Friday, September 16, 2011

Professor Reeve's curious Facebook page

     REEVE'S BLOG. For those readers who seek to learn more about SJC City Councilman and Saddleback College adjunct Derek Reeve—the fellow who joked at a recent meeting that he had named his dog “Muhammad”—you might check out his blog: Patriots of Troy. There, he informs us that he is “an attorney, small business owner, and adjunct professor of political science at Saddleback College and Concordia University.”
     On his blog, Reeve posts only intermittently, typically providing links to conservative or libertarian articles, such as conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer’s The Fall of Obama.

      FACEBOOK. He’s also on Facebook: Professor of Political Science Derek Reeve. On his Facebook page, that title is followed by the words “Public Figure.”
     Under “about,” we are told that:
This is dedicated to all current and former students of Professor Reeve. FREE SPEECH ZONE, but please be respective [sic] of others [sic] wrong ideas. :-D
     Is the Facebook page merely "dedicated" to Reeve's students or is it also a resource for students in his current classes? It would appear to be a resource as well. You'll see why I make that inference in a moment.
     There’s no denying that most of Reeve’s Facebook posts present conservative or libertarian views. For instance, he leaves a link to “There Is No Male-Female Wage Gap,” an article that appeared in the Wall Street Journal. He leaves links to articles by the likes of Bob Barr, who has run for office as a member of the Libertarian Party. (There are few exceptions to this pattern.)
    He quotes notorious libertarian/libertine philosopher Ayn Rand:
"The Constitution is a limitation on the government, not on private individuals... it does not prescribe the conduct of private individuals, only the conduct of the government... it is not a charter for government power, but a charter of the citizen's protection against the government."
     He also cites Fox News stories.
     As on his blog, on his Facebook page, Reeve posts intermittently, occasionally offering brief conservative or libertarian opinions—or links to like-minded articles.
     On Sept. 10, he advised: Remember in prayer all the victims, first responders, fire and police officers and those affected by 9/11 on this 10th Anniversary......”
     So Reeve assumes that his audience prays. He is suggesting to his audience who they should mention in their prayers. Are his current students among his audience? It seems so. He clearly makes announcements to his students on this site. (Judge for yourself.)


     EXTRA CREDIT. One thing on his Facebook page caught my eye. Back in June, he offered his students an extra credit opportunity: attendance of the showing of the anti-socialized medicine documentary “Sick and Sicker” (see above). The showing was at a local church and it was promoted by a local “Tea Party” organization: South Orange County 912.
      Upon clicking on the latter link, we see the following:
Movie - SICK & SICKER! 
When the Government becomes Your Doctor! 
Monday, June 27, 2011, 6:30 PM
. . .
Christian Mission Church
27812 Forbes Road, Suite A, Laguna Niguel, CA (map)
. . .
   This is our second showing of this Movie with Dr. Jeff Sarkozi as our speaker. If you missed the first showing, don't miss this one! Dr. Sarkozi is an ex-patriot of Canadian socialized medicine. He is passionate on this subject! He will also give us solutions! 
   Where will ObamaCare lead America? 
    Logan Darrow Clements shows what happens when "the government becomes your doctor" using licensed news footage from Canadian TV, interviews with doctors, patients, journalists, a health minister, a Member of Parliament, a doctor who went on a hunger strike as well the producer's own Canadian relatives. Clements even rents a hospital to show the mismatch between supply and demand in a medical system run by politicians. SICK and SICKER puts ObamaCare on ice with cold hard facts from Canada.
One of Reeve's students wrote back:
    Hi Professor Reeve, I am in your PS 12 class [“Comparative Politics and Government” at Saddleback College] this summer. I am entering my junior year at UCSB where I have been since my freshman year and am pursuing a Political Science degree. I am interested in learning about foreign governments this quarter. I am a registered Republican but consider myself to be a conservative before any political party title and would vote according to who represents my values best. I watch a good amount of news weekly and hope to learn more.
     Hmmm. Is this student responding to Reeve's stated "values"?

     Naturally, it wouldn’t do to offer this “extra credit” opportunity only to students who happen to visit Reeve’s “Professor” Facebook page, and so I'm guessing that he has all of his students monitor the page. That is, it seems likely that viewing Reeve's Facebook page is part of taking his course. (Again, that's a guess.)
     Just sayin': if Reeve has his students keeping track of his Facebook page, it looks like his instruction is mighty conservative/libertarian. Tea Party groups? Documentary showings at a church? Instructions to pray?
     Golly. [END]

     UPDATE: Note to right-wingers: I am not questioning Reeve's right to hold and express opinions or to cite articles/blogs. We honor those rights. If there is an issue here, it is whether, qua CC "poli sci" instructor, it is appropriate for Reeve to [a] suggest to his students that they pray or how they should pray, [b] recommend political articles that are almost uniformly conservative or libertarian, [c] set himself up as a conservative/libertarian guru to his students—if indeed he is doing that on his Facebook page. With regard to b and c, people can reasonably disagree, I suppose. I don't see how [a] can be defended. —Again, I'm operating on the assumption that Reeve has his students read this Facebook page, which seems likely [though not certain], given that he makes announcements to his students on that page. See.

37 comments:

  1. Oh my! What happened to academic freedom, BvT? It matters only when it favors the liberal agenda. Hmmmm. I got it.

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  2. I find the whole professor as Facebook "friend" kind of creepy and highly unprofessional - especially for current students. Doesn't your college district have policies about this kind of thing?

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  3. 10:01, I'm not sure about the policy question, but I am aware that Irvine Valley College, like many colleges, has its own Facebook page. I checked it out once, and it did appear that students befriended themselves to the site/college, if that is the term. It's a new era. What can I say?
    I am creeped out by the kind of chumminess exhibited by students who write to Reeve's page. What I wonder about is whether Reeve has set himself up as a kind of conservative/libertarian guru to students. I don't know that that's the case, but, judging by what I've seen, it may be. I don't think that sort of thing is healthy. At any rate, it shouldn't be encouraged. Teachers should not be gurus.

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  4. 9:21, FIRST, I am not questioning Reeve's right to offer his opinions—whether on a Facebook page or anywhere else.
    SECOND, the professorate is often accused of teaching leftist philosophies. Reeve's instruction seems to be an instance of a professor teaching non-leftist philosophies (judging by appearances). It is worth noting.
    FINALLY, if (and I say "if") he has his students visit this Facebook page as a part of taking his course, then I do think his (there) advising prayer (and his assuming that all of his auditors pray) to be a tad hinky, given the First Amendment, which forbids government establishing religion. I don't want to make a Federal case out of it, but his advising of prayer in this setting is worth noting.
    9:21, do try to read more carefully.

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  5. In employment situation there ARE some restrictions, rean't there? For example, professors are not supposed to date their students (restrictions on free association); employees should not serve on hiring comittees when a candidate is a family member or a lover; etc.

    I find the professor as Facebook friend for current students creepy. Why can't he just use Blackboard to post his materials - why take it to social media?

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  6. I don't think you have to worry too much - his facebook page doesn't look too actuive. I agree by the way - unprofessional move, and yes, a bit creepy. Take it to Blackboard fella.

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  7. I wonder if Reeve pals around with the similarly creepy Howard Gensler, who also teaches Poli Sci at Saddleback? Those two would make an interesting pair. Maybe they should team teach. That would likely spark the formation of a Hellmouth, right there in beautiful Mission Viejo

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  8. Boy, you're all over this fella like white on rice. If it was one of your liberal collegues interacting with, say someone within the Obama admin, or with Paul Krugman, there would be no issue, huh? Ever heard of the first amendment? Freedom of speech, association & assembly, in case you forgot. But because bvt's blog is all about guilt by association, this guy is just a new target dissent inquiry, a flavor of the week, so to speak.

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  9. You can see Reeve's interactions with students on his Facebook page here

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  10. Oh, and BTW, In case you haven't figured it out by now, Charles Krauthammer ROCKS!

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  11. What about Anthony Weiner's interactions on social medai? Have we forgotten aboout that already?

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  12. I was told when I was hired (part-time) to use the college's online Blackboard to interact with students and to post class materials.

    I was told to not use Facebook or an independent blog (blogger, word press, etc) as a medium to manage the class or students.

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  13. 11:30, nobody is questioning Reeve's right to state his opinions or his right to cite articles and blogs. But, as a teacher at a community college, it is at least odd to find him urging students to pray. He does seem to use that Facebook page to communicate with his students. Some of his students are at Saddleback College, a public institution.
    And, as a matter of fact, if I were to find that instructor X has his/her students read only very liberal readings, I would question that just as I question the decidedly right-leaning pattern of Reeve's reading recommendations (relative to communication with his college students). There's no double standard here.
    And what do you mean by guilt by association? Do you mean that, according to BvT, Reeve is guilty of something because of his associations? Explain!

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  14. Yes, precisely! Perhaps bvt is doing the same sort of things he's inferring about Reeve with his blog, dtb?

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  15. Interesting discussion but I think there is a BIG difference between a Facebook page dedicated to class activities and a student audience and a blog that focuses on college issues and the larger world of ideas with an audience of faculty and staff - and readers in the community. This blog is not related to class activities.

    It's also interesting to consider the Facebook page discussion in terms of why colleges direct faculty to communicate with students using college email accounts (instead of private accounts) and to use resources such as Blackboard and Writing Studio (UCI). Such institution-based resources and media can be monitored or otherwise accessed if necessary. For example if an instructor were incapcitated, the institution could retreive course materials from Blackboard and as well as student emails - but could not do the same with a private email account or a blog or a Facebook page.

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  16. As a point of info: I have never made any of my blogs a part of any of my courses. I teach philosophy. I do have a philosophical blog (OC Blue Philosopher), and I have on occasion suggested to students that they read some of it--as strictly extra reading for interest, never as a requirement.

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  17. I don't know why a professor would WANT a Facebook page for classes...

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  18. Oh, but I've heard for years how bvt laments to students about the very subject matter published on his blog, cats included... coincidence?

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  19. I lament about my cats? You're an idiot.

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  20. I think the other issue with a professor befriending students via Facebook is that then the professor is privy to the Facebook postings of his students, now FB "friends."

    All the students' photos, status updates, etc. would be able to be viewed by the professor.

    See the problem?

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  21. I don't want to be friends with my students.

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  22. Are some of you people NUTS?! By any standards, Reeve's Facebook thing with his students is egregiously unprofessional, unethical, and definitely creepy. The progressive/liberal profs I know bend over backward to include opposing views in their classes, BTW--as a matter of sheer class and basic professionalism. Reeve clearly has no compunction about indoctrinating his students. He's lucky if no one sues him for promoting religion. What a bankrupt jerk. But back to my original sentence: who could blame BvT for retiring, when the quality of some comments is this low? It IS like some of you are leaving farts, rather than thoughts. for god's sake, get with it.

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  23. 11:30 and 9:21: don't write about things of which you know nothing. Academic freedom and freedom of speech coexist with the professional ethics of teachers. Reeve violated the most simple of professional ethics standards when he talked about prayer in the way that he did--advocating it, in short--and when he set up a personal Facebook relationship with students that clearly tries to sway them to one political view. Not cool, not professional, not smart, not ethical. Embarrassing, in truth.

    You really, desperately need an education, by the way.

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  24. Yes, ethics drawn up for professional elites, by professional elites, in the age of technical rationality, which btw, came more than a century after our constitution...

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  25. 10:59, you've committed the genetic fallacy. Why am I not surprised?

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  26. Reeves seems like a nice human bean.

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  27. Creepy indeed. Also odd is the merging of Saddleback classess and Concordia. Isn't Concordia a faith-based institution?

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  28. Someone has been taking down items on Reeve's FB wall. Curious.

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  29. I'm pretty sure that Reeve is using his "patriotic" fervor and religious extremism to generate some publicity so that he can run for higher office and start to get the perks that come with it. He's probably in a safe Republican district where the majority of voters would vote for a candied yam if it had a flag pin stuck on it, and he's in that ballpark.

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  30. Please consider posting this on Patch.com. Reeve was in the news over his dog naming exercise

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  31. Can’t y’all just live and let live? Well, since yer’all on a mission to get this well-intentioned America-loving guy (and one of your own colleagues!) busted for something, because you generally hate conservatives, according to bvd they’re all a bunch-o-louts!

    Why don’t we just tip-off the old CHP & DVM about bvd snapping hundreds-o-pics while driving? Gaarrrssshhhh Wally, the evidence is peppered all throughout his little bloggie! He’ll never be able to find them all in time! Why that’s like text’n & drive’n Waaaaally! I hear that’s a pretty serious offense in CA, besides someone could end up in the horsepital! Now let’s see jest how fast them thar pics come down! Hehe… Bwwwwahahaha!

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  32. Gosh, do you suppose that 8:15 is a lout? Think so.

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  33. Perhaps bvd and his little gang are the real louts? Sure that polisci professor said a dumb thing and I bet he’s regretted it way before bvd and gang jumped all over him for it. Why not let the real people who could have been offended deal with him? Why fight someone else’s battle? Are you folks that hard up for conflict? Don’t you have your own lives? That 8:15 guy seems a bit overindulged. I think he meant DMV, not doctor of veterinarian medicine. Although he could've with a word like horsepital? Well Heeeee Haaaaaw!

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  34. Just now, I was compelled to delete a seriously offensive comment. Do try to be civil, OK?

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  35. What's all this about BVD's on the blog??? I think that underwear is not a suitable element in any blog or public forum! Why, I'll bet that no one's mother knows they are spreading BVD's all over this blog! We ought to stop this right now!......

    Some of us will are reminded, perhaps, of old SNL's.

    It seems as if loutishness and not paying attention go together, always.

    Sincerely, Emily Litella's ghost

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  36. Unprofessional and strange if you ask me. There's a kind of arrogance and over-inflated sense of self too.

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