Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Ignorance: It's Your Problem

I write to you today about a very serious matter:


Ignorance is a disease plaguing many congregations in the Brave New Church and affiliates and we here at the home offices have finally done something about this problem.  We are working our way down the age bracket to reach every member of the BNC in a grassroots program we now title, “No Child Left Behind.” 

This year we have begun the program at the Bachelors level: at BNC Colleges and Universities nationwide.

So many forget the true meaning of a “Liberal Arts Education.”  Unlike most colleges, universities, and institutes, a liberal arts designation means freedom to explore and have opportunities thrust upon you like beacons in the night!  Cast off the rigors of Reading, ‘Riting, and ‘Rithmetic for the greater good found in Sexuality Studies!  Angry about patriarchy?  Try a major in Women’s Studies!  There is no need for hard science or history – only a great imagination to interpret the troubles of today!

Back in 2007 The Los Angeles Times reported a smorgasbord of fine educational options for your budding young Einstein and there has yet to be much change in the academic rigmarole:

1. 'The Phallus'
Occidental College. A seminar in critical theory and social justice, this class examines Sigmund Freud, phallologocentrism and the lesbian phallus.

2. 'Queer Musicology'
UCLA. This course welcomes students from all disciplines to study what it calls an "unruly discourse" on the subject, understood through the works of Cole Porter, Pussy Tourette and John Cage.

3. 'Taking Marx Seriously'
Amherst College. This advanced seminar for 15 students examines whether Karl Marx still matters despite the countless interpretations and applications of his ideas, or whether the world has entered a post-Marxist era.

4. 'Adultery Novel'
University of Pennsylvania. Falling in the newly named "gender, culture and society" major, this course examines novels and films of adultery such as "Madame Bovary" and "The Graduate" through Marxist, Freudian and feminist lenses.

5. 'Blackness'
Occidental College. Critical race theory and the idea of "post-blackness" are among the topics covered in this seminar course examining racial identity. A course on whiteness is a prerequisite.

6. 'Border Crossings, Borderlands: Transnational Feminist Perspectives on Immigration'
University of Washington. This women studies department offering takes a new look at recent immigration debates in the U.S., integrating questions of race and gender while also looking at the role of the war on terror.

7. 'Whiteness: The Other Side of Racism'
Mount Holyoke College. The educational studies department offers this first-year, writing-intensive seminar asking whether whiteness is "an identity, an ideology, a racialized social system," and how it relates to racism.

8. 'Native American Feminisms'
University of Michigan. The women's studies and American culture departments offer this course on contemporary Native American feminism, including its development and its relation to struggles for land.

9. '"Mail Order Brides?" Understanding the Philippines in Southeast Asian Context'
Johns Hopkins University. This history course — cross-listed with anthropology, political science and studies of women, gender and sexuality — is limited to 35 students and asks for an anthropology course as a prerequisite.

10. 'Cyberfeminism'
Cornell University. Cornell's art history department offers this seminar looking at art produced under the influence of feminism, post-feminism and the Internet.

11. 'American Dreams/American Realities'
Duke University. Part of Duke's Hart Leadership Program that prepares students for public service, this history course looks at American myths, from "city on the hill" to "foreign devil," in shaping American history.

12. 'Nonviolent Responses to Terrorism'
Swarthmore College. Swarthmore's "peace and conflict studies" program offers this course that "will deconstruct 'terrorism' " and "study the dynamics of cultural marginalization" while seeking alternatives to violence.

Now, I realize many my darling non-BNC privileged elite will offer a hearty tsk’ tsk’ in an effort to show unenlightened disagreement with such marvelous thought-provoking courses of study!  So, without further ado I introduce to you the next step in progressive liberal arts education:

If you do not come to the BNC banner of radical tolerance, unity, and free Love, we will come to you!  Behold Gustavus Adolphus College!  This is a fine BNC-affiliated institution founded in 1862 by Swedish Lutherans.  Home to the annual Nobel Conference, this school of progressive thought boasts 75 different majors, a fine roster of athletic opportunities, and a rainbow colored tapestry of student organizations!  Each year approximately 2,500 fresh faced blondes join to ranks of exceptional BNC education and we see to it that each young adult is exposed to as many options as possible for personal and academic exploration. 
Because so many students at many institutions around the world are committed to only traditional academic and lifestyle expectations, Gustavus Adolphus College has ever so Bravely offered a beautiful introduction for incoming freshman as to the breadth and depth of opportunities previously unheard of while growing up in a limited home environment:

Poetry!  Pageantry!  New Pals and Partners!  Could there possibly be a better way to introduce the many options available to little Johnny and his former high school girlfriend, Susie?

The Brave New Church and educational affiliates recognize that we can no longer idle by and beg students into our coursework and extra-curricular offerings.  No, we will now come directly to the student!

Because if the BNC supported “Queers and Allies” student group at GA can’t effectively Love your child into tolerance, acceptance, and unfettered sexual experimentation, who will?

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