4-20 and loaded .44s: guess which one isn’t welcome on campus?

One of these things is not like the other!

Want to smoke pot in public at the University of Colorado today?  Move along, and never mind the fish fertilizer, especially if you don’t have a CU i.d. to prove that you’re a member of the campus community.  But of course, if you’re armed to the teeth with handguns and shotguns of your choosing, campus denizens and members of the public alike are always welcome on our state university campuses!  (And for now anyway, students at CU can even keep their guns in their dorm roomsAwesome!!!)

Think about this for a moment:  a district court judge has ruled that a public university may ban all non-students and non-employees from a public university campus today, just because the admin says so, whereas other courts have ruled that public universities have no right to forbid anyone–students, faculty, staff, and the general public–from campus with a gun, so long as it’s permitted. Continue reading

Are there any regions left in American history?

Nota Bene:  This is a post of interest mostly to American historians, although I would certainly welcome the thoughts of other historians about the role of place or geography in their sub-fields.

Here’s my question:  is there any such thing as regionalism in American history any longer?  Northeastern history was always a regional history, but historians (many of whom lived in and/or trained in the northeast) for the most part denied that it was a regional history and instead claimed to be writing “American history.”  There are regional and state-based history associations like the New England Historical Association, but there is no Northeastern Historical Association.

Western history used to be much more about place, but I think the consensus has shifted to seeing the West–and more broadly speaking, what used to be called “frontier history” and is now called most often borderlands history–as more of a process than a region.  That is, diplomacy, trade, and violent conflicts between Native Americans, Euro-Americans, and various other ethnic groups, depending on spatial and temporal location (Chinese immigrants, Latinos, and African Americans, for example), are a central part of American history from the Columbian “discovery” to our contemporary debates about immigration and border security.  Continue reading

The fantasy life of Whig historians, or, Srsly, Tina?

The Whig of Illusory Progress is back!

Click here and try not to barf all over your desk.  ZOMFG.  You’ll have to click–I’m not going to post that trash on this blog, and that’s really saying something for someone who recently posted a photograph of Pat Buchanan.  You’ll notice, however, that “Father Pat Coughlin” of the Know-Nothing Party wasn’t posed topless and blindfolded, and yet a cover about feminism and working women features just that imagery.  You’d think with symbolism like that that Father Pat’s ideas were mainstream and uncontroversial, whereas feminism and working women are deviant.

This ugliness reminds me of a conversation with a senior scholar I had a few years ago, a woman who probaby took her Ph.D. in the 1960s and so has been an eyewitness to change in our profession over the past 50 years.  I was relating  stories of women I know (including me) whose progress to tenure and promotion was screwed up/f^(ked with/thwarted unjustly, etc., and she looked at me with surprise:  Continue reading

Pat Buchanan, or John C. Calhoun?

Old crazy ideas

You be the judge.  Answer on the flip!

I know further. . . that we have never dreamt of incorporating into our Union any but the Caucasian race–the free white race.  To incorporate Mexico, would be the very first instance of the kind of incorporating of an Indian race; for more than half of the Mexicans are Indians, and the other is composed chiefly of mixed tribes.  I protest against such a union as that!  Ours, sir, is the Government of a white race. . . .

[I]t is a remarkable fact, that in the whole history of man, as far as my knowledge extends, there is no instance whatever of any civilized colored races being found equal to the establishment of free popular government, although by far the largest portion of the human family is composed of these races. . . . Are we to overlook this fact?  Are we to associate with ourselves as equals, companions, and fellow-citizens, the Indians and mixed race of Mexico?  I should consider such a thing as fatal to our institutions. . . . Continue reading