No, this isn’t a positive blog entry. I’m not out to coin a new term, Techapathy. Instead, you can summarize it in the same way Rodney Dangerfield’s character did in Back to School:
Apathy is a lack of emotion, motivation, or enthusiasm
“I really don’t like when teachers post political stuff on staff e-mail. Actually, I don’t think we should be getting involved in politics at all. Maybe privately, but not publicly.”
Ten years or more ago, this perspective would certainly have been mine. Education seems so “out of politics.” Politics is what those silly vain people get involved with, and education is what people with loving hearts do with students. Unfortunately, the lines between good, bad, and, unfortunately, indifferent are blurred to heck and gone.
In an age dominated by various kinds of techno-utopianism — the conviction that networking technologies are politically and socially emancipatory and that massive data collection will unleash both efficiency in business and innovation in science — the idea that Big Data might be your enemy is antithetical to everything we have been encouraged to believe. A soon-to-be-attained critical mass of algorithms and data has been portrayed as allowing individuals to customize the choices they make throughout their lives. Now, the data sets and algorithms that were supposed to set us free seem instead to have been turned against us.
I regret that by the time I’m done, my only answer will be the same–Vote them out. Perhaps, it’s time to come up with a new approach.
Note: No Teach for America staff were hurt in the writing of this blog entry.
Check out Miguel’s Workshop Materials online at http://mglearns.wikispaces.com