Happens on American campuses too

McGille University male self-criticism squad

McGille University male self-criticism squad

McGill University student forced to recant, apologize, for publishing racist picture of Obama.

A student at McGill University in Montreal, Canada was forced to issue a formal apology for emailing a picture of President Obama kicking open a door–all because some students thought the image was somehow racist.

The image was actually an edited .gif, and was shown by Jay Leno on “The Tonight Show” last fall. It humorously suggests that the president may be fed up with press conferences. McGill student Brian Farnan, vice president of the university’s student government, sent out an email with the .gif and the harmless caption, “Honestly midterms get out of here,” according to Legal Insurrection.

What happened next is almost unbelievable: Another student issued a formal complaint against Farnan for committing a “micro-aggression.”For those not up-to-date on the PC lexicon, “micro-aggression” is the latest phrase of choice for leftist radicals seeking to blame racism for common annoyances suffered by people of all races. Minority activists at the University of Michigan, for example, have insisted that trivial slights, such as “Having your opinion second-guessed in a group assignment,” are micro-aggressions that betray the campus as a hostile place for students of color.

The .gif of Obama kicking a door was racist because of the “cultural, historical and living legacy surrounding people of color—particularly young men—being portrayed as violent,” according to the apology letter that Farnan was forced to write.

Technically, Farnan got off easy. Under the McGill student government’s Orwellian “equity policy,” Farnan could have been suspended or even dismissed from his position as vice president in the organization. The decision to force Farnan to apologize was apparently made by an “equity commissioner,” whose will can only be overturned by a two-thirds majority of the student government.

Like a true victim of the thought police, Farnan was forced to denounce his heretical email.

“Despite the innocent intentions influencing my decision to use this particular image, I have come to recognize the negative implications of adding the .GIF image within this given context,” he said. “By using this particular image of President Obama, I unknowingly perpetuated this living legacy and subsequently allowed a medium of [Student Society of McGill University] communication to become the site of a microaggression; for this, I am deeply sorry.”

The punishment of Farnan has proved controversial, however, and now the student government has plans to review the equity policy in the coming weeks.

UPDATE: “Microagression” defined: Catch 22. If you deny you’re a racist, you’re a racist; if you deny there’s no difference between races, you’re a racist.

Microaggressions can take a number of different forms, for example, questioning the existence of racial-cultural issues, making stereotypic assumptions, and cultural insensitivity. Some other types of microaggressions that have been identified include Colorblindness (e.g., “I don’t think of you as Black. You are just a normal person”), Denial of personal bias (e.g., “I’m not homophobic; I even have gay friends.”), and Minimization of racial-cultural issues (e.g., “Just because you feel alone in this group doesn’t mean that there’s a racial issue involved.”). “Colorblindness” in particular has been associated with higher levels of racism and lower levels of empathy.

Here’s the offending picture, by the way:



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14 responses to “Happens on American campuses too

  1. sunbeam43

    What else would you expect from the Progressive city of Montreal and Progressive McGill U! Not at all a surprise!

  2. Greenwich Taxpayer

    Boy, if they had this policy when I went to high school I would probably be in jail. This was and is harmless and Canadian and US universities need to lighten up with all of this “political (and so-called social) correctness that crushes free speech and humor. Shame on school officials for not outright dismissing the”charge” and allowing the confession (I mean apology) for going forward.

  3. Fox

    Just what are the “micro aggression” complainers trying to achieve? Are they so naïve that they expect to be respected? Logic would suggest anyone wanting to avoid being targeted for nothing at all would simply put as much distance as possible between himself and his potential accusers at all times.

  4. Mazama

    Yea… “micro aggression” is a real problem but “the knockout game” is just a myth. George Orwell couldn’t make this stuff up.

    Remember back when (late 80s?) men were told they needed gender “sensitivity training” in order to become suitable husbands/boyfriends/whatevers? Some wag suggested that the same (supposed) benefit could be derived if women took some de-sensitivity training. That idea needs reviving… Uh oh… Did I just commit micro-aggression?

  5. Mr. Sacks

    We are living in a world where no one is going to do anything for fear of being sued or offending someone. If doctors weren’t so scared of being sued, all sorts of redundant medical tests would be unnecessary and costs would be lower. Since we can now get free healthcare, food, cell phones and subsidized housing without working, we should all kick back and watch society collapse. Maybe it would be our best contribution to make it all implode sooner rather than later.

  6. burningmadolf

    What about Walt?

    • Anon2

      Or Harvard’s own Hasty Pudding Club, famous for mocking just about everything.

    • Libertarian Advocate

      Walt is safe. Their heads would explode as they powered up their fits of moral outrage at his contributions here. Maybe that’s the ticket. We could get Walt to trigger a critical mass of progressive exploding heads by hijacking the feeds for all three major networks and as well as MSDNC and CNN for good measure. Sure, it would be a mess to clean up, but a worthy project nonetheless.

  7. Peg

    Of course, wishing Sarah Palin literally had shit forced down her throat, or calling Justice Clarence Thomas an Uncle Tom, or hoping for Dick Cheney’s death is simply SENSIBLE and accepted!

    Sometimes I am just beyond words for people who think and act like this.

    • The very fact that you’re offended means you’re engaging in micro-aggression, Peg. Shame on you.

      • Peg

        I understand. I appreciate that most lefties don’t believe in flogging – BUT – for me I bet they’d make an exception……

      • Libertarian Advocate

        I’m not content with committing mere simple acts of “micro-aggression.” I am henceforth dedicating my very existence to committing as many acts of MACRO aggression against the twisted pink panty wussie girly-men of the progressive akakademy. I’ll start it with a trip to the range with my Sig Sauer P226 Enhanced Elite and a couple hundred rounds of recently acquired Israel Military Industries 9mm parabellum ammo. Care to join me CF, Cobra, Walt, Gidzo, EOS?