Listening Eloquently to Lesser-Known Voices

Any discussion and deliberation about social and educational issues must seek out information from a variety of sources, question and critically examine that information, and think carefully and imaginatively about different ways of  interpreting and making sense out of that information.  This is never a clear cut, obvious and straightforward process.  Exercising such care in seeking out various sources of information and analysis is very much in the tradition of WISR’s founding principles and our commitment to action-research—to asking questions, to probing beneath the surface, and to being mindful of both the immediate tasks before us as well as the “bigger,” long-term picture.

We should be ever-mindful of and on the lookout for opportunities for seeking out additional information and perspectives—especially from people whose voices we often don’t hear.  Increasingly, a challenge confronting all of us is that the most accessible mass media (major TV networks, newspapers, radio stations, even websites) are corporate funded, and as a result, the most strongly featured news and analyses are slanted toward the interests of the corporate funders, and other powerful special interest groups and government office holders.  This is most apparent with Fox News, but in subtle and very important ways, this is the case with NBC, CNN, the San Francisco Chronicle and others.

To that end, I am devoting a web page on this blog to some “Social Justice Links for the Curious Mind” [ ].  The links I am recommending for your consideration do not have a hold on the absolute truth, but on a regular basis, they do offer some very worthwhile information and analyses as “food for thought.”  I do feel that my consideration of issues is strongly enhanced by listening to these less publicized voices. And, because the values embodied by these websites are, for the most part, quite compatible with my own values, I do feel that they are diligent about seeking out information which is both supportive of my values and commitments, and at least as “accurate” if not more so than the information and commentary that I can receive from mainstream media.  I have started to spend some time each day checking out some of these websites for their updates.

Profile photo of John Bilorusky

About John Bilorusky

John Bilorusky is President of WISR and Member of WISR's core faculty. John was one of WISR's four founders in 1975, and WISR has been, and will continue to be, the hub of his professional and community involvements. John received his BA from the University of Colorado (cum laude in Physics and cum laude in General Studies) in 1967. He received his MA from the University of California at Berkeley in 1968 and his PhD in Higher Education from UC Berkeley in 1972. He has also held major faculty appointments in the College of Community Services at the University of Cincinnati (1971-73), in the Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Studies at UC Berkeley (1970-71) and at University Without Walls-Berkeley (1973-74). He has actively written and published in the field of adult learning and social change. He lives with his wife, Janet, and 18-year-old twins, Kyle and Nicole. Janet is a nurse at the Regional Center of the East Bay, serving and supporting people with developmental disabilities. Kyle and Nicole are currently enrolled at Berkeley City College. He has an adult son, Clark, who has a Master's in Asian American Studies from San Francisco State, and who lives with his wife, Donna, and their two children, Ilaw and Tala, in Vallejo, CA. Clark provides Tech Support in the Union City School District.
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One Response to Listening Eloquently to Lesser-Known Voices

  1. Profile photo of alexmartinez alexmartinez says:

    I agree that the news presented to us is mostly from biased, agenda-setting sources. Even small media outlets obtain their “news” from major organizations such as FOX and the New York Times. What we get is not an accurate represention of what is going on in our community, but rather what some corporate partners feel that we must know about or fear about. Thank you for setting up the links to various alternative news sources, as for some people it is easier to switch on the TV to Fox and get their news (AKA Propaganda) from them.
    I really enjoy your blog, John!

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