Archive | May 26, 2009


I’m watching Larry King trying to match wits with Jon Stewart; when King said “I am unfeared!” (meaning something else), that about summed it up.

Out of Africa

black and white alien from Star TrekA white student born in Africa has been suspended from medical school (specifically, the euphoniously named University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey) for calling himself a “white African-American.”

I suspect there’s a tendency on both the left and the right to blur the distinction between this kind of lunacy and, e.g., the censure of white students who dress up in Klan costumes or blackface to reenact lynchings (as occurred on my fair campus a few years back). Many on the right would like to insinuate that making a fuss about demeaning minstrel shows is just as crazy, just as much a symptom of (as they like to say) “political correctness run amuck” as making a fuss about an American from Africa describing himself as African-American. Likewise, many leftists of the authoritarian variety might have us believe that the latter is a serious racist incident just like the former – a kind of verbal blackface, if you will.

Both reactions are wrong. These are cases where we need to, um, discriminate. (But don’t expect university administrators to figure out the difference without the help of a bit of pressure.)

Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes