Is it possible to create projects that do not refer to politics? So far, many of the projects in learning to code are about politics. Why is it that I have to do a project that deals with race and gender? Why can’t these projects be based solely on the quality, or quantity of something other than gender or race representation? I watch a lot of politics so that I can see how the people I voted for perform their job. I do not care about race, gender, ideology, or culture. I only care about how well someone performs their job, and what ideas they have that can improve something. Please take the time, when coming up with the curriculum, to focus on actual data that has meaning. How about researching to see how many people have come to be saved from God by Jesus Christ? How about researching something that challenges the theory of evolution?

I love learning about programming and enjoy the work I can do on a computer. I just cannot stand it, everywhere I turn there is politically correct this or that and it saddens me to see that is all you guys seem to care about.

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What projects are you talking about, specifically?

To put some perspective on this: demographic data has been, and is, collected by many companies, organizations, and institutions, including the U.S. Census.
Collecting basic demographic data is not political, or controversial in nature at all. It’s neutral data collection that companies, organizations and governments use to help better understand & assist populations they serve/deal with.

If one wants to do a data project where they have a survey that asks for one’s religious affiliation (or “N/A”), political party, age, gender, income, address, etc. you gather that to see if there’s any correlations between the variables and do basic EDA.

Or, for example, a company might want to know who their audience is, so they might send out surveys to collect basic demographic info so they can 1.) better serve their customers, 2.) see where there are gaps and to improve their product/website/whatever.

You’re not going to find any sort of religious-based projects on here b/c that’s not a topic that is equally universal or neutral/objective.


That might be true about the projects having valid statistics, but I think there’s a good point here. It does seem like CC kinda pushes a little bit of an agenda. I mean they were all over flying the BLM banner on everything. Pride day was something recommended to me when I was doing the holiday thing. It’s not all bad, everyone has an agenda, so it’s hard to keep it out of stuff, but for people who don’t agree it can be a little off putting you know?
I’ve always kinda felt like CC leans one direction a good ways, projects on global warming, and equality, etcetera. And I personally can stand those, I agree with them to a lesser extent, but it’s not always what I want to be thinking about when I’m programming, and more so if I had a serious disagreement with them.

I mean consider if they did have the statistic on Christianity? It wouldn’t sit right for a lot of people. Same thing in this case here I think.

I hope I’m thinking along the same lines as you @coreym.gentry :slightly_smiling_face:

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Hey @coreym.gentry, I’m glad you took the time to express your viewpoint on the projects you’re seeing here. Like @lisalisaj mentioned, it would be helpful to know which projects in particular you mean and here’s why.

I’m a practicing data engineer at a biotech company and have done work previously for adtech and insurance companies. The specific types of stats you’ve pointed out are generally useful in all of those fields. There’s going to be a good deal of signal in race and gender data across many fields.

For example, you want to target your Spanish TV station at a Spanish speaking population to increase viewership. How can you approach this problem? Well, you might want to begin with a demographic map of a region and use that to help identify where you can place billboards; you might want to find products and websites that Spanish speakers tend to use very frequently and purchase ads on those sites. That will help you to maximize the return on investment for your ad spend.

Another example is that we’re finding out that gender and race have impact on efficacy of drug treatments. This will impact how you design a study to make sure that you have good representation of the population in a clinical trial. As a pharmaceutical company you’re looking to make sure you know who your target patients are. It can help you determine efficacy much more accurately and later on, when it’s time to market, you can help physicians identify the patients that would benefit.

With those examples in mind, I would say that many of the exercises on Codecademy are designed to be “toy” models of the types of real-world data that you would encounter as a professional. Do you have to care about the representation of different races or genders? No, but you absolutely need to be able to work with those types of categorical values and the specific challenges they can give you. I would argue that this is a big driver in the design of the exercises. Additionally there’s the aspect of what data is freely/publicly available – another business side decision that’s really financial in nature but can lead to this type of scenario.

To your point about religion, sometimes that’s going to be a relevant metric you’ll need to work with but it’s less common. It’s probably useful in ad tech (maybe you think there’s a reason to target a specific religious affiliation), political spaces, and other use cases but it’s application is less helpful in other areas. On the data type side, it’s the same as gender and race, so you’ve learned how to work with it.

And now with some level of pedantry the evolution point: you’re calling it a theory which is going to make the proposition of challenging it difficult. The US Academy of the Sciences describes a theory like this:

The formal scientific definition of “theory” is quite different from the everyday meaning of the word. It refers to a comprehensive explanation of some aspect of nature that is supported by a vast body of evidence. Many scientific theories are so well established that no new evidence is likely to alter them substantially. For example, no new evidence will demonstrate that the Earth does not orbit around the sun (heliocentric theory), or that living things are not made of cells (cell theory), that matter is not composed of atoms, or that the surface of the Earth is not divided into solid plates that have moved over geological timescales (the theory of plate tectonics) … One of the most useful properties of scientific theories is that they can be used to make predictions about natural events or phenomena that have not yet been observed.

So it’s important to distinguish between a hypothesis (which is the colloquial definition of theory) and a theory. With that distinction in mind, you’re looking at a PhD’s worth of work to even make a dent in evolution and that’s just way out of scope for these projects.

@8-bit-gaming, to your points on some of the agenda you’re seeing on CC, I’d offer this. The day I learned that representation matters in education, I was showing a video to my physics class at an all girls high school. I forget what I even showed (maybe about the woman whose research led to the first image of a black hole, but possibly something that was inconsequential to me) but the reaction the class had to the video was, honestly, shocking. They were so excited to see a woman doing physics and it visibly made them excited and motivated them so much more to put forth their best effort. I thought I understood representation, but in that moment I learned that I had no clue. Since then I’ve made it a big part of who I am as a professional to be as inclusive as possible because you don’t know who’s life you’ll impact with such a minor change. CC at its core is still an educational site and part of the mission of any educational system is to bring underrepresented groups into the professional world of development.

Happy to hear any responses/feedback and to keep the conversation going.


Which I am glad to see, but there still seems to be bias here. If the same was done for Christians, or Jews, or Islamic, or people who aren’t LGBT, or white people, I wouldn’t be able to say much. Personally I don’t need anything representing me, because that’s not who I am. But when I see who CC represents, and the things that they push (such as climate change) it feels very much from a U.S. Democratic perspective.
Each individual project by itself isn’t enough to say that on, but when you look at the whole, it feels very much from the woke movement. Which I’m not speaking against here, that’s not my point. But it is rather clear and apparent that CC leans that direction. And that may feel off putting to a lot of people, especially given CC has an international audience.

Now CC can do whatever they want, after all it is their platform. If they feel to take a particular stance than they can do that. But the fact is there. They are taking a stance. And if they desire to get feedback from the community, they are hearing now, that not everyone agrees with it, and they have to decide what to do about it.
I won’t be angry at them for not changing anything. If I ran a company I wouldn’t go against my morals if it meant the company died. But since the OP made the statement, I’m just confirming that they aren’t the only one. I’ve been around here for a couple years now, so I’ve seen them make some statements I disagreed with. Unfortunately most of those conversations have been deleted now, or at least they took away my access to them.

As far as cultural differences exist around the world, there are some common issues that are completely non-partisan, neither right nor left leaning. Climate change is an international concern that some members of the population have taken every effort to politicize and trivialize, when it has nothing to do with politics, but the damage our modern world has inflicted on the earth in just the past 50 years. That was when the population of the world was barely more than a quarter what it is now. There was 2-1/2 times more glacier ice and 2-1/2 times more wildlife on the planet. If this is not something we as a whole (humanity) should be concerned about then, yeah, toss the idea of climate change. Unfortunately the science is not lying in terms of the overall effect and pending outcome… disaster. We are well past the tipping point, so there is doubtless no going back. If it is ‘woke’ to be saying that, then so be it. BTW, what the heck is, ‘woke’?


I’m hanging around here for a while and did not really come across a political agenda – but maybe that’s because I took a different career path. I don’t really understand why one would be offended by gender or race representation, but anyway. Even if there was a point, you do not plead for a politically neutral platform but for a replacement of the assumed current agenda by another one – a religious one, right? Since that rather contradicts your argumentation, it seems to be a rather pointless suggestion to me. And as @lisalisaj already pointed out: Religion is less fit for science based projects than facts and figures.


Would venture a guess the suggestion was sarcasm or irony in order to illustrate the point. From CC’s shoes a bunch of talk about religion is considered “bad”, from a religious persons perspective a bunch of talk about evolution is “bad”

Just my interpretation there though. With text it’s hard to say with certainty.

Religious based statistics are equally valid as statistics though, as opposed to the statistics offered being mostly those that are seen on the left wing side of things.

I may consider pulling out of this before I get to involved. In whatever case, count me as a voice that also sees this.

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I considered that – but would not dare to take a bet. So the OP would have to clarify.

Absolutely – that’s what I meant. I assume that CC would not be shy to present statistics about religious affiliation though.

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Viewing it scientifically (statistics based) how do we summarize data about religiosity? What fundamental units are we looking to analyze?

religion and employment

  • do people with a certain religion get hired for certain jobs more or less than others?
  • do people with a certain religion prefer certain jobs over others or decline them more than others?

religion and politics

  • do people with a certain religion prefer one political party over the other?

Those kind of things?

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The project I am referring to is: Visualize Race and Gender Representation in American Movies. I am one that believes that we are all one race, the Human Race, and the color of our skin shows more or less melanin. I also believe that men and women are to be treated equally under the law, but we are not equal in strength and intelligence. That is to say that men are stronger than women, but women are smarter than men. I may have overstated my frustration out of anger. Everywhere I look there is politics. I get that politics are important because there must be some regulations in life and business. I do not have all of the facts about evolution but I believe it to be a religion in and of itself. All the so-called evidence that is there is being challenged every day and I would like to see more debate on the topic. As far as religion, it is my belief that there is only one God, and for me to be able to reach Him is through Jesus Christ. I did not start this topic to have any kind of battle. All that I have said is an opinion and I will not state facts until I have them available. This is a project that I plan on working on in the future.

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Science cannot disprove the existence of God. All it will do is prove the existence of God. Religion is not an emotional subject. It can become emotional because of the level of faith one has, but ultimately it requires logic to choose to believe in something larger than yourself. Think about it this way, the world must have balance. There is much evil in the world, but without the good, the world would collapse on itself. Only good come from God. Science is exploratory, religion is foundational. Atheism is also a religion.

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I’m of the belief that religion is a private matter and doesn’t need to be discussed in every public forum. I don’t care what religion someone is (that’s your business)…but it doesn’t need to influence or pepper every discussion and the mere mention of it can make some people feel uncomfortable.

As for the project you mentioned–“Visualize Race and Gender Representation in American Movies”, I’m not familiar with that and I’ve taken most of the DA and DS courses. Where is that project/do you have a link to it? TYIA.

As for it being in the course, I don’t know the thought process of the curriculum developer who created it so I cannot speak for them. But, in my mind, if you think about the history of film and who was primarily in films in the beginning of the art form and how it’s changed over time, wouldn’t that be an interesting thing to see in a data visualization? It would (hopefully) show progress in casting underrepresented people in film. Further, this could be helpful information for film/tv companies on where they can improve upon casting people for roles in film and what types of films are produced.

Because…as was stated above by @akmauro: representation matters. And, because this is an ed tech company, the same applies.

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The project is in Visualizing Data Skill path. I agree that representation is important. The problem is that the lack of representation still exists much more than in the past. But it is simply not true. As far as religion, it is supposed to make people uncomfortable. It is supposed to make people think of things other than themselves. When someone becomes offended, it is the fault of the person being offended. I do not set out to offend people just to offend people. I only set out to speak the truth. Truth is absolute, not relative. I hope that you were not offended because of this topic, but if you are, that is on you. The freedom to express an opinion is crucial in solving problems. That is why science is important to solve problems. Religion is important to solve moral problems.

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And what did the data show you in that project?
We’d look to the data to test whether our hypotheses (null & alternative) are true or not. (reject the null or not).

It is not the “fault” of who is offended. Not everyone ascribes to the same religion. Not everyone wants to discuss their religion in public and believe it is a private matter. Because gee, it’s not like religious differences have ever caused any wars, death, starvation, or uprisings, etc. in the history of the world.

Truth vs relative…“truth” is based on one perspective/experiences and is subjective, not objective.

Yes, the freedom to express an opinion is important…but so are accepting the consequences of expressing that opinion. At this point I would link to an xkcd comic…but I won’t.

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The project itself was not about whether women were represented in movies less than men. I get that. The project was about the data of the results of some test. I do not have a problem with the project per se, the title of the project is a bit misleading in my opinion. I do not know where you live in the world, but in the United States, I fought for people to have an opinion. I may not agree with yours, but I will fight for you to continue to have an opinion.

I’m going to have to do that project so I can be better informed & b/c I’m curious about it.

Freedom of speech applies to government suppression of individuals’ speech, not speech on social media. (Which is why I mentioned that it’s not free from consequences of speech).

There’s a Maya Angelou poem called “Human Family” and the (sometimes) reluctant optimist in me really does believe that the overall theme and lines ‘We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike.’ are true.

On a personal note, thank you for your service. My grandfathers were WWII vets and Korean War vets and my uncle was in Vietnam.

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I can list all of the things that fire me up about politics, but I will not because this is a learning platform. Truth deals with facts and things that can be proven. Truth does not belong to any individual as their own. Truth is universal and absolute. This becomes a problem because many people believe in different truths. It is up to us as individuals to determine what is true or false.

I should be able to speak my opinion wherever I like, period. That does not give social media the right to suppress one’s voice over another. Social media needs to be neutral. I do not use social media to insult anyone. But, if someone is offended by what I believe in, what am I to do about it?

We can get into a huge debate over the consequences of what I say. But for anyone to try to enforce those “consequences,” is a violation of the Constitution. When the government uses social media as a tool to eliminate dissent, that is a violation of the Constitution. That is how tyranny begins. But, when something comes up that I do not agree with, I will voice my opinion about it. I will not be oppressed by anyone other than God. I do not kneel to man, nor do I kneel to the flag, I only kneel to God.

By the way, I am grateful for your Grandfathers service as well. It is because of them we can have this friendly debate.

Ultimately, I am here to learn. I always enjoy a little debate. I can sit here all day and point out where you are wrong and I am right, and vice versa, but that is where I draw the line. Debates are not about proving where one is wrong and the other is right, it is more about seeing where one stands and what one believes in, and finding common ground.

Thanks for chatting with me here. It was refreshing.

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Hey Lisa,

Remember, I do go out to insult people maliciously. I’m not a rude person. However, I will speak the truth as I believe it to anyone that needs to hear it, regardless of how they feel about it. That goes back to being offended. Why is it that I have to suffer the consequences of someone else being offended? It’s not my fault that someone disagrees with me. You’re right, the first amendment does not apply to private companies. However, you are incorrect in assuming that we have a right not to be offended. Regardless of what the government does, even if a private company says that I cannot say something is a suppression of free speech, although it is not a violation of the first amendment.

By the way, I’m sure you hear things about misinformation and disinformation from social media and the government all the time, right? Well, it is not up to the government or social media to decide for us what is true. It is up to us as individuals to determine the truth.

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