The sun is shining and summer is in full swing, so what better time to chat about school? (*Laughs maniacally*) This week’s newsletter is all about academics: teachers, students, researchers and the like. So here we go!
Mariia Butina, a 29-year-old Russian woman who came to the U.S. on a student visa in 2016, has been arrested and charged as a covert agent in U.S. election meddling. Prosecutors say she targeted high-level political, news media, and business officials, in an effort to push Republicans toward a more pro-Russia stance. Butina allegedly made her connections through the National Rifle Association and the National Prayer Breakfast, and even tried to broker two meetings between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin. Court documents claim Butina told associates that her actions had been approved by Putin’s administration, but Putin denies everything and would you look at this shiny soccer ball?
Former National Teacher of the Year Jahana Hayes, whose giddy reaction to being honored by then-President Barack Obama went viral in 2016, has declared her candidacy in the Congressional race for Connecticut’s fifth district. Her opponent in the Democratic primary, Mary Glassman, is a two-time nominee for lieutenant governor with decades of experience in Connecticut politics — so Hayes has a tough battle ahead of her. But with her students as inspiration, Hayes is ready for the challenge. “My students were all working and I looked down at them and said, ‘Who will speak for them?” she recalled in her first campaign ad. “Who will share their story with the world? And I said me.’”
A study of more than 23,000 comments on YouTube confirmed what we probably could have guessed: Women who host science-related channels are subjected to more criticism and discussion of their appearance and intelligence than males who host similar channels. Researchers sorted the comments into six categories — positive; negative or critical; hostile; sexist or sexual; appearance-based; and neutral or general discussion — and found that about 14 percent of comments for female hosts were critical, compared to about six percent for male hosts. Unsurprisingly, women also received more sexist and sexual comments. One day, friends, we will live in a world where women can freely talk about science on the internet, and men can make a bajillion dollars showing off their eye shadow palettes.
A new report issued by the U.S. Census Bureau found that women who earn more money than their husbands often underreport their income, while their husbands inflate their earnings. Researchers compared couples’ responses in surveys dealing with personal economics to their tax filings with the IRS — and noticed marked discrepancies. For example, the study found that in households where wives are the top breadwinners, husbands filling out surveys report that their earnings are 2.9 percentage points higher than the income they document in their tax filings. To which we say, let us all take a lesson from Kanye West and Kim Kardashian, who are living happily ever after on an empire built from Kimojis.