Monday, June 15, 2015

Calling America 'Land of Opportunity' offensive, University of California warns professors

Phrases such as “America is the land of opportunity” and “America is a melting pot" are "micro-aggressions" that could leave some students feeling discriminated against, according to a new faculty training guide put out by the University of California.

The guide, which says those phrases and others can be interpreted by minorities as “denying the significance of a person of color’s racial/ethnic experience and history,” or that they “assimilate to the dominant culture,” is used across the vast, 200,000-student University of California system. Specifically, it is for training professors in “faculty leadership seminars” that aim to “enhance department and campus climate toward inclusive excellence.”

The guide, first exposed by the student-run The College Fix, uses the same argument to condemn a number of seemingly innocuous statements, such as:

“I believe the most qualified person should get the job.” “Affirmative action is racist.” “Everyone can succeed in this society, if they work hard enough.” “When I look at you, I don’t see color.” “I don’t believe in race.” “Gender plays no part in who we hire.” Many find the training guide absurd.

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