Content tagged politics

Conservation Optimism

posted on 2019-05-13

“These lectures always make me depressed”, a colleague of mine said as we walked out of the tropical biology course last Thursday. “Why?”, another asked. “Because every time, they show you just how badly we're messing up nature.” The rest of the group had to agree: studying ecology can be horribly depressing at times. Species are disappearing faster than we can count them, whole ecosystems are collapsing right in front of our eyes, and we don't seem to be able to do very much about it. So how do we deal with this desparate outlook? And is there any cause at all for optimism?

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Guns and Numbers

posted on 2019-04-29

A couple of days ago, a friend of mine pointed out an article on gun control to me, which made the following claim: “Armed citizens are successful 94% of the time at active shooter events”. Written by a firearms training company, it analyses shoot-outs in the United States between 2000 and 2017. Basically, it says that armed citizens are highly effective at stopping shootings (and therefore, that more citizens ought to be armed). Having been asked to fact-check the article, here is what I think.

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Review: Becoming Michelle Obama

posted on 2019-03-04

Becoming is Michelle Obama's autobiography, begun soon after she and her family left the White House and proving an instant international bestseller after being published last year. The popularity is deserved: although her story is long, it is told with a warmth and openness that makes it an engaging and thought-provoking read. And that is before she even reaches the White House.

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The National Park Game

posted on 2019-02-20

Last year the school I was teaching at organised a field trip to the Kafue National Park for our grade 9 students. It was a fantastic opportunity to have fun camping, enjoy time together as a class, and of course to marvel at the astounding nature and wildlife we have in Zambia. Accompanying the trip as the class' biology teacher, I thought about how to bring across the importance and challenges of conservation work in a park like this. In the end, I hit on the idea of a role-playing game: let the students step into the shoes of a (fictional) park's stake holders, and argue it out for themselves. Fourteen students in charge of developing a national park – what would they do?

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Unless otherwise credited all material Creative Commons License by Daniel Vedder.
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