Balance for Staying Fat

Chris Santos-Lang

If you think “Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes” has a religious bias, you are not alone. But does that mean it should be dropped from the curriculum of the freshmen English class at my local public school (and others)?

Students love this book, and it has won many awards. It would seem wrong to ban a book simply because some readers do not share the perspectives of its fictional characters, but that same principle gives us free reign to balance it with other fiction (similarly written in the first person) with opposing biases. The following is one story written for that purpose.

Chris Crutcher, the author of “Staying Fat”, has asked to link his website to this story, and expressed interest in reading more stories like it. If you are concerned about religion in public schools, start writing.


Ethics for Artificial Intelligences

Chris Santos-Lang

Originally published at in 2002, this paper explained why some authorities in relevant fields raised concerns that machines will take over the world in the next 10-30 years. It also discussed what we can do to ensure that machines will behave as though instilled with an appreciation for ethics.