Saturday, April 22, 2017

Academic Victimology and Snowflake Culture

I'll be your savior, steadfast and true
I'll come to your emotional rescue
--Rolling Stones

Heather Mac Donald argues that the soft totalitarianism aimed at silencing dissenting views on college campuses is not a psychological disorder as some have diagnosed. Instead, it is merely aggression inspired by perceived threat to a dominant institutional ideology.

Steps that many institutions have been taking to preserve that ideology, such as establishment of 'safe spaces,' policies against 'microaggressions,' and diversity oaths, reinforce a culture of academic victimology where sensitive students, i.e., 'snowflakes,' see themselves as the ones being aggressed upon.

This is nonsense. Because people can generally avoid speech that they do not like by walking away or tuning it out, speech cannot be considered aggression. People have no right not to be offended. Mature human beings are capable of controlling their feelings.

On the other hand, when speech that challenges dominant institutional ideology is chased off campus thru violence or threat of violence, then that is physical aggression being employed by individuals who rationalize themselves as victims.

School administrators who enact policies aimed at preserving dominant institutional ideology through the establishment of a culture of academic victimology are partners in crime. In fact, it seems straightforward to craft a sociological model that specifies school administrators as principals who contract with snowflake students as strong-armed agents in order to preserve institutional sameness.

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