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You have to read it to believe it: Stanford declares 'American' is offensive

Published in Blog on December 20, 2022 by Jakob Fay

Lately, I’ve noticed it’s becoming harder to distinguish between the news and satire. This is yet another example of that.

Yesterday, I wrote that political correctness has effectively become a religion, one that seeks to supplant traditional values with new, woke standards. It’s much worse than any of us ever realized, I said. And as evidenced by this “harmful language guide,” its adherents are ever becoming more zealous.

Stanford University, one of the most prestigious schools in the world, has introduced an “Elimination of Harmful Language Initiative” to combat the allegedly dangerous, politically incorrect words that proliferate its campus. 

The guide tackles language pertaining to ableism, ageism, colonialism, cultural appropriation, gender, institutionalized racism, and other absurd topics. It seeks to transform its campus into the ultimate safe space.

Some of the first words and phrases to go are those that are apparently ableist (discriminatory in favor of “able-bodied” people). These include “addicted,” “crazy,” “tone deaf,” and “committed suicide.” 

No more "walk-in" appointments (how dare we discriminate against those who can’t walk?); instead, we must say “drop-in” appointments. “Sanity check” is also off the table (are we insinuating that insane people are, well… insane?). “Confidence check” would be much more inclusive.

Moving on to colonialism, “Philippine Islands” is the biggest no-no. “The term is politically incorrect and denotes colonialism,” Stanford informs us. The guide does note, however, that people of Filipino heritage might still use the offensive term (which seems strange to me, but what do I know?). “Philippines” or the “Republic of the Philippines” is the PC way to go.

When it comes to cultural appropriation, Stanford is here to sound the alarm: culturally appropriative language has made its way into our everyday vocabularies! It’s time to bleep out “brave”, “Geronimo”, “guru”, “Pocahontas”, and many other insensitive words that denote our lack of respect for other cultures.

As if all of this has not already made speaking without offending someone an impossible chore, the list of banned words is only just beginning. I haven’t even mentioned “fireman,” “gentlemen,” “guys,” “ladies,” “manmade,” “abort,” “Karen,” “peanut gallery,” “survivor,” “gangbusters,” “grandfather,” “convict,” “immigrant,” “prisoner,” “prostitute,” “killing it,” “pull the trigger,” “rule of thumb,” “no can do,” “submit,” and a plethora of other obscenities that are sure to land you on the wrong side of the Stanford PC police.

Either you are working up a sweat by now, having realized that the left has completely drained the fun out of language; or you dismissed the whole list from the get-go (I personally would recommend the latter).

But wait, there’s more!

I saved the best for last: according to the Stanford language guide, “American” is also offensive. Why? Because it “often refers to people from the United States only, thereby insinuating that the US is the most important country in the Americas (which is actually made up of 42 countries).”

Is anyone actually offended by these words? Or are we just subjecting our students to nonsensical newspeak to teach them compliance to the religion of woke?

Higher education should exist to challenge students’ preconceived notions, pushing them to grapple with new ideas. Instead, it coddles their delicate sensibilities, shielding them from the realities of the world.

We need not be intentionally offensive. But to tiptoe around a thousand rules of political correctness is unquestionably absurd. 

The radicals have come for our kids. What we do about it very well may determine the future of this nation.

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