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April 26, 2011

Not intended to be a factual statement: Title IX version

By now I'm assuming everyone knows about Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) and his "not intended to be a factual statement". Kyl's statistics were a little off. He said that over 90% of Planned Parenthood's resources were tied to abortion services, when in reality it is about 3%. He knew that but used the 90% because it was more effective-- not true but more effective.

Speaking about saying things that one knows are not true (BTW when did we lose the word lie?), thanks to the New York Times, we now know that colleges and universities, especially athletics departments are also happy to issue statistics that are not intended to factual.

The problem:

That pesky Title IX requires colleges and universities who receive federal monies (that would be all but 2 or 3) to provide equal opportunites for women and men students in athletics and they don't want to
.
The solution:
Add women's names to team roosters without actually having the women participate (University of South Florida)
Require women cross-country runners join the indoor and outdoor track teams so they could be counted three times (Quinnipiac).
Call the fencing team a women's sport and count the male fencers as women (Cornell)-- that's my personal favorite.

Ah it's good to know we can trust what we hear from our elected officials and our colleges and universities.

April 22, 2011

Happy Earth Day

Hey it's Earth Day. This year there is an effort to collect "a billion acts of green." . Currently they've collected over 100 million pledges.

Lots of the pledges are very doable:
. turn off the water while brushing your teeth
. wash all of your clothes in cold water (well not diapers)
. eat more local food
and my current favorite
. play outside instead of watching TV, saving few hours of electricity usage (I am so doing this one!).

So check them out, make a pledge and stick to it.

April 17, 2011

Food food food

I've been on the road a lot lately interviewing students and generally having fun- hence the lack of posts. Travel is often fraught with problems (especially when you are flying) but there are lots of benefits including, if you are very lucky, finding a great new restaurant. This last trip we found three! This was so exciting that I decided to FairerScience's first foodie post.

I have to start with Fin which is known for "Caribbean Small Plates in Key West." Key West you say-- well remember I told you there were some upsides to travel. I found Fin looking through a book of menus- theirs was the most creative, so off we went to 613 1/2 Duval Street (I liked the 1/2).

We did the chief's tasting menu and it was sooooo good that we immediately made a reservation to come back the following night- becoming their first customers to come two days in a row (they're a new restaurant-open less than two months). They put together really interesting combination of foods like caramelized diver scallop with fois gras flan (who knew scallops and fois gras could work so well together).

The Spanish flatbread with shaved black truffle had so many slices of truffle that I was picking them up and eating them straight-- oh my that was good. Tom went crazy for their empanades (they make their chorizo). The second night the chief sent us ceviche (with pink Key West shrimp). Now I didn't usually like ceviche but I do now (as long as chief Michael Schultz is making it).

So if you are ever in Key West, go to Fin and tell them Pat sent you.

For my next foodie post, kimchi grits (no kidding) at Empire State South in Atlanta.

April 03, 2011

Combatting Sexual Violence on Campus

Hey it's a start

This Monday, April 4, 2011, Vice President Biden will visit the University of New Hampshire in Durham, NH, with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to call attention to the high rates of sexual assault and violence committed against young women in schools and on college campuses across the country. Young women aged 16-24 experience the highest rates of rape and sexual assault; in fact, 1 in 5 will be a victim of sexual assault during college. The Vice President and Secretary Duncan will highlight the Administrationís commitment to raising awareness and promoting policies to prevent sexual violence and assault against women of all ages. Also during their visit, they will introduce new guidance to help schools, colleges and universities understand their civil rights obligations to better prevent and respond to sexual assault.

For the first time in its history, the Office for Civil Rights is issuing detailed policy guidance that focuses on sexual violence.