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The Value of a Liberal Arts Education

We live in a sneering world where if one isn’t majoring in business or actively becoming a lawyer — one’s future is worthless and their worldview is infantile. Who needs a Poet when you can sell your soul and then sue the person for breach of contract when they buy it and try to take it home from you?

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The 1968 Columbia University Riots

The 1968 riot and takeover on the Columbia University campus is still a rotting sore that ruins the day.  The matter drowns in infamy and many wish it soon to be forgotten — much like the student strike of 1932 that took over the campus — but if we hope not to repeat the mistakes of the past, we must remember them, share the facts of the moment, and preserve the truth into the future.

It is interesting that, just as during the campus strike in 1932, the 1968 riot centered on athletics at Columbia university.

I was able to purchase the historic images you see in this article, and I’m sharing them all with you now to help set the definitive timeline of what happened in Morningside Heights in the Spring of 1968 — and why the riot happened, and how Columbia, still to this day, wrestles with the hard matters had at hand half a century later.

Some of the dates and captions may seem off — I offer them to you directly as they appear in situ — no editorializing or changing of the information has occurred.

Some ghosts never die — they remain, haunting you, forever; not from the shadows — but from the bright sunlight of College Walk.

4.14.68

SCHOOL DAY
New York: Statue of Alexander Hamilton looms above students outside Hamilton Hall during a protest rally at Columbia University April 24th.  Hanging from the balcony are photos of Stokely Carmichael and a Viet Cong flag.  Acting dean Harry S. Coleman and two other Columbia officials have been barricaded inside the building since April 23rd. One target of the student sit-ins is the university’s plan to construct a gymnasium in a Harlem park, which Negro students contend will deprive residents of a recreation area.

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Columbia University in the City of New York 1931-1946

Columbia University in the City of New York was founded in 1754 as King’s College by royal charter of King George II of England. Columbia is the fifth oldest university in America and the oldest living school in the State of New York. As a graduate of Columbia, you never tire of reaching back into history to pull out instances of living and of educational memeing and of the loving of a life that remains to haunt you today — because way back when is always more perceptive and pleasing than the now and again.

I was delightfully fortunate to be able to purchase a large cache of genuine Columbia University photographs. Columbia has a certain reputation in the history of America as being a seat of unrest, and a center of the human protest against the status quo, while also trailblazing educational concepts for teaching and learning.

We begin our photographic tour in 1930 with this caption:

COMMENCEMENT EXERCISES AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY
New York — General view of the commencement excercises at Columbia University, showing the great assemblage of students listening to the address of president Nicholas Murray Butler of Columbia.  There were 861 diplomas and 4,895 degrees awarded during the ceremony.  More than 20,000 spectators witnessed the exercise. 6-3-30.

In you look closely, you can see a naked 115th Street from the Columbia green!  There’s no Butler library yet — named for Columbia President Nicholas Murray Butler mentioned in the caption — Butler Library would rise along the North side of 115th Street in 1931 and would be dedicated in 1934.

Continue reading → Columbia University in the City of New York 1931-1946

The Columbia University Strike of 1932

Many may remember the infamous, and violent, Columbia riots of 1968 — but few know about the strike two generations previous that overtook the Morningside campus in 1932.  This is that story — told in authentic, historic, photographs and captions — that I was able to purchase and share with you today.

COLUMBIA STUDENTS STRIKE
Protesting the expulsion of Reed Harris, crusading editor of the “Columbia Spectator”, undergraduate daily, a one day strike was called on April 4th, by more than a thousand students at a mass meeting in New York. The students applauded speakers attacking Dean Herbert E. Hawkes, who expelled Harris, and President Nicholas Murray Butler, Harris first gained recognition when he attacked the conduct of Athletics at Columbia University as “semi-professional”. The photo shows a general view of the thousands at the mass meeting. 4/4/32

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Return of the Deaf-Mute: Our Next Deaf Culture Conversation

Did you know there’s a troubling, but rich, history using the term “Deaf-Mute” in America?  Janna and I have written a new book “conversation” about that pejorative label released by David Boles Books Writing & Publishing titled — Return of the Deaf-Mute: The Lost Legacy of the Greatest American Deaf Generation — and in our book, we examine the “Deaf-Mute” stereotype in history, its effect on common culture, and the role of human tolerance in society today. How did the “Deaf-Mute” label become such a colloquial monstrosity that it has repressed generations of Deaf people in America — just because it was a convenient, default, categorization that had nothing to do with context or fact of condition?

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Our Latest Book! Day One: Learning American Sign Language in 24 Hours

Our second American Sign Language book published in three weeks — Day One: Learning American Sign Language in 24 Hours written by Janna Sweenie and David Boles — is now available for purchase online as an eBook. You may read the book online, on your smartphone, tablet, computer or Kindle! You also get 150 free HD ASL videos for use with the book!  We invite you to join us in our ongoing effort to help propagate American Sign Language as a proper foreign language!

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Continue reading → Our Latest Book! Day One: Learning American Sign Language in 24 Hours