Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Point of Reciting in Class

I'm gravely disappointed with how my professor in Politics and Governance Class acted earlier today, this is the 3rd week of class in the college I am attending. There are mainly two things he did to send me to tragic disillusionment with his teaching style. Primarily, he cannot properly comprehend the idea of Meritocracy, secondly he equated same-sex marriage to murder. 

Let me enlighten you on what happened. And you be the judge if I am just being emotional and irrational here or am I on to something here, so please leave your comments my lovely readers. so what happened today ? so big that it made me do an emergency blog post? 

Brief background first, when classes just opened approximately 3 weeks ago, naturally during the first meeting of a class, an entire period of class will be devoted to introduction of students and professor, rules of the professor, professors requirements, and the syllabus. He said to the class that as a requirement everybody will have to report a topic that would be chosen by him from the syllabus, and every after report he would "polish" the reports presented that day. 

My initial general impression of him was average, if I would be asked to quantify it I would say 7/10 because he was eager to engage with the students, he wasn't your typical snooty know-it-all professor and as an added bonus to why I liked him was that he was very knowledgeable with the course he was teaching. What I only feared is that if he keeps on simplifying terms, according to him, to avoid jargons the class might loose important information along the way. But I did like the way he argued that its more important for us to understand rather than us be a walking textbook who doesn't understand what one is saying. Ever since he first started lecturing, there are two people who always recites, me who always seat in the front-isle seat and a girl who always sits at the back. Okay enough background lets go to the main story, to the point.

There was gonna be 3 reporters today each with a maximum reporting time of 15 minutes. For today all the people that were going to be reported was Enlightenment thinkers. The first reporter was going to be talking about John Locke and his "Social Contract". As required by the professor, the reporter has to engage with the students, so she tried her best and asked the class " Does anyone know what the the social contract is?" I of course raised my hand because first of all the French Revolution is honestly one of my favorite topics to read about in history, I love history, but as a person I am inclined to be biased on which part I really enjoy talking about. As we all know the French Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment are inextricably linked. 

Okay let's go back to the story, I was raising my hand excitedly, he was at the back, the class laughed as they saw my eagerness to answer the question, he also laughed, but I will not give up, he still chose to wait for the others hands, which obviously in this class which is filled with more than 30 students will not happen, he starts to walk around the classroom, my hand is still in the air, he keeps smiling at me and my classmates as well, until I am suddenly pissed and I tell him as he passes by "sir you have to call me this is a meritocracy" , his reaction is his natural smirk look, "he keeps saying let's give chance to others" I am even more infuriated now, duh! nobody is even raising there hand, why waste time when all of us know one of us will eventually answer the question posed by the reporter.

The last time I checked the classroom employs a capitalist and not a communist structure. The classroom is one of only very few places where one can preferably and ideally be a hard headed capitalist, only in a classrooms case knowledge represents wealth. The syllabus had a grade appropriated for recitation, so naturally in a ideal setting there will be some students who will have a slightly higher grade than the others, a fair professor wouldn't just give everyone a perfect score in a quiz if some students didn't study right? because if he/she will then what's the purpose of the Latin honors? or giving a numeric grade? why not just put Pass or Fail students? This is a meritocracy! give merit to those who deserve it!

I was completely hurt by what he did, I expected a lot from him but he disappointed me, the irony there is two things: that when he did answer the question and naturally he cited examples, a subsequent example of his will even cause further disgust from my side; and his answer to the question was exactly what I was thinking of.

"Social Contract is when you give up certain right's or freedom ..." when he got to the point of giving an example of giving up certain freedom, he equated murder with same-sex marriage. He's exact words were " absolute freedom does not exist, we have to protect others freedoms us well, that's why we the citizens gave authority to an entity in exchange one can't just kill someone because he/she loves it, there are limitations, stealing, same-sex marriage, etc. " First of all I have no problem with people not being OK with same-sex marriage, and its importance to transfer more than 1200 plus rights that are being enjoyed by opposite-sex married couples, but to equate a crime with a right is just to much to bear.

As I finish this so-called emergency blog-post  you have the liberty to judge my reaction, what do you think my lovely readers? COMMENT!!!!

Love you all!

-Paul Ken-