College at Oxford Will Remove Cecil Rhodes Plaque

Inside Higher Ed, Dec 21, 2015
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I have always been opposed to the Rhodes Scholarship. Not only are the obvious reasons to oppose it - as in the case of the monument, the scholarship "an uncritical celebration of a controversial figure, and the colonialism and the oppression of black communities." There are less obvious reasons (and the ones that were more immediately apparent to me when I would have applied) - it was and is itself an instrument of discrimination (to this day it is still open only to people who graduated before the age of 25, eliminating people like me who had to work and struggle before being admitted to a university). Perhaps that may seem petty on my part, in the face of the real oppression people face. But honestly, when you're up against a wall, all you see is the wall, and that's what I saw at the time.

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