A Case In Point of a Little Knowledge Being a Dangerous Thing

Battles Around Nation Over Proposed Mosques – NYTimes.com.

To sort of “spit ball” a bit on the topic I posted yesterday about Bill Gates’ call for the world to self-educate via the internet, what sort of deep research do you think the sign-holder in this article did before rushing out to protest a Mosque in Temecula? Their “reasoning” probably flowed a little like this: “Islamist terrorist blow things and people up; Islamist Terrorist frequently go to mosques; therefore Islam must preach Terrorism. ‘Boo’ to mosques.”

Now, even a lengthy perusal of internet stories about terrorism would likely support two of the points in their theory and the lazy self-educator would be able to come to the faulty conclusion which lead to the creation of the “Monuments to Terrorism” placard being brandished. Only through a critical thought-based research process would one be encouraged to research a bit about Islam in order to come to a truly accurate conclusion about Mosques and the position the religion takes on terrorism. Does this mean that all self educators would be lazy and jump to conclusions before fully researching a topic? No, of course not. However, how many examples do we need to be shown that many do?

So, Mr. Gates, please rethink your position and use the bully pulpit your celebrity and success afford you to encourage University Education rather than decry it as a waste of time and money.

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About Art

I've been a higher education professional for over 15 years and an Academic Advising administrator for the past eight of those. I have a background in exploratory student advising and have spent a great deal of time guiding students through contemplating their personal college-to-career pathways. I've published, presented, and consulted on the intersection of social media and academia and am a firm believer in social media's power as a tool for engagement rather than solely information delivery. I've worked at public and private institutions as well as 2-year colleges and 4-year universities. I believe in Academic Advising as a teaching and learning activity, that learner-centered education is the key to students' academic success, and that as long as we keep students' individual goals and success at the center of our decision-making process, the problem of college-level student attrition can be solved.
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