Potpourri!

A few interesting items from across the Interwebs:

1.  Gender essentialism in children’s toys is alive and well!  And while we’re on the topic of essentialism, one thing that’s hilarious about the attempts by the likes of evolutionary biologists to justify contemporary cultural perceptions of gender is that often its in complete ignorance of (relatively recent) social history.  To wit: it wasn’t until post-WWII that pink was designated a “girl color” and blue for boys.  In fact, in the early decades of the twentieth century, the exact opposite was true.  

2.  Hey, let’s discover some more ways in which schools are failing to address the serious and systemic sociocultural needs of kids and instead resorting to the blunt tools of rote memorization and truancy fines!  This is gonna end well for everybody.

3.  And finally, a sober and clear-headed discussion of why torture is very, very wrong, and why our national attempts to justify it only make it worse. 

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