Nov 23

Canadian University Suspends Yoga Class After Students Become Offended

Not a Safe Space – Canadian University Suspends Yoga Class After Students Become Offended:

Young kids going to college are precisely that: Young kids going to college. Administrators are the ones who are supposed to be responsible for protecting free speech and upholding the U.S. Constitution within their spheres of influence, not pandering to hypersensitive students accustomed to always getting their way by merely shouting “racist” at whoever they happen to disagree with that week. Where are the adults in the room?

– From the post: Speechless – UCLA Engages in Absurd, Anti-Intellectual and Dangerous Attack on Campus Free Speech

Apparently yoga is no longer a safe space.

When I first saw this headline I dismissed it, thinking it had to be a joke. Unfortunately, the joke’s on us.

The Telegraph reports:

A free yoga class has been suspended at a Canadian university over fears the practice could be seen as ‘cultural appropriation’, it has been claimed. 

Jennifer Scharf told the Ottawa Sun she was shocked after being told by Ottawa University’s student federation her class was being cancelled because of ‘cultural issues’. 

The instructor had been offering free lessons at the Centre for Students with Disabilities since 2008 before she received an email in September explaining the class had been suspended.

An email from the centre said that “while yoga is a really great idea and accessible and great for students … there are cultural issues of implication involved in the practice”. 

It continues: “Yoga has been under a lot of controversy lately due to how it is being practiced” and which cultures those practices “are being taken from”. 

It’s under a lot of controversy? Really?

The email adds that many of those cultures “have experienced oppression, cultural genocide and diasporas due to colonialism and western supremacy … we need to be mindful of this and how we express ourselves while practicing yoga”. 

Ms Scharf told the newspaper: “People are just looking for a reason to be offended by anything they can find.

Acting student federation president Romeo Ahimakin said the class had been put on hold, “to make it better, more accessible and more inclusive to certain groups of people that feel left out in Yoga-like spaces”. 

Ms Scharf said she suggested changing the name of the course to “mindful stretching”, but said that idea was rejected.

While these intellectually challenged (is that a micro-aggression?) college cry-bullies deserve their fair share of blame for what is happening across college campuses, it’s the adults in the room who are really to blame. I’m not just talking about the obvious failures of these kids’ parents and the high schools they attended. I mean the college administrators who are giving in to what are not merely absurd, but also often illegal and unconstitutional demands.

The next time you wonder where all of this leads; what the inevitable outcome of administrators’ deciding to embolden these hordes of logic deprived, emotionally stunted college students is, you now have your latest answer: Yoga.

Oh, and on a related note. This is what’s happening at Occidental College, according to Reason:

In recognition of their complicity in “structural racism and oppression” at Occidental College, the faculty will vote on a resolution that mandates diversity training, requires all academic departments to make racial sensitivity a component of in-class instruction, and allows students to “report microaggressions” between students and professors.

The Plan of Action seems to be a response to recent protests on campus; students occupied the administrative center and vowed not to leave unless Occidental President Jonathan Veitch agreed to resign. They also want Occidental to hire more professors of color and fund new diversity initiatives.

The students will get many of the things they want, if the full faculty body approves the Plan of Action. The resolution would mandate diversity and ally training for all faculty, beginning in January 2016. “We empower the Dean of the College to ensure compliance,” the plan reads.

The plan also obligates professors to place a much greater emphasis on topics relating to race and ethnicity—even if they don’t teach subjects that call for much examination of social or cultural issues. “All departments must incorporate issues of cultural and racial identity and diversity in their curricula,” the plan reads. Does all departments include mathematics? Physical sciences? I imagine that it does.

Perhaps most worrying, the plan calls for a microaggression monitoring system that would allow students to report faculty members for offending them. The plan explains that this is necessary to correct “power imbalances between faculty and students.” But students will have too much power if they are granted the right to be safe from microaggressions—which are, by their very nature, subjective and relatively inconsequential. How are professors supposed to teach if they have to worry about being reported and investigated for unknowingly saying the wrong thing to a student?

At this rate, the value of a college education will hit approximately zero by my son’s 18th birthday.

For related articles, see:

From Protesting Vietnam to Demanding “Safe Spaces” – What Happened to America’s College Kids?

Speechless – UCLA Engages in Absurd, Anti-Intellectual and Dangerous Attack on Campus Free Speech

Rutgers University Warns Students – “There is No Such Thing as Free Speech”

A Professor Speaks Out – How Coddled, Hyper Sensitive Undergrads are Ruining College Learning

Statists Declare War on Free Speech – College Students Banned from Handing Out Constitutions in Hawaii

California Student Banned from Handing Out Constitutions on Campus

A Winter Wonderland of Fear – Cities Across the U.S. Move to Ban Unregulated Sledding

Brave New World Revisited…Key Excerpts and My Summary

In Liberty,
Michael Krieger

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