The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Math = White Supremacy

Posted on | July 16, 2023 | 2 Comments

Where did the belief arise that “white supremacy” is so structurally embedded in American society as to require wholesale changes to “dismantle” its nefarious influence? It didn’t start with George Floyd. Rather, in its most directly articulated form (of which the above graphic is an expression), it can be traced to the work of left-wing activist Tema Akun, who developed it as a training for people working in non-profit tax-exempt “social justice” organizations:

Because we all live in a white supremacy culture, these characteristics show up in the attitudes and behaviors of all of us — people of color and white people. Therefore, these attitudes and behaviors can show up in any group or organization, whether it is white-led or predominantly white or people of color-led or predominantly people of color.

The reason certain traits are condemned by Akun is that, among other things, they have to do with evaluating success. Was the project completed on time and under budget? Are resources being allocated in the most efficient way? In the world of business, questions like that ultimately get answered either by growth and profit (as the reward of success) or by bankruptcy and collapse (as the punishment of failure). In the non-profit world of “social justice” activism, however, such metrics are difficult to obtain; everybody in such organizations is trying to claim credit for “success” (whatever that might mean in such a context) and to avoid blame for failure. If they really had any valuable skills, or any desire to make a living by actual work, after all, they wouldn’t be “social justice” activists, would they? To justify their continued employment, these parasites must avoid such things as “urgency” (e.g., showing up on time, meeting deadlines, etc.) and “objectivity” (e.g., clearly defined measures of work output), and so these traits are stigmatized as being characteristic of “white supremacy culture.” Quod erat demonstrandum.

(See also, “What Does ‘White Supremacy’ Mean?” Feb. 4, 2022.)

In the aftermath of the death of St. George of Minneapolis, this work by Akun and other “anti-racist educators” got circulated around everywhere, as various organizations and institutions were seeking some way to atone for their allegedly racist sins, which explains this preposterous nonsense:

An Oregon Department of Education newsletter from February promoted an online course designed to “dismantle” instances of “white supremacy culture in the mathematics classroom.” One example of “white supremacy” highlighted by the course was “the concept of mathematics being purely objective,” an idea which the resource stated is “is unequivocally false.”
The program, known as “A Pathway to Equitable Math Instruction,” describes itself as “an integrated approach to mathematics that centers Black, Latinx, and Multilingual students” that provides “opportunities for ongoing self-reflection as they seek to develop an anti-racist math practice.”
The “feedback advisors” for a portion of the program include William Zahner, who is an associate professor at San Diego State University; Melissa Navarro Martell, who is an assistant professor at San Diego State University, and Elvira Armas, who is the Director of Programs and Partnerships for the Center for Equity for English Learners at Loyola Marymount University in California.
“White supremacy culture infiltrates math classrooms in everyday teacher actions,” the guide states. “Coupled with the beliefs that underlie these actions, they perpetuate educational harm on Black, Latinx, and multilingual students, denying them full access to the world of mathematics.”
The newsletter pitched the program to educators “looking for a deeper dive into equity work,” offering to teach “key tools for engagement, develop strategies to improve equitable outcomes for Black, Latinx, and multilingual students, and join communities of practice.”
The Oregon Department of [Education] Director of Communications, Marc Siegel, told Campus Reform that math instruction should be built on an “equitable foundation.”
“Building math instruction on an equitable foundation can better ensure all our students have a pathway to success in math,” Siegel said.
Examples of “white supremacy culture” cited by the document include a focus on “getting the ‘right’ answer” and requiring students to show their work.

(Hat-tip: Instapundit.) If “getting the ‘right’ answer” is racist, does this mean my D in high-school algebra was a struggle for social justice? Are kids who fail math class being oppressed by “white supremacy”?

The spokesman for Oregon’s public school system can only babble jargon about “equitable foundations” when confronted over this nonsense, which definitely is not “a pathway to success in math.”



2 Responses to “Math = White Supremacy”

  1. Theodore Johnson says the quiet part out loud – THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL.
    July 16th, 2023 @ 6:34 pm

    […] Also see: Robert Stacy McCain: Math = White Supremacy […]

  2. Congratulations, Massachusetts Liberals: Your ‘Millionaire Tax’ Just Cost the Patriots an All-Pro Wide Receiver : The Other McCain
    July 16th, 2023 @ 7:05 pm

    […] mind. Math is “white supremacy,” they tell […]