Category Archive 'Political Correctness'
10 Jun 2020

Gone With the Woke

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The international hysteria over the unfortunate death of “Five-Felony-Convictions” George Floyd has produced the last straw we could all see coming: HBO-Max is pulling “Gone With the Wind” (1939) from circulation. GWTW will be joining “Song of the South” (1946) and television’s “The Amos and Andy Show” (1951-1953) on the Index Prohibitorum. Though HBO does claim the film will return in a redacted version carefully denouncing all of its sins against politically correct history. (Hollywood Reporter:)

Long considered controversial for its depiction of Black people and its positive view of slavery, Gone With the Wind faced renewed scrutiny after an op-ed by 12 Years A Slave screenwriter John Ridley published in the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday. In the op-ed, Ridley called on HBO Max to “consider removing” Gone With the Wind from its platform as the film had its “own unique problem.” “It doesn’t just “fall short” with regard to representation. It is a film that glorifies the antebellum south. It is a film that, when it is not ignoring the horrors of slavery, pauses only to perpetuate some of the most painful stereotypes of people of color,” Ridley wrote.

He added: “It is a film that, as part of the narrative of the “Lost Cause,” romanticizes the Confederacy in a way that continues to give legitimacy to the notion that the secessionist movement was something more, or better, or more noble than what it was — a bloody insurrection to maintain the “right” to own, sell and buy human beings.”

HBO Max said Gone With the Wind will eventually return to the service with a “discussion of its historical context and a denouncement of those very depictions” of Black people and slavery.

In a statement to The Hollywood Reporter, a HBO spokesperson said: “Gone With The Wind is a product of its time and depicts some of the ethnic and racial prejudices that have, unfortunately, been commonplace in American society. These racist depictions were wrong then and are wrong today, and we felt that to keep this title up without an explanation and a denouncement of those depictions would be irresponsible. These depictions are certainly counter to WarnerMedia’s values, so when we return the film to HBO Max, it will return with a discussion of its historical context and a denouncement of those very depictions, but will be presented as it was originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming these prejudices never existed. If we are to create a more just, equitable and inclusive future, we must first acknowledge and understand our history.”

GWTW is wrong, you see, because it takes the former (now-discredited in Academia by Marxist revisionist historians) national consensus view that the South was Wrong But Romantic, fighting for a fore-doomed cause that would inevitably fail, but that Southerners’ motives were patriotic and sincere, and their conduct gallant. Even worse, GWTW portrays happy African American servants exercising plenty of domestic power and responsibility and treated as members of the family. And, on top of that, they have quaint accents, speak in distinctive and amusing vernaculars (condescension!), and all the prominent ones remain loyal to their white family, even after Emancipation! HBO knows that all this is morally unconscionable and must be factually dead wrong. Eric Fone and Ta-Nehisi Coates told them so.

Margaret Mitchell’s portrait of the Lost Antebellum South, of course, was produced by a woman born in 1900, old enough to have known personally, lived beside, and heard all her life the reminiscences of the older generation which actually lived before, fought in, and survived both the War and the glorious, now so-deeply-regretted to have ever ended, Reconstruction Period. She couldn’t possibly be right. Those Marxist historians know better.

06 Jun 2020

New York Mag Has Andrew Sullivan Hog-Tied and Muzzled in the Closet

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The once-conservative Andrew Sullivan is now paying the turncoat’s price. New York Magazine pays his salary presently, and it has become clear that New York Magazine is keeping Andrew muzzled and on a tight leash.

There is, you see, always some danger that Andrew may reflexively lapse and produce an honest and well-reasoned appraisal of current events. This week’s current events consist of nation-wide violence and looting produced by well-financed and well-organized radical agitation, abetted by the national media, with the death of “Five Felony Convictions” George Floyd while in the hands of the police as the pretext.

Andrew will fight like a tiger for the honor of Sodomy, and he ankle bites real conservatives like a hydrophobic chihuahua but, even Andrew has to live, and he would transgress the Left’s sacred taboos concerning racial grievance at his own peril. That comfortable seat at the Establishment Table comes with a price: his integrity, his soul.

(Cockburn, at the Spectator, is mercilessly derisive.)

What has happened to New York media? Just as the New York Times was experiencing its own Inner Mongolia Moment over the now notorious Sen. Tom Cotton ‘Send in the Troops’ op-ed, the Maoists at New York magazine were going after their best columnist, Andrew Sullivan.

Sullivan revealed on Twitter yesterday that his column wouldn’t be appearing. The reason? His editors are not allowing him to write about the riots.

What has happened to New York media? Just as the New York Times was experiencing its own Inner Mongolia Moment over the now notorious Sen. Tom Cotton ‘Send in the Troops’ op-ed, the Maoists at New York magazine were going after their best columnist, Andrew Sullivan.

Sullivan revealed on Twitter yesterday that his column wouldn’t be appearing. The reason? His editors are not allowing him to write about the riots.

Presumably Sullivan’s editors are frightened that he might make the radically bourgeois point that looting and violence are wrong.

Cockburn understands that Sullivan is not just forbidden from writing for the New York magazine about the riots; his contract means he cannot write on the topic for another publication. He is therefore legally unable to write anything about the protests without losing his job — at the magazine that, in 1970, published Radical Chic, Tom Wolfe’s brilliant and controversial excoriation of progressive piety. It’s the bonfire of the liberals!

Who cares about the First Amendment? Not the Maoists who are marching through NYC’s media institutions. Safetyism is their creed. Sullivan may be a very small ‘c’ conservative, in some ways, but he is really a committed liberal — an Obama-loving gay man who thinks that Trump’s ‘dangerous fantasies’ threaten America. …

Sullivan, a source close to New York magazine reveals, has to have his work vetted by sensitive junior editors to make sure it doesn’t trigger them. If it passes their sniff testing, it can be published.

RTWT

12 May 2020

Today’s Campus

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HT: Chilton Williamson.

17 Apr 2020

Goodbye to That Brand

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Old package with Indian Maiden “Mia”.

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New woke package.

The Minnesota Farmer has bad news about a classic brand.

For nearly a century, the Land O’Lakes Indian maiden has kneeled by the side of a blue lake holding out an offering of a 4-stick box of butter.

No more. The Minnesota-based farmer cooperative has redesigned its packaging to focus on celebrating farmers ahead of its 100th anniversary next year.

“We need packaging that reflects the foundation and heart of our company culture — and nothing does that better than our farmer-owners whose milk is used to produce Land O’Lakes’ dairy products,” President and CEO Beth Ford said in a statement in February.

The new packaging looks much like the old packaging — blue lake, green pine trees, yellow horizon — just minus Mia, the name of the Indian maiden.

The release made no mention of why the company decided to remove the character from their packaging. The entire Land O’Lakes website seems to have been scrubbed of any mention of the iconic mascot.

A spokeswoman for Land O’Lakes did not respond to a request for comment submitted Monday.

For Native Americans who have long criticized the use of Indian mascots, the change is a welcome one.

“It’s a great move,” said Adrienne Keene, a professor at Brown University, author of the popular Native Appropriations blog and citizen of the Cherokee Nation. “It makes me really happy to think that there’s now going to be an entire generation of folks that are growing up without having to see that every time they walk in the grocery store.”

Well, Beth Ford, you can go sell your butter in future to crackpots and leftist grievance mongers like Adrienne Keene. You won’t be selling any more to me.

04 Mar 2020

Not Just a Woman’s College Anymore

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Wellesley was traditionally the most non-neurotic of the women’s colleges. Not anymore evidently. PC piety is apparently in full bloom at poor old Wellesley. (College Fix story)

Some students at the venerable, all-female Wellesley College are calling for an end to use of the term … women.

A staff editorial in the Wellesley News bemoans the popular on-campus catchphrases such as “Wellesley sisters,” “Women Who Will,” and “Wellesley women,” and asks that instead there be a more concerted effort to use gender-neutral language all around.

In particular, three suggestions put forth by the campus journalists are:

    When discussing the student body, say “Wellesley students” rather than “Wellesley women.”

    Avoid making statements like “We’re all women here…”

    Use gender-neutral language whenever possible in syllabi and other general written communication.

The editorial also criticized Wellesley’s transgender policy, which accepts students who were born male but identify as female, but not students who were born female but identify as male.

It described the five-year-old policy as complacent and neglectful of the transgender and nonbinary community, and called on administration to revise it, as well as “usher in a more inclusive language standard for official communications. Additionally, we ask students to reflect these changes in their everyday lives in order to foster a more kind, empathetic environment.”

“… Our sentiments should not be misconstrued as a blanket demand to censor campus dialogue or dictate everyday behavior,” the editorial added. “We are merely advocating for a kind environment for all marginalized identities that may step foot on Wellesley’s campus which can be implemented through policy and cultural shifts within the community and beyond.”

RTWT

18 Feb 2020

Our National Park Service, Delivery Source of Leftism

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George Washington’s Mount Vernon.

Michael Pillsbury, in the WSJ, explains how America’s national historic sites have wound up being explained in relation to Identity Group grievances and Climate Change by people who majored in Marxism and Social Justice.

George Washington’s birthday is celebrated on Monday, so consider this thought experiment: It is 2026 and Washington and close military advisers like Alexander Hamilton return for a 250th-anniversary ride on the eight decisive battlefields where American independence was won.

At first, they might be pleasantly surprised to see the battlefields still intact. But suppose the visiting heroes lean down from their saddles to listen to the park rangers leading tours in green-and-gray uniforms. Expecting to hear a recounting of battles that formed the republic, they instead hear stories about identity politics and climate change. Hamilton, upon returning to his only home, in New York—a site that attracts thousands of visitors annually—would be taken aback to hear, as I did on a visit, park rangers editorialize that he stashed his wife there so he could carry on with his mistress in his Wall Street home.

This casual, official reinterpretation of history has alarmed many modern historians and Americans, including those like me with relatives who served at Valley Forge. In 2016, a park ranger reportedly telling tourists at Independence Hall in Philadelphia that “the Founders knew that when they left this room, what they had written wouldn’t matter very much” resulted in news articles and calls for her resignation. Rangers, however, aren’t required to stick to any script when interpreting the Revolution. Washington and Hamilton might ride on to privately owned Mount Vernon for a more authentic experience.

Traditionally, great powers trust their military forces with protecting and interpreting the sacred battlefields of their founding fathers. After the Revolutionary War, the U.S. military protected the battlefields, conducted “staff rides” to review decisions and scenarios, and encouraged private donors such as the Ladies of Mount Vernon to restore other historical places tied to Washington.

But then came the National Park Service. In the 1920s and early 1930s the NPS was a minor agency struggling for attention and already filled with what today are called environmental activists. These ideologues sought to obtain possession of the nation’s historic sites, which would raise the Park Service’s profile above that of a mere maintenance organization.

In April 1933, President Franklin D. Roosevelt invited Park Service Director Horace Albright for a Sunday drive along Skyline Drive, a new highway the Park Service was building in the mountains of Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park. Albright had already created a “history division” and set up historical monuments. So he took advantage of this time with the president to defeat objections from the War Department, which wanted to keep the battlefields under its purview. Mere months later, by executive order, the War Department transferred 57 historical sites and, more important, the authority to interpret the history of the sites to the Park Service. Albright saw this victory as the culmination of his career.

RTWT

29 Jan 2020

Yale’s Latest PC Gesture Makes the Spectator

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cole_thomas_the_course_of_e
Thomas Cole, The Course of Empire: Destruction, 1833-1836, New York Historical Society.

James Panero tells us that Yale imported a Cambridge bolshie to “decolonize” the History of Art Department.

Are we in our own revolutionary moment? Many of our leading institutions clearly believe so. Yale University has been working overtime to prove it is on the right side of history. ‘Problematic’ colleges have been renamed. ‘Offensive’ stained-glass windows have been knocked out. Only the leadership of an Ivy League school could spread such a poisonous rash. Heading the charge against the Dead White Male has been a progressive Yale bureaucracy that is, for the most part, pale and stale.

Now the task of dismantling Yale’s famous art history survey course has fallen to a scholar I respect, Tim Barringer. British-born, Barringer is the Paul Mellon Professor of the History of Art at Yale University and has been a leading curator at the Metropolitan Museum. He even mounted the Met’s exceptional 2018 exhibition on Thomas Cole.

Following a 2017 mandate to ‘decolonize’ Yale’s Department of English, Barringer is giving over the keys of Yale’s famous art survey course to the identity vandals. According to the Yale Daily News, instead of one class that will tell the story of art from ‘Renaissance to the Present’, new courses will, Barringer says, be devised to consider art in relation to a five-step history lesson, ‘questions of gender, class and race’, with further discussion of art’s ‘involvement with Western capitalism’. Of course, ‘climate change’ will also be a ‘key theme’.

Art doesn’t fare well in revolutionary times. Likewise, revolutionary sentiments are often revealed in the treatment of art. If only Professor Barringer had looked more carefully at another five-step history lesson, Thomas Cole’s ‘Course of Empire’ tableau (1833-36), he might have seen how civilizations burn down from decadence as well as assault.

RTWT

That whirring sound you hear in the background is grand old Yale Art History professors, men like Sumner Crosby who taught the Gothic Cathedral course and Charles Seymour who taught the Italian Renaissance Art course, who fished for salmon together every summer on the Upsalquitch, spinning in their graves at 78 RPM.

25 Jan 2020

Yale Kills Renowned Art History Survey Course

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Jan Matejko, Stanczyk during a Ball at the Court of Queen Bona after the Loss of Smolensk, 1862.

July 1514: Stanczyk, the famous jester of Sigismund the Old, was renowned for his cynical humor, but Matejko shows the jester in a private moment of despair in a palace anteroom outside the royal ball being given by Queen Bona Sforza. On the table next to the jester, we see dispatches announcing the fall of Smolensk to the Muscovites. Alone among the denizens of Poland’s royal court, only Stanczyk the jester forsees with dread the rise of Moscow and the destruction of the Commonwealth.

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If Stanczyk were employed as jester these days at Yale Universuty in New Haven, Connecticut, he’d probably looked similarly after reading this Yale Daily News story.

Yale will stop teaching a storied introductory survey course in art history, citing the impossibility of adequately covering the entire field — and its varied cultural backgrounds — in one course.

Decades old and once taught by famous Yale professors like Vincent Scully, “Introduction to Art History: Renaissance to the Present” was once touted to be one of Yale College’s quintessential classes. But this change is the latest response to student uneasiness over an idealized Western “canon” — a product of an overwhelmingly white, straight, European and male cadre of artists.

This spring, the final rendition of the course will seek to question the idea of Western art itself — a marked difference from the course’s focus at its inception. Art history department chair and the course’s instructor Tim Barringer told the News that he plans to demonstrate that a class about the history of art does not just mean Western art. Rather, when there are so many other regions, genres and traditions — all “equally deserving of study” — putting European art on a pedestal is “problematic,” he said.

“I believe that every object I discuss in [“Introduction to Art History: Renaissance to the Present”] (with the possible exception of one truly ghastly painting by Renoir) is of profound cultural value,” Barringer said in an email to the News. “I want all Yale students (and all residents of New Haven who can enter our museums freely) to have access to and to feel confident analyzing and enjoying the core works of the western tradition. But I don’t mistake a history of European painting for the history of all art in all places.”

Instead of this singular survey class, the Art History Department will soon offer a range of others, such as “Art and Politics,” “Global Craft,” “The Silk Road” and “Sacred Places.” Barringer added that in two or three years, his department will offer a substitute class to “Introduction to Art History.” But the new class “will be a course equal in status to the other 100-level courses, not the introduction to our discipline claiming to be the mainstream with everything else pushed to the margins,” Barringer said.

RTWT

It’s essential, you see, to flatter the amour propre of representatives of Identity Victim Groups (specially recruited and affirmatively actioned into Yale) by assuring them that the crude carvings of devils and bogeys their Stone Age ancestors turned out are the equivalent of Michelangelo’s David.

16 Nov 2019

Technology!

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15 Nov 2019

Wrong People in Charge Everywhere in America Today

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CBS Boston:

A Durham, New Hampshire celebration scheduled for the beginning of holidays is undergoing some changes this year in an effort to remove religious overtones.

Formerly called the Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony, the newly named Frost Fest will include the absence of a formal tree lighting. Santa will be at the event but he will not arrive in a town firetruck as he has in the past.

The wreaths that traditionally adorned lamp posts on Main Street will also not be present this year.

Town Councilor Sally Tobias says the changes came about after some controversy last holiday season. “There was another private citizen that came forward and said that he had always had a problem with the Christmas tree, as he called it,” Tobias said.

After holding a public meeting, the town formed a working committee and made changes to the event.

“There were a couple of people that did express some concerns about how they felt being included,” Tobias said. …

Tobias, herself, is not the biggest fan of the changes but says the town is open to feedback.

“I will state that trees and Santas and wreaths are not Christian,” Tobias said, “And we would like to hear back from the community. We’d like to hear what they think about it, how they would like to see it evolve a little differently and how we can make it better.”

RTWT

Everywhere you look in America today, from Harvard and Yale to Big Corporations and local town governments, you’ll find invertebrates in charge who instantly surrender to the insolent demands of the crackpot malcontent left.

22 Oct 2019

Men’s Magazines Go Woke and Go Broke

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Arnold Gingrich, once upon a time the editor of Esquire.

Long ago, Esquire used to publish articles celebrating masculinity and male interests, including contributors like Ernest Hemingway. The quality of those 1930s and ’40s issues was such that people now collect them.

Today, Esquire is an excruciatingly irritating voice of metrosexual soyboy hysteria endlessly denouncing Trump and grovelling apologetically on behalf of all mankind before the idols of politically correct wokeness.

Brian Patrick Eha notes that the same thing is happening today across the entire men’s lifestyle magazine genre and subscriptions are everywhere precipitously declining.

When the culture changes,” Esquire contributing editor Wesley Yang wrote earlier this year, “each of us must either seek an accommodation or choose a hill to die on.” He was reviewing Bret Easton Ellis’s White, a collection of jeremiads, many aimed, like poison darts, at millennials, the cohort Ellis has dubbed “Generation Wuss.” The voice of an earlier generation, Ellis, who is gay, finds himself shocked by—and contemptuous of—the weak-mindedness and quickness to take offense typical of some millennials. …

In June, Hearst promoted Esquire.com editor Michael Sebastian to replace Fielden as editor-in-chief. As with Pels at Cosmopolitan, the idea is to bring a digital sensibility to the print product—while making digital the top priority. Esquire, a source told WWD, will be getting “a full Cosmo.” I take this to mean that the trends identified in this essay will only accelerate, and that the commitment to social-justice ideology will only harden; that Esquire will soon descend into the sucking morass of what Yang aptly calls “woke clickbait.” No doubt the magazine will struggle on for a time, like a punctured blimp leaking helium, deflating while still aloft, but if it grows in prominence—if the metrics that men like Troy Young care about improve for a time—it will be only as a wounded airship, once high up in the atmosphere, grows larger in the eye as it sinks slowly groundward.

Just as one can’t reinflate a leaky blimp, there is little reason to believe that Esquire’s editorial quality will improve under Sebastian, however much he juices web traffic. The great men’s magazines may eke out a lucrative afterlife hawking clothes and branding nightclubs in India; but as magazines, they are dying or dead—and the dead do not improve.

RTWT

03 Oct 2019

British Employment Tribunal Says Doctor Can Be Fired For Declining to Refer to Trannies By Their Preferred Pronoun

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Daily Wire:

On Tuesday, a British [employment tribunal] ruled that belief in the Bible was “incompatible with human dignity.”

That statement came in a case involving Dr. David Mackereth, a devout Christian who had worked as an emergency doctor for the National Health Service for 26 years. He said he was fired from his job because he refused to call a biological man a woman. The court’s ruling stated: “Belief in Genesis 1:27, lack of belief in transgenderism and conscientious objection to transgenderism in our judgment are incompatible with human dignity and conflict with the fundamental rights of others, specifically here, transgender individuals.” The court added. “… in so far as those beliefs form part of his wider faith, his wider faith also does not satisfy the requirement of being worthy of respect in a democratic society, not incompatible with human dignity and not in conflict with the fundamental rights of others.”

Also reported by the Independent and by the BBC:

The hearing was told he would refuse to refer to “any 6ft-tall bearded man” as “madam” following a conversation with a manager at an assessment centre and later left his role.

The tribunal panel – sitting in Birmingham – found the [Department for Work and Pensions] DWP had not breached the Equality Act. It stated there was no contravention and dismissed the complaints.

“A lack of belief in transgenderism and conscientious objection to transgenderism in our judgment are incompatible with human dignity and conflict with the fundamental rights of others,” the judgement said.

Dr Mackereth, 56, said he was “deeply concerned” by the ruling.

“Without intellectual and moral integrity, medicine cannot function and my 30 years as a doctor are now considered irrelevant compared to the risk that someone else might be offended,” he said.

“I believe that I have to appeal in order to fight for the freedom of Christians to speak the truth. If they cannot, then freedom of speech has died in this country, with serious ramifications for the practise of medicine in the UK.”

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