Saturday, December 12, 2015

These are the dreaded microaggressions?

I've written some posts lately on events at American campuses, where left-wing activists have claimed that they are the victims of "microaggressions" that leave them unable to function, except to angrily band together to get campus administrators fired.

I was curious about what these microaggressions might actually be, so I did a search and came up with a project about microaggressions from Fordham University in New York City. Various students were photographed with little placards explaining the microaggressions that they have personally experienced.

I was gobsmacked by just how petty these microaggressions are. Mostly they just involve students being asked where they are from or what ethnicity they are. If that's a microaggression, then most of us are both victims and perpetrators, as people commonly ask this question, both out of curiosity and as a conversation starter.

So, here is a sample of the microaggression complaints:

A bit precious? I get the exact same question in the classroom, it's an abrupt way of asking for your ancestry.

The only real offense here is the lack of geographical knowledge of her classmates

I can imagine it being tiresome to field a question like this, but she really ought to just suck it up

In other words, people are guessing that she is of Chinese descent. I don't know if she's a bit tired of the assumption because she is American born or because she is of some other East Asian origin. But this stuff happens: Australians in Japan are often called "Amerikajin" because it is assumed that people with Anglo looks are from America. Not the hardest thing in life to deal with.

Someone got his name wrong. He is now a member of a club several billion strong.

Someone thought that a person who looked Chinese might possibly be able to read a kanji that looks like Chinese script. Little did they know they were committing a microaggression.

It's interesting that Asian students are jumping on the microaggression bandwagon. They are, after all, members of the most privileged group in America when it comes to career, education and income. Perhaps they realise instinctively that in a liberal system you become vulnerable if you don't strongly assert your right to be a member of a victim class. Or perhaps it is too tempting, even for intelligent people, to externalise their problems, i.e. to blame external "oppression" for your unhappiness, rather than to try to set things right in your own life.

At any rate, it's difficult to take microaggressions seriously. It seems to be more the case of people searching desperately for reasons to feel put out.


  1. The most amusing thing is that a University has a "project" about this... seriously, lol.

  2. We have been learning not to speak to, or even make eye contact with, others -- even those with whom we have been friendly and close relatives. Actually, silence or failing to make eye contact may make us vulnerable to the charge of micro aggression. It has become dangerous to encounter others -- so we may resort to wearing headphones or staring at our phone screens as protection when we must be out in public.


  3. All these 'microaggressions' are backhanded dishonest attacks on White people's identity and racial interests.

    Its says, you must only notice or not notice what I say is important, NOTHING else.

    The underlying manipulative attitude is ugly and reveals a great deal of hostility (racial in this case).

    Something diversity with proximity ALWAYS brings. Live and let live-- separately.

    Buy you see: Diversity means everyone MUST think alike about 'Diversity'

    1. "Diversity means everyone MUST think alike about 'Diversity'"

      Diversity means everyone must conform. There must be no tolerance of intolerance. Freedom of speech is important, that's why freedom of speech must be rigidly controlled.

      In other news, we have always been at war with Eastasia.

  4. Years ago I was in England and I was asked by an Englishman if I was a New Zealander. I told him that no, I was an Australian. I now realise I was the victim of a neocolonialist microaggression. Strangely enough I survived the ordeal and I didn't even require counselling. And then when I visited Greece with my girlfriend several Greek people assumed we were Americans. More microaggressions! Honestly, I don't know how I survived those traumas.

  5. There's a system of power involved. It's more than people wanting to feel put out. They could feel put out without making a public display.

  6. Emory Students Want Professors Evaluated on Number of Microaggressions They Commit

    We demand that the faculty evaluations that each student is required to complete for each of their professors include at least two open-ended questions such as: “Has this professor made any microaggressions towards you on account of your race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, language, and/or other identity?” and “Do you think that this professor fits into the vision of Emory University being a community of care for individuals of all racial, gender, ability, and class identities?” These questions on the faculty evaluations would help to ensure that there are repercussions or sanctions for racist actions performed by professors. We demand that these questions be added to the faculty evaluations by the end of this semester, Fall 2015.