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June 24, 2011

I can't even figure out how to title this one

This from a CNN story:

If Americans could have only one child, they would prefer that it be a boy rather than a girl, by a 40% to 28% margin, with the rest having no preference or no opinion on the matter. These attitudes are remarkably similar to what Gallup measured in 1941, when Americans preferred a boy to a girl by a 38% to 24% margin.

The attitudes of American men drive the overall preference for a boy; in the current poll, conducted June 9-12, men favor a boy over a girl by a 49% to 22% margin. American women do not have a proportionate preference for girls. Instead, women show essentially no preference either way: 31% say they would prefer a boy and 33% would prefer a girl.

and to make it even worse

It is significant that 18- to 29-year-old Americans are the most likely of any age group to express a preference for a boy because most babies are born to younger adults.

People always used to ask my Dad (the father of three daughters) if he regretted not having a son. His succinct response was "no"--and he used to get so angry that people would even think to ask him that. His response and the love behind it has made a difference for all of my life. Thanks Dad.

June 22, 2011

I'm back

Am sorry folks for being among the missing for so long. All is well, it was just quite a spring work wise. With the last immediately due report off to the copy editor and my root canal not scheduled until next week- I'm back. And what better way to come back than to tell you about, if you don't already know about it; FairerScience friend Bev Watford's article in ASEE's PRISIM magazine Last Word.

Her call to action on diversity is powerful and inspiring:

As members of the engineering education community, it is our obligation to acknowledge that specific groups have been historically discouraged and turned away from pursuing what we know is a fabulous profession. It is our obligation to nurture and support the next generation of engineers. It is our obligation to change the way that engineering is portrayed and conveyed so that more children want to, and believe that they can, earn an engineering degree. It is our obligation to nurture a professional community that includes individuals from diverse backgrounds collectively working to create the technology for future generations.

As an engineer, I have often seen that the more challenging the problem, the more innovative and creative the solution. I expect nothing less now.

With folks like Bev and new ASEE executive director Norman Fortenbery (yup another FairerScience friend) I too expect nothing less.