December 27, 2005

December’s Official Academic of the Month

We know, dear reader, that you have been patiently waiting for that luminous apex in our “weblogging” month—our declaration of the December Official Academic of the Month. In previous installments, we have lauded a variety of unsavory tenured radicals, championing their commitment to indoctrinating students and establishing an intellectually intolerant learning environment.

And why have we done this? Because, dear reader, that is what good education is all about. Or at least that’s what Stanley Fish taught us. (Is there a Stanley Fish in this class?)

Right about now, you must be wondering: “Who in the good Lord’s name is sufficiently noxious to deserve the glorious title of Academic of the Month?” Or words to that effect.

Well, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” are pleased to announce that this month’s award winner is none other than John Montgomery, a mathematics professor at the University of Rhode Island. Okay, you say, so who is John Montgomery? From a quick perusal of his “website,” we get the impression that he’s an utterly inoffensive pedant. No pontifications about “feminist algebra” should be spewing from the orifices of this math expert.

As anodyne as Mr. Montgomery may appear, he is actually a rather pernicious character. In fact, a student columnist at the University of Rhode Island campus newspaper complained about the way in which Mr. Montgomery taught Venn Diagrams to his Math 107 class.

Mr. Montgomery offered the following charming example:

W = all members of President Bush’s administration
S = all members who are stupid
I = all members who are incompetent
Y = all members who are “yes –men” (or women)

Describe and draw a Venn Diagram:

a) all incompetent “yes-men” who are not stupid
b) those who are stupid or incompetent, but not yes-men.

We, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” particularly savored his addition of “or women” next to his “yes-men” category: One can blithely call the Bush administration a passel of knuckle-dragging Neanderthals, but one wouldn’t want to upset the feminists in one’s midst!

In addition to this delightful display of political intolerance, Mr. Montgomery also used another lovely example in this class: “No Republican cares for the homeless.” Ah, yes, all in a good day’s work for a math professor.

In his own defense, the Good Doctor claimed that his examples were merely designed to entertain students, to make sure they stayed awake in his class. If this were truly the case, why didn’t Mr. Montgomery offer sentences such as “All attractive college girls are easy”? That surely would have entertained the inebriated jocks at URI, but perhaps the Good Doctor would consider it an inappropriate statement? For some reason, however, he finds the use of his math class as an opportunity to castigate unfairly his political opponents entirely appropriate. Well, that’s entertainment, we guess.

Well, Mr. Montgomery, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” also strive to entertain. And thus, solely in the name of entertainment, we shall present our own array of unfair statements—even though you may not like them too much.

Mr. Montgomery is an ignoramus whose actions are an affront to the traditions of liberal learning. His inability to grasp why his blatant political hectoring is inappropriate demonstrates that he is utterly unfit to instruct undergraduates. And it is also a sign that the American academy has become so utterly politicized, so replete with left-wing posturing, that professors can’t tell the difference between earnest teaching and mindless political cheerleading. Also, Mr. Montgomery is a nerd.

For these reasons, dear reader, we’re sure you’ll agree that Mr. Montgomery fully deserves our coveted December Academic of the Month crown. He must be very, very proud.

If you know a good candidate for our Academic of the Month program, feel free to drop us a line by pressing the “Contact Us” “link” at the top right-hand corner of your computer screen. There are so many noxious professors, and so little time.

Posted at December 27, 2005 12:01 AM | TrackBack