Monday, August 6, 2007

Academic Integrity - NOT!

Way back on May Day 2006, it is estimated that 400,000 people marched on downtown Chicago to protest. The rallying cry was, “Yes, we can!” but I’m not sure what the question was.

Now 400,000 people is a huge group, twice the size of the audience on the Mall in DC to hear Martin Luther King, Jr. say “I have a dream” way back in 1963.

In July 2006 a survey hit the media and was covered by the Chicago dailies. It proclaimed that nearly 300,000 of those marchers were U.S. Citizens. And 200,000 said they were voters. The newspapers lapped it up as fact.

But let’s take a look at the poll and the pollsters. The sample was 410 people chosen at random at the march. Some of the pollsters spoke only English so they had to bypass people in the crowd who didn’t.

In addition, the fear factor was never quantified. If you were here illegally, would you admit it to someone walking around with a clipboard? I think I would either lie about my status or decline to participate.

Now, who was running this study? A group of college professors led by Nilda Flores-Gonzalez, a Puerto Rican who has made her living doing Latino research. They call the group the “Immigrant Mobilization Project”. (Editors: This ought to be your first clue. Be very skeptical.)

Nilda has written such articles as, “The Racialization of Latinos: The Meaning of Latino
Identity for the Second Generation
” and “Latino Youth Culture and Community Action”.

And she is working on an article entitled, “The media’s criminalization of Latino youth”.

Her current position is “Associate Professor with a joint appointment in the Department of Sociology and the Latin American and Latino Studies Program, University
of Illinois at Chicago.”

I wonder why the media is willing to fall for such nonsense and print it. It certainly plays to the diversity angle, but they ought to at least use some journalistic diligence and tell us who these people are and why the numbers might not be accurate.

As for the University of Illinois – Chicago, they have been in a liberal free-fall for decades. They must realize that there is a world off-campus that no longer respects their research for this very reason. They are by no means alone among universities.

If we let the likes of Nilda Flores “frame the debate” as they like to say in the ivory tower, it is easy to predict what we will get.

No comments:

Post a Comment