New courses help students shape ethical dialogue in variety of fields

DALLAS (SMU) – Nine new courses to be taught at SMU beginning this fall aim to address real-world ethical challenges from the political science realm to the video game industry. With $128,000 in grants from SMU’s Cary M. Maguire Center for Ethics & Public Responsibility, many of the 25 faculty members who developed the courses or have sponsored ethics-focused research grants gathered March 19-22 in Taos for a ethics course development and writing workshop. “We have long felt that professors are among the most influential people in a student’s college life. If their professors write about, talk about and teach ethics, students will see ethics as important and worthy of attention,” says Maguire Center Director Rita Kirk. The grants are part of a half-million dollar, [...]

Cal Jillson, Political Science: Pre-K efforts at Capitol a test for governor, lawmakers

Times Record News By: Mathew Waller AUSTIN — Children ran in circles in the bright gym. They sat pointing at pictures and words in books at the library. And they typed at computers in a screen-filled classroom. “The slide game!” one child shouted, asked about a favorite education computer program. “Thinking skills,” said another. The 240 children, many kindergarten-age, attend the Abacus School of Austin — which offers full-day prekindergarten classes. “It’s all about a love for learning,” said Cathy Kelly, director of the school. She talked about how they brought in a zebra and a camel for a demonstration. Abacus is on the higher end of pre-K environments, and the private school is funded through tuition alone, as opposed to the way the state [...]

Ted Cruz President 2016 Speech: Why Did He Announce First?

International Business Times Originally Posted: March 23, 2015 U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz’s announcement on Monday officially declaring his Republican presidential run wasn’t just an effort to soak up all the media attention as the first major party candidate to announce. It was also a signal to campaign staffers and donors to join his team. “His problem is that in a very crowded field that includes some very accomplished people like [ex-Florida Gov.] Jeb Bush and [New Jersey Gov. Chris] Christie and [Ohio Gov.] John Kasich and a bunch of other senators, I think he felt he needed to break to the front of the pack with an early and unambiguous declaration that he’s running for president,” said Cal Jillson, a professor of political science at [...]

America’s political royalty

Christian Science Monitor Originally Posted: March 22, 2015 By Linda Feldmann Why political dynasties, from the Adams to the Clinton to the Bush families, are both loved and loathed in the United States. In a nation of 319 million people, America’s 2016 presidential election could well come down to a rematch between two of its greatest modern political families: the Bushes and the Clintons. Hillary Rodham Clinton is crushing it in polls for the Democratic nomination. The former secretary of State, senator, and first lady leads her nearest potential competitor – Vice President Joe Biden – by an average of 44 percentage points in major polls. And she hasn’t even taken the first formal step toward running. In terms of fundraising and organizing, though, Mrs. [...]

Students Travel To Selma For 50th Anniversary Of Civil Rights Marches

KERA Originally Published: March 7, 2015 Today, March 7, marks the 50th anniversary of a bloody milestone in the Civil Rights Movement – when marchers in Selma, Alabama were attacked by police on the Edmund Pettus Bridge. On Friday, a busload from SMU began retracing the route a group of students, faculty and staff took a half century ago. LISTEN  

SMU Students Mark History Milestone With Trip To Selma

CBS DFW Originally Published: March 6, 2015 DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – They are marching back in history to mark a major milestone. Students from Southern Methodist University loaded into buses Friday and set off — bound for Selma, Alabama. They know it will be an emotional trip and it’s one they’ve planned for more than a year. There are 36 students and four adults on their way to Selma. The group is largely made up of young people with majors in Human Rights and Anthropology – majors that are a part of part SMU’s political science department. But the pilgrimage wasn’t by exclusive invitation; it was also offered to all students at SMU. LaQuencia Dorsey’s grandmother was among the thousands who participated in the march from [...]

Joshua Rovner, Tower Center, The U.S. just leaked its war plan in Iraq. Why?

Washington Post Last week U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) gave a remarkably detailed press briefing about its intended late spring offensive to drive the Islamic State out of the critical Iraqi city of Mosul. Critics immediately jumped on CENTCOM and the Obama administration for telegraphing its intended operations to the enemy. In an open letter to the president, Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.) warned that the “disclosures not only risk the success of our mission, but could also cost the lives of U.S., Iraqi, and coalition forces.” Whether one agrees with McCain and Graham or not, the CENTCOM disclosures certainly were odd. Military officers are typically loathe to provide specific details of future campaigns. So why did CENTCOM broadcast its plans? According to [...]

Matthew Wilson, Political Science, Top Texans can’t resist ranting about gay marriage

Star-Telegram Originally Posted: Feb. 21, 2015   Mighty as it is, Texas is not mighty enough to turn back the clock. Every marriage soon might be performed and recognized nationwide under a federal ruling, a stroke for liberty and an average $15,000 boost for the economy. State leaders, sworn to uphold current laws, must choose between begrudging acceptance or kicking and screaming. One of Texas’ wisest political science experts predicts the latter. Whatever courts rule on an Austin same-sex marriage last week, or whatever the Supreme Court rules in June on the 14th Amendment equal right to marry, Republicans “should rail against it for one powerful reason,” professor Cal Jillson of Southern Methodist University wrote by email. Gov. Greg Abbott and House Speaker Joe Straus, [...]

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