First Amendment: Still engraved in stone

August 18, 2012

In a discussion about teaching evolution in biology classes a few years ago, I had carefully explained how and why the First Amendment does not require creationism to be taught in biology classes, and in fact is the reason that creationism isn’t taught, in the Establishment Clause. My explanation irritated the tarnation out of a creationist woman who exclaimed, “Well, it’s not like the First Amendment is engraved in stone!”

Heh. Guess what I found at Southern Methodist University. There, outside the main door of the Umphrey Lee Center, which houses the Department of Economics and the Division of Journalism of the Meadows School for the Arts:

The First Amendment, at SMU

This is an encore post from April 2008.

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Immigration policy in an era of globalization: U.S. needs more immigration, not less

June 11, 2011

Anathema to many partisans of the immigration debates:   What if we look at the real value of immigration?  The U.S. needs more to encourage immigration than to discourage it.  God, and devil, in the details.

From the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank:

In advance of an immigration policy conference, Dallas Fed Senior Economist Pia Orrenius discusses how immigration policy can help the U.S. economy and how the global competition for high-skilled immigrants is increasing. The Dallas Fed and the John Goodwin Tower Center for Political Studies at Southern Methodist University are co-sponsoring “Immigration Policy in an Era of Globalization” at the Dallas Fed on May 19-20, 2011.

This piece had only 329 views when I posted it.  Shouldn’t carefully studied views of immigration get more circulation on the inter’tubes?

Do you recall seeing any coverage of the May 19-20 conference  in your local news outlets, or anywhere else?  The conference included high-faluting experts who discussed immigration policies for the U.S., Canada, the EU, Europe, Britain, Australia, Japan, South Korea, Italy, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Spain and Germany.  One might think to find some value in the information there.

Can we get the immigration we need, legally?  Do present proposals in Congress offer to boost our economy, or hurt it?

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Democrats take solid South

October 25, 2009

Bob Moser says they can.  He’s talking about how to do it at SMU this week.

Can’t make it?  Buy the book.

The William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies
and the
Geurin-Pettus Program in the Department of Political Science
at Southern Methodist University
invite you to



Bob Moser, editor of the Texas Observer and an award-winning political reporter for The Nation, has chronicled Southern politics for nearly two decades.

In Blue Dixie he argues that the Democratic Party needs to jettison outmoded prejudices about the South if it wants to build a lasting national majority.  With evangelical churches preaching  a more expansive social gospel and a massive left-leaning demographic shift to African Americans, Latinos, and the young, the South is poised for a Democratic revival. Moser shows how a volatile mix of unprecedented economic prosperity and abject poverty are reshaping the Southern vote. By returning to a bold, unflinching message of economic fairness, the Democrats can in in the nation’s largest, most diverse region and redeem themselves as a true party of the people.

Books will be available for purchase.

THURSDAY, October 29, 2009

Noon to 1 pm
Texana Room, DeGolyer Library
6404 Hilltop Ln. & McFarlin Blvd
Bring your own brown bag lunch!

Better, make it to the lecture, buy the book, listen to Moser and let him autograph it for you.

For more information, please call 214-768-2526 or email carberry AT smu DOT edu

Invite a friend to a brown-bag lunch:

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Whales and evolution: Gingerich at SMU, this afternoon

October 7, 2009

From an SMU press release:

Evolution Expert Philip D. Gingerich to Speak at SMU on Oct. 7

Philip D. Gingerich, a leading expert in the evolution of primates and whales, will speak at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 7, in Dallas Hall’s McCord Auditorium.

Philip D. Gingerich

Philip D. Gingerich

Gingerich’s lecture on “Darwinian Pursuit in Paleontology: Origin and Early Evolution of Whales” is part of SMU’s year-long celebration of naturalist Charles Darwin’s 200th birthday and the 150th anniversary of his world-changing publication, On the Origin of Species.

Gingerich, the Darwin Year Visiting Scholar for SMU’s Institute for the Study of Earth and Man, is Case Collegiate Professor of Paleontology at the University of Michigan. He also is professor of geological sciences and director of UM’s Museum of Paleontology. A recipient of UM’s 1997 Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award, he teaches courses on primate and mammalian evolution and supervises undergraduate and graduate student research on mammals and evolution.

His research focuses on vertebrate paleontology, especially the origin of modern orders of mammals and quantitative approaches to paleobiology and evolution.

A winner of numerous awards, Gingerich is a member of the National Geographic Society Committee for Research and Exploration, associate editor of American Journal of Science, and co-editor of Causes and Consequences of Globally Warm Climates in the Early Paleogene. In 2001 he was a scientific adviser to “Walking with Prehistoric Beasts,” a television documentary produced by the BBC and aired on the Discovery Channel.


SMU’s Martin Luther King Week

January 22, 2008

Southern Methodist University celebrates the life of Martin Luther King, Jr., all week long.

MLK talks with reporters at SMY, 3-17-1966

SMU has about an hour of tape of a speech Dr. King delivered at SMU in 1966. While the speech is not particularly noteworthy, it’s a good example of King’s rhetoric of the time. You can put it on your iPod.

It’s interesting SMU has made it available on-line, the first time the recording has been made available. Teachers will also want to check out the clip from the campus newspaper for DBQ questions, and printed excerpts from the speech.

It’s a real period piece — King in a southern, formerly segregated town, so soon after the Voting Rights Act. Real history, real people. Very interesting.

Photo of King speaking at SMU SMU has activities running all week long. Things change in 40 years.

(Check out the socks and ties of the men on stage — and where are the women?)

  • Photos from SMU, from the archives of the campus newspaper, The SMU Campus.

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