I wonder how it feels when the academic has no clothes? When their prejudices are revealed to the world and they stand naked, are they embarrassed? Or do they not even notice?
The drawback to commenting on current news is that at times events unfold faster than This is the third time I have written this post. I abandoned the first two because they were outdated before I could share them.
Canadian news this week has highlighted an incident at Wilfred Laurier University, where a teaching assistant wound up in hot water when she showed a clip about gendered pronouns from a television program. Apparently one or more students was offended and complained to the university administration, which meant the woman was then subjected to a re-education process.
I had a lot to say on the matter. Too much really. I was having an online email exchange with two friends, the ones who brought the story to my attention (living in Germany I sometimes miss Canadian news stories). Both are academics, professors who would never behave as the ones at WLU did.
I asked one of them, Neil Abramson, if I could reprint some of his comments here, and he graciously allowed it. If his tongue was planted any further in his cheek it would be sticking out.
Times seem to have changed. Marxism failed but right thinking has prevailed. I’m glad society no longer discriminates against LGBTQ people. Now right thinking means you don’t have to suffer the burden of figuring things out for yourself especially at a university where mental contamination lurks behind every discussion! What if you figure wrong? You’ll be sorry.
The best thing about right thinking is that when you’re doing it right, it’s almost like not having to think at all. Like riding a bicycle. Or like chanting right thoughts out of a little red book of doctrine as a red guard in Tiananmen Square while making your old profs do the “airplane” as they engage in “self-criticism” for all those wrong thoughts fluttering like trapped birds in their heads.
Thinking can be such a burden when you don’t already know all the right answers; when wrong thinking encourages open mindedness and you have to figure out the right answer for yourself.
Imagine thinking there could even be two sides to a debate!? Such wrong thinking seems to still exist even, apparently, at a modern university! What were they thinking? Were they?
With the publicity has come the apologies. Which I suspect wouldn’t have happened if the young woman had not had the presence of mind to record the inquisition she was subjected to.
The whole thing (plus some reading I have been doing lately) has me wanting to discuss at length social change the rise of liberalism as a religion. And I might do that at some point in the future, but not today.
Do take the time to read the news coverage though, and listen to the tape of the inquisition, all 42 minutes of it. It does leave me wondering if there is any future in our culture for the university as an institution of higher learning. That too is a discussion for another day.