Free-Range Kids

College Students: Stop Acting Like You're Made of Sugar Candy

No wonder students are equally scared of rapists and a discussion of rape culture! They have grown up under the mantra: Everything is dangerous.

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What happens when a generation grows up being told that nothing is safe enough, not even a walk home from the park? Or that  they should never encounter a bad grade, or mean remark—these things are too wounding? Or that they didn't lose the game, they are the "8th place winners!?"

Here's what happens: At least a portion of them become convinced that they are extremely fragile. They need—they demand—the kind of life-buffers they've had since childhood.

Which brings us to this remarkable essay by Judith Shulevitz in Sunday's New York Times. She details the demands students are making to feel "safe" on campus. But she's not talking about physical safety; students want to be safe from debates. Safe from jarring ideas. Safely situated in a "safe place" (terminology previously associated with hurricanes and nuclear war) when some speaker somewhere on campus is even suggesting the possibility that we don't live in a "rape culture."

So if you haven't read the essay yet—and Robby Soave's rousing take on it—please do. And then let's start using a term Shulevitz employs, "self infantilizing," to describe what has happened to our young adults when they behave as if they are as helpless and vulnerable as babies, and apparently just as easily entertained. The "safe place" Brown University provided for its students during the rape culture debate in another building was outfitted with coloring books, bubbles, and Play Doh. (Did I mention the puppy video?)

Treating women as frightened children who need soothing would never be tolerated if it were proposed by a male authority figure: "What you pretty little ladies need are some bubbles!" But somehow, when it's proposed by other women on campus, it is an act of solidarity, not condescension.

This is awfully familiar to those of us who watch what's happening in the world of childrearing—and for this I don't even blame parents. I blame a whole culture bent on protecting kids from almost everything: from Pop Tart guns, to red ink on homework, to a spat with their best friend. (Parenting magazine famously told parents to remain close at hand when even their school-age children have playdates because, "You want to make sure that no one's feelings get too hurt if there's a squabble.")

When you have a culture devoted to seeing danger in what used to just be everyday life, it actually becomes illegal to distinguish between real risks (letting your 5-year-old swim alone, in a quarry, in the dark) and negligible ones (letting your 10-year-old wait in the car, in a safe neighborhood, while you run a short errand).

No wonder kids end up at college equally scared of rapists and a discussion of rape culture! They have grown up under the mantra: Everything is dangerous.

Now we just have to figure out how to help them realize: Nope. It's not. College students don't need coloring books. They don't need puppy videos. They need to stop equating umbrage with courage. As Winston Churchill said: "We have not journeyed all this way across the centuries, across the oceans, across the mountains, across the prairies, because we are made of sugar candy."

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  1. Treating women as frightened children who need soothing would never be tolerated if it were proposed by a male authority figure: “What you pretty little ladies need are some bubbles!” But somehow, when it’s proposed by other women on campus, it is an act of solidarity, not condescension.

    Principals, not principles.

    1. “Principals, not principles.”

      And equally important: data not anecdotes. Consider that before you allow yourself to get swept up in Reason’s ridiculous moral panic.

      1. I’m sorry, mtrueman?

        Where is this data that contradicts this moral panic?

        1. “Where is this data that contradicts this moral panic”

          I see no data here. Just anecdotes and hand-wringing, Groundless accusations, too. You must have seen them. “I blame a whole culture…”

          1. I see, so you airily assume the stuff we are experiencing and observing isn’t happening.

            Thank you for sharing your prejudices. We are nourished by them.

            1. “I see, so you airily assume the stuff we are experiencing and observing isn’t happening.”

              You misunderstand. I have no doubt that the anecdotes like the puppy video are true. I believe that anecdotes will only take you so far, and not far enough to warrant the sky is falling reaction by the commenters here. The author’s sky is falling reaction is to be expected. She’s a television personality who’s made a name for herself trafficking in this kind of thing.

              Here’s one panic-stricken comment:
              “it’s really the result of a cultural breakdown… ”

              There are others along similar lines, and just as vague. If you have something against data and things scientific, that’s understandable. Science strips an issue of much of its immediate emotional impact. Anecdotes are better at preserving that viseral emotional reaction so evident here. But anecdotes at the same time can be used to spin up a phony issue from nothing in a way that data can’t be.

              1. What makes you think my comment was panic striken?!?

                I was just making an observation. I believe people create the culture they think they want.

                Thus, inevitably old cultural conventions are always dying, new ones are always arising. It’s the way of the world. Notice my phrase ‘unthinkingly followed’? Guess what my opinion is about cultural institutions that tell people to shut up and do what your told and my level of concern at people turning them back on them? 😉

                I focus on raising my kids, and help friends out who ask for help or advice. I don’t panic because despite all the ‘help’ provided by the progressive blob in the education/social services sector of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, I am doing a pretty good job.

                As far as your dismissive attitude towards Lenore’s real world experiences goes, her experiences match mine. I understand that what she’s saying goes against your prejudices. But, unless you can marshall some evidence that this sort of thing is on the rise, you aren’t going to convince me (and I suspect her) not to believe my lying eyes.

                1. I’d advise an attitude of skepticism to anything you read here and you might want to look into confirmation bias, as well. There’s a reason why people (aside from commenters at Reason) demand data rather than a handful of anecdotes. It’s not because of personal prejudice.

                  I’m not advising you to ignore or dismiss your gut feelings, hunches and the like. Not even to downplay them. Just be careful when someone trying to whip up a moral panic exploits these feelings as we see here. Take an intellectual approach to the issue rather than an emotional one. Where is the data on the harm done to children by telling them they are “8th place winners?” I still haven’t seen any.

                  Honestly Tarran, I probably share your feelings about a lot of this, but I am asking for something more solid. Article after article filled with anecdotes and nothing else, begins to irk me. And the reaction to this parade of moral panic irks me too. If commenters showed even a fraction of the skepticism they do for global warming, or whatever you want to call it, as they do for this issue, I wouldn’t be a lonely voice in the wilderness.

                  1. Scientific data? On what? Psychology and Psychiatry studies on parenting? Neither of those use Empirical methodology, nor do they produce conclusive results in the real world. Certainly not very scientific.

                    There is no “science” of parenting to produce the data you demand. And if there was it wouldn’t give you reliable “scientific” results. The obvious individuality of people (John Locke “Essay”), both parents and children, would leave you with no data that you could reproduce in a controlled environment, the requirements of the Empirical method btw.

                    How bout dat mr. big britches?

                    1. “There is no “science”…”

                      So when Lenore says “Here’s what happens: At least a portion of them become convinced that they are extremely fragile” we just have to take her word for it?

                  2. Thanks for trying, mtrueman. I have a similar problem with all this that you do, and I try and figure out how big a deal this really is and whether this crowd is blowing it out of proportion.

                    Theres several things that I think are scrambling people’s brains about this.

                    There seems to be an awful lot of anti-anecdotes, if you listen for it. “Well, in my neighborhood, the kids are still always outside…” Why arent these getting factored in? Well, I think most people run into lots of their own pro-anecdotes on a daily basis, once the moral theme is escalated into a general padding of the hard edges in culture and not just about the frailty of kids. Consider absurd liability/safety rules and fine print, even for adults. So the overall trend is easy to buy into, and individually experienced exceptions are more easily written off as exceptions.

                    About roaming/playing outside: If the moral panic idea here is true, then there should not be as many kids roaming/playing outside. Of course, in many or maybe even most cases I would be willing to believe this is the case. However, a cultural change to accept more tv watching, gaming, and other indoor activities could explain this. We have more stimulation to indoors than we did long ago.

                    The way the internet can distort the dissemination of formerly insignificant news and create an echo chamber is very capable of creating a panic among us just like a real problem would, so we need to be vigilant.

              2. Data is the plural of anecdotes.

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  2. But somehow, when it’s proposed by other women on campus, it is an act of solidarity, not condescension.

    It’s some crazy how labeled an empowerment movement.

    1. “It’s some crazy how labeled an empowerment movement.”

      huh?

      1. some (crazy) how

        some how is crazy

  3. I think we can all agree that women weaken legs.

    1. The opposite was actually proven. Sex boost T levels which boost performance. The experiment was done in response to that exact quote.

  4. One ironic thing about this is that these adult-sized toddlers are the ones least capable of taking care of themselves if a real danger–such as a real rapist–confront them.

    1. But they should never have to be in this situation! Instead, let’s teach men that it’s not OK to rape. That will solve all these issues.

    2. Any tips as to how they might lower their risk of being raped is victim blaming.

  5. Serious question. I’m 31. Me and my friends did all of this “dangerous” stuff when we were kids. Yet, it is my generation and people even older that actually buys all this helicopter parent bullshit. Are people my age really incapable of thinking about these situations and saying “Oh yeah, we did that shit all the time when I was a kid, and everything turned out fine”?

    1. You were just lucky someone did not lose an eye.

      1. but someone did…he’s called Patch now….

    2. I think this explains that fairly well.

      http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minimax

      It can be rational to avoid even events one knows are small risks to occur when the result is something really awful to you, and there’s not much more awful to most parents than harm befalling their children.

      1. I would argue that children not adequately being prepared to face the world is far more damaging than broken limbs hurt feelings.

        The short-sightedness of the iver parenting movement is astounding.

        1. If the outcome is a bunch of adults too scared or incapable of moving out of their parents’s house, people might start to get the lesson.

        2. Yup.

        3. I think that’s correct and should be factored in to. Good point.

        4. The short-sightedness of the iver parenting movement is astounding.

          I give you attachment parenting as example number one.

    3. I think it’s really the result of a cultural breakdown regarding the concept of adulthood.

      The customs that if followed blindly resulted in a child being transformed into an adult are being discarded. Parents often want to be their children’s friends.

      Parents also have trouble permitting their children taking risks because the parents are not mindful that eventually their charges will have to navigate life and consider risks on their own. Thus the parents are trying to keep their child safe at the moment, heedless of the stunting of the child’s long term psychological growth.

      1. I know a lot of parents that desperately want and attempt to make their kids their friends.

        The kid doesn’t want you to be their friend. That’s what they have friends for. The whole thing is fucking absurd.

      2. I think that there can be healthy situations where parents have a very friend-like relationship with their children. But it has to also involve expectations of personal responsibility and a good measure of (age appropriate) independence.
        Particularly with older teens, I think it can be very good to have an adult sort of relationship with your parents.

        1. Zeb,

          I did not mean to imply that a parent cannot be a friend but this comes much later in life, when the children have grown to adults.

          What I have noticed is that with young kids, they want you around to play with and do things with – and this is of course normal as it is how all parents across time and species have taught their kids to survive in the world.

          As they get older and begin to have more independence they want/needs more friends in their own peer group, where they learn the pitfalls of social interaction with that peer group, and is also the peer group that they will interact with intensely in adulthood. However, even during this time of emerging independence the kids want to know that you are there and have their back in the event of…whatever. To help pick them up when they fail while teaching them as they are picked up.

          Once they reach adulthood and are out on their own – absolutely, you can be friends or maybe more appropriately have a friend-like relationship, but only after you have done your job as a parent.

          Just my two cents.

          1. I hear what you are saying. I think that the friendship can come before full adulthood, but it depends a lot on the kid. Some teens need a lot of firm parenting. Some are pretty ready to take responsibility for themselves.

        2. Oh yes. For example, my girlfriend and I game with my son, and he really loves our sessions despite the fact my gf and I are probably the worst companion players ever (true story, I watched my girlfriend repeatedly back into a wall while standing in a pool of spitter acid in left for dead 2, while I shouted for her to move forward. In the meantime, I, confusedly mistaking the center of my flashlight beam for the aim point of my rifle, was repeatedly shooting my son’s character in the back instead of the zombie horde charging at him – we all died).

          But that doesn’t mean the fist of tarran is stayed if his English homework isn’t done.

          1. Speaking of Terrans and team-play, DON’T BOTTLENECK THE RAMP when I’m trying to seal us in with supply depots.

            1. DON’T BOTTLENECK THE RAMP

              Don’t oppress me!

            2. Don’t impose your ramp culture on me!

              1. +1 Supply-triarchy.

            3. Leroy Jeeeennnnkiiinns!!!

    4. My own mother, now 68, who has freely admitted to drinking and smoking when pregnant with me, Mad Men style (I was born in ’66). Who allowed me to play by myself all the time as a kid. Even after I broke an arm when I was around six playing alone out of sight with a friend within shouting distance of his house.

      Even she now fully advocates “helicopter parenting” for me with my two girls. She just buys into the whole “it’s different now” meme. It’s pretty much as simple as that.

      1. It is different now. It’s much safer for kids on their own than it was in the 60s.

      2. What’s different now is 24-hour TV news, talk shows and Lifetime movies all engineered to scare housewives.

  6. When I was in college, I felt bad for my fellow students who had been sheltered from the evils of the world by their helicopter parents. They had such a tough time interacting with other students, and they had such anxiety about failing on an exam or getting a C on their mid-term paper. What they needed to learn, and thankfully some did, is that failure often allows a person to examine themselves and figure out what they did wrong, how to find a solution, and be prepared for the next obstacle in life. If someone is never allowed to fail, then they cannot be prepared for the trials and tribulations of daily life. They will instead be set up to fail over and over again and learn nothing about themselves, others around them, and life itself.

    1. The experience of failure is critical to success in life.

      1. Indeed.

        Success in life is measured by one’s ability to overcome a series of obstacles.

        1. Good judgment comes from experience.

          Experience comes from bad judgment.

  7. My guess is that these kids (and, yes, kids is especially appropriate in this case) will get a pretty harsh lesson when they entere the workforce. As a Gen-Xer, I can think of little reason why I’d want to hire them until they’ve gotten a stiff dose of reality. Honestly, I don’t have a whole lot of need for an entitled ass who’s going to insist that I organize my work and business affairs around their feelings.

      1. Honestly, what someone does on their own time is none of my business. But, if I found out a candidate for a job I was hiring for regularly went to something like this, I’d be disinclined to hire them unless they had a damned good excuse.

        1. Bill Dalasio said:

          damned good excuse

          Rule 34, dude.

    1. There is quite a bit of notional evidence that employers are dissatisfied with the pool of potential employees.

      Perhaps there is an up-side? Perhaps those who aren’t pathetic pussies will become wildly successful because of the lack of competition. And, just maybe, the pussies will be forced to grab a nut if they want success for themselves. Perhaps the cycle of pussification is self correcting…

      Provided the system is allowed to work as it should.

      1. Perhaps those who aren’t pathetic pussies will become wildly successful because of the lack of competition.

        I hate to say it but that’s not the way the world works….

        1. The ones that aren’t pathetic pussies might just become wildly successful, but they’ll be the target of the others’ greed and envy. “You didn’t build that!”

          1. Also people copy each other.

            In a culture full of pussies, even the salvageable guys will only see pussies to pattern themselves after.

            1. Not everyone will be raised a pussy. Will your kids? Will most parents here stand for allowing their kids to be unprepared for life? I doubt it.

              If I’m an employer, I’m gonna pick the non-pussies to work for me, if I can get them. Regardless of the laws in place attempting to force me to do otherwise (because that type of discrimination is nearly impossible to prove).

              People today raised their kids to go to college because they saw college as being the determinate factor of being successful. Won’t they see that the pussies are the ones living with mom and dad and the tough kids are ripping down 6 and 7 figures?

              It’ll be interesting to see, over the next 10 years, whether the touchy feely college degrees yield to STEM because that’s where the jobs are? I could see a similar backlash on this child pussification shit as well. It happened, to a certain degree, in the 80s.

              1. That’s right – discrimination based on pussification level isn’t illegal. . . Pussies aren’t all the same color (even if real ones are all pink in the middle), the same sex, nor do they all come from the same country.

                By Jove, I think you’ve got it!

      2. That won’t happen. What will happen is that the people utterly unprepared for life will declare it to be unfair that other people are more happy and successful than they are, and will turn to the loving arms of the state to rectify the ‘problem.’

        You can’t have a free society without personal responsibility. A society filled with grown children will be the cuddliest slave state the human species has ever seen.

        1. Then we are right and truly fucked.

          And not only in the sense of becoming a slave state. Even a slave state needs to feed, clothe and shelter itself somehow. And these bastards will be well neigh useless to that end.

          1. People figure shit out if they have to. I think people are overestimating the permanence of their uselessness. Generalizations about whole cohorts of people are really not all that useful. There are plenty of young people who are capable of hard work and independence, even if it takes some of them a bit longer to get there.

            1. This is true, but only when reality finally intervenes. With their parents and schools coddling them, how long before they start voting for gov’t policies that alos do the same?

            2. Agreed. I don’t think generations differ that much from each other in fundamental ways. There might be cultural shifts, but prior generations are responsibl for that just as much as current ones.

        2. It has to self correct at some point, though. Hopefully before the choices come down to get your dick in the dirt or starve.

          1. As a geosexual I find that expression very offensive.

      3. And, just maybe, the pussies will be forced to grab a nut if they want success for themselves.

        Which is why I made it conditional on getting a good stiff dose of reality, rather than an absoulre refusal to hire.

      4. There is quite a bit of notional evidence that employers are dissatisfied with the pool of potential employees.

        Perhaps there is an up-side? Perhaps those who aren’t pathetic pussies will become wildly successful because of the lack of competition. And, just maybe, the pussies will be forced to grab a nut if they want success for themselves. Perhaps the cycle of pussification is self correcting…

        There is also a lot of evidence that we’re moving to an employee’s market, so you might be on to something.

        1. This is part of the reason why even though I refuse to smoke and only rarely drink, I’ve always supported legalizing drugs, even heroin and meth: it’s a way for stupid people to self-select out of life, rendering me more competitive for employment. Just wish I didn’t have to pay for their healthcare.

      5. Perhaps those who aren’t pathetic pussies will become wildly successful because of the lack of competition

        Wildly successful? Eh… you still have to start at the ground floor and work your way up. In a much better position than my age cohort, on average? For sure!

        There are plenty of us responsible millenials out here. We just don’t bitch and complain about personal responsibility.

        My two sisters in law are a great example of the dichotomy.

        One is married to a successful guy who took a risk with a job. The risk didn’t pan out well, but they both worked their asses off until he found a new job in his field.

        The other is marrying an irresponsible dick. They don’t hold down jobs, and somehow have the time to travel internationally 3 or 4 times a year. Everything has to be the finest quality, and they pay more rent than my mortgage (which isn’t cheap). Either he has a trust fund or they’re 6 figures in debt. Either way, they aren’t able to keep this up forever.

    2. I don’t have a whole lot of need for an entitled ass who’s going to insist that I organize my life around his feelings.

      The phrase that we’re all looking for is “drama queens” which applies to the male (anatomically speaking) as well as the female of the species.

      And this is an issue not just in work, but also social and family life too. These kids just can’t cope, and the parents sires and dams who bought into the “dangerous world” schlock have much to answer for.

      1. I once had a young flunky in for a “come to Jesus” meeting in regards to his work habits. During our conversation he said that I didn’t make work “fun” and I didn’t give him enough pats on the back.

        I was completely flummoxed. I explained to him that if work was fun, I could charge him for coming in and doing it. There is a reason they call it work. I also made the mistake of asking him what he thought he had done that deserved a pat on the back. The one item I remember was he thought he deserved a gold star for finishing tasks on time. Not early, just on time.

        Needless to say, he didn’t last much longer at our company. The most disappointing part of firing him, was that I couldn’t go down my long list of reasons of why I was canning him out of fear of being sued. Instead I merely got to tell him that we no longer needed his services and he could pack up any time.

        1. The most disappointing part of firing him, was that I couldn’t go down my long list of reasons of why I was canning him out of fear of being sued. Instead I merely got to tell him that we no longer needed his services and he could pack up any time.

          which did him a further disservice by even further insulating him from reality.

          1. which did him a further disservice by even further insulating him from reality.

            Here’s the thing, though. His moral and character development is not Pope Jimbo’s problem. PJ had a plausible fear that exposing the him to reality would expose PJ to lawsuits. And that isn’t exactly an irrational fear. You’re talking about a grown man, not a child. At some point, he should have kind of picked up that the world doesn’t owe him a blowjob or a snowjob.

        2. The most disappointing part of firing him, was that I couldn’t go down my long list of reasons of why I was canning him out of fear of being sued.

          God bless right to work states.

          1. I had several coworkers who were very disappointed that for once I managed to control myself and act professionally. They were really hoping for something like this:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNYNxulbEOI

    3. An engineer buddy of mine who is in my relative age group (30-40) told me that he actually received a phone call from the mother of one of his direct reports regarding a poor performance evaluation. He said it took all of his self-control to politely tell this dude’s mother, “ma’am, it’s as inappropriate for me to speak to you about your son’s work performance as it is for you to call me in the first place.” He then proceeded to call this employee into his office and tell him, “you’re 23. Act like an adult. If I ever get a call from your mother again I will assume you aren’t mature enough to work here.”

      Absolutely blew my mind.

      1. You. Have. Got. To. Be. Fucking. Kidding. Me.

        The dude’s mother?!

        1. Bill, I’m pretty sure I said out loud exactly what you just wrote.

          And then I ordered us another round of carbombs.

          1. That guy’s mother must think he’s another Douglas MacArthur.

      2. Apparently that happen a lot to college professors now too.

        What amazes me is that the young people aren’t absolutely mortified that their parents would do that, let alone ask their parents to do that.

        I didn’t get any bad grades in college, so it never came up, but I can only imagine that I would want to hide the fact from my parents and would never consider trying to get them to “fix” it.

        1. I got plenty of bad grades in undergrad (usually related to the carbombs referenced above). And I did everything I could to fix it myself for fear of them finding out…with limited effectiveness.

          I didn’t live a cloistered childhood by any stretch. Road bikes for miles, played in the woods, went to the pool. All without adult supervision. And my folks never complained to teachers about “bad grades” (because I didn’t have any then). What they did do was rigidly structure my life to the point where I either 1) didn’t have the self-discipline to structure things myself, or 2) rebelled against the structure to such degree that self-discipline didn’t matter a whit.

          The resulting undergrad debacle was my fall from grace. But those failures probably taught me some of my most valuable lessons.

        2. Shit, I had to nearly tie my wife up in the bleachers when her “baby” hurt himself playing 8th grade football. She wanted to go out on the field to see her boy and I told her that there was no way I would let that happen. In her defense, other mothers have gone out on the field so there was precedent.

          After the game she told the kid that she wanted to be out there for him, but his mean dad wouldn’t let her. He told her in no uncertain terms that she was never to come out there if he was hurt. She sulked for a week about that.

          If it is bad in the 8th grade, what morons would not die of shame in their 20’s?

        3. The flip side is that a long, long time ago, I was in college and had a prof that I was knew was trying to see how many of us he could get to quit (because he told us flat out that was his intent as the first words out of his mouth on the first day of class).

          I recall having just gotten a rather poor grade on an exam a month or so later, and having a private “come to jesus moment” as I wandered back to my dorm across the freezing mall. No, it did NOT involve calling mommy and daddy to talk to that mean prof. Rather, that was the moment that I hitched up my britches, straightened myself up, and decided there was no way I was going to let that SOB drive me out.

          A year later, Dr. SOB (who, btw, was also my undergrad advisor) was telling me that I should apply to pharmacy school because I “clearly had what it takes”.

          1. HA!

            I forgot about those classes. You’re right. Had a bunch of profs that did the whole look to your right, look to your left thing. They came right out and told you, this is a weed-out class. There are x number of people currently in your class of engineering and the school can support x-30%. Man up.

            I doubt that happens anymore.

            1. Bingo, that was exactly his starting point: “This is a pre-med course. There are 60 of you here now, there are going to be 40 of you at the end of the semester. My name is … and I’m the one who’s going to do it to you”. (I was NOT pre-med, but human physiology was a required course for a zoology major.)

            2. Absolutely right. We’ve actually had our Prez tell incoming freshpeeps, “Look to your left. Now look to your right. If all three of you don’t graduate, we’ve failed.”

              Nonetheless, I keep doing my job, and get called a tough grader. Thank Whoever’s in charge for tenure — I don’t have to sweat “pleasing the customers” (the people we used to call students.

          2. That reminds me of my experience in boot camp when I joined the Navy in 1978. Our company commander, a grizzled Chief Machinist’s Mate, bluntly informed us that he was going to deliberately fuck with us for the entire eight weeks we were there. A warship, even in peacetime, is a dangerous place and there’s no room for people who panic under stress. He added an interesting and important point: if you can’t handle it here it doesn’t mean you’re a bad person; it just means you should be doing something else with your life–take the lesson and run with it.

        4. I work with a lot of college students and I can very definitely verify that this is the case. Each semester professors post notes to their classes that under no circumstances will said prof have any conversation with any parent regarding the student. If the student has an issue, then the student has to address it directly.

          The first time I saw it, I was like WTF? My prof friends swear it is necessary. When I was in college, I would’ve been absolutely mortified to have my Mother handle my problems. These kids (at minimum) text their parents every day, if they’re not talking to them directly. It’s baffling to me. Love my (late) Mom, but no…just no.

          1. I shared an office with a someone who called their child at college every morning to make sure said child was ok and up for another hard day of being coddled. Drove me nuts having to listen to this foolishness day after day. Especially since this wunderkind was a dorm RA.

        5. My dad used to insist on checking my math home work until around high school. He was laissez faire about everything else, but he had to check my math homework. I hated it. Every mistake I made would elicit a new disdainful diatribe. If my father weren’t too apathetic to care about my college courses I’m sure he would side with the professors every time.

          If I got hit by a car running a red light, he’d say, “why didn’t you look and make sure he was stopping? Why would you ever expect others to act responsibly?” With that upbringing I’d make a poor rape crisis counselor.

          1. My dad wasn’t much different. It probably did toughen you up to the point that you don’t make excuses for yourself.

      3. Recently a local talk show host talked of the same thing.

        A 20 something girl at the radio station had her mother call her boss to ask for and tell him why the little snowflake deserved a raise.

        Instead of being embarrassed that her mother called she was dissapoint that no raise was forthcoming.

      4. Don’t assume the employee got his mother on the case. He may have just blabbed about it to his mother, not knowing she’d butt in.

  8. I’ll tell you what, if or when I have a kid of my own and they go off to college I’m going to tell them I’ll be unhappy if they get straight A’s because I’d rather they get some B’s or even a C once in a while rather than be miserable.

    1. I found that if you don’t waste a lot of time dicking around, you can get very good grades and still have plenty of time for fun and relaxation. It does depend on your field of study a bit, though.

    2. I’d be disappointed because it’d mean they’re only taking humanities classes. A B in multivariate calculus is worth more than an A in every humanities class at the university, in my experience. Even doing worse has its merit. The point of an education if there ever was one is to subject oneself to intellectual challenge. It takes more character to try and fail at advanced mathematics than to settle for writing a few pages of sophistry every week for an easy A (that’s basically what every humanities class is). Mind you, I don’t hate the humanities per se, just the teachers; a reasonably well-read person likely knows more about your average humanities prof’s own topic than the prof himself.

  9. I’m talking about this new reclassification of people getting drunk, going on a date, going to fraternity houses, and women not taking responsibility for their own behavior. I said that gay men for thousands of years have been going out and having sex with strangers everywhere. They know they can be beaten up. They know they can be killed. What is this where women are, “Oh, we must be protected against even our foolish choices. It’s up to men to?” This is ridiculous. This is an intrusion into the civil liberties of young people that have this kind of vampiric parent figures and the administrators hovering, watching, supervising people’s sex lives.

    For anyone who didn’t watch or read the transcript of the Camille Paglia interview.

    1. This scared me. I need to go to my safe puppy room, you monster.

      1. is that where you abuse puppies?

        1. The puppies are asking for it. Otherwise they wouldn’t be walking around naked.

    2. The irony of that is women were over-protected (if possible for the parents) for a very long time.

      Wasn’t the point of the feminist movement to break out of all that? To go forth and take risks in life as well as responsibility?

      1. Everyone likes the ‘to go forth’ part, it’s what follows there that’s a harder sell.

        1. To go forth… under the ever-lengthening penumbra of projected paternal protection.

      2. When I hear women complain that it’s a man’s world and they want a piece of it I just laugh.

        My response is go out there and get it baby, all you can handle.

        1. From the shanty towns to the prisons to the homeless shelters. to the coal mines, it sure is a man’s world. Until women are lining up to inherit their share of all those things, they’ve no right to complain.

  10. “What doesn’t kill me makes me a perpetually pissy-eyed spokesperson for victimhood.” So much for a movement of personal empowerment.

  11. Another cultural shift: you were always told that it didn’t matter if you didn’t dress stylish to work out in the gym. Just show up consistently and pump iron.
    The last few years we are now told to dress in designer athletic wear. Ladies, wear make-up(!). When you look good you feel good and NOBODY WANTS TO WORK OUT NEXT TO A SLOB.

    1. I’m more concerned with the dickbags who talk on their goddamn phones while on the treadmill.

      1. No shit, mang.

      2. Even worse are the people who sit, not exercise. and talk on their phone — or text — while on the circuit training weights machines. I’ve many times gone and done all the other weights machines I wanted to do, while one person sits jabbering away on the last machine I need (apparently they don’t have access to chairs anywhere else in the world). Then, when I finally can’t take it any more, I politely come up to the machine, point and mouth the words “may I?” Up comes the index finger, a ‘give me a minute, will ya?”. Then they say on the phone “I’ve got to go, some jerk thinks it’s his health club.” And then they start doing their workout, which consists of four reps on the lightest weight level, then five minutes of staring at their fingertips before doing another set, and ‘no you can’t work in, I’ll be done in just two more sets.”

        1. This is one of the reasons that I gave up on the gym in favor of a treadmill at home in the basement. Peace and quiet!

        2. At the risk of antagonizing Warty (never a good idea) I started doing crossfit about five months ago and had completely forgotten about all those wonderful gym experiences.

          In an attempt to avoid Warty’s wrath, Warty, I go to Olympic lifting classes and morning squat sessions too!

          1. Warty can go sit and spin! (I do crossfit, too). It’s fun – something that a gym should be.

            1. Exactly, m’lady!

        3. Those people are usually the ones who ask me if I’m trying to avoid them.

    2. Who tells you that?

      1. The monthly, glossy health magazines. They’ve been harping on this for a few years now.

    3. If you think of the gym as Tinder-in-person, of course you’re going to want your gym to be full of the well coifed.

    4. I’m sorry, but if you’re in designer clothes and make-up, you’re probably not doing the whole exercise thing correctly.

      Then again we’re living in the age of Planet Fitness.

  12. For a girl’s four year birthday, my three year old son when asked what we should get her responded “a pink monster truck!”

    Cute that he took what he likes, monster trucks, and thought a girl might like one too if it was pink?

    Or, have I already raised another cisgendered patriarchal monster?

    1. Gun makers seem to think girls like pink guns.

      1. So he’s a capitalist?

      2. Google “Hello Kitty Machine Gun”.

    2. No you haven’t. My youngest granddaughter would be pleased senseless to get a pink monster truck. She likes My Little Pony and disassembling engines in equal parts.

      1. What kind of little pony do you have ?

      2. My daughter’s big into the Ninja Turtles and Power Rangers. To be fair, she’s a Barbie nut too, but at least the other stuff kinda balances that out.

    3. An American Sniper coloring book. Many on here have already “read” it and recommend it. For ages 3 to 8 as well as for neocon adults. Some of the proceeds go to Jesse Ventura.

  13. What you pretty little ladies need are some bubbles!

    To be fair, we all could use some bubbles. Bubbles are fun.

    1. What’s a hot tub without bubbles? Hey, Bubbles. Come here.

      1. “So what’s your favorite subject?”-T. Melon

        “Poetry!”-Bubbles

        “Great, maybe later you can come over to my place and help me straighten out my Longfellow!”-T. Melon

    2. Did you ever blow bubbles when you were a kid??… Cause he’s back in town and wants you to give him a call!

      1. “Hello, my name is Bubbles.”

  14. But she’s not talking about physical safety; students want to be safe from debates. Safe from jarring ideas. Safely situated in a “safe place” (terminology previously associated with hurricanes and nuclear war) when some speaker somewhere on campus is even suggesting the possibility that we don’t live in a “rape culture.”

    You know what is really ironic? How can a person who has lived in a cocoon of safety ever have experienced anything that would make exposure to “rape culture” a trauma?

    I GET IT that a woman who has been raped or sexually abused as a child would wish to avoid discussions that would remind her of those experiences. But people who have lived in safety cocoons havn’t had those experiences, by definition. You either think all the children are potential victims of abuse deeply traumatized by their experiences, or you think they are too coddled to deal with conflict effectively.

    What’s bizarre is that everyone seems to think both simultaneously. They’re all supposedly coddle babies whove all been secretly sexually abused by the rape culture, despite having never been allowed to leave the house to avoid getting molested by child abusers.

    1. It’s not bizarre when one understands that doublethink is an emotional mental state, not a rational one.

      ‘I don’t like’ leads to ‘I avoid experiencing it’. That’s it. There is no deeper logic, just a huge cloud of rationalization obscuring the very primitive, reptilian thought process.

      1. I wonder what actual abuse victims think of all this. Not everyone grew up in an overprotective home. I wonder how kids who actually have experienced trauma feel about those who are collapsing in mental fits because they can’t handle a debate about “rape culture”.

        1. Anecdotal experience doing some work in corrections (mostly just interviews of prisoners) but a lot of those guys experienced some degree of extreme trauma in their life. It didn’t send them into fits, it hardened them in the long run (usually in very negative ways). Many of those guys just saw it as ‘the way the world is’ and admittedly probably used it to justify their own dangerous impulses.

          1. Admittedly a biased sample.
            My guess is that it does harden people, not always in negative ways though.

            Anyway, I would bet that the degree of people’s sensitivity to “offensive” discussions is inversely correlated with how much actual trauma they have suffered.

            1. It also does fuck people up. Often while also hardening them.

            2. Hmm, While I’ve never been sexually assaulted, I did grow up in what would now be called an abusive environment. I spent some months in foster care as a result.

              I pay this type of thing no mind whatsoever. For the most part, these people are whiners and losers looking for attention. Real rape happens, real abuse happens, but few victims are going to spend time in a toddler play room so they can feel safe. That’s completely mental. It’s a show for victim culture, and that’s what we have – victim culture. We grant victims status, and, therefore, some individuals will seek out that “status”.

              The very best response is no response at all. A cold eyed stare and a “Sorry, to hear that, dear.” Is the only appropriate response.

              1. My thinking is that, generally, decisions and policies made from neuroses are bad. And a neurosis may be a neurosis born of traumatic experience, but it’s still a neurosis, and therefore, far from conferring expertise, actually renders one’s judgment less reliable.

        2. In mental health (i.e. where serious abuse victims actually receive care), this shit would never fly. The focus is on learning to recognize those situations and thoughts that have the potential to make you decompensate, and then master techniques for enduring those situations and practicing those techniques until you stop being at risk for decompensation. If something unexpectedly triggers (and this is how the word is supposed to be used, folks. If you don’t have serious trauma in your past, you don’t get triggered, unless you are talking in a very technical fashion with a professional in the field) a panic attack or flashback, then you take the minimum time needed to recover, and you get right back into your life. Although maybe you don’t watch Saw IV, because that is a terrible, terrible movie.

          It’s like getting the wind knocked out of you playing hockey. You get your breath back and you get back out there. It doesn’t mean the player who hit you is evil, and it doesn’t mean that hockey itself is an evil sport, it just means you are vulnerable in a particular area and need to work on reducing that vulnerablility. (I had some extended extra pads and squat moar metaphor going here, but it just didn’t work.)

          1. I had a friend some years ago who was subject to panic attacks. She had been married to a very bad man. We cured her (mostly) by introducing her to target shooting. She was a natural and as her gun collection grew her attacks shrank.

          2. Great comment. That’s exactly how I feel about it. There are probably a few people out there who have experienced traumatizing rapes, but very likely not enough to justify having a toddler play room at a discussion about “rape culture” where they can run away and have flashbacks.

    2. I think part of this is due to the rewards society gives to victim status. Even if YOU haven’t been a victim of physical violence, you want in on the gig, usually under the justification of some system-based oppression. It’s a perverse kind of psychic entitlement.

      1. ^This. This situation reminds me of that article written some months ago supposedly by a woman who lived in poverty. The point of the story was to explain why the poor made awful decisions. Turns out, she was some pretender from a wealthy family who had attended private school and had an advanced degree. Not that educated people from wealthy families can’t and don’t sometimes end up in poverty, but she so obviously had other choices. She made a mockery of the topic.

        1. I have a good friend who’s daughter is actually pissed at him because he provided her with such a good life growing up. She feels deprived because she grew up in a nice suburban home with loving parents, always had money growing up, went to a good school and never had anything bad happen to her.

          My buddy is completely bewildered by the whole deal. What do you do when your kids resent the fact that their life was wonderful?

          1. *facepalm*

          2. Cut off the cash and ship them to Somalia.

          3. Sounds like someone who needs some challenges.
            Someone should tell her to take up an extreme sport or start shooting heroin or something.

            1. Both are a great way to stay in shape.

      2. I’ve been violently assaulted many times when I was young. We just called that Friday or Saturday night.

    3. Why do you think sexual assault (with all its definitional flexibility) is starting to look like a right of passage among college-age women, to the point that some are faking rapes? It adds a frisson of worldliness to bubble-wrapped ingenues who have none.

      1. I think it is a total jealousy deal.

        I think there are a significant amount of women who really are envious of women who have been raped or abused. It isn’t that they want to be actually raped or abused, but they sure do wish that they had that experience on their victim card punched.

        If they had that in their past, they could enjoy the undiluted sympathy of all their peers whenever they brought up their past. They could win arguments by playing their victim card.

        That is why 1%-ers like Lena Dunham make up rape stories. A rape story is the new Malibu Beach House, the accessory that no real Barbie can be without.

        1. So it’s basically just a variant of Munchausen syndrome?

      2. Well, it’s partly in the definition of rape. Rape used to be, well, rape. Now, a drunken boob squeeze is “rape” or at least sexual assault.

        Pay attention to the phraseology. If someone claims to have been “sexually assaulted” that can mean anything from an inappropriate touch to full on rape. If getting drunk and inappropriately touching someone is rape then I’m a rapist.

        I’m not saying squeezing a strangers ass in a bar is ever acceptable regardless of gender, but the appropriate response is a slap or drink in the face – not a prison sentence.

        1. Hmmm….

          I know men tend to be a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma, but let me say that I think it is almost always a good thing when a gal grabs your ass in a bar. Please don’t try to dissuade any women from taking that action.

          I know that I have always enjoyed such gropes.

          1. I have to agree. LB, you can grab my ass in a bar anytime you like.

            1. I’ll keep that in mind if the occasion should ever present itself.

        2. Oh, you’re behind the curve. There was a piece that stated–I think reason wrote about it, where one type of ‘sexual assault’ was deliberately witholding sex.

          Keeping your hands off and going home is rape.

          That’s where we are now.

      3. I, as other men I suspect, have had numerous women ask me to pull their hair or hold down their arms forcefully during sex.

        Some have pushed it too far where I withdrew for the fear of backlash the next day.

        From personal experience I believe many women get off on rape fantasies.

        Any others here experience that? Male or Female ?

        1. Something tells me we’re gonna see more of this situation, because of a certain book that was recently made into a movie.

  15. Remember when that student from some California college was trying to get professors to voluntarily use trigger warnings on their syllabi showed up in the comments to defend her point? I’ve been thinking of that conversation recently. She was so convinced that all she was asking for was manners. That is why it can be hard to debate people on this — they are so convinced that anything that makes them uncomfortable amounts to a personal attack and must be stopped.

    1. I don’t mind trigger warnings, if they are used to say the equivalent of “Warning: this video contains scenes of graphic violence. Viewer discretion is advised.”
      The problem is the kind of people who hear the trigger warning and think that’s a good reason to walk out. The trigger warning is there so you can be *prepared*, not so you can start protesting.

      1. Same thought, same time, Hazel.

        1. yeah, but it’s sooo much fun when they get the pie in the face

    2. You know, the funny thing about it is that I don’t really have a problem with a simple, “this is what we will be discussing in class today.” I look at it more as “heads-up, prepare yourself.” What I take issue with is the notion that: 1) everything can be “triggering” because of the subjectivity, 2) people should receive unique consideration and accommodation due to those subjective circumstance, and 3) that avoidance is even remotely a healthy way to deal with issues.

      1. As long as they don’t actually say “trigger warning”, I agree. But that phrase is just a joke now. But sure, warn people if you are going to bring up disturbing topics.

        1. Agreed. At this point if I hear the words “trigger warning” I’m likely to get up and leave because I don’t want to be surrounded by a bunch of pussies.

        2. The sad thing is that it was originally a technical term from PTSD/panic disorder treatment for situations that actually set off panic attacks and flashbacks (or other serious symptoms). It was supposed to be a way for people in recovery from severe mental illness to recognize where they were vulnerable and be able to prepare for or avoid those situations until they were ready. It was not supposed to be a permanent taboo.

          1. I wonder if it ever occurs to the feminists-types what self important narcissistic little turds they are.

            War veteran: It’s rough, whenever I hear a car backfire I get startled, and when I see war movies I have flashbacks and feel like I’m getting shot at and start to sweat.

            Feminist activist: Yeah I know, same here; an ugly guy asked me out once, now every time someone tells me they’re not a feminist I feel the urge to slit my wrists; life is tough for us, isn’t it?

  16. Honestly I think a lot of this has to do with the fact that humans are hundred thousand year old computers running on modern day software. Historically speaking, humans were often in environments where avoiding danger was pretty much impossible, from the days we wandered as herds on the plains, wary of predators. We are, for lack of a better term, programmed to be worried about the possibility of a predator coming after us. Being in an environment without that threat, without the possibility of danger, drives a lot of people to create further threats out of the mundane. That, coupled with the obvious biological desire to preserve your young, results in the typical fearmongering campaigns: everything from Stranger Danger to video game violence.

    1. Um yeah, there’s a big difference between a tiger jumping out of the bushes at you and a person in your tribe saying something you don’t like.

      How many tribal societies had rules in which nobody was allowed to say offensive things because they might traumatize the delicate feelings of other tribe members? How long do you think any tribe that did would have survived?

      Any tribal society I know of, the pussy with the hurt feelings would have gotten the shit beat out of him so he actually had something to cry about. That’s how humans are programmed to deal with whiney little pussies.

      1. Said tribe already had existential threats all around them. Starvation, disease, warfare, etc. In the modern world, the traditional dangers are significantly reduced. You don’t have to worry about a bad harvest resulting in community starvation, you don’t have to worry about the Mongols coming over that hill one day. As someone else pointed out last week, there’s a reason why eating disorders only start to become more common in societies where food is widely available.

        We have to make up a tiger to be afraid of. And in a modern, Western society, with so little physical threats and such a focus on psychological health, the ‘new tiger’ becomes threats to the psychological well-being of an individual. Which is quickly turned into simple emotional gratification. I’m not saying it’s rational. We have this ridiculous focus on emotional well-being and vague psychological threats because we live in a society where its so profoundly prosperous and safe that it’s the only immediate and constant ‘danger’.

      2. That sort of misses the point. Without the ever-present danger of getting killed by a lion, or another tribe or whatever, people still have the same mechanism of wariness and anxiety that helped them be ready to react to lion attacks built in. And it gets directed toward things that aren’t real dangers in the same way.

        1. Is it mindless borderline-hysterical anxiety about existential threats hiding in the crevices of other peoples’ psyches, though, or is it buying into the latest feel-good fad to highlight your unique status, solicit social approval, and tell others just how much they can shut the hell up?

          1. I think it is like Titor says above. When there isn’t a tiger out there that might try to eat you, people invent their own tigers. I think that the later option that you pose is secondary to that fundamental aspect of human nature.

          2. Social approval is certainly a factor in all this, but it’s telling that the social approval lends more heavily towards the ’embrace your feelings’ side of the equation than the ‘stop being a whiner’ in certain groups and exponentially increases the more said groups have access to outstanding Western prosperity and safety. There’s a reason why a lot of social justice activists are trustfund babies.

            1. I don’t suppose it matters whether or not they actually feel threatened in any measurable sense or whether they think they feel threatened (or whether there’s a difference, ultimately.) But I have trouble taking seriously the notion that women on American college campuses, objectively among the best insulated from harm, truly behave as if they’re under constant threat or merely ape the talking points.

            2. I suspect that a lot of SJWs are people who were basically the popular kids in high school, and now they have guilt because they used to pick on all the nerds viciously, who were mostly poorer or minorities. Except they havn’t really changed at all, they are still mean, vicious bullies, they have just found more socially acceptable targets. Ones where they get lots of feedback telling them what great, morally righteous people they are for picking on those baddies.

              1. I would think the SJWs were the ones picked on in school and have found an avenue for revenge.

    2. I’ve thought that for awhile myself. People aren’t made to live happy, fluffy lives with no danger and no responsibility. They’re made to hunt dangerous animals for food and have to wear as many hats as possible as members of a tiny tribe in a difficult environment.

      The next time you’ll see humans at their full potential is when we reach an earth-like planet and have some room to spread out.

      1. and have some room to spread out.

        And gambol about the plains?

        I tend to think that humans’ full potential happens when you have fairly dense populations and lots of specialization.

        1. No, I’m not romanticizing the stone age. But as a certain erudite individual once said:

          “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.”

          1. Will you settle for “pitch a fit, take a selfie, ‘like’ a tweet, microwave a Lean Cuisine, put it all on the credit card”?

          2. I do agree that people should be generally capable. That’s how I try to be. But people still need to specialize a lot if we are to get beyond a stone age existence. We have gotten to a point in the development of knowledge that even someone who would have been a brilliant polymath in the past can’t really develop good understanding of more than a few subjects.

            How many people have there ever been who can actually do all the things on that list?

            1. I both agree with you and don’t. I think a single person could competently do everything on that list, but not if you added particle physics to it.

              At the same time, specialization works best for humans when the subject specialized in is something that legitimately takes up a smart person’s intellect. Henry Ford didn’t pay twice the prevailing wage out of the goodness of his heart, he did it because people couldn’t stand doing the same repetitive task day in and day out and the high turnover was slowing production. (that was one solution, the other being George Pullman bringing in the army to keep his employees at work)

              Now, if someone specializes in writing software, that’s different. Though even then all the devs I know have at least one other disparate skill that they’re quite good at.

    3. And thus we have the TSA.

      Not to provide discrete, focused and well run oversight, but to provide an in-your-face security charade so that we can all feel safe that somebody is doing something.

      1. (And the weenies don’t just tolerate it, they beg for it!)

      2. …so we can all feel safe a gloved hand up our rectum
        FTFY

  17. One wonders what the reaction would be if libertarian students confronted the administration the next time some lefty speaker showed up on campus and demanded libertarians have a “safe place” to retreat to, or if a student with wealthy parents claimed that said lefty’s talk about “soaking the rich” triggered frightening images?

    1. “This Marxist revolution you keep enthusiastically espousing? This ‘death to the bourgeosie’? I’m going to need a safe place to drive my 3-series to and sip on a gingerbread latte.”

      1. I’m going to need a safe place to practice close order drill and marksmanship.

  18. From the NYT comments, bottomless buffet of wisdom and insight =

    On Bravery
    “On almost every page of the New York Times I find information that is troubling and goes against my dearly and closely held beliefs. For God’s sake, I just read Ross Douthat’s column”

    On “College-Level Writing”
    “I believe that this phenomenon, on the large, has gained prevalence at locations of higher education for a purpose other than those provided here and provided by activists. My perspective suggests (in admittedly neo-Freudian fashion) that these campaigns are wrought with their members’ insecure sense of individuality….”

    On God-Stuff Sucking Worse, So There
    “I am surprised the blanket protection of generally accepted science, and lack of social debate at Christian based colleges (especially evangelical and fundamental) was not discussed. While “safe spaces” have some value, the accreditation of those schools as actual places of higher learning is shameful and a disservice to these several united states.”

    1. On ‘High-Level Throat-Clearing’
      “Rightist media outlets paint these hermetic confraternities of PC-enforcers as if they’re prototypical of Democrats and their future when they absolutely are not. When similar nonsense is discussed on the political right, reasonable Republicans back into the querencia and prepare for battle royal, because they have to. But liberals of sound mind can dismiss such silliness without worrying themselves over a potential auto-de-f?. The cathexis of the GOP for a handful of nonsensicalities is the most extraordinary thing I’ve ever seen….”

      On, ‘Shut Up, White People’
      “…. Solutions like this are just what is needed to save Ms. Shulevitz and the rest of the sanctimonious free-speech tough guys commenting here the trauma of having to worry about whether or not their right to express the white guy opinion will be infringed.”

      On ‘Ignorance Is Strength’
      “Setting up safe spaces IS engaging in the debate; it is an act of speech/protest. Telling rape victims and their allies to respect the rights of people who ignore (or tacitly defend) rape culture does nothing to empower youth to engage in debate on their own terms. It rather defends one version of free speech that relies on the big voices, the established voices of “authorities” on the issues, as if rape victims themselves are not authorities.”

      1. So speech deriding “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings” as self-infantilizing is where we arbitrarily draw the line between protected and unprotected.

      2. Hey, i just learned the term “cathexis” yesterday. What a coincidence.

        That’s not how you’re supposed to use it, ya twit.

        1. lol

          $5 words, $0.10 brains. You order a grilled ham & cheese and they’ll insist they only serve croque monsieur.

    2. ‘Ignorance is Strength’, ‘One Does Not Simply Walk Into Mordor’, Continued
      “Drawing attention to speech rights when the topic is rape or racism is a diversion. It often does more to delegitimize those who are on the right side of the issue than participating in fixing the culture of rape or racism. You are absolutely not impinging on someone’s right to free speech by asking them to, in all cases, translate the n-word to “the n-word.”….. The enemy is not the one asking for sensitive speech; the enemy is the one who benefits from the distraction of these tangential debates.”

      One of the Good Ones
      “Were the cookies gluten free? Gluten can be triggering”

      And the Winner, Completely Ignored by NYT Editor
      “It seems like the driving force behind this trend is Title VII and Title IX, and their stricture that campuses don’t create a “hostile environment” for women and other groups subject to harassment. 90% of the comments here deplore the trend. Would they have these Titles changed? How?”

      1. It often does more to delegitimize those who are on the right side of the issue

        Holy begging the question, Batman!

      2. *on that last point =

        Only one person out of ~400 comments i scanned through seemed to connect the dots and realize that the social-absurdity of the modern college campus is entirely a product of laws which these very same people most likely supported and would continue to support.

        i.e. it occurred to NO ONE that *just maybe* the Good Government they all worship had anything to do with the status quo.

      3. oh, and out of the comments, which ones did the NYT editors “pick” and highlight?

        “Safe spaces aren’t about hiding. The point of a safe space (as illustrated by the example provided during the rape culture debate) is to help students attend a debate or discuss an issue they might otherwise avoid due to past trauma. … Having the space gives her the freedom to attend the event without worrying about a panic attack in the middle of the audience. It strikes me as a lovely idea born of basic human decency.”

        And

        “That so many people need a “safer space” should be cause for alarm about the state our of society, not the gunshot beginning another race to the bottom to see who can mock the rape victim more smugly.”

        And (EPIC WIN!!!)

        ” The focus of the right on stupidities on campus — such as the playroom for undergraduates described here — served as excellent camouflage for the enactment of the hard-right agenda that affects far more people than the privileged little souls at Smith or Brown. As conservatives pointed to hate-speech incident X, or re-education demand Y they initiated tax cuts and deregulation that destroyed the American economy and pushed our society into the realm of feudalism; they started two wars that killed 100,000’s and cost trillions; they illegally surveilled and tortured; and they treated the first black president as if he was a foreign enemy.”

        Yes = even the college playskool environment? Can be blamed on BOOOOSH

        1. Debates about the First Amendment and censorship are just bobbles, Gilmore. Bright and shiny objects meant to distract as from – DUHN-DUHN-DUHN – the continued atrocities of a man no longer in office.

  19. I think part of this just boils down to tactics.

    The left has wanted to restrict speech for a long time. They recently discovered that if they just insert the word “safe” into their demands, they actually occasionally get somewhere. Because the opposite of “safe” is “threatened”, and you don’t want to support threats, right?

    But a much bigger part of it is the logic of affirmative action (including special treatment for women, which is often considered a separate subject but which for today I’m lumping in to this primary category). The logic of affirmative action is that all minority (and female) failures are the result of “exclusion”, and that if we could just switch to modes of “inclusion” there would be no differences in success between different groups.

    But we’ve had “inclusion” for some decades now, and while post-education achievement gaps have narrowed, they haven’t gone away.

    The failure of “inclusion” to be a magic bullet has to be pinned on something. And basically it’s being pinned on “space ownership”. Even though (the argument goes) white men have been forced to include minorities and women in various institutions, it hasn’t been “true” inclusion, because those groups don’t feel “safe” in spaces white men have traditionally dominated. So when women and minorities fail to succeed more than white men after they’ve been given every educational opportunity, it’s because they didn’t feel “safe” enough to succeed.

    1. And the only way they can feel “safe” is to follow the Occupy model and have white men (and their apologists and fellow travelers) be completely silenced.

      Then “marginalized groups” can feel “truly” included and safe.

  20. At just over 40, and out of the military for a long time, I used to believe that my inability to completely reintegrate in society was some function of the military, or just my aging. I’m not just shaking my fist and demanding vacating said lawn. We’re, as a society, really doing a disservice by stretching these childhoods into the mid and late twenties.

  21. My new slogan: “What is wrong with us!”

    Something in me thinks that the real reason for all of this is laziness. If you can convince someone that the discussion / lecture / class / subject / etc is disturbing to someone then it can be canceled. Which then mean they don’t have to do it. But that is really wishful thinking on my part.

    Actually, people are just nuts now. A good example. One of our friends has a son that is a senior at a private school. He is still able to re-take tests if he feels he didn’t get a good enough grade on it. Yes, as a senior. Then here is the real sad part, his mom still does much of his homework, organizes his work, and lays out his books and finds the information for him. She completely coddles him. Next year he goes off to college and will actually be in ROTC. I am waiting to see what happens, talk about 180 degrees different than now.

    When we had our son (who is now 14) we were given a good advice. We are not raising a child, we are raising an adult. We try to make sure we do things and have him do things that will allow him to be successful as an adult.

    1. Oh, yes, it will be interesting to see what happens when the military starts getting these people as recruits.

  22. From the NYT article:

    Last fall, the president of Smith College, Kathleen McCartney, apologized for causing students and faculty to be “hurt” when she failed to object to a racial epithet uttered by a fellow panel member at an alumnae event in New York. The offender was the free-speech advocate Wendy Kaminer, who had been arguing against the use of the euphemism “the n-word” when teaching American history or “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” In the uproar that followed, the Student Government Association wrote a letter declaring that “if Smith is unsafe for one student, it is unsafe for all students.”

    “It’s amazing to me that they can’t distinguish between racist speech and speech about racist speech, between racism and discussions of racism,” Ms. Kaminer said in an email.

    Oh, they can distinguish. But they’re not about to pass up an opportunity to scramble for the moral high ground and silence their opponents with whatever tools are most convenient and convincing to the muddle-headed booboisie.

  23. And I thought “self infantilizing” was baby play.

    1. I think baby play is actually the opposite of that. It is the process of becoming a more capable person and understanding the world.

  24. “Now we just have to figure out to help them….”

    Why? Don’t some people need to be the Eloi?

    Just kidding.

  25. It’s obvious today’s college students were never “free range kids.”

  26. Was nobody capable of writing headlines this AM? (Seems half the articles have such trouble.)

    College Students: Stop Acting Like You’re Made of Sugar Candy

    Looks like college students are saying that of other people. It’s supposed to mean the imperative clause is directed at college students. There should be a comma there instead of a colon.

    1. When everyone is an editor, no one is an editor.

  27. Not 8th place winners. Seventh losers!

  28. I thought “rape culture” was the era of grab-ass bosses and “I let him have his way with me because I wasn’t going to fight human nature”… and it was something that ended in the late 60s with the prog-feminist movement.

    But as others have pointed out, the lefties have redefined “rape” to include drunken boob-grabs and such. Is hanging up swimsuit-model posters in your cubicle classified as rape yet?

    1. Maybe it would be better to describe “rape culture” as “Now-that’s-what-I-call-rape culture”.

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  30. American schools have crippled the past two generations. They are terrified of everything, they cannot accept failure, so they don’t take chances. They are lazy and feel entitled. The Occupy movement was the epitome of this mindset. The practice of “everyone gets a prize” and politically correct speech is exact why the US is in this mess. Most young people are terrified by confrontation especially when it involves taking a position contrary to the majority. This is why groups like DJP and BDS are taking over university campuses across the US. When you refuse to stand up for yourself, then you submit to tyranny. which is the ultimate goal of the progressive left. An all powerful, unrestrained Federal government.

  31. As a quadrasexual sugarkin this articles triggers me so hard I can’t even

    1. Can quadriplegics have a carbon footprint?

  32. uptil I saw the check ov $9726 , I didnt believe …that…my friends brother actually earning money part time on-line. . there uncles cousin has done this for under eighteen months and recently took care of the morgage on there villa and purchased a brand new Chevrolet .

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