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Ed Driscoll

Why, It’s Like Something Out of H.G. Wells…

September 30th, 2013 - 6:46 pm

“British Students Ban ‘Blurred Lines’ From Their Own Universities,” Brendan O’Neill writes today at Reason:

Over the past fortnight, five prestigious institutions in the U.K. have banned Robin Thicke’s saucy R&B ditty Blurred Lines from playing anywhere on their premises, on the basis that its overly sexual lyrics might encourage bad behaviour in men.

Which institutions, I hear you ask? Stuffy churches, perhaps, aghast that a song would promote casual sex? Islamic groups, maybe, believing that lines like “I know you want it” are not suitable for young ears, especially female ones? Or maybe it was killjoy police forces, not exactly renowned for their ability to chill out, which forbade the playing of Thicke’s tune?

Nope, it was student unions. Five student representative bodies—at the Universities of Edinburgh, West Scotland, Leeds, Derby and Kingston—have banned Blurred Lines in all the premises in which they have dominion, including student bars and dancehalls, on the basis that it “undermines and degrades women” and “promotes an unhealthy attitude toward sex and consent”.

Once upon a time, students’ political leaders kicked against authoritarianism; now they enforce it.

In the space of a generation, they’ve gone from demanding the right of young adults on campus to listen to, dance to, read and watch what they want, to placing a paternalistic hand over students’ ears and eyes lest they hear something a bit raunchy.

Why, it’s like something out of science fiction. An H.G. Wells story, perhaps:

By 1932, a frustrated Wells found his superior wisdom bypassed time and again by the superior mass appeal of fascism and Communism. In a talk at Oxford provocatively titled “Liberal Fascism,” he called for liberalism to be “born again.” After his customary denunciation of parliamentary politics as an anachronism, he let out his frustrations, calling for fascist means to serve liberal ends by way of a liberal elite as “conceited” and as power-hungry as its rivals. “I suggest that you study the reinvigoration of Catholicism by Loyola,” Wells said. “I am asking for a Liberal Fascisti.” It was also to Communism that “we shall have to turn—we outsiders, that is, the young people with foresight for enlightened Nazis; I am proposing that you consider the formation for a greater Communist Party; a western response to Russia.”

Are they burning the CDs as well? Burning talismanic objects of hate is the hip new back to der future trend on campuses these days.

Oh, and speaking of liberal fascism, one student is refusing to be a pawn in a leftwing psychodrama. “After Told He’s Racist, UW-M Student Rejects Further Diversity ‘Training,’” the College Fix reports:

Jason Morgan, a University of Wisconsin-Madison student earning his doctorate there, has told his supervisor he objects to the school’s mandated diversity training for teaching assistants (TAs) because leaders of the first session he attended essentially called him – and the whole class – racist.

What’s more, the next session – on how to support transgender students – is something Morgan said he cannot support, as it runs in direct contradiction to his religious beliefs.

The letter, sent by email Sept. 22, states all new TAs in the university’s history department are required to attend one orientation session, two training sessions, and two diversity sessions. Morgan, in his letter, called the first of the two diversity sessions, held Friday, “an avalanche of insinuations, outright accusations, and suffocating political indoctrination (or, as some of the worksheets revealingly put it, ‘re-education’) entirely unbecoming a university of our stature.”

Below Morgan’s letter has been reproduced in its entirety. Morgan, a College Fix contributor, also sent copies of the letter to various Wisconsin news outlets:

Dear Graduate Director Prof. Kantrowitz,

Please forgive this sudden e-mail. I am writing to you today about the “diversity” training that new teaching assistants (TAs) are required to undergo. In keeping with the spirit of the Wisconsin Idea, I am also blind-copying on this e-mail several journalistic outlets and state government officials, because the taxpayers who support this university deserve to know how their money is being spent.

As you are probably aware, all new TAs in the History Department are required to attend one orientation session, two TA training sessions, and two diversity sessions. Yesterday (Friday, September 20th), we new TAs attended the first of the diversity sessions. To be quite blunt, I was appalled. What we were given, under the rubric of “diversity,” was an avalanche of insinuations, outright accusations, and suffocating political indoctrination (or, as some of the worksheets revealingly put it, “re-education”) entirely unbecoming a university of our stature.

Read the whole thing.

If all of these trends keep up, parents might start to wonder if higher education is really all that it’s cracked up to be.

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