[V]iewpoint diversity among professors [has] plummeted. In 1996, the ratio of self-identified liberal faculty to self-identified conservative faculty was 2-to-1; by 2011, the ratio was 5-to-1, according to the Higher Education Research Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles.

More recent statistics paint a starker picture. A 2019 study by the National Association of Scholars on the political registration of professors at the two highest-ranked public and private universities in each state found that registered Democrat faculty outnumbered registered Republican faculty about 9-to-1. In the Northeast, the ratio was about 15-to-1.

In the most evenly split discipline, economics, Democrats outnumber Republicans “only” 3-to-1. The second most even discipline, mathematics, has a ratio of about 6-to-1. Compare this to English and sociology, where the ratios are about 27-to-1. In anthropology, it’s a staggering 42-to-1.

© 2021 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 16, 2021 at 4:32 AM

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