Tuesday, 24 October 2017

The Trouble with Thinking

I noticed this got brought up today.

There's a  University of Illinois math professor....Rochelle Gutierrez....who wrote up this new book....which basically says that algebra and geometry sponsor “white privilege”.

Reason?  It's a Greek creation.  A bunch of white dudes.

Her big cause?  She suggests to teachers that they ought to be aware of 'identity' politics when it comes math.

I sat there for a few minutes reading over the article and her gimmick.

You see, I enjoy history....but I also have a fascination about math.  So, you lay this out.....most all math leads back to two groups....Sumerians and Babylonians.  It's basically the same region but some will argue that the Sumerians were there before the Babylonians existed. 

The Egyptian angle?  They were hyped up on linear equations (lot of this seen in the Pyramids). So the term algebra is Arabic in nature.

If you were talking about geometric algebra...then yeah, it’d be the Greeks who developed this. They'd sit around for hours after the sun set and discuss how many pickles you could cram into a barrel, or how you might measure the volume of a container of water.  Rather than waste time talking about zombie stories, or fake politics....they were actually thinking beyond reality. 

I don’t think this professor knows much about the historical side. It doesn’t matter who developed it....just that it works. She sounds like some loser who is continually looking for something to get all angry about. She might as well suggest that tampons and bras are ‘white privilege’ because white guys from France developed them.

Why didn't some African guy go and develop algebra ahead of the Arab dudes?  That might be worth asking. 

All of this fake 'white privilege' talk gets to an amusing stage.  Are Arab guys 'white'?  Are Egyptians 'white'?  Are Greeks 'white'?    Should you get all hyped up because hamburgers, muffins, Coke, or ball-point pens were some white guy's invention?  Should we be thinking of 'white privilege' every time we open up some a box of Orellos?  Should it bother some black dude or Mexican dude if cocaine, marijuana, crack, meth, or opioids were some 'white privilege' invention and I should decline it if I were Latino or black? 

The trouble when you start pondering or thinking....a rational person would eventually ask questions that some dimwit intellectual professor can't answer.