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October 30, 2007

Comments

Bigmund

There should be some mechanism by which a doctorate can be removed following a protracted display of extreme silliness, particularly those which are prejudicial to good race relations!

The Thin Man

We have truly entered an almost Kellog-esque realm here. These views rank, in academic terms, with the idea that eating cereal prevents masturbation.

How a rational University Board or Trust has been hoodwinked into the impostition of this bilge I cannot fathom.

The idea that the RA should question one on ones' sexual identity and report "results" to their superior is really more than I can bear.

I wish I had a teenage son or daughter, so that I could forbid them from going to Delaware.

Where is this Dr. Butlers PROOF that all white people are racists?

What evidence can she offer in support of this? Perhaps she cast a horoscope, or read the runes, or just just FEELS this is the case.

The leftist staff on campus are becoming the new inquisition. How many will they be allowed to "put to the question" in this way before we stop them?

David

I’m sure we can all take comfort from the fact that Delaware is obliging its students to regurgitate the views of an openly racist paranoid hokum merchant. Time to reboot the system, methinks.

liamalpha

The one-on-one meetings with RAs as described here reminds me of cult indoctrination. This sounds very similar to things I've read about Scientology and auditing. There, the idea is to have the person tell his auditor all his personal secrets, thus giving the cult power over the individual, and also develops an emotional dependence of the individual on the cult. I don't know if the analogy holds 100%, but it certainly comes to mind.
Other than that, what can be said about the contents of the indoctrination? I think that "counter-productive to the actual cause of diversity" would be an understatement.

Jerub-Baal

The body of an email I just sent in response to this, as a concerned citizen, to Samantha Harris at FIRE.

It would seem to me that you have the option of pursuing an additional line on this. Quoting from the article on FIRE's site.

The university suggests that at one-on-one sessions with students, RAs should ask intrusive personal questions such as “When did you discover your sexual identity?” Students who express discomfort with this type of questioning often meet with disapproval from their RAs, who write reports on these one-on-one sessions and deliver these reports to their superiors. One student identified in a write-up as an RA’s “worst” one-on-one session was a young woman who stated that she was tired of having “diversity shoved down her throat.”

If someone was asked sexual questions in an official setting, and objected and was reported negatively upon (or even just felt uncomfortable about it), that this would clearly be a case of sexual harassment. In a corporate setting, it most certainly would be. I would think that the University's sexual harassment policies used for any other situations would be accessible for comparison. Once upon a time, I worked for Warren, Gorham & Lamont publishers [law resourse publishers often quoted by the Supreme Court, ED.](before they were gobbled up by RIA), and HR law, specifically stuff on sexual harassment, was a big part of their business. If these questions, or even the overall framework of the sessions, was approved by the offices of Kathleen G. Kerr, Director of Residence Life, she could then be directly named. Sexual harassment suits against public institutions get a lot of press. This could potentially be an additional 'big stick' for you (not that this case is low in them).

This whole incident meets the highest standards for rank and unashamed hypocrisy.

Trimegistus

I think every student who is required to go through this psychological abuse process should sue the bejeezus out of the State of Maryland, the University's chancellor and trustees, the "professor" who came up with it, and the RAs who obediently administered it.

Jim Hoft

I've attended classes like this. And, I've left the training feeling confused. At the training I attended I was told that minorities (blacks, asians, etc.) cannot be racist since they are the targeted group.
I've since learned that they were wrong.

The Lost Dog


Absolute crap!

I am a jerkist, not a racist, or for that matter, any other kind of "ist".

Jerks are jerks, and these people qualify with a "bullet".

JEEBUS! I even have to explain (because of these illiyerate idiots), that "with a bullet" refers to Billboard magazine, and not guns. They are stupid enough to accuse me of some F'ing "ism", if I don't make this clear.

Dr. Shakti (?) Butler - are you stupid enough to think that I am a racist? I think so - without a doubt! Talk about the pot calling the kettle black! OOPS! There I go again with my "institutionalized racism"!!!! How low can you go, Jacques Cousteau?

How thw hell did morons like this not get laughed off of the stage years ago? These are HILLARY'S people, my friends. Look out...

Ignorance is soon to become power. Yeesh...

David

Jim,

“At the training I attended I was told that minorities (blacks, Asians, etc.) cannot be racist since they are the targeted group. I've since learned that they were wrong.”

Dr Butler’s unilateral formulation of racism (“prejudice + power”) is logically and morally absurd, but it’s disturbingly common among those who work in the racial grievance industry. See links below for more:

http://davidthompson.typepad.com/davidthompson/2007/04/the_right_kind_.html
http://davidthompson.typepad.com/davidthompson/2007/04/prejudice_revis.html

Like many others in her “profession”, Butler obviously isn’t opposed to racism *per se*. She isn’t arguing for a reciprocal moral principle – i.e. that people shouldn’t be prejudged on the basis of their skin colour or country of origin. She’s simply encouraging paranoia, victimhood and disaffection among students, while indulging her own bizarre racial revenge fantasies. Fantasies which others may begin to share after prolonged and coercive exposure to this lurid nonsense. Is Dr Butler concerned by her *own* abuse of power, or the power wielded by academic institutions like Delaware, or other likeminded “educators” and “activists”? Is she troubled by her own vile, overtly racist, efforts to indoctrinate? It seems not.

Perpetuating this outlook might be politically useful to some leftist ideologues and opportunist pressure groups, or those with serious mental health problems; but it isn’t clear how believing “all white people… living in the United States… are racist” helps anyone see further than the colour of a person’s skin.

The Lost Dog,

“How the hell did morons like this not get laughed off of the stage years ago?”

Well, quite. One has to wonder how we arrived at an academic environment in which figures like Dr Butler, of which there are so many, are taken seriously and allowed to peddle their obnoxious wares.

georges

McCarthyism was destroyed by television. Once the public saw him at his raving worst in the Army/McCarthy hearings and on Murrow's TV show they turned against him. It seems to me the best way to fight these idiots is also by public exposure. On campus they expoit the unequal power relationship between themselves and the students. But in a combative TV interview this privileged position is removed. OF course mass television is disappearing, bu that's another issue...

David

Georges,

“On campus they exploit the unequal power relationship between themselves and the students.”

Exactly.

I’ve heard Butler’s line peddled before, usually by idiots, ideologues and fantasists. It goes something like this: “Racism is exclusively a function of power. As a member of Designated Victim Group X, I do not belong to the dominant order; I do not have institutional power or the leverage of ‘normality’, therefore I cannot be racist. All those who belong to the dominant group participate in racism. Those who dispute this formulation are, by definition, racist and oppressive.”

The “dominant order” is usually defined (either nationally or globally) as “white hegemony” or some such. It’s transparent horseshit, of course. The undue influence and institutional power of those propagating these ideas - now very widely and sometimes coercively - is never acknowledged. Yet PC prejudice of this kind is *itself* the “dominant order” in many, if not most, U.S. universities, and in academia more generally. And the most overt and adamant expressions of bigotry are, in my experience, now coming from the academic left.

As Scott Burgess pointed out:

“It is heartening to learn that were a black man, motivated by a hatred of white people, to break into my house screaming racial abuse, kill me, and use my blood to cover the walls with slogans urging the murder of white people everywhere, this person could not correctly be deemed racist. Nor would it be racist for the ‘dominant power’ within an area as large as an entire country - say, Zimbabwe - to carry out systematic acts of oppression against a white minority, as racist acts can only be carried out by those belonging to the globally dominant group.”

http://dailyablution.blogs.com/the_daily_ablution/2006/06/more_on_racism_.html

georges

I despise the "group identity" think behind it all.

I wonder how the math of black - gay works? Was I wrong to dispute vigorously with a black colleague over dinner when he insisted there were no gays in Africa until the white man introduced homosexuality? Yes, he really said that! I mentioned the important cultural contributions of gay African-Americans like James Baldwin, Billy Strayhorn and Cecil Taylor ( I didn't have Wikipedia to hand, so couldn't think quickly enough of gay Africans domiciled in Africa). He was having none of it.

Is a gay white man like Peter Tatchell allowed to criticize Jamaican Dancehall lyrics which incite the murder of Jamaican gays? I think he is, because I think anyone's allowed to criticize anything. And there are black Jamaicans who have been murdered for their sexuality.

This "black trumps gay" group-think is like the "Muslim trumps gay, female, apostate" line favoured by Ken Livingstone and Madeleine Bunting, in their endorsement for Qaradawi.

David

Ah, you’re talking about the finer points of Victimhood Poker. Another great contribution to life in the modern world.

http://dicklist.blogspot.com/2006/07/tdl-gaming-world-series-of-victimhood.html

But victimhood is vital to the careers of hokum merchants like Butler. If victimhood and “oppression” aren’t stressed and discovered (or simply imagined) at every turn, what would she and her colleagues do?

I’m inclined to wonder what Butler’s effect might be on students, especially dark-skinned students, who are unfortunate enough to be exposed to this noxious claptrap. Will she foster a less bigoted society? Or will she encourage alienation, disaffection and paranoid grievance, thus perpetuating the very problem she affects to address? If the latter, at least Butler and her peers will benefit from the damage they cause, by pointing to the fallout of their own handiwork and demanding further “correction” of wayward individuals.

AntiCitizenOne

The above description of racism is the prevalent one at the BBC.

AntiCitizenOne

MLK must be spinning in his grave right now.

"But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. They have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.

As we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied, as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their selfhood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating "For Whites Only". We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.

I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

herbert

Want to bet that World Trust Educational Services, Inc. got to provide its services witout competitive bidding?

David

Herb,

From the outline of Butler’s workshops and retreats:

“The program is designed to unearth embedded assumptions, illicit [sic] new questions and create potentials for transformative learning and dialogue… This full day workshop deepens the potential for transformative learning, dialogue, healing, and change. It is a day of focused exploration that invites participants to constructively face internalized oppression through the lens of race.”

http://www.sivideo.com/diversity/programs.htm

For some reason I picture a “recovered memory” type scenario, mixed with a bit of Marxist “false consciousness” claptrap. And it’s interesting that Butler should blather about “healing” and “dialogue” but have arrived at such a noxious, divisive and paranoid worldview.

I suspect that the lovely Dr Butler is… unwell.

trax

Dr Shakti Butler is a perfect example of how one can become the very thing they claim they're fighting against... She has become a RACIST!

The cause?

The answer is simple... HATE!

Dr Shakti Butler lives in a gangrenous construct - BUILT BY HER OWN HATE - that mistakenly feels like a comfortable cage.

It's very PROGRESSIVE. ; )

The Thin Man

She is also an astute snake oil salesman, since, once the students from this regime graduate, suitably indoctrinated, there is a good chance that they will take her methods with them into the government departments in which they will be employed. Think of the contracts!

Butler has created a nascent market for her loathing and passive aggressive tendencies. David makes a very good point with the idea of recovered memory - find a solution to a problem you yourself "create" and then watch the cheques roll in.

But she will be "sublimely unaware" of the awfulness of what she is doing - because she is doing it "for the children".

RiverC

Ugh, this whole thing makes me want to vomit. Is this the new religion? Is this the creeping Marxism? Detestable. Vile. You couldn't be further from the truth if you tried. I mean, literally, one-hundred-and-eighty degrees from anything remotely true.

I remember seeing this same kind of vile, venomous nonsense in a video called 'The Color of Fear'. It tried to tell white people they were racist for being white. Everyone in the group bought it except for me. I got very angry and left. I would not be surprised to find that this Butler person was somehow involved.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0484384/

The Sanity Inspector

These university speech code reeducation handbooks could save trees and boil things down to the nitty-gritty thus: Everything that antagonizes progressives is forbidden; everything that antagonizes conservatives is compulsory.

The Sanity Inspector

Oh, and linked.

steveaz

"White?" "Black?"

Last I checked "white" meant the color white, and "black" meant, well, black. These once-innocuous describers for opposite shades now represent sports-logos for opposing teams in a child's neverending war-game.

It's as if the modern pop-usages of the words have eclipsed the words' real definitions. But, by what sleight of hand?

I think that with academe and the media in its tow the Left can assemble an entire three-ring circus - from the walking poodle to the bearded lady - then collect its concessions, hold a credible show, fold the tent, and move on unhassled to the next venue.

As long as the circus can fill its seats by subsidy or by rent, it will be coming to your town soon.

David

In case anyone thinks the instance above is a lone aberration, here’s another Witchfinder General of the grievance cultivation industry - the Director of Equity, Race & Learning Support for Seattle’s public schools, Dr Caprice Hollins:

“Combating [‘institutional’ racism], Hollins said, first requires knowing to what extent it exists in Seattle's public schools… ‘They wouldn't have hired me if there wasn't a need,’ said Hollins, who started the job last week. ‘I just need to find out what that need is.’”

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/195794_ecenter19.html

And, after years of searching…

“Hollins recently admitted to The Seattle Times that even she, a die-hard, diversity-obsessed devotee, could not find an institutionally racist program in the system. With nowhere else to turn, she pointed to summer vacation – summer vacation – as ‘an example of systemic problems’ because black children fall even further behind.”

http://www.townhall.com/columnists/column.aspx?UrlTitle=seattle%E2%80%99s_guilt-tripping_battles&ns=LaShawnBarber&dt=04/09/2007&page=2

So, despite being unable to find any evidence at all to justify her role (and her $86,000 salary), Ms Hollins remains in place, no less determined, looking for “institutional racism” in… children’s summer holidays. Hollins is perhaps best known for disdaining long-term planning and the speaking of grammatical English as “white values” and criticising the expectation of such things from *all* students as “cultural racism.”

More: http://davidthompson.typepad.com/davidthompson/2007/05/prejudice_revis.html

Safwan Bob

Sunlight is a great disinfectant. I laughed the whole way through the first paragraph. Doublespeak is just something I find funny...

http://www.udel.edu/PR/UDaily/2008/nov/letter110107.html

Nov. 1, 2007

The University of Delaware strives for an environment in which all people feel welcome to learn, and which supports intellectual curiosity, critical thinking, free inquiry and respect for the views and values of an increasingly diverse population. The University is committed to the education of students as citizens, scholars and professionals and their preparation to contribute creatively and with integrity to a global society. The purpose of the residence life educational program is to support these commitments.

While I believe that recent press accounts misrepresent the purpose of the residential life program at the University of Delaware, there are questions about its practices that must be addressed and there are reasons for concern that the actual purpose is not being fulfilled. It is not feasible to evaluate these issues without a full and broad-based review.

Upon the recommendation of Vice President for Student Life Michael Gilbert and Director of Residence Life Kathleen Kerr, I have directed that the program be stopped immediately. No further activities under the current framework will be conducted.

Vice President Gilbert will work with the University Faculty Senate and others to determine the proper means by which residence life programs may support the intellectual, cultural and ethical development of our students.


Patrick Harker
President

Vitruvius

The following is a comment at DIW - http://tinyurl.com/2pcx2x -

"Shakti Butler, PhD., the author of the laughable "Life Diversity Facilitation Training" pamphlet referenced above, got her doctorate from something called the "California Institute of Integral Studies," which doesn't appear to be affiliated with any university.

"How astounding that the University of Delaware would commission her work.

"Her CV doesn't mention a dissertation. Indeed, no publications whatsoever are listed, except for an ambiguous list of "Videos and Publications," where no distinction is made between what's a video and what's a publication.

"It's the CV of a motivational speaker who got her PhD from a diploma mill. This is the "expert" the University of Delaware chose to indoctrinate its students."

Butler's CV (pdf): http://www.world-trust.org/about/drbutlerphd.pdf

morbo

Holy shit. I downloaded that training document and can hardly believe what I am reading is real! I am just speechless.

Another bizarre definition:

"AN ANTI-RACIST: ...

(as applied to people of color), some use the term anti racist. Others use synonyms such as freedom fighter, activist, warrior, liberation fighter, political prisoner, prisoner of war, sister, brother, etc. In practice, it is difficult for an activist of color not to be an anti-racist activist, since the struggle against racial oppression intersects with every issue affecting people of color."

morbo

This could have been written by Orwell. It's 1984 in a microcosm, right under our noses. It's all there, indoctrination, monitoring thought crimes and reporting them to higher authority, the redefinition of terms to exclude the expression of badthink. It's blatant, undisguised totalitarianism. Imagine if this were allowed to go unchallenged or even spread to other schools and universities, causing the next generation of elites to grow up steeped and indoctrinated in this kind of thinking... It's an alarming thought. I would hope that most people would see straight through this kind of crap, but university administrators obviously don't.

AMac

A recent University of Delaware R.A. backs up FIRE's version of diversity training with a first-person account at SayAnythingBlog.
http://tinyurl.com/2bl46t

Vitruvius (03:05) --

D-i-W commenter beckett posted an update to the comment you reference (same thread).

"After I posted, I investigated further and found that my description of the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) as a "diploma mill" was unfair. CIIS is a small urban school specializing in alternative subject matter, e.g., somatic/spiritual philosophy. Its professors have standard, if not very impressive, credentials. CIIS appears to be a haven for Esalen Institute types, veterans of the 70s "new consciousness" of the Big Sur..."

Abraham

“A RACIST: A racist is one who is both privileged and socialized on the basis of race by a white supremacist (racist) system. The term applies to all white people (i.e., people of European descent) living in the United States, regardless of class, gender, religion, culture or sexuality. By this definition, people of color cannot be racists, because as peoples within the U.S. system, they do not have the power to back up their prejudices, hostilities, or acts of discrimination. (This does not deny the existence of such prejudices, hostilities, acts of rage or discrimination.)"
-----------

This definition is intellectually weak and easy to disprove and destroy.

I was stabbed and almost killed in 1991 by a black man who invaded my car while trying to carjack me while I was stopped at a red light.

While he was stabbing me, he called me a "white motherf*cker".

This black man stabbing me did not need "state power" or "institutional power" to "back up" (whatever that means) his "prejudices and hostilities", ALL HE NEEDED WAS A KNIFE.

AntiCitizenOne

Abraham ,

He was forced into a life of crime by white society.

Snake Oil Baron

When you are told something over and over again you can often start to believe it. So I am a racist. Nothing I can do or say will change that. I guess I should stop worrying about race relations or fairness and such and just screw over minorities. It's my nature. It's actually kind of liberating when you accept it. I can't wait to get into a position of interviewing job applicants so I can screen out the non-whites.

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