Mathematics has been used to help people, but more often it has been used to hurt them. Math was behind the development of nuclear weapons. It is used to maintain an economic divide between a handful of wealthy, White people and the billions of poor people of color around the world. It is used as a rationale for depriving people of access to cheap, life-saving drugs. So my question is: what good has the progress of mathematics as an intellectual discipline done for people? Maybe if our mathematicians had a background in social justice, we wouldnâ€™t have so many people suffering around the world.
That quote is so erroneous and misguided that it is hard to imagine that it came from, well, anybody! Since we didn’t make it up, however, it has to be the confessions of a lunatic leftist, in this case one Jonathan Osler who runs a website called Radical Math. The quote, by the way is a response to this question: “What would happen to the progress of mathematics as an intellectual discipline if all children were taught social justice math rather than traditional math?”
Based on Jonathan’s stupid answer, we’re confident in asserting that the teaching of “social justice math” would merely accelerate the plunge into academic hell that is the trajectory of American, public education. Let’s break down this moronic answer, shall we:
Mathematics has been used to help people, but more often it has been used to hurt them.
The story of human progress is the story of scientific process, and mathematics is the language of science. Physics, engineering, chemistry, biochemistry, genetics, computer science, medicine, etc. are impossible disciplines without mathematics, and modern technology is a function of mathematical progress. Has modern technology been used for evil purposes? Of course, and like sticks and stones, anything can be used for evil. However, despite evil deeds by evil people, would any sane, non-Luddite prefer a world without science and technology? Does the fact that some people do not have access to the incalculable benefits of technology nullify all the good for which it’s responsible?
Math was behind the development of nuclear weapons.
Indeed. And nuclear power plants, steam turbines, cars, airplanes, computers, modern agriculture, medicine, sonograms, x-ray machines, surgery, air conditioning, televisions, cruise ships, refrigerators, microwave ovens, and a few hundred thousand other inventions that have improved human existence and are responsible for increasing the life span and comfort of billions of people. Would Jonathan prefer that all of these things had not been invented simply because nuclear weapons were also a result of technological progress?
It is used to maintain an economic divide between a handful of wealthy, White people and the billions of poor people of color around the world.
Ahhh…now the truth comes out. “Mathematics is racist.” Mathematics is the tool that whitey uses to keep darky down. We told you he was a lunatic leftist. Because Jonathan likes to issue moronic statements without proof, we don’t know if this statement is based on a disdain for white people, capitalism, western civilization, or on some other tenet of social justice. However, the statement does reveal the conspiratorial beliefs of the practitioners of “social justice.”
It is used as a rationale for depriving people of access to cheap, life-saving drugs.
We completely disagree that mathematics “is used as a rationale for depriving people…” Frankly, the sentence makes no sense. Nonetheless, Jonathan isn’t aware that those “life-saving drugs” wouldn’t even exist without mathematics. For someone advocating a new mathematics, Jonathan is seriously deficient in simple logic.
So my question is: what good has the progress of mathematics as an intellectual discipline done for people?
Everything, Jonathan. Everything. The difference between the hell-hole of the Dark Ages versus the Enlightenment, science, and modern technology is mathematics. That question is the product of incomprehensible ignorance. Jonathan, you should sue your public school.
Maybe if our mathematicians had a background in social justice, we wouldnâ€™t have so many people suffering around the world.
Sure. You’ve convinced us. Sign us up.
Ok, back to the real world.