Jimmy Kimmel’s Thanksgiving Pageant is updated for modern sensitivities.
Cornell students staged a “cry-in” after Donald Trump won the presidency.
One student said she was “terrified,” reports the Cornell Daily Sun. Trump supporters “are willing to put people down based on their identity,” she said.
A dorm at Penn offered cats, a puppy, coloring pages and snacks.
Elsewhere in the Ivy League, a Clinton supporter bragged to the Princetonian that she’d spent Wednesday morning crying in her dorm room. “I sat and sobbed and I still have the tissues all over my floor to prove it,” wrote Marni Morse, a politics major. (I think “brag” is the correct word.) Finally, she left for class, still crying, wearing her “Dare to say the F-word: Feminism” t-shirt and her “A woman belongs in the House and the Senate” sweatshirt to feel “stronger.”
This is feminism? She’s not even strong enough to pick up her tissues.
Around the country, professors are delaying exams and offering counseling, reports Reason’s Robby Soave in a meltdown round-up.
At Loyola University and Byrn Mawr College, students demanded that classes be canceled, citing exhaustion, depression, and safety concerns, Campus Reform reported. “A Trump election directly endangers the lives of all students at Bryn Mawr College that are people of color, lgbtqa+, non-Christian, and female,” one student claimed.
“College campuses have created safe spaces to wall students off from the mildest forms of disagreement,” writes Soave. “Too many of them simply had no idea that great numbers of Americans despised their progressive agenda and were eager to strike a blow against political correctness.”
Colleges have pushed racial, ethnic and gender diversity but ignored viewpoint diversity, writes Fordham University’s Charles Camosy in the Washington Post.
Today’s college graduates are formed by a campus culture that leaves them unable to understand people with unfamiliar or heterodox views on guns, abortion, religion, marriage, gender and privilege. And that same culture leads such educated people to either label those with whom they disagree as bad people or reduce their stated views on these issues as actually being about something else, as in Obama’s case. Most college grads in this culture are simply never forced to engage with or seriously consider professors or texts which could provide a genuine, compelling alternative view.
Campus progressives have “pushed race-based and identity-group-based classifications,” concludes Soave. They’ve “assailed white privilege,” disparaging people based on their identity. Identity politics backfired.
Non-college-educated whites — still a large percentage of the population — voted as a bloc against the educated elites. Treated as “deplorables,” Archie and Edith Bunker chose the deplorable candidate.
Counselors will be standing by around the clock to help University of Florida students deal with offensive Halloween costumes, reports The American Mirror.
University officials advised students to avoid costumes that “reinforce stereotypes of particular races, genders, cultures, or religions.”
Students who are “troubled” are urged to e-mail the U Matter, We Care program, phone “a 24/7 counselor in the Counseling and Wellness Center” or contact the Bias Education and Response Team.
At the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse, students were invited to attend a seminar called “Is Your Costume Racist?”
The UWL Hate Response Team has also launched investigations into sidewalk chalk on campus that read “Trump,” “Build the wall,” and “All Lives Matter” because the phrases are considered “hostile,” the Mirror reports.
At the K-12 level, Colorado has banned clown costumes in school because of the “creepy clown” panic.
Add a politically correct subtitle to the book of the week in the National Association of Scholars’ contest.
It’s possible to find up-to-date political lessons in classic literature, NAS argues.
For example, Crime and Punishment can be seen as the story of a debt-stressed student, driven to mental illness, who kills his lender. Fahrenheit 451 might be subtitled “Projected Earth Surface Temperature in the 22nd Century.”
This week, contestants may pick any novel by Jane Austen and write a new subtitle. NAS suggests: Pride and Prejudice: Finding Safe Spaces for Queer Folks Under Heteronormative Tyranny. #PCSubtitle @NASorg
I like Sense and Sensibility: The Intersectionality of Internalized Cis Privilege and Frailty.
Don’t expect “safe spaces” or “trigger warnings” at the University of Chicago, wrote Dean of Students John Ellison in a letter to incoming freshmen. Expect some discomfort.
“Our commitment to academic freedom means that we do not support so-called ‘trigger warnings,’ we do not cancel invited speakers because their topics might prove controversial, and we do not condone the creation of intellectual ‘safe spaces’ where individuals can retreat from ideas and perspectives at odds with their own,” wrote Ellison. “Diversity of opinion and background is a fundamental strength of our community.”
“Universities cannot be viewed as a sanctuary for comfort but rather as a crucible for confronting ideas and thereby learning to make informed judgments in complex environments,” wrote University of Chicago President Robert Zimmer in a Wall Street Journal op-ed.
It’s inspired praise. “It is a sad commentary on higher education that this is considered a brave and bold move,” writes Mary Katharine Ham on The Federalist.
But there’s plenty of outrage, writes Reason‘s Robby Soave.
The New Republic‘s Jeet Heer called Ellison’s letter a “perverse document” that limits academic freedom by telling professors they can’t issue “trigger warnings,” if they choose.
“The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education confirmed with the university that its statement should not be read as a ban on trigger warnings,” responds Soave.
Professors are free to warn — or not warn.
Slate‘s L.V. Anderson branded (the letter) “very odd,” while suggesting that the university is further marginalizing students who already feel marginalized.
Activist students should want their universities to treat them as thinking adults — rather than Mommy’s Special Snowflake — Soave argues. If the administration has the power to limit unpopular speech, students lose power.
At University of Georgia, Dr. Naomi Graber defines “safe space” as a place where students can voice unpopular views without risking a lower grade — or ridicule. Her syllabus assures students “they will not be penalized for being ‘wrong’ in discussion sections” and asks them to “challenge ideas, not people.”
Two paintings that offended some Native Americans will be moved from public view at University of Wisconsin-Stout. Chancellor Bob Meyer said the artwork created in 1936 “stood in the way of an effort to create an inclusive and comfortable environment for everyone.”
A painting of French trappers and Native Americans in canoes will be moved to a conference room, where it can be viewed by appointment, while a painting of a fort will be in the university archives, which “provides for controlled access.”
“Rest assured, political correctness played absolutely no role in this tough decision,” said Meyer in a statement.
Political correctness is “an interesting mixing of progressive ideals with fascist tactics,” said Kelly Carlin, daughter of the late comedian George Carlin, at a Foundation for Individual Rights and Education (FIRE) event in Philadelphia.
Joining her were Rain Pryor and Kitty Bruce, daughters of late comedians Richard Pryor and Lenny Bruce.
“Disagreement is not oppression,” writes Nicholas Christakis, the Yale professor accused of not creating a sufficiently safe space for students troubled by insensitive Halloween costumes. “The answer to speech we do not like is more speech,” he writes. Christakis and his wife have stepped down as what used to be known as “house masters.”
At the University of Northern Colorado, two professors were reported to the Bias Response Team for asking students to discuss controversial issues, reports Heat Street.
One professor “asked students to read an Atlantic article entitled The Coddling of the American Mind, about college students’ increasing sensitivity and its impact on their mental health,” reports Heat Street.
The professor then asked his students to come up with difficult topics, including transgender issues, gay marriage, abortion and global warming. He outlined competing positions on these topics, though he did not express his personal opinion.
In a report to the Bias Response Team, a student complained that the professor referenced the opinion that “transgender is not a real thing, and no one can truly feel like they are born in the wrong body.”
The team told the professor to avoid transgender issues.
Another professor told students to pick from a debate topic from a list that included homosexuality and religion. A student complained students were “required to listen to their own rights and personhood debated.”
University of Oregon’s Bias Response Team has designed posters showing what not to say.
At the University of Oregon, “thought police” step in when one person’s “constitutionally protected speech has offended” another person, writes Robby Soave on Reason‘s Hit & Run. The Bias Response Team, made up of seven administrators, is fond of staging “educational conversations” and is “not shy about referring its cases to university agencies with more robust enforcement powers.”
The BRT’s annual report lists 85 incidents, including a faculty member’s insulting comment on a blog, a poster that “triggered” bad feelings about “body size” and a complaint about a “culturally appropriative” party.
“Students, faculty, and staff who feel threatened, harassed, intimidated, triggered, microaggressed, offended, ignored, under-valued, or objectified because of their race, gender, gender identity, sexuality, disability status, mental health, religion, political affiliation, or size are encouraged to contact the BRT, writes Soave.
When a student reported that a sign in a dorm encouraging cleaning up after oneself was sexist, the BRT Advocate “empowered” the student to contact Housing staff. “A BRT Case Manager followed up to ensure that the sign was removed, and the program staff had an educational conversation about the issue.”
An anonymous person thought the student newspaper wasn’t providing enough coverage of transgender students and “students of color.” So “university administrators had ‘an educational conversation’ with student-journalists about what kinds of stories they should be printing,” reports Soave, who finds it “positively Orwellian.”
These “conversations” the BRT sponsors reflect a massive power imbalance between students and administrators, since the administrators appear to have the authority to punish the students.
. . . Would a student in such a situation feel like he could invoke his First Amendment rights without facing reprisals?
“It’s troubling to see the university policing and micro-managing students’ every day interactions,” Azhar Majeed, an attorney at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, told Soave. “One can imagine the chilling effects this would have.”
A “swollen campus bureaucracy, empowered by intrusive federal regulation,” has usurped the faculty’s “prerogative to shape the educational mission and to protect the free flow of ideas,” writes Camille Paglia.
“The entire college experience should be based on confronting new and disruptive ideas,” she writes. “Students must accept personal responsibility for their own choices and behavior, and university administrators must stop behaving like substitute parents and hovering therapists.”