I don’t have kids heading off to college but if I did I would for sure share this video with them. It’s brought to you by the Factual Feminist’s Christina Hoff Sommers, who smartly explains how to navigate the gender jungle minefield of sexual politics of higher education. I could not agree more with what she has to say about thinking for yourself and welcoming differing opinions. Below is an excerpt.
“Now, if you are liberal and idealistic, and also a woman, you face a different sort of risk. When you get to campus you will find a large and excited group of gender activists—students and some professors—eager to recruit you to their cause. They will present you with shocking statistics of sexual violence on campus, and theories about an oppressive patriarchy. They will tell you how mistreated and traumatized you are. It will seem new and exciting—a way to make friends and fight injustice at the same time—and you may be tempted to sign up. Just be aware that most of the victim statistics you will hear are wildly exaggerated and the theories about women’s oppression are twisted and surreal. As for trigger warnings and safe spaces—these are infantile. They are the opposite of empowerment.”
“You shouldn’t take my word on these matters. You shouldn’t take anybody’s word. Think for yourself. Your feminist foremothers fought and won a battle for your right to be educated on a par with men. They knew you were tough, and wanted you to have the opportunity to put that strength to use. Don’t waste it by falling captive to a pointless ideology or indulging in victimhood.”
Opposite of empowerment indeed! Having someone challenge your ideas forces you to actually think critically about them and either strengthen your argument, or, gasp, admit you were wrong and actually learn something. There are few things more freeing than realizing you can disagree with others but still have mutual respect and enjoyment for each other.
To think how far our society has strayed from this basic truth is truly depressing. Really, sometimes I can’t even read the news. Here’s hoping videos like this are making a difference and that the pendulum shifts back towards sanity soon!