• Annmarie Throckmorton, M.A.

Ringing The School Bell With Money Not Merit

CAUTION: The following is supposition, not quite allegation but very close to it.

There is reason to speculate in view of the recently revealed scandal of $25 million in college admissions bribery in elite, first-tier American universities, such as Yale, Stanford, Harvard, and the University of Texas.* That scandal is probably just the exposed portion of a much larger and more dangerous problem of corruption in a bought-and-paid-for United States government that demonstrates time and again that it is independent of and contemptuous toward the citizenry whom it is mandated to serve.

I earned my Master's degree at Ohio State University supported by student loans and two years of fully-paid tuition and small monthly stipends based on merit and my ability to teach undergraduates each quarter in return. Without that financial assistance I would not have been able to study and earn my higher degree. But I was disappointed that Sociology was the only department at OSU that offered that assistance to me, and I was saddened that I had to put aside my life-long interest in the harder sciences and make do with demography within sociology. Then I was dismayed to find that there were zero jobs in the field of demography for which Ohio State University had prepared me.

Now I wonder if educational positions, perhaps in a science more to my interest that sociology, and subsequent employment might have been more available to me if rich kids had not been bribing their way through the educational system and probably the world. Just as wealthy parents buy their meritless offspring admission into the best schools, perhaps with further payoffs for degrees their unscholarly progeny could never earn, it is my guess is that the well-to-do then use upper-tier business and social connections to place their idiotic scions in cushy government jobs, using strategies along the lines of "Hire my foolish daughter for a six-figure salary in your governmental agency and I'll hire your foolish nephew for same in mine." Once placed in these government positions these posers are unsurprisingly incompetent and therefore defensively, ferociously aggressive toward any attempt to investigate what is going on in our dysfunctional government.

On a personal level, earnest, impoverished, intelligent me probably had no chance at success, especially when adding honest into the disqualifiers. It makes me cry when I think how hard I tried, the years of stress I endured, the eighteen-hour work days I patiently studied and taught through, the whole heart I put into it. And the game was rigged against me all along.

So what about second-tier universities, for example, Ohio State University where I attended in 1983-1985? The Dean of the Department of Sociology was an Egyptian national who did not seem to understand English and whom I never found in his office; and the Assistant Dean was a Chinese man who was always hard at work in his office, and who was in charge of almost everything in the department, including admitting new graduate students. Well, rumor had it that because almost twenty of the sixty graduate students in the department were pretty Chinese girls newly arrived from China, that they had been admitted because their parents paid bribes. Middle-class American students who would never think to offer a bribe simply lost out. A deeper, darker rumor shared with me by several of those young women was that the dumpy, middle-aged, married Assistant Dean pressured them for further, more intimate favors. They asked for my help in evading him but I was helpless because I was battling the exact same pressures from him, and from other faculty members in addition. So, yes, based on this new university bribery lawsuit and my old experiences at university, I would suppose that other ugly rumors of rampant bribery at American university are probably also true. Allegedly.

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* "Charges announced in $25M college admissions bribery scandal" published by Fox News on March 12, 2019. Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c23HcJD1LiI&t=2s

Caption: Ringing The School Bell With Money Not Merit

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2019

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