Archive | February, 2016

Pinker opposes BDS boycott of Israel by American Anthropological Association

29 Feb

For what it’s worth, I agree with Pinker. Punishing scholars (not governments) from nations with questionable human rights records makes little sense – plus we’d have to punish every nation’s scholars, including the U.S.

Why Evolution Is True

Various universities, student organizations, and academic associations have been joining the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement (BDS), urging a boycott of Israeli academics. Their recomendations range from complete non-interaction with Israeli academics to milder “sanctions”, including boycotting of institutions rather than scholars (i.e., you could invite an Israeli academic to speak at your university).

The American Anthropological Association (AAA) is about to vote on a resolution supporting the BDS by imposing a boycott of Israeli academic institutions, based on these principles, outlined in the linked pdf:

Whereas, The AAA’s 1999 Declaration on Anthropology and Human Rights states, “Anthropology as a profession is committed to the promotion and protection of the right of people and peoples everywhere to the full realization of their humanity” and “the AAA has an ethical responsibility to protest and oppose… deprivation;” and whereas the AAA has historically upheld those rights, including the right to education and academic…

View original post 856 more words

Advertisements

Chinook Nation (You CAN Help!)

23 Feb

Making the world a better place sounds lofty, but can be pursued every day with simple actions. In this case, you can quickly and easily help address a historical injustice by simply signing a petition.

I had the chance to meet and talk with Tony Johnson, Chairman of the Chinook Indian Nation, at the recent Society for Cross-Cultural Research meetings in Portland, Oregon. Since then, I have learned a bit more about the Chinook Nation, their justified grievances, and continuing efforts to be federally recognized.

Attempts to gain such recognition reveal a history of broken treaties, misunderstandings, and debate about the specific criteria for federal recognition as a tribe. After reviewing these criteria, the outgoing Clinton administration granted the Chinook Indian Nation federal recognition. Unfortunately, this decision was reversed by the Bush administration just 18 months later.

Now, Tony and others are appealing to the Obama administration to review federal recognition criteria and clarify the legal standing of the Chinook. Please visit the Chinook Nation link above for more information about what you can do to help.

I have also started a petition at Whitehouse.gov to help draw attention to this issue. The petition must have 150 signatures to become searchable on the petition site, a necessary step if the petition is going to have any hope of reaching the 100,000 signatures necessary to be reviewed by presidential staff.

Please review and sign the petition here, and share widely so we can (minimally) reach that first threshold. Imagine how good it will feel to know that you have helped bring about this change – all you have to do is sign your name. Thanks!

Why do you love anthropology?

13 Feb

Welcome to the AAA Blog

Why do you S_S-Classic-Heart-Pink_1024x1024 anthropology? We thought we’d get an early start celebrating Valentine’s Day and the Feb. 18 Anthropology Day event by sharing the #AnthroLove.

Read the responses below from AAA President Alisse Waterston and her colleagues at John Jay College CUNY. Then share your own story with us in the comments!

ALISSE WATERSTON –  GAINING PERSPECTIVE

I got to anthropology the long way, and later than most. Almost 30 years old when I “discovered” the field—well after I had completed my undergraduate education—I found anthropology to be the discipline that would best help me understand the world as it exists rather than as I may have wanted it to be. Anthropology gave me the intellectual tools to step outside myself and question what I thought I knew. It helped me realize and come to terms with the human capacity for cleverness, creativity, connection as well as delusion and other…

View original post 385 more words