February 21, 2017
I’ve previously mentioned the taxpayer-funded race hustler Dr Caprice Hollins, whose efforts to empower black Seattle school pupils included dismissing grammar and foresight as “white values” and expectations thereof as “cultural racism.” Rather than encouraging “students of colour” to articulate their thoughts, to be responsible and plan ahead, like everyone else, we must, said Dr Hollins, see people as “racial beings” and “teach [children] to view the world through a racial lens.” But we mustn’t correct their grammar and spelling, or expect them to turn up on time.
Similar sentiments were voiced, in a somewhat boggling way, by Dr Riyad A Shahjahan, a professional educator at Michigan State University and a “social justice theorist,” who wants us to believe that people with brown skin are mystical and exotic, akin to leprechauns, and, unlike white people, “inhabit [their] bodies fully.” Dr Shahjahan also denounces expectations of attentiveness and academic competence, and even punctuality, as racist and oppressive. We should, he says, embrace “embodied pedagogy” and “disrupt Eurocentric notions of time.”
With such deep and incontestable thinking in mind, it may not be surprising to learn that the Writing Centre at the University of Washington, Tacoma is exploring similar avenues. The Centre, the stated goal of which is to “help writers write and succeed in a racist society,” aims to improve the life chances of brown-skinned students by encouraging them to give employers the impression that they’re incapable of mastering even rudimentary grammar:
An “antiracist” poster in a college writing centre insists American grammar is “racist” and an “unjust language structure,” promising to prioritise rhetoric over “grammatical ‘correctness.’” The poster, written by the director, staff, and tutors of the Writing Centre, states, “racism is the normal condition of things,” declaring that it permeates rules, systems, expectations, in courses, school and society… The Centre pledges to “listen and look carefully and compassionately for ways we may unintentionally perpetuate racism or social injustice, actively engaging in antiracist practices.” “We promise to emphasise the importance of rhetorical situations… in the production of texts,” announces the poster. “We promise to challenge conventional word choices and writing explanations.”
The Writing Centre press release - which, according to one of its authors, Dr Asao Inoue, took “over a year” to write, despite its brevity – tells us that language is “constantly changing” and it is therefore, allegedly, “difficult to justify placing people in hierarchies or restricting opportunities and privileges because of the way people communicate.” Instead of becoming proficient in the structure and expressive possibilities of the national tongue, students – brown ones – should “become more critical” of “unjust language structures.” Apparently, the way for minority students to flourish as writers is to dismiss any criticism of their prose, and any attempt to improve it, as a racially motivated “microaggression” and an “oppressive practice,” and thus proof of “an inherently racist society.”
In short, then, students with brown skin needn’t be articulate, verbally self-possessed, or precise in their thoughts. And that ungrammatical job application, the one enlivened with incomprehensible sentences and lots of inventive spelling, will do just fine. And by the time the real-world consequences of this “social justice” posturing become difficult to avoid, Dr Inoue will have been paid - and be merrily exploiting the next batch of suckers.
Thank goodness these enlightened people are here to help.