Brent Snavely

A construct of upbringing and society, holder of a BS and JD and most recently an MA, I have practiced law more than 20 years. It has been said "The Truth shall set you free" -- I believe it will, but only if it is Your Personal Truth. Parrhesia may be humankind's only hope (see,
Brent Snavely has written 27 posts for Cooperative Catalyst

Amerian Education’s Language & Lies Two-Step: Step 1 – Language

In Henry VI, Part 2, we learned that members of Jack Cade’s group had no intention of helping anyone except themselves. If Dick the Butcher been the Secretary of Education instead a conspirator trying to foment a rebellion, perhaps he would have substituted, “The first thing we do, let’s teach them how to speak” for … Continue reading

Teacher, Test Thyself

A simple multiple-choice question. Only one answer is right. You must consider yourself a failed teacher if you do not answer correctly. You will be penalized for guessing. Which of the following is the correct view of education in the U.S.A.? A: B: C: Both the above. D: One of the above. E: None of … Continue reading

Education: Obfuscation, Metonym or Comparison Device?

During my 52-year trek to Utopia where I uncomfortably practice law, I fed cattle, pitched –it, picked rocks, baled hay and mended fences. I worked at fast-food places and apprehended shoplifters. I was a shop-rat, played cops and robbers, and was a Paramedic and a Paramedic Instructor. After 22 years of school and miscellaneous seminars, … Continue reading

I am a Cultural Tourist. Are you the Tour Guides?

I am sitting at my computer attempting to articulate profound thoughts and the TV show my wife is watching intrudes. The show is about Kevin Costner’s making of the film Dances with Wolves. Those interviewed claim “authenticity” (as defined by those telling the story) was an underlying concern of all who were involved in the … Continue reading

Let’s play: “Stand on the Line”

While progressing through my MA studies, I met with a young woman (I do not denigrate her youth, for she is only one decade younger than I am, but her outlook and attitude certainly were “youthful”) whose open expression of her life experiences affected me quite deeply. She was born and raised in Utah; her … Continue reading

Coffee Cats

I recently had the pleasure of meeting Ammerah Saidi in person. While some of you may be old hands at directly interacting with other Cats, I thought it important to share the general flavor of that meeting with those who may not yet have had such an experience. I took the first shot at the … Continue reading

Field of Dreams: If you build it, he (they) will come…

In the day and age of technology, a great deal of information is readily available. There are many ‘answers’ out there just waiting to be accessed but sometimes the answers are not as important as the questions, of which I have several for all the pros here. After you build the school(s) of your dreams, … Continue reading

What did you do during the Great Occupation of twenty-ought-eleven?

If OWS or other “occupation” movements turn out to be anything other than a minor footnote in someone’s analysis of U.S. society, I fantasize that while I sit under a shade tree years from now whittling my dance pegs, one of my grandsons asks me that question. “Well,” I would answer, “having been strangers occupying … Continue reading

Making Work to Make Class Work

I did not take any “test prep” courses until facing the Bar Exam which, in Michigan, involves the Multistate Bar Exam (an engineered, multiple-guess device) used in tandem with written essay questions to determine whether individuals should, or should not, be licensed to practice law. A sufficiently high Multistate score results in “passing” without a … Continue reading

“No” does not mean “NO”, and I am snarky…

I was recently advised that “no” does not mean “NO”, and that I am “snarky”. I re-learned the meaning of “no” through The Bartleby Project . I support the effort to “Just Say No” to the test and so I added my head to that project’s count. I even added my two cents-worth of thought… … Continue reading

Education as Colonization and Commodification Processes

You and I may use the same language and media for communicating and yet still not understand one another. This concept was driven home last year when I reconnected with a gentleman I graduated from law school with twenty years earlier. Why I contacted him is not as important as my letting you know that … Continue reading

An Open Letter to “Teachers” Everywhere (from a ‘non-teacher’)

Paula White’s description of the pain she experiences in the mad, mad, mad, mad world of education has prompted me to make a single point (albeit in a rather longwinded, round-about way). Whether you follow the yellow brick road purported to lead to the City of Oz (material “success” in the U.S. or the “global … Continue reading

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