Jack Herrera

Open Syllabus Project gives empirical insight into curriculum debates

As debates continue to smolder—and ignite, in the case of the “Who's Teaching Us” campaign and the now-failed initiative to reinstate a “Western Civilization” requirement Stanford—regarding the prominence of the “Western Canon” in American universities’ curriculum, the Open Syllabus Explorer provides a quantitative backing to previously more speculative discussion.

Feminist writer Roxane Gay visits campus

Last fall, new student staffers at the Women’s Community Center (WCC) were given copies of Roxane Gay’s book “Bad Feminist” as a welcome to campus. This Wednesday, the WCC and a bevy of campus co-sponsors hosted Gay—the “Bad Feminist” herself—on campus.

Alternative campus journalism platform The Tab launches at Stanford

Call it a British invasion: After launching web presences at colleges across the East Coast, The Tab — a U.K. based student news platform — has started publishing stories on their new “The Tab Stanford” section. The Tab, which markets itself as a place for young people to write stories for other young people, joins sites…


While justice movements persist on Cal’s campus and our own— and on campuses countrywide—student protests register quietly, quickly, or not at all in the news. Activism, as an average, is now quiet smolder dulled by the apathy of mass opinion. There are passionate folks, loud and brilliant people standing up for what is right at Stanford and elsewhere, but their energy does not mirror the sentiments of their peers—student populations are no longer excited. There are few powerful causes that hold our attention, and a protest is unlikely to bring us out in force (unless there is a promise of free food, or a celebrity speaker).

Talking about abortion without having a uterus: my best attempt to not be a dick

When I begin to question my stance on abortion, I tend to reassure myself by putting the issue in the context of my own feminism. Access to abortion is good for women. I sincerely believe that: the ability to terminate a pregnancy puts women in control of their own bodies. But what matters more than what I believe is what the women in my life have taught me about abortion; what the female intellectuals and thought-leaders I respect have explained to me: access to safe abortions is a vital right afforded to all people with uteruses.

Help! I need a grown-up!

My column last week touched on what we’ll call the “aPCalypse”: the impending doom of Western Liberalism at the hands of the PC Police. As I noted, Ben Carson warned in 2013 that, “Political correctness is antithetical to our founding principles of freedom of speech and freedom of expression.”

‘PC’ is a meaningless term

Something that could be called “PC Culture” does indeed exist, but the version of “PC” that Carson and others espouse is completely nonsensical and entirely self-serving. And if we’re to take this potentially dangerous phenomenon seriously, we have to create a set of objective definitions for what we’re seeing, and resist the urge to spin it in our own political favor

How to end a riot

The riots will not end with us shouting at the protestors to go home. It will not end with us chastising them for being violent. It will end when we tell our fellow Americans what they have deserved to hear us say for so long: We are listening. We must do better. And we will do better.

Did Ted Cruz just use science to disprove global warming?

The senator’s delusion is a reminder to all of us: Solitary research results are not the same as scientific truth. We cannot let politicians delude us in this way. We must value legitimate scientific theory over ideological positions. It is the only way we can continue to build a true understanding of the world and our reality.

What to talk about when no one is innocent

At Stanford, we are removed from the hatred that exists in the stones of that Old World land on the Mediterranean. We have the opportunity to look away from the past, and into the future. Let’s start looking at how to solve problems, instead of arguing about who started them.

America should stay open to experimenting

We are made great by our grand experiment. So, if it is to continue, we must not claim that those who identify with our political opposition are inherently wrong: we must never pretend that the “real” America has already been discovered.
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