Well, what’s the latest bit of fodder to throw on the dumpster fire that is 2020?
Oh, that’s right. Math is racist.
A professor of math education has declared it to be both racist and patriarchal to use the phrase “2+2=4” to demonstrate objectivity and neutrality in mathematics.
“The idea that math (or data) is culturally neutral or in any way objective is a MYTH,” Laurie Rubel of Brooklyn College tweeted a week ago, The Blaze reports. “I’m ready to move on with that understanding. who’s coming with me?”
In a second tweet she added that “along with the ‘of course math is neutral because 2+2=4’ trope are the related (and creepy) ‘math is pure’ and ‘protect math,” and that it all “reeks of white supremacist patriarchy. I’d rather think on nurturing people & protecting the planet (with math in service of them goals).”
along with the "of course math is neutral because 2+2=4" trope are the related (and creepy) "math is pure" and "protect math."
reeks of white supremacist patriarchy.
i'd rather think on nurturing people & protecting the planet (with math in service of them goals) 🌏❤️💙💚
— Laurie Rubel (@Laurie_Rubel) August 4, 2020
Are these people just competing to see how far-fetched the latest trend in intersectional philosophy or critical theory is going to be?
Well, Twitter being Twitter, you can imagine that lots of folks had reactions. Some chose to actually respond to her reasoning (if you can call it that), while others simple gawked at the absurdity of it all.
Math is employed every day to heal people and the earth. Expanding that is noble, but redefining the tool will not achieve it. It will just create another tool that the next popular ideology will say “reeks.”
— Tim Consolazio (@tcoz_tweet) August 4, 2020
Okay this literally has to be parody
— DegenerateLittleCreep (@mimbarari) August 4, 2020
if I were an astronaut , and you worked for NASA , I would quit my job ☹️
— Chuck Nance (@mynameschuck) August 5, 2020
Silliest tweet I have seen in quite some time
— Agronomist 🇺🇸 (@AggieAgronomist) August 10, 2020
The Blaze notes that this isn’t the first time Rubel has gone out of her way to call something “racist” that is otherwise completely benign.
f Rubel’s stance sounds a bit familiar, it may be because she made some headlines a few years back with an academic paper arguing that rewards based on hard work are a “tool of whiteness” that oppresses minorities.
She added in her paper that in order to fix the problem teachers must incorporate social justice ideas into their lesson plans, a process she called “teaching for” social justice to lift up disadvantaged students.
The process “is providing students from underserved, marginalized groups access to challenging mathematics … with the critical equity-directed practices, or teaching about social justice. In other words, dominant equity-directed practices do not challenge the status quo,” she said in her paper for the Journal of Urban Mathematics Education.
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