NWA Letters to the Editor

Posted: February 22, 2018 at 8:21 p.m.

Recent generations

wimpy, self-centered

We have now raised two-and-a-half generations of wimpy, self-centered and entitled individuals. If you don't think so, just ask any mindful high school student, teacher, college professor or employer. Better yet, spend a day in any public place that requires individuals to follow basic protocol and demonstrate good manners.

In the editor's letter of the The Week magazine is quoted David Leonhardt of the New York Times who recently said, "We live in a culture that fetishizes individual preference and expression over communal well-being." William Falk, editor-in-chief of The Week said, "The credo of culture is ... 'What I want is what I need, and who cares how what I need affects you.'"

CBS News' Sunday Morning on Feb. 1 ran a piece on the rise of political correctness on college campuses. At the University of California, Berkley, many guest speakers have been cancelled because of threats of violence and destruction of property by students and outsiders. Berkley students called for the cancellation of comedian Bill Maher's commencement address. Maher said, "Whoever told you you only had to hear what didn't upset you?" One Berkley student said, "Students who claim to be the most liberal are the ones not willing to engage in controversial ideas."

At other universities academic speakers were disinvited. Charles Murray, political scientist and author, was not permitted to speak at Middlebury College, Vt., because student protesters shouted him down so that he couldn't be heard. He and the female college professor who facilitated the engagement were attacked by the protesters as they left. The professor suffered a concussion and whiplash. One Middlebury student claimed, "It's a good thing that we are actually able to challenge authority." The mob mentality is on the rise in schools and colleges all across America. Some have stated that colleges are no longer places for the exchange of civil ideals but are an intolerant world of political correctness.

In Minnesota, to embrace political correctness, they're banning To Kill a Mockingbird and Huckleberry Finn from the curriculum because they contain racial slurs that may offend. No consideration for context or historical significance.

Wimpy college students now want "safe spaces" where they can go so they won't be exposed to topics that make them uncomfortable. They request "trigger warnings" that upcoming information may be distressing.

In contrast, last March the University of Chicago sent out a letter to incoming freshman stating, "We do not support so called "trigger warnings," we do not cancel speakers because their topics might prove to be controversial, and we do not condone the creation of intellectual "safe spaces."

We have raised generations of mental weaklings. The advancing of political correctness has added to the problem by promoting [an attitude that] if you're not poor, a young person, a person of color, or a female, then you can't possibly understand or speak toward their issues, which denies the common humanity we all share and the desire to dialog to see a better America.

Terry Stewart


Commentary on 02/23/2018