Joel Stein on Edison, NJ : poor taste (needs more curry?)

Joel Stein has an truly atrocious piece in Time magazine, which opens with

I am very much in favor of immigration everywhere in the U.S. except Edison, N.J.

I can see how Stein is sort of trying to be funny, but the whole piece has a stink (like uncooked hing) about it that got Anna up in arms and Mimosa writing:

But really, what bothers me about this piece, why it didn’t strike me as satire, is that it seems to assume that there really is a dominant narrative out there, i.e. that “white” culture is where it’s at. Assimilation is not an option, it’s a requirement for these rude new aliens – but of course, that assimilation is on the dominant narratives terms.

Klein’s response:

Didn’t meant to insult Indians with my column this week. Also stupidly assumed their emails would follow that Gandhi non-violence thing.

Perhaps he thought the emails would also be curry flavo(u)red?

On that note, here is a quote from Amitava Kumar’s Passport Photos, which I am enjoying right now:

If the word ‘curry’ doesn’t have a stable referent or a fixed origin, how can its changing use by postcolonials be seen as a sign of resistance?

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unfair labor practices and the UC postdoc union

The University of California (UC) postdocs are trying to form a union to (among other things) get a uniform contract, workplace protections, etc. The UC administration has (true to form) stalled on giving information for negotiations. Congressman George Miller sent a rather strongly worded letter to Yudof after a congressional hearing was was held in Berkeley. More recently the union filed an unfair labor practices charge with the California Public Employment Relations Board.

Beryl Benderly has been covering this story for Science Magazine – links to some of her posts are above.