Saturday, August 15, 2015

"The flight to safety"

Something strange is happening at America’s colleges and universities. A movement is arising, undirected and driven largely by students, to scrub campuses clean of words, ideas, and subjects that might cause discomfort or give offense. Last December, Jeannie Suk wrote in an online article for The New Yorker about law students asking her fellow professors at Harvard not to teach rape law—or, in one case, even use the word violate (as in “that violates the law”) lest it cause students distress....

.... The current movement is largely about emotional well-being. ...[I]t presumes an extraordinary fragility of the collegiate psyche, and therefore elevates the goal of protecting students from psychological harm. The ultimate aim, it seems, is to turn campuses into “safe spaces” where young adults are shielded from words and ideas that make some uncomfortable. ...[T]his movement seeks to punish anyone who interferes with that aim, even accidentally. You might call this impulse vindictive protectiveness. .... more
How Trigger Warnings Are Hurting Mental Health on Campus - The Atlantic