What a silly question. Of course I am! And I'll prove it by passing the Prager RUAL Test with flying colors.
|Please read all instructions carefully before beginning the test. If you are having any trouble answering a question, put down your pencil and raise your hand. A VRWC representative will be with you shortly to take care of |you it.
- 1. Read question.
2. Answer question.
3. Keep drool off answer sheet.
A perfect score! You have in store for you a bright future as a professional idiotarian major at any one of our country's most prestigious colleges and universities.
- Do you believe that standards for admissions to universities, fire departments, etc. should be lowered for people of color?
Yes. People of color were egregiously oppressed for such a long time in our society that we must take into account the severe disadvantages they have been forced to suffer. If this means giving them special advantages now as a way of offsetting those past disadvantages, then that is what we must do. Our society is guilty of holding them down and must rectify that guilt by generously affording them all these special advantages, since they would have no hope of getting ahead at all otherwise.
- Do you believe that bilingual education for children of immigrants, rather than immersion in English, is good for them and for America?
Yes. Our strength as a nation and culture lies in our diversity as a people. If we fail to encourage that diversity in our country's newest citizens and guests, then we face losing that strength as more and more of them move here. We will end up becoming a homogenized culture that is intolerant of any difference. So it is important that immigrant children be taught to appreciate and value both their new and their former cultures equally. Showing them that we accommodate and welcome their original language will not only make them feel more welcome here, but strengthen our culture as they grow up because they will bring into it a greater diversity which can only come from their retaining a multiethnic and multicultural outlook.
- Do you believe that murderers should never be put to death?
Yes. The cold-blooded killing of a helpless and confined individual by the state is never morally justified. It only perpetuates the cycle of violence as well as the brutality of that state. No person should ever live in fear that their government can just come along one day and execute them for violating any of its norms. Even if those violations are "proven," governments have been known to make mistakes. An innocent person could be put to death, and the possibility of that ever happening must never be allowed in our society. There is also the possibility that many violators can be re-educated and taught to respect the value of human life, in which case they can again become productive members of our society and of their own communities.
- Do you believe that during the Cold War, America should have adopted a nuclear arms freeze?
Yes. If we had demonstrated to the Soviet Union that we were really serious about bringing a complete end to all further construction of nuclear weapons, they would have felt less threatened and more willing to adopt a similar stance on their own. Then the world would have been much safer. We could have ended the so-called Cold War and its arms race much sooner, and in a much more cooperative and mutually beneficial fashion.
- Do you believe that colleges should not allow ROTC programs?
Yes. Forcing colleges to harbor such programs sends the wrong message to prospective students, many of whom are visitors from other countries. It says we tolerate letting our institutions of higher learning be used to instruct people in the "art and science of war"—institutions where it has no real place. If someone wants to be taught how to be a warrior, they can attend a war school or a military academy. Colleges should be reserved solely for learning about the things that create and enhance life, not about the things that can kill or destroy it.
- Do you believe that it was wrong to wage war against Saddam Hussein in the Gulf War?
Yes. If this question refers to the recent war in Iraq, I believe that removing a legitimately elected head of state is as much an act of aggression as any "we" have unilaterally accused him of committing. Going in there without the express permission of the United Nations was clearly wrong, not to mention a violation of international law. The Junior Bushies all deserve to be brought before an international war crimes tribunal and tried for their illegal acts of aggression. However, if this question is about the first Gulf War, then, yes, I believe "we" were wrong to wage war in that instance too. The Senior Bushies never really gave sanctions a chance to work on reducing Saddam Hussein's ability to continue his disputed occupation of Iraq, which he was contending had historically been Iraq's 19th province. We could have negotiated in good faith and worked out a settlement that would have been mutually beneficial for all sides as well as in full compliance with international law. But, no. Instead "we" decided to oust him from Kuwait by force.
- Do you believe that poor parents should not be allowed to have vouchers to send their children to private schools?
Yes. No voucher proposal I have ever seen convinces me that it would lead to anything other than the complete destruction of our public schools. Without any public school system, learning in this country would be set back a hundred years, while millions upon millions of children go uneducated. I suppose some people want poor people to receive no education and remain in squalor and ignorance. But that's not what this country is all about. We're about letting every child have an equal opportunity at getting a good education; and you cannot do that unless there are public schools. Besides, a voucher would have to be made out for thousands of dollars each year for every child to pay for their "tuition" at private schools. Public schools have been delivering the same services free of charge now for only a mere $6,857 a year per pupil, according to a 1996 report.
- Do you believe that it is good that trial lawyers and teachers unions are the two biggest contributors to the Democratic Party?
Yes. Both professions share in the Democratic Party's fight to rid our society of intolerance, inequality, and denial of rights. It is therefore only proper that they all should assist and support each other on this common ground. If the members of these professions believe—as they seem to now—that no other political party is standing up for equality, rights, and tolerance, then it is perfectly understandable that they would want to be the Democratic Party's biggest contributors since it is both walking the walk and talking the talk on these things. After all, most of the rights that the Democratic Party has always fought for have been won in our courts through the tireless efforts of civil rights attorneys. The Party has also fought side by side with professional educators from all walks of life to ensure that public schools stay strong and teach tolerance and respect for different cultures. The Democratic Party shares with them many of the same values and goals. It is good that their contributions help the Party remain a steadfast partner with them in those efforts.
- Do you believe that marriage should be redefined from male-female to any two people?
Yes. If two people love each other, regardless whether they are female and male, male and male, or female and female, they should have the same equal right to get married like everyone else. It is wrong for any government to create barriers that discriminate against two people simply because they happen to be homosexual. We must tolerate people's choices, especially with respect to such personal matters as marrying whomever they wish.
- Do you believe that a married couple should not have more of a right to adopt a child than two men or two women?
Yes. Numerous studies have shown that gay and lesbian couples are just as loving and supportive of their children as opposite-sex couples are, in many cases more so. Most traditional marriages end in divorce, so nothing is inherently beneficial for children in those arrangements. It is discriminatory to deny same-sex couples the same rights to adopt. After all, this should all be about the children and their best interests, not what some people might consider inconsistent with their narrow, intolerant religious beliefs.
- Do you believe that the Boy Scouts should not be allowed to use parks or any other public places and should be prohibited from using churches and synagogues for their meetings?
Yes. Their blatant acts of discrimination against people who happen to have alternative lifestyles is based on some arcane moral code defined by intolerant religious beliefs, and not based on a more inclusive moral code defined by government. No study has ever shown that gay scout leaders would pose any threat to the physical safety or moral upbringing of young boys, like has happened in the Catholic church. Since the Boy Scouts is not a church, they should have to obey the same laws that prohibit such discrimination in other organizations. If a church or synagogue wants to host meetings of the Boy Scouts or any other organization, it should be required to ensure that the organization engages in no discriminatory practices or else face losing its special tax-exempt status.
- Do you believe that the present high tax rates are good?
Yes. Highly progressive tax rates have always been good for promoting economic equality and, in turn, social justice, and for effectively putting brakes on some of the worst aspects of unbridled capitalism, such as an over-concentration of wealth. A society that is truly democratic should be so economically as well as politically. Otherwise you cannot have real justice. And without justice, there is no peace.
- Do you believe that speech codes on college campuses are good and American values?
Yes. The right to free speech does not include the right to offend others or to speak against or question the value of their cultures or belief systems. Thomas Jefferson wrote that into our constitution so we must respect that. Especially on college campuses where the need to accommodate different cultures and lifestyles, persons of color, and unfettered thought is greatest in terms of promoting academic freedom and diversity without fear of being ridiculed or demonized. Thus it is necessary to adopt codes that prohibit any speech which might contribute to an environment of disrespect, hate, or fear of anyone's race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, sexual preference, lifestyle, culture, or beliefs.
- Do you believe that the Israelis and Palestinians are morally equivalent?
Yes. Both sides have committed atrocities against each other, and each has an interest in securing a lasting peace between them. But that cannot happen as long as the Israelis keep attacking Palestinians and provoking the Palestinians to attack back in revenge. The Palestinians unjustly lost their land when Israel was set up by the United States, and they deserve to get at least some of it back. This is only fair. President Clinton got Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to hug the Israeli prime minister and both won a peace prize for it. So there is hope that the Israelis will let the Palestinians have some of their land back.
- Do you believe that the United Nations is a moral force for good in the world, and therefore America should be subservient to it and such international institutions as a world court?
Yes. When all nations decide something is right or should be done, then each nation can be assured that what has been decided by all of them is legitimate. The United Nations was formed so that no nation could impose its will on or otherwise threaten any other nation. That moral intention should always be revered and respected by every nation, regardless its relative strength or weakness. The United Nations does a lot of great humanitarian work, too, such as feeding starving peoples. Petty questions about sovereignty only stand in the way of this work. So no country should believe its sovereignty is more important than this global good, especially as it relates to our world court.
- Do you believe that it is good that colleges have dropped hundreds of men's sports teams in order to meet gender-based quotas?
Yes. Achieving parity between men's and women's sports activities on college campuses is vital to eliminating all gender-based discrimination there and in our society. Once the number of women's sports teams starts increasing, an equal number of men's teams can be added back, which is most fair for all sides.
- Do you believe that no abortions can be labeled immoral?
Yes. A woman's right to choose what she does to her own body is paramount to maintaining her autonomy as a person, and is more important than the status of any embryo or fetus which remains a part of her body until it actually leaves her womb. Women have been oppressed by men for thousands of centuries, and aborting something that is essentially a mere body part of hers whenever she wishes is their way of getting back at men and out from under all that oppression.
- Do you believe that restaurants should be prohibited by law from allowing customers to choose between a smoking and a non-smoking section?
Yes. Smoking is harmful and should be banned from all places. Until this ban can be imposed universally, no restaurant should be allowed to discriminate against any customer through the segregationist method of forcing them to make a false choice between smoking and non-smoking sections. Studies have shown that smoke travels everywhere and that even the least amount of second-hand smoke will likely cause emphysema, cancer, or other related illnesses in every non-smoker who is exposed to it.
- Do you believe that high schools should make condoms available to students and teach them how to use them?
Yes. In an era when AIDS and HIV infections are becoming much more common, it is necessary to do whatever we can to protect our children from catching this deadly sexually transmitted disease. Practices of safe sex must be taught all students from the youngest possible ages so that when they inevitably becomes sexually active they have not only effective tools for protecting themselves against this threat but practical knowledge about how to properly use such tools.
- Do you believe that racial profiling for terrorists is wrong -- a white American grandmother should as likely be searched as a Saudi young male?
Yes. We must always be sensitive to other peoples' cultural differences and not discriminate against anyone based on those differences. If searching everyone at random is what it takes to avoid the possibility of offending anyone who might perceive their being singled out for searches as acts of discrimination, then we must avoid that possibility at all costs.
- Do you believe that racism and poverty -- not a lack of fathers and a crisis of values -- are the primary causes of violent crime in the inner city?
Yes. When people are discriminated against because of their race, they feel oppressed and have no choice but to turn to what others might consider less desirable means of removing themselves out from under that oppression. So violent crime is the only means they have of expressing their anger—a way of lashing out, if you will—at the injustices they see all around them as a result of that oppression. Although poverty is a symptom (not cause) of this oppression, it is still another reason people who are living under oppressed conditions in our inner cities have for "illegally" obtaining what has been wrongly and unfairly denied them by our society.
- Do you believe that it is wrong and unconstitutional for students to be told, "God bless you" at their graduation?
Yes. There is a wall of separation between church and state, enshrined in our constitution, which must always be maintained. Forcing students who may not believe in the same "god" (or in any "god" for that matter) to sit through what in essence amounts to state-mandated acceptance of one particular belief system is intolerant both of cultural and religious difference and of the way some students are offended by any form of religious expression. We must therefore always be careful that nothing in any governmental act such as a school graduation is ever allowed to upset, intrude on, or offend the religious or personal sensibilities of the individual, so that we can ensure they are never made to feel unwelcome or uncomfortable.
- Do you believe that no culture is morally superior to any other?
Yes. We are all human beings, each with basically the same needs, wants, and desires as every other human being. Equality of the individual must also include equality of their cultures if we are to eradicate once and for all the scourges of discrimination and intoleration which have plagued humankind for far too long. When all cultures are considered by everyone to be equal, no culture will ever have cause again to oppress or otherwise threaten another; and the world will be a much peaceful and safer place for every human being.
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