Satire: Why You Should Not Write for Stem

Vivian Dong '24


Our education, our country, and our livelihoods are slowly falling to waste because of none other than STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics — also known as ISpend, Toomuch, timEcrying, overMath. But before I make you question your entire life and everything you have ever been taught, let’s do a simple reflection activity. Find a cozy place to sit, a pillow to cry into (you’ll be needing it), and close your eyes. 


Now think, how have your STEM classes made you feel? I know this will be difficult, but confronting your fears is important. I’ll start: even the word “STEM” makes me want to break down into tears; the mere sensation of its single syllable oozing off my tongue makes me shudder and convulse with disgust. Every utterance of the abominable four-letter word triggers years of unresolved trauma, bringing back war memories of the days I spent fighting for my life in chemistry class (like that one time I asked Dr. Pernia a question about electronegativity and he told me to stand next to him like we were atoms and pretend that we were twins). 


Now, after your own reflections, can you imagine my distress and torment as I scrolled through the Ridge Devil’s Advocate website and came upon the STEM section? An otherwise perfect day (well, as perfect as a day can get when your most recent kinematics test in physics was handed back with a fat 32) was absolutely ravaged by this discovery. I found myself in the throes of a full-blown mental breakdown (my therapist will be hearing about this). 


It is utterly unacceptable that we encourage the suffering of so many people. In fact, I believe that the STEM editors are victims of Stockholm Syndrome. Stockholm Syndrome is a psychological disorder in which people begin developing feelings of affection and sympathy for their captors or abusers [1]. 


I watched with my own eyes as my fellow comrades, Angie Yang and Jade Lee, emerged from sophomore year battle-worn and exhausted from chemistry and precalculus. And yet the following year, they became editors of RDA’s STEM section. It is evident that STEM subjects have severely affected their mental health, and I fear for their well-being. After being held captive in their STEM classes, Angie and Jade have now turned to trauma bonding with STEM subjects as a coping mechanism. A GoFundMe has been created here (GoFundMe) for their immediate treatment: please consider donating to save two lives from the claws of Ursus americanus (aka black bears in biology-speak).


Evidence of their psychological trauma is striking as Angie and Jade concoct a list of STEM-related article topics with ideas such as “Apple’s new IOS 16 update & what to come with the iPhone 14” (Be honest, do you really want to write about that? We all know the answer: the IOS 16 update is horrendously ugly). Furthermore, even if you are simply looking to educate your peers on exciting news and expand your writing skills, I highly discourage you from writing for the STEM section. Try your hand at the Foreign Affairs or School News sections instead. Even Angie isn’t writing for STEM, as she starts her year off by writing for the Arts and Entertainment section (maybe she is more sane than I thought) choosing to write about the rapidly growing app, BeReal (nevermind, she’s definitely not sane). 


If the mental health effects of STEM are still not convincing enough, try to expand your view by thinking about the exigence of the situation and the vital role you play in combating the colonization of literature and news by STEM-conforming trains of thought that condemn our world to perpetual doom. Perhaps Angie and Jade are already lost causes, but we cannot let STEM win. All other non-STEM subjects have been under attack for as long as STEM has existed, and it is time to put this brutal regime to an end. 


If our education system had not fallen to waste, everyone would know that World War I was waged by Austria after a Serbian patriot replaced Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s collection of short stories with a scientific journal. Ferdinand was settling into bed with some nighttime reading of his favorite fairy tale when he found himself holding a scientific article entitled “Yuck! Thomson’s Plum Pudding Model Disproved by Rutherford”. As his gaze landed on the first word, he was immediately stricken with terror and suffered from a stroke, dying shortly after. The evidence was indisputable: the Serbian patriot had been sent to murder the heir to the Austrian throne in order to supplant the humanities. War had begun.


This version of events may come as a shock, but the reality is that you have been conditioned to believe that Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated because of the threat he posed to Serbian independence. All of this false propaganda has been drilled into the Ridge subconscious by STEM proponents in order to hide the horrors they have committed. 


Furthermore, STEM proponents have used the World Wars in order to fuel a rise in technology and engineering, setting the stage for world domination. Government funding for scientists and engineers working to create military technology has led to a dangerous military-industrial complex that is sapping our country’s money and resources. Consequently, non-STEM subjects have been pushed aside and ignored, and we now live in a dystopia nurtured by the STEM barbarians. Think about it: why else would our STEM classes be such hell if not for a series of STEM-led coup d’etats, starting in Austria and spreading across the globe?


In short, a history of injustices has allowed for the infiltration of harmful STEM classes in our school systems and education, which in turn destroys the mental health of our population. Is staying up until 3 am to cram for a physics test even though you are tired, delirious, and bound to fail really necessary? And only to do it all over again for the retake which you are also bound to fail? The only avenue through which our education system can be saved is through literature and text. By allowing a STEM section to exist within our news sources, we are destroying the last chance we have to save the world and end the tyranny of STEM rule. Don’t be afraid; be confident, independent, and assert your dominance against STEM (but please don’t buy the Sigma Male Bible like Jade). YOU have the power to make the world a better place by avoiding RDA’s STEM section. As the Dalai Lama once said, “If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito” [2].