As regular readers know, I’ve often expressed dismay at the apparent level of maturity and sanity currently on display at far too many of America’s colleges and universities. Now it seems already special and oh-so-emotionally fragile special snowflakes are–as if such a thing were possible–even more fragile, as The College Fix.com reports:
If students get their feelings hurt at Grand Valley State University, officials want to know about it.
The Michigan-based public university encourages students to report when they feel ‘belittled, disrespected or isolated’ to the school’s bias response team, which promises to review the matter, according to its website.
Is that all? Why not “mildly unsettled,” “potentially anxious,” or “possibly a little peevish?” And that mascot looks awfully aggressive to me. I’m feeling isolated and belittled…
Grand Valley State University strives to create an inclusive and equitable campus community where people are treated with dignity and respect. If anyone in the Grand Valley community feels belittled, disrespected, or isolated based on their identity, there is a mechanism to report the incident,’ the university’s website states.
‘The university is committed to safeguarding individual’s constitutional rights to free speech and assembly and we are also committed to addressing incidents of bias that may negatively affect individuals and/or communities at the university,’ it adds.
The place, which is in Allendale, MI, looks pretty tranquil. Why is it leftist universities are such cesspits of non-inclusive, inequitable, disrespectful, belittling and isolating horrors? With massive diversity and inclusion bureaucracies on the job, one would think they cleaned that sort of thing up years ago.
The official title of the group that catalogs and responds to bias incidents is called the ‘Team Against Bias.
Well there’s a surprise. Do they have super powers? Colorful spandex costumes? Capes?
Several years ago, The College Fix reported on two professors who voiced conservative viewpoints at Grand Valley State who were subsequently reported to the school’s bias response team by students in their class during the fall 2015 semester.
In one case, a professor stated they believed there are only two genders and did not want to use pronouns such as Ze and Zir. In the second case, a professor said he believed children deserved to be raised by a mother and father, a statement that — after it was reported to campus administrators — prompted the department chair to have a ‘conversation with the faculty member about the incident,’ a campus spokesperson told The College Fix at the time.
‘If the allegations of such a report appear to be violative of the University’s harassment or discrimination policies, it will be referred to the Inclusion and Equity Division to be reviewed and possibly investigated,’ campus official Sara Pokorski had said. ‘Most bias incident reports do not result in such a referral or investigation. The bias incident reporting system is not disciplinary but a mechanism for someone to report that they felt mistreated and, consequently, University offices work to address the needs of the affected individual.
And how, exactly would such addressing be done? Would an “affected individual” be given puppies to pet? How about a tranquilizer infused pacifier to suck? And do you, gentle readers, really believe they’d establish an “Inclusion and Diversity Division” if it had no powers to destroy the enemies of inclusion and diversity? I’m reporting that guy in the photo. Look at the shock and horror on that poor girl’s face. he’s a white guy, so he’s obviously disrespecting and belittling her, and I bet he’s doing it near books that aren’t diverse or inclusive.
The Economist reports on metastasizing diversity bureaucrats:
AMERICAN universities are boosting spending on ‘diversity officials’. At the University of California, Berkeley, for example, the number of diversity bureaucrats has grown to 175 or so, even as state funding to the university has been cut. Diversity officials promote the hiring of ethnic minorities and women, launch campaigns to promote dialogue, and write strategic plans on increasing equity and inclusion on campus. Many issue guidance on avoiding sexist language, unacceptable lyrics and inappropriate clothing and hairstyles. Some are paid lavishly: the University of Michigan’s diversity chief is reported to earn $385,000 a year. What explains their rise?
Only 175?! How can a university function with so few?
Recent years have seen a large growth in media coverage of claims that minorities and women are treated poorly on American campuses. Black students, says Derald Wing Sue, a psychologist at Columbia University, often complain that when they are complimented in class, ‘it’s almost as if the professor is surprised’ that blacks can be articulately intelligent. Dr Sue’s writings have helped popularise the notion that diversity officials are needed to squash such ‘micro-aggressions’. As Southern Utah University’s Centre for Diversity and Inclusion has put it, campus speech and dress should ‘validate people’s identities and cultures’. Some schools require transgressors to take diversity training, or mandate it for everyone. Students at the University of Missouri must attend training to prevent even ‘unconscious discrimination’. A study of 669 American universities found that nearly a third require that faculty attend diversity training.
Considering the current trend to computerization of jobs once held exclusively by humans, universities could save millions by replacing diversicrats with computers. Any anxious student could step into a private booth, state their current anxiety, several tissues could be dispensed, and a soothing female voice could say things like:
“I understand your feelings.”
“The person that microaggressed against you should be killed.”
“You’re really not a pathetic, useless weenie,”
“I validate you.”
Perhaps a sucker could also be dispensed before they leave.
Universities say that a boom in regulations under Barack Obama’s administration increased the need to hire more bureaucrats of every kind. But one study found that for every dollar spent to comply with government rules, voluntary spending on bureaucracy totalled $2 at public universities and $3 at private ones. Robert Martin of Centre College in Kentucky, a co-author of the study, says the real reason for the growth in spending is that administrators want to hire subordinates, thereby boosting their own authority and often pay, rather than faculty, over whom they have less power. Bureaucrats outnumber faculty 2:1 at public universities and 2.5:1 at private colleges, double the ratio in the 1970s. Diversity is the top justification for these hires, says Richard Vedder of the Centre for College Affordability and Productivity, a think-tank. Of more than 1,000 bureaucrats at Ohio University in Athens, 400 are superfluous, he reckons. If let go, tuition fees could be cut by a fifth.
Thank Goodness Barack Obama is looking out for us, even today. Cut bureaucrats and lower tuition? Nonsense! What do they think we’re talking about? Schools or something? I’m feeling microaggressed, and that girl on the right? She’s flashing a secret white supremacy girl power sign while pretending to hold a bottle of some evil, Donald Trump produced, blue liquid!
One result of all this is growing ‘resistance, anger, grumpiness, and eventually backlash’ to the proliferation of diversity officials, says Alexandra Kalev of Tel Aviv University, one of the authors of the study on diversity training at American universities. Many white male professors, she found, now limit campus interaction with minorities and women, lest an unintentional slight get them in trouble. High spending on diversity officials also leads to fewer classes, as well as higher tuition fees, which make it harder for minorities, who are disproportionately poor, to attend college. Might students rebel? It looks unlikely. The era of Donald Trump seems to have strengthened the diversity bureaucracy’s belief that students’ feelings must be protected.
Well of course, because Donald Trump will personally stop at every college in America and say mean things to the most vulnerable students. It could happen. Back to The College Fix:
On its website, university leaders encourage students to ‘speak up against bias.’ Some tactics it advises includes to interrupt biased behavior, use body language to show disapproval, encourage dialogue, or report the incident.
Like this body language?
Under a heading titled ‘Context for Free Speech,’ campus officials state that ideas that offend are allowed under the First Amendment. ‘While these acts do not necessarily rise to the level of a violation of the student code, university policy or the law, they may contribute to creating an unsafe, negative or unwelcome environment,’ the website adds.
Let me see if I have this right: free speech contributes to “creating an unsafe, negative or unwelcome environment?” I know nothing makes me feel more unsafe than realizing others might say things with which I disagree, even if I don’t know they’re saying them.
If this is representative of the emotional stability, maturity and intellect of our current and future college graduates, gentle readers, I’m feeling unsafe. Maybe I better call the Team Against Bias…