My late father was a mathematician back in the slide rule days. To him, the only calculator anyone could, or should, possibly need was a pencil and a sheet of paper, a trait he firmly installed in his offspring.
With this background, I can only imagine his reaction to this.
Scenes from the Joint Mathematics Meeting (the largest annual meeting of mathematicians in the world):
A talk entitled "Undergraduate Mathematics Education as a White, Cisheteropatriarchal Space and Opportunities for Disruption to Advance Queer of Color Justice" pic.twitter.com/EL87QJLvXX
— Joel Fish (@joelwatsonfish) January 4, 2023
It is no wonder how a contemporary university professor could come up with such tripe. It also provides no surprise that an academia dweller could concoct “queer of color justice,” believing it somehow makes sense. Professor Levya doubtless did not minor in English. But I digress.
Imagine the surprise awaiting young Figures Filbert, the natural math whiz seeking further training so he can progress from whiz to wizard, with corresponding employment opportunities post-higher education, when he first enters Professor Levya’s classroom. The room grows silent as the instructor warily eyes the pupil before blaring out, “YOU! You, with your racist/sexist/historical societal structure-based pursuit of correct answers for complex equations! You are the source of ALL EVIL!” At which point, Filbert quietly slips out of the classroom and resigns himself to a career working at the neighborhood GameStop.
What truly frustrates the woke about precise sciences such as math is that math is wholly colorblind and gender-neutral. It could care less about ethnicity, political persuasion, sexual self-identity, or whatever other stuff and nonsense anyone cooks up in their quest for self-deification. It solely exists in reality. A math question’s answer is immune to cultural considerations and political correctness.
In fairness, it’s understandable why it’s so maddening when anyone, regardless of ethnicity, insists on 1+1=2 not being subject to cultural interpretation. The woke cannot abide accuracy, for accuracy brings with it merit. Merit, the twin notions that what one wishes for must be earned and competition fuels quality even as iron sharpens iron, is anathema to progressives. It exposes the fallacy of equity. A guaranteed equal outcome, regardless of training, skill, and effort, leads to dire consequences society cannot afford. The self-appointed elites believe they are immune from their fatally flawed practices’ fallout, but they are not immune.
Math demands precision. Math has no room for soft bigotry-inspired largesse or pandering latitude. Applied math in fields such as engineering cannot safely weaken via softened standards rooted in someone’s great-great-great-great-grandfather being called a bad name by the town bigot. If, for example, you were flying in an airliner, would you be okay with critical components not being required to meet the highest standards because someone in charge gave those involved with their design and manufacturing a pass on precision due to their being defined as marginalized?
While I miss my father terribly, I am thankful he isn’t here to see such displays of utter silliness. I also quietly chuckle at imagining what would happen if he attended the Joint Mathematics Meeting. Suffice it to say Professor Levya would receive enthusiastic enlightenment regarding the error of his ways via whatever means deemed necessary, as my father was not reluctant to be an old-school man. Also, my father would give the following talk at the meeting: “Yes, 1+1=2, you blithering imbeciles.”