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"unless it affects me"

Just because it doesn't affect you now doesn't mean it won't someday. These things become entrenched in colleges, and then kids in school are taught the same things, and then it becomes typical workplace philosophy... eventually you are shunned as a "mid-evil" ogre stuck in your racist past.

Hyperbole? Perhaps. Coming soon to a college campus near you, probably. Should be firmly entrenched by the time your grandkids go to college.

Windermere FL
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VA, I can't speak for others, but I've got no trouble calling out nutballs regardless of whether their politics agree with mine. I think there are lots more people like that.

Some of this involves how easily upset people get and how hypersensitive they are. I tend to be more chill about stuff unless I think it's an important issue, and then I'll speak up. Like the yoga thing. It's stupid IMO for them to discontinue the lessons, but unless it affects me or is some gross injustice and harmful to someone, I usually don't get too exercised about it.

New Orleans LA
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Short story from almost 20 years ago, so this is not new.

As an undergraduate I also taught lab courses for freshman and sophomore chemistry. One issue I had was a particular student who had such terrible English it made it difficult for him to accomplish much. One day, he turned in a (typed) report written in sparkling perfect English.

It was obvious he didn't write it. I asked the professor what to do. He (wanting nothing to do with what he knew would come of it) wanted me to let it go. I didn't want to, but I did.

The next year (1997) we had mandatory cultural sensitivity training at this very school in this story (University of Ottawa). During a session about ESL students I brought up this incident and asked how it should have been handled.

The shit storm brought upon me was beyond description. The instructor's words were, as close as I can remember them, "If you're too entrenched in your racism to understand that people sometimes struggle with language then perhaps you don't belong here."

I attempted to explain that she didn't seem to have understood anything I said. She snapped at me for "talking down to her" and told me that it was clear that I "considered [her] an inferior because to suggest [she] couldn't (her word) understand what I meant was so offensive to [her] that we cannot talk about this anymore". She then added that she couldn't be sure if I was being racist or sexist with her. Possibly both.

OK. I can see where this is going.

Windermere FL
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"I know a lot of liberal/progressive people who think PC has gone too far in many ways."

Absolutely. Unfortunately they are not driving things as much as the nutballs are. People are less likely to call out nutballs when they happen to be politically aligned with them, rather than call them out.

Correction- nutballs still don't drive a lot, but like today's fucked up shit becomes tomorrow's new normal, today's nutball becomes tomorrow's enlightened individual.

This has been increasing on college campuses for a long time now. Generally, liberal nutball ideas become more common in your ultra-liberal places first. These are not really all that nutty in Canada.

Windermere FL
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"Today's fucked up shit becomes tomorrow's new normal."

Not necessarily. A lot of times some fucked-up fad comes and goes on its own. Sometimes it goes away as a result of it going too far and sensible people reacting against it. I know a lot of liberal/progressive people who think PC has gone too far in many ways.

New Orleans LA
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The majority may not care, but they can't have yoga on campus now because they've been taught that it's oppressing... someone...

tbr - I know you say that "nobody cares" in California, but googling California campus cultural appropriation bring up TONS of hits for Stanford, CSU San Marcos, UC Irvine, UC Davis, and many others. The schools have these same kind of online guides scolding those who practice "cultural appropriation" and do not understand that it is a 'microaggression towards students of color" and a "subconscious exercise in white supremacy". The majority center around Cinco de Mayo events and Halloween. For some reason St. Patrick's Day is not included in the list of days that white people are bad.

Today's fucked up shit becomes tomorrow's new normal. This is how this stuff comes creeping in... slowly.. in small doses... becoming more and more "normal". One day you'll wake up and realize it's everywhere. I don't normally agree with Andrew's wild ass conspiracy theories but this one is happening.

Windermere FL
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CALIFORNIA sounds like the bar scene from, "STAR WARS". All chiefs and no Indians.

Thornton CO
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Yeah, these people are going a bit overboard. But although we see lots of stories about this stuff, the great majority don't care.

My Korean boss goes to yoga on campus with one of our white staff and the class is taught by a Japanese woman.

That's one thing I like about California. For the most part, no one cares where you came from, what kind of food you are eating, who's culture you are mimicking, or who you are fucking.

Fullerton CA
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Some things are just fucked up. But people usually come to their senses at some point.

New Orleans LA
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I remember learning about cultural appropriation in college. I felt like I was looking at the emperor's new clothes. Everyone was nodding their heads and agreeing while I was dumbstruck.

The concept goes against everything that I know. When cultures meet, there is a cultural exchange. We adopt the things that are good. Isn't imitation the sincerest form of flattery? Our cowboys got their horses from Spain and we got our number system from the Arabs. In return Spain adopted the tomato and Ireland the potato.

To me, it is a sign of true acceptance when another cultural aspect is adopted. It seems to me while an Indian yogi may bemoan the fact that the focus in the West is on yoga for excercise rather than spiritual enlightenment, the widespread acceptance of yoga could also open doors to the spiritual aspects of yoga.

I have also heard the controversy over accepting traditionally African hairstyles. It seems that it is easy to offend. I get so confused. My dad has kinky hair. During the 70's, he let his hair grow into a big halo of hair (or fro.) I suppose that is cultural appropriation. Cutting his hair every 8 days and styling it to look like regular Anglo hair with lots of product is better I suppose but then is it trying to distance himself from African Americans and avoiding any possible association?

Women used to be ashamed of big booties. Now women are getting Brazilian butt lifts and butt and lip injections. Is that cultural appropriation or is it embracing a wider range of beauty standards. I hear the protest over professional appearance standards that don't take into account African hairstyles but I also hear protests when Anglos adopt the hairstyles for whatever reasons. Well, for better or worse, the two go hand in hand.

It seems that if we distance ourselves and refuse to adopt any other cultural influence we are xenophobic, isolationist, and snooty but if we adopt other cultures we are culturally appropriating. I feel like I can't win. Is that the point?

Carrollton TX
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TOPIC: WTF
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