Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The LEAST Educated Cities In America (PHOTOS)

Being from Fresno, and raised in California's Central Valley, I'm not at all surprised to see several cities here come up on the list (Bakersfield, Fresno, Modesto, Stockton). I have a higher education degree, but the area's economy is heavily based on agriculture, since it has some of the richest topsoil in the world. Ag jobs don't pay a lot, so they are going to attract and hold people with relatively little education.

Unfortunately, this area is an oft-ignored part of the state, despite the huge amount ag contributes to the economy. We have some of the poorest areas in the country.

However, keep in mind that less educated does not mean stupid or lazy. Farmworkers in particular are some of the hardest-working people I've ever met. They have to be, since they typically get paid by how much they get done, and not an hourly wage.

There is a massive immigrant population here, mostly from Mexico and Latin America, but also Southeast Asia and elsewhere. This brings unique challenges. The children of these immigrants often have a difficult time straddling the conflicting cultures of their parents and the U.S. It's not as simple as just getting them schools and libraries, though more attention there wouldn't hurt.

Still, it's also important to recognize that, even if everything was done right (and it currently isn't by a long shot), this will always be a low-education area of the country.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Controversy in Wisconsin

Good story, Mr. Wallis. Despite the horrible things said, I'm glad that you and Mr. Lenz stuck things out with humble truth. That's what it will take, I believe: polite but firm truth, even in the face of dishonest attacks. Some will refuse to change their minds, no matter what (in the face of facts, one such man recently told me that he doesn't believe any news/information organization, but only what he "feels in his heart"), but that does not change what our response should be.

Most people find it difficult to stand up to this kind of behavior, but it must be done. Jesus frequently confronted those of his day who clung to falsehoods and hypocrisy, and he is the model those of us who call ourselves Christians ("Little Christs") should follow. If we don't, the hoaxes and lies persist and grow, lacking firm opposition. The people behind them come to be seen as the majority, and believe they represent that, when, in fact, they are simply the loudest.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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I'm a Christian and political moderate (I tend to be more liberal on core issues and more conservative on the hot-button ones). I have a B.A. in Biblical and Religious Studies and Philosophy.