Just Another Rant on Policy
So I hope you all enjoyed your days without the blog as we protested SOPA and PIPA. What? You thought that we were just being lazy? That’s silly. Of course we did it with a purpose. Haha. Of course.
So what should I talk about on this first day back? Should I tackle SOPA and PIPA? No, those are fairly well covered. Everybody already knows what’s screwy with those bills, and if you don’t you should google it right now and become acquainted with the consequences of the passing of the bills.
Let’s do something even more perplexing. Let’s talk about core curriculum classes at universities.
Here I was, floating through my days, integrating those functions that needed to be integrated, calculating the specific heat when it needed to be known, and just generally being the boring, numbers person that I naturally am. Then, without any forewarning, I found myself in an economics class. Economics is a place where they care as much or more about the meaning of a word than the meaning of a number. This could turn out badly.
It didn’t, of course, or at least I very strongly hope and believe that it will. I like to think that I’m a multi-talented guy who can function in a large number of spheres–a diverse range of disciplines–but this isn’t true for all of us. I can attest to the fact that there are people in my science, math and engineering classes who are useless without a calculator in their hands. Should they be penalized for this shortcoming?
What is college but a place to prepare for a paid role in the world. Sure, at some point college meant more than that. It was a sign of distinction, a way to guarantee a level of awareness of the times and society in which one lived, but we don’t need that any more. We have the internet, right?
No, the role of college is to make sure that somebody is prepared for a future job they might possess. Why should engineers be required to take a course in economics? No, that’s a bad example. A course in economics could be marginally useful to an engineer. But why should an engineer be required to take a course titled “Music Appreciation”?
Will having an appreciation for music make me more valuable to the company for which I will work? Will I be unable to cope with my life if I can’t identify Beethoven’s 5th by hearing only a few lines?
No. Of course not.