I am a victim of micro-aggression. I only found out now after watching the campus activists who have been disrupting studies this past semester. They claim their learning experiences are plagued with systemic bias and attitudes that they call “micro-aggressions.” A micro-aggression is any word, act or presupposition, slight though it might be, that offends an individual because of their background or perceived identity.
A student might be micro-aggressed, for example, when asked to study an author that he (or she or whatever) considers biased. The student can then ask for some “safe space,” a mythical place where such micro-aggressions (and freedom of speech) are not allowed to enter.
I have finally come to terms that I am one of these micro-aggressed persons. I have been constantly harassed by a culture that has long done everything possible to make my life difficult. For a long time, I have been in denial of this reality but now, with all the ruckus on campuses, I finally see the light. I need to stand up for my rights. I need some safe space where my feelings cannot be hurt.
Comedic "anti-feminist" performance broken up by a real feminist
Let me begin by saying I cannot help being who I am. I have always been this way. My feelings have been hurt right from the start by elementary school teachers who ganged up on me to discourage me from being who I am. Many times, they even used violence.
It is not easy being part of the micro-aggressed. Micro-aggressions are not just isolated incidents that can be brushed off as the product of ignorance. No, this is serious stuff. It is bigotry pure and simple.
It is systemic and we need to change the system. Everywhere I go, I am a victim. Every tool I use, every sport I play, every letter I write I am constantly reminded that I am not accepted by the establishment. I have often been made to adjust and change, because I cannot naturally be that which I am. If we must institute sensitivity courses at all levels of society to remedy this injustice, so be it. The bias must stop.
Not only is this hurtful abuse systemic, it is also historically abusive. You can trace the long history of bias against people like me over the centuries especially in our Western culture. It is found in our literature, politics and even religion.
Thus, historically our literature has called me “sinister.” According to the dictionary, my condition is associated with being clumsy, awkward, insincere, backhanded and dubious. Politically, people of my leanings have been called communists. Religious allegory has said that, should I follow my inclinations, I will be damned eternally at the Final Judgment.
And I might add those of the opposite leanings are given every right and privilege. The whole system favors them. They are associated with correctness, honesty and justice. No one ever calls them sinisteror labels them a communist.
The worst cruelty is when they call me names using horrible words of ridicule. People have used the l-word or even the s-word to describe me. Is it any wonder that I feel micro-aggressed? Doesn’t it seem only just that I should demand my micro-rights?
Lest anyone wonder to what grouping I belong, let my say without embarrassment using both the l-word and the s-word that I am a lefty, a southpaw — a left-handed person. Everything I said above is true. For a long time I was micro-aggressed and did not even know it. Now I know it.
Satanists protest against Christians in Ferndale MI
My purpose in sharing my own micro-aggression is in no way meant to belittle the bias suffered by others. It is merely an effort to use what is left of my First Amendment rights to declare these student disruptions to be childish and unrealistic.
I do this also to illustrate that the real world is full of hardships, sufferings and even inconveniences (like my own) that can be turned into “micro-aggressions.” One deals with these situations not by whining, pouting and protesting, but by building character, upholding principles and braving hardships. One accomplishes much more by opening horizons rather than retreating into academic playpens called “safe spaces.”
It is time for these students to stop being so self-absorbed that they block out the reality of a very real and marvelous world. University administrators need to stop acting like children entering into the make-believe world of micro-aggressions. If there is to be a return to order, perhaps it is time for both professors and students to realize that university education is meant to open up a universe that extends far beyond safe spaces. As a southpaw, I can say that we need to put an end to the disruptions that are blatantly leftist.
Spero columnist John Horvat II is the author "Return to Order," which is available at Amazon.