Showing posts from September, 2014

Ideological Isolation

I watched a television series called Boy Meets World when I was younger.  I've been catching some reruns here and there recently.  One character I had completely forgotten about was a bully, with his two cronies.  The cronies are sniveling yes men who do whatever the bully tells them to do.  Of course, these three are a caricature, but this phenomenon happens all the time in real life.  Seeing an example of it in a thread on Facebook this morning is what sparked this post.

I was talking to my students the other day about race problems.  It's a topic I like to discuss with them, to get their perspective on the issues.  One of them mentioned white privilege.  I pointed out that one of the dangers of white privilege is that we white people don't feel privileged--at least, not always.  More often than not, a privileged member of a society does not feel that ey is privileged, rather ey feels like a normal member of the society and that everyone roughly has more or less the same…

Judge and be judged

The Bible says "Do not judge, or you too will be judged." (Matt 7:1)  Of course, the logic is flawed, but in practice that is generally true--the more you judge people, the more they will judge you.  However, I think that sometimes we go too far when we say "don't judge me" or "don't judge other people".  I think the anti-judging culture is harmful.  I believe that judgment serves a good purpose in society, and that it is helpful.

Judging others is a powerful tool.  It should be acknowledged and embraced, not dismissed.  When I first came out of the closet, I joined the bandwagon of people who said "don't judge me for being gay".  But there were times when I had to admit to myself that I was grateful for the input that people gave me.  Many of the people who voiced their opinions to me did so out of love and a desire to help.  It may not have been a pleasant thing for me to hear, but often things that we need to hear aren't pleas…

Weight for it

I have come to realize that maintaining weight is the easiest thing to do, as far as weight is concerned.  To gain weight or to lose weight is more difficult.  There is one mathematical/biological reason for this.  The more your body weighs, the higher your basal metabolic rate is.  That is, the number of calories your body needs simply to live (not counting any movement that you actually do throughout the day) increases as you grow bigger and decreases as you grow smaller.  Thus, the number of calories needed to maintain weight correlates positively with body weight.

How does this phenomenon affect weight change and goals of weight change?  Well, it makes it difficult to gain weight.  Why?  Because as you gain weight, you need to eat more calories to gain more weight.  Right now, to maintain my current weight, I need to eat roughly 2,500 calories.  When I was 285 pounds, I needed to eat roughly 3,000 calories.  So, if I'm trying to gain weight--say I want to get to 300 pounds--r…