(Via Campus Reform)
Every year, college students across the country find new and absurd ways to be offended, leading to justifiable confusion of campus-themed stories with headlines from The Onion.
In many cases, college-goers are taught to despise long-standing American institutions and symbols, such as police officers, the Constitution, and even the American flag itself.
So, this year, Campus Reform has decided to take a look back at 2017 to highlight some of the silliest and most disturbing things students found offensive.
1. 9/11 memorials
Conservative students all around the country often erect memorial displays on September 11 to remember the lives that were lost in the day’s tragic events, but this year some memorials were vandalized or relocated to prevent students from taking offense.
At Southern Methodist University, for instance, the administration moved a 9/11 memorial to a lightly-trafficked area of campus because its contents might be considered “triggering, harmful, or harassing.”
At Columbia University, one passerby took matters into his own hands, removing about 50 flags from the memorial and throwing them in the trash.
2. The Constitution
Controversy abounded this year at Kellogg Community College after campus officials arrested three conservative activists who were passing out pocket-copies of the Constitution. Administrators told the activists that asking students if they “like freedom and liberty” was disruptive because passers-by didn’t “know that they can say ‘see ya later.’”
The Alliance Defending Freedom subsequently sued the college, accusing it of violating both the First and Fourteenth Amendments.
3. The police
In November, Brooklyn College asked New York City police officers to use bathrooms on the far end of campus in order to avoid being seen by students who might be offended by their presence.
The move came several weeks after students attended a screening of a film about NYPD’s surveillance of Muslim students as part of its counterterrorism efforts.
2017 saw a widespread movement to rid the country of Confederate monuments, some of which are located on or near college campuses. At the University of Tennessee, three professors claimed that colleges should rename controversial monuments in general because of the “psychological harm” they cause to minority students.
Meanwhile, the University of North Carolina is in the midst of an ongoing debate over whether a statue of a Confederate soldier known as “Silent Sam” should be removed from campus.
5. Non-“inclusive” language
2017 also saw a trend of university departments issuing what are commonly dubbed “inclusive-language guides” that help students and staff avoid words that might be offensive to some.
One such guide was issued at the University of Wisconsin, River Falls, where officials cracked down on potentially offensive language by telling student to “check yourself” before using terms such as “illegal alien” “ugly,” or even “you guys.”
Similarly, Emerson College deemed the term “homosexual” to be an offensive reference to gay or lesbian people, saying only the latter two terms are sufficiently inclusive.
Students find new ways every year to be offended by Christmas, but this year an academic department at the University of Minnesota declared that even “bows/wrapped gifts” are “not appropriate for gatherings and displays.”
Instead, the department encouraged its employees to “consider neutral-themed parties such as ‘winter celebration,’” suggesting using color combinations that aren’t associated with Christmas or Hanukkah.
100 Americans Owe $1 Million+ In Student Loan Debt
Astronomically high college tuition facilitated by a bottomless ocean of student loans has saddled Americans with a record $1.48 trillion in non-dischargeable debt – an amount which has more than doubled since the 2009 lows.
As we reported in January, nearly 40% of student loans taken out in 2004 are projected to default by 2023 according to the Brookings institute.
While in March we noted that debt-laden millennials were set back an average of $140,000 vs. their parents – a problem compounded by the fact that students aren’t just borrowing money for tuition; their student loans cover rent, food and other bills, leaving them with massive interest payments and in many cases, little prospect of getting ahead – much less saving for retirement.
Enter the million-dollar-debtors
While millions of Americans are drowning in student loans – 101 people have the ultimate albatross around their necks; student loan balances exceeding $1 million, according to the Wall St. Journal. Five years ago, there were just 14 people with loans that large.
Utah orthodontist Mike Meru, 37, is one of them. After graduating from Brigham Young University with no debt and a new marriage, Meru borrowed $601,506 debt to attend USC’s orthodontics program – while his new wife Melissa finding work as a USC administrative assistant to save on tuition. After a few years, his student loan had swelled to $1,060,94.
Judge Allows UC Berkeley To Face Lawsuit
(Reuters) – A federal judge rejected the University of California at Berkeley’s bid to dismiss a lawsuit claiming it discriminated against conservative speakers like Ann Coulter by imposing unreasonable restrictions and fees on their appearances.
In a decision late Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Maxine Chesney in San Francisco said two conservative groups could pursue claims that the school applied its policy for handling “major events” and an earlier policy for “high-profile speakers” in a manner that unfairly suppressed conservative speech.
But the judge also said she was “unpersuaded” by claims by the plaintiffs that the school engaged in intentional viewpoint discrimination, and that the major events policy was too vague. She said the plaintiffs could not seek punitive damages.
The Berkeley College Republicans and the Young America’s Foundation, a Tennessee group, had sued after the university canceled Coulter’s scheduled speech last April 27, citing security concerns.
Janet Napolitano, president of the University of California, was also named as a defendant.
UC Berkeley is known as the birthplace of the student-led Free Speech Movement of the 1960s. Like other schools, it has tried to welcome different views without jeopardizing safety or its educational mission.
The major events policy was adopted in July, and gave school officials discretion to take various steps to ensure security.
Chesney said the plaintiffs may pursue an equal protection claim over a security fee charged for an appearance by conservative commentator Ben Shapiro that was well above a fee at the same venue for Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, part of the court’s liberal bloc.
Teacher Couldn’t “Read or Write” For 17 Years
In an very in depth story by the BBC, a man who was a New Mexico teacher ended revealing a secret that may or may not surprise you, he could not read or write for 17 years of his teaching.
The entire article reveals how John Corcoran gamed the system without ever learning how to read or write and achieved teacher status at the same time.
BBC: When I was taking a test I would look at someone else’s paper, or I’d pass my paper over to somebody else and they’d answer the questions for me – it was fairly easy, amateur cheating. But when I went off to college on a full athletic scholarship it was a different story.
I thought, “Oh my gosh, this is way over my head, how am I going to be able to get through this?”