Outraged in Illinois, Thin-Skinned at Princeton

A history professor at Southern Illinois University is being hounded off-campus for distributing suggested reading matter that "alluded" to racist material and made two black teaching assistants uncomfortable, reports the Southern Illinoisan.

Along with the usual litany of material by Rosa Parks, MLK and Malcolm X, Professor Jonathan Bean added to the suggested reading list for his "History 110: 20th Century America" course an article from Frontpagemagazine.com about some 1970s-era murders perpetrated by black activists.

Bean edited out a passage that contained a link to the European American Issues Forum, whose leaders have pledged to ensure the individuals convicted in the so-called Zebra killings spend life in prison.

But the teaching assistants tracked down the original article, followed the link and then complained that Bean was distributing racist propaganda to his students.

Oh Boy!

Pre-teen boys who went to the "Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day" at the University of California-San Francisco's Center for Gender Equity last week got to undergo gender sensitivity indoctrination while their female counterparts took part in all manner of hands-on activities, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

The 9- and 10-year-old daughters got to, for example, work with microscopes, slice up brains, play surgeon or dentist and visit the intensive care unit nursery. The boys, on the other hand, learned about "violence prevention and how to be allies to the girls and women in their lives" using media, role playing and group games.

The center's director, Amy Levine, said the program wasn't intended to give boys and girls the same learning opportunities. "It's about dealing with effects of sexism on both boys and girls and how it can damage them," she said. It's about mirroring "the same sexism that occurs in the classroom daily."

Where Was Jesse?

Officials at a school in Michigan are scrambling to contain the damage done by a student who distributed what were described as "racially innappropriate" fliers to fellow students, according to WJRT-TV.

The 17-year-old says he had been harassed for months by students who referred to him with such hateful and offensive terms as "hick" and "redneck," but school officials refused to intervene or insist on sensitivity training for the entire student body.

So the student handed out a flier inviting his fellow students to attend a meeting at a local park to "take back the Creek" (sort of like Take Back the Night? – ed) and "keep outsiders away from our town and support our way of life."

The flier was described as an act of racial intimidation that carried an "inherent threat" of violence. A subsequent search of his pickup truck turned up a hunting knife and a box cutter the kid used at work, so he was permanently suspended and will not be allowed to graduate with his classmates.

School official now tell the Flint Journal that race had nothing to do with it, but the expulsion stands.

"It was a poor choice of words, and on the surface, it sounded racist. It's easy to understand why it was interpreted that way," said superintendent Roy Pearson. "But after spending a very long time talking to this boy and listening to what he had to say in his own defense, we no longer believe this had anything to do with race."

Surely Not!

An anonymous emailer to the Lansing State Journal has blown the whistle on a heinous wrong being perpetrated at the Michigan State Police headquarters -- volunteers handing out Bibles.

A member of the department's volunteer chaplain corps was accused of distributing special Bibles printed with the department's shield on its cover around the headquarters.

When confronted by crusading journalists about the problem, state officials immediately halted the practice, but not before about half of the contraband books ended up in employees' hands.

Officials stressed that it happened with neither the blessing, the knowledge nor the financial support of those who run the state police, or any other department of state government.

Causing Distress

Opposition politicians in the UK have been put on notice that any ads about immigration issues which cause distress and concern among minorities may be considered racist incidents, according to the BBC.

Police in Plymouth are said to be investigating two such ads, one by the Conservative Party about how much taxpayer money is spent supporting asylum-seekers and another by the anti-immigration UKIP party. The ads prompted complaints from some locals that the ads are increasing racial tension.

"We understand the need for political parties in a free and democratic society to voice their opinions," said Inspector Gary Neeves of Devon and Cornwall Police's Diversity Unit. "However, we also have to consider the impact on communities in the city … The advert caused distress and concern and a degree of fear among minorities in the city."

The complaints have been recorded by the police as non-crime racist incidents.

Thankfully, Their Forefathers Had Slightly Thicker Skin

Organizers of a diversity-laden international festival at Princeton had to retract advertisements for the event after language on them was deemed offensive and insensitive to the immigrant community, reports the Daily Princetonian.

The slogan on posters put up around campus by the International Festival Committee read, "Meet the Aliens ... the legal ones." The campus Chicano Caucus and Accion Latina were devastated by the language.

One, Chicano Caucus president Juan Lopez, said the language "evokes unpleasant feelings of international student elitism, disgrace and disrespect for our hard-won rights as immigrants in this country, disregard for our immigrant ancestors."

For more doses of politically correct nuttiness, head on over to the TongueTied daily edition.


Jennifer H. in Germany writes:

Are you somehow unaware that there is an American national epidemic of child obesity? The American Academy of Pediatrics, in its policy statement on the prevention of pediatric overweight and obesity, states that "foods that are nutrient rich and palatable yet low in excess energy from added sugars and fat need to be readily available to parents, school and child care food services, and others responsible for feeding children."

Why is the mom in New Jersey "nutty" and a "busybody" for requesting that her child's school not promote high-sugar, high-trans-fat, artery-clogging, chemical-laden junk?

Bradley K. in Pamona, Calif. writes:

Thank you Ms. Lucero! I went to the actual Denver Post article and I was interested in seeing the parent's remarks about the small change in the pledge of allegiance. She stated: "I made it very clear that I was a Christian and I didn't appreciate the fact that she had taken that out." I am a non-believer and I have to listen to that phrase every time I hear the pledge. How about we change with the times? Where did religious freedom go? Why force me to listen or say your Christian things? Thanks for doing something different!

Mark H. writes:

Wouldn't a ban of the Bible at that university in Scotland actually involve preventing anyone from bringing a Bible into that university? This was such a misleading headline. Having read the linked article, which uses the same misleading language when refering to this issue, I noticed that it is not a ban at all, just a removal of the free Bibles provided by the Gideons. I suppose the student association could have invited groups from other denominations to provide free copies of their holy books for the dorm rooms and I suspect that would have passed without any controversy and probably very little notice. Unless of course, that action had the unintended consequence of offending everybody.

Scott K. writes:

It's one thing to look for all the cases in which somebody got upset over something small, and to try to impeach all of liberalism in doing so, but you've really overreached when you have to write about a non-binding recommendation by a student council at a Scottish university to that university's administration. What relevance does that have to anybody outside of that university? My school's student government doesn't get this much attention on its own campus, much less nationally or internationally, and rightly so!

Clint B. in Orlando, Fla. writes:

I don't hear the ACLU complaining about men not being allowed to be Girl Scout troop leaders. I guess the ACLU knows it just makes sense to not allow men to go on week long camping trips with young girls. Too bad they can't apply that same logic to gay men and young boys. Wait that wouldn't be PC. Never mind.

Tim M. writes:

We have apparently reached the point in this country where discussion or debate is no longer possible. The hyper-sensitive victim groups are determined to shut down any dissent, no matter how empirically based or reasoned. They brow beat any opposition into submission with epithets and labels. Larry Summers may as well give up trying to clarify, explain, and apologize. They don't want to hear it and will never accept it.

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