If you thought iris scanners and hands down your pants were bad, wait ‘til you hear what Janet “Big Sis” Napolitano is up to these days.
Now, president of the taxpayer-funded University of California system and former Department of Homeland Security head Napolitano is “advising” faculty in the system to avoid using certain speech. Under the new guidelines, speech deemed “microaggressions” — which could be latently racist or sexist — should be avoided.
Through the new lens, even Martin Luther King, Jr.’s language could be suspect.
As reported by FOX News:
Phrases such as “America is the land of opportunity” and “America is a melting pot” are “micro-aggressions” that could leave some students feeling discriminated against, according to a new faculty training guide put out by the University of California that one former professor in the system says shows “how crazy it’s become.”
The guide, which says those phrases and others can be interpreted by minorities as “denying the significance of a person of color’s racial/ethnic experience and history,” or that they “assimilate to the dominant culture,” is used across the vast, 200,000-student University of California system. Specifically, it is for training professors in “faculty leadership seminars” that aim to “enhance department and campus climate toward inclusive excellence.”
The guide — labeled “Tool: Recognizing Microaggressions and the Messages They Send,” which somehow evokes images of Mao’s China in my mind — details a whole list of microaggressions that should be avoided, as reported by National Review:
Other microaggressions listed on the document include asking, “Where are you from or where were you born?” (because it suggests that the person you’re asking is “not a true American”); asking a post-doctoral minority student whether he or she is lost in the halls of a chemistry building (because it makes “the assumption that the person is trying to break into one of the labs”); and having students fill out forms on which they have to check a box indicating whether they’re male or female.
Gee, the new guidelines really make one see things in a different light. Whereas I’d always thought of Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech as one of the greatest of all time, now I realize it might be a little microaggressive, with his talk of the “great vaults of opportunity of this nation.”
And come to think of it, the UC system should probably change its tagline — The only world-class public research university for, by and of California — it makes me feel a little excluded as I’m not a “true” Californian (even though I lived there for more than 20 years).
Perhaps an indication of just how far out there the University of California has gone, even some faculty — who might be prone to numbness to the political correctness in which they regularly swim — think it’s kinda nuts.
“I don’t think University of California realizes how crazy it’s become,” Tim Groseclose, an economics professor at George Mason University, told FoxNews.com.
Groseclose believes political correctness has jumped the shark … He said the climate at universities is now so bad that even some liberal professors operate in fear.
“Just before I left UCLA, a liberal colleague and I talked about how disgusting the new micro-aggression policy is. I asked him if he ever worried about being dragged before some investigatory board via some trumped up charges. He responded, ‘That’s why, around here, I just try to minimize my contact with other humans.’”
Groseclose does offer a suggestion for returning to some semblance of reason:
“I wish Congress would do something like suspend federal money to the University of California for a couple years – enough time for the university to regain its sanity.”
[Note: this article was written by Michelle Jesse]