Episode 40

Libs of TikTok, Death Penalty, Legacy Admissions, Biden vs. Charters

Things get loud as Ravi, Cory, and Rikki discuss the Libs of TikTok Twitter page and Taylor Lorenz’s contentious reporting on it this week. They then roll their eyes as they contend with the baffling prevalence of legacy admissions in higher education before touching on a darker, similarly antiquated feature of America: the death penalty. Finally, Ravi airs his grievances with the new Biden-backed regulations on charter schools. 


Cory and Rikki get into a spirited debate over the Libs of TikTok page and what it aims to do, while Rikki calls out Taylor Lorenz’s questionable reporting on the account’s creator. Ravi questions her right to privacy given her high-profile political activism and the misdirected focus of the coverage. [01:11]

Yale Law graduate Ravi can’t believe his luck as he and the other hosts discuss the advantages legacy students enjoy when applying to college. They then outline some proposed legislation to curb the antiquated standard. [16:47]

Ravi, Cory, and Rikki get into a light, airy discussion on the death penalty. The hosts largely agree on the issues with capital punishment, listing such problems as wrongful convictions, waste of public resources, and racial disparities. [23:14]

Ravi deconstructs the new DOE regulations on charter schools and argues they’re a roundabout way to prevent more competition with public schools. He also touches on the hypocrisy of a certain anti-charter figure on the left. [33:59]

Meet the woman behind Libs of TikTok, secretly fueling the right’s outrage machine (The Washington Post, 04/19)
Libs of TikTok Twitter
Libs of TikTok Tweet #1 (Twitter, 04/19)
Libs of TikTok Tweet #2 (Twitter, 04/19)
Libs of TikTok Tweet #3 (Twitter, 04/19)
Libs of TikTok Tweet #4 (Twitter, 04/19)
Saagar Enjeti Tweet (Twitter, 04/19)
Glenn Greenwald Tweet (Twitter, 04/18)
Episode 39 of Lost Debate (Spotify, 04/14)
Libs of TikTok Tweet #5 (04/19)
Libs of TikTok Vid #1 (Twitter, 04/14)
Libs of TikTok Vid #2 (Twitter, 05/11)
Libs of TikTok Vid #3 (Twitter, 03/08)
The Shame Deficit (The Atlantic, 04/19)
The Real Reasons Legacy Preferences Exist (The Atlantic, 04/04/2019)
Democrats unveil bill to ban legacy admissions at universities (The Hill, 02/02)
Colorado Becomes 1st State To Ban Legacy College Admissions (NPR, 05/27/2021)
Suffolk University Public Survey (USA Today)
Commentary: It’s time to end legacy admissions in New York’s colleges (Times Union, 04/19)
College Admissions Are Still Unfair (The Atlantic, 10/23/2021)
Why do American universities favor the children of alumni? (The Economist, 04/06/2021)
Matt da Silva Tweet (Twitter, 04/20)
By Ending Legacy Admissions, Amherst Aims to Remake Its Student Body (TIME, 10/22/2021)
Memorandum (Education Reform Now, 06/26/2018)
Legacy, Athlete, and Donor Preferences Disproportionately Benefit White Applicants, per Analysis (The Harvard Crimson, 10/23/2019)
Meet the Class of 2022! (The Harvard Crimson)
Want to get into Harvard? Being a ‘legacy’ helps (MSNBC, 04/11/2019)
Amherst College Ends Legacy Admissions (NBC News YouTube Channel, 10/23/2021)
JFK’s Very Revealing Harvard Application Essay (The Atlantic, 11/21/2013)
Democratic lawmakers propose ban on legacy admissions to colleges (NBC News, 02/02)
Inmate who picked firing squad calls death row choices ‘unconstitutional’ (The Washington Post, 04/18)
South Carolina’s first-ever firing squad execution halted by state Supreme Court (CBS News, 04/20)
Ron Paul: Jasper County raised taxes to pay for a death penalty case (Austin-American Statesman, 09/23/2016)
Cruel and Unusual (More Perfect, 06/02/2016)
GALLUP POLL: Support for Death Penalty in U.S. Falls to a 45-Year Low (Death Penalty Information Center, 10/26/2017)
States with and without the death penalty – 2021 (Death Penalty Information Center)
More Than 250 Conservative Leaders Join Call to End Death Penalty (Death Penality Information Center, 10/19/2019)
Can America Kill Its Prisoners Kindly?
Texas Legal History: Lethal Injection (Texas State Law Library, 12/11/2020)
Most Americans Favor the Death Penalty Despite Concerns About Its Administration (Pew Research Center, 06/02/2021)
Counting The Condemned (The Intercept, 12/03/2019)
THE STEPCHILD OF LYNCHING (The Intercept, 06/17/2018)
DEATH PENALTY COST (Amnesty International, 05/18/2017)
Tennessee’s Death Penalty: Costs and Consequences (State of Tennessee, Comptroller of the Treasure, 07/12/2004)
Wasteful & Inefficient The alarming cost of the death penalty (Equal Justice USA)
This Chart Shows How Insanely Expensive Death-Penalty Cases Are (Business Insider, 01/07/2015)
Not That Innocent (The Atlantic, 06/09/2021)
Joe Biden on Why He Is ‘Lukewarm’ on Charter Schools: ‘I Am Not a Charter School Fan’ (Grabien, 02/26/2020)
Biden’s Department of Education begins new war on charter schools (The Hill, 04/19)
What Biden’s proposed reforms to U.S. charter school program really say (The Washington Post, 04/06)
Charters and the Common Good (Education Next, 01/23/2018)
Charter School Funding: Inequity Surges in the Cities (School Choice Demonstration Project, 11/2020)
‘No, my children went to public schools’: Warren accused of lying about her children’s education (Washington Examiner, 11/22/2019)
Elizabeth Warren Lying Vid (Twitter, 11/22/2019)
Asleep at the Wheel (Network for Public Education, 04/15/2019)
Still Asleep at the Wheel (Network for Public Education, 12/2019)
WHO MANAGES CHARTER SCHOOLS? (National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, 02/09)
Landrieu & Curbelo: Biden Administration Attack on Public Charter Schools Will Harm the Families and Students Who Need Them Most (The 74, 04/11)
Urban Charter School Study (Center for Research on Education Outcomes, 03/2015)
The unwelcome success of charter schools (AEI, 10/05/2020)
SUNY-approved charter schools in NYC outperform public schools: study (New York Post, 01/30)
Team Biden’s Backward Hostility to Charter Schools (Cato Institute, 12/22/2020)
Biden aide outlines public education goals of incoming administration (The Bay State Banner, 11/18/2020)
The AOC Tapes: Rep says she got goddaughter into Bronx charter school (New York Post, 02/22/2020)
Bloomberg, Adams announce summer program at NYC charter schools (New York Post, 04/18)