Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The privilege walk comes to medical school

(I keep revealing more and more details that will eventually make it possible for someone to determine which school I go to and "out" me in real life. I know this is a danger, but I think it is a risk worth taking to blog about these issues.)

Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse: last week, as part of our weekly liberalism seminar, our class had a group interview with a patient and her doctor. The patient was black, and said some things which were funny, at which both she and the class laughed. Apparently, some of the many left-wing members of the class thought that she reinforced black stereotypes and that it was insensitive of the class to laugh, and found this discomfiting. Word has it that they are proposing a "solution" to this "problem:" host a "privilege walk." You know, the college orientation-type left-wing indoctrination exercise where someone reads off a series of yes-or-no questions about how privileged you are, and everyone takes one step backward or forward depending on their answer to each question, and all the white men end up at the front and have to turn around and see how far behind the nonwhites, women, homosexuals, and immigrants are, and feel guilty about being such horrible racist sexist oppressors. Worse, this is being proposed not as an ad hoc event, but as the main event of one of our weekly liberalism seminars at some undetermined future date.

I've thought about this, and realized that I need to take a stand. I cannot in good conscience participate in this anti-white, anti-American activity, but I'm not sure how to make my views known. I will almost certainly stand alone in refusing to participate: I'd estimate that about 50% of my class would say that this is a great idea that will be a really powerful, eye-opening, consciousness-raising experience, 45% probably thinks it would be somewhat interesting, 5% (libertarians or mainstream Republican types) would roll their eyes and go through the motions, and then there's me: the only one I know of who is strongly opposed in principle to this sort of thing. I'd appreciate any advice on how to stand up against it.

By the way, John Derbyshire did a good job of taking apart this privilege walk. I suspect that, like him, I'd actually end up farther toward the back than the front.


feminizedwesternmale said...

Stay true. You undoubtedly will end up in a place that "tolerates" your beliefs. For me, it was as private of a practice as you can get. Regardless, your precociousness notwithstanding, only compromise when it will absolutely adversely effect your future. It will preserve your principles, which will, in turn, make you a great practitioner.

Anonymous said...

Look, you're obviously a decent, polite guy. I'm sure you have a few friends. Taking a stand as an "out of the closet" conservative is a great way to witness to our belief system and stand up for tradition. Plenty of people have suffered far worse for doing the right thing, i.e., Saint Thomas More.

icr said...

This kind of activity is a toned-down version of the "struggle sessions" of Mao's Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. A lot tamer than the original(no physical violence here or abandonment of the rule of law ), but the concept is clearly the same.

Take way the florid, overwrought Marxist-Leninist language...and:
"Although the bourgeoisie has been overthrown, it is still trying to use the old ideas, culture, customs, and habits of the exploiting classes to corrupt the masses, capture their minds, and endeavor to stage a comeback. The proletariat must do just the opposite: It must meet head-on every challenge of the bourgeoisie in the ideological field and use the new ideas, culture, customs, and habits of the proletariat to change the mental outlook of the whole of society. At present, our objective is to struggle against and crush those persons in authority who are taking the capitalist road, to criticize and repudiate the reactionary bourgeois academic "authorities" and the ideology of the bourgeoisie and all other exploiting classes and to transform education, literature and art, and all other parts of the superstructure that do not correspond to the socialist economic base, so as to facilitate the consolidation and development of the socialist system"
They held public meetings to criticize and solicit self-criticisms from suspected "counter-revolutionaries." Although the 16 Points and other pronouncements of the central Maoist leaders forbade "physical struggle (武斗)" in favor of "verbal struggle" (文斗), these struggle sessions often led to physical violence.

a young curmudgeon said...

If everyone and every culture is equal how come some are privileged?

Take a stand before it's too late. Europe is already gone. America might yet be saved.

RobertHume said...

You might do more good by reporting from the inside rather than having to leave. There might be an important point in the future where your status as a "mole" could be of strategic importance.

But the life of the spy is brain-numbing, they say.

Hermes said...

Robert, I have indeed thought of that. Coming as I do from a blue-collar background, a family who lived hand-to-mouth for most of my upbringing, my reaction to the list was similar to Derbyshire's. I've thought that if nothing else, it would be instructive to my classmates to turn around at the end of this exercise and see me, a white man, significantly behind the mostly upper-middle-class whites, Asians, Indians, and even blacks (not to mention women, whom this exercise considers a separate victim group) who comprise my class. If nothing else, it should demonstrate to them the absurdity of the exercise. But as we all know by now, pointing out the absurdity of liberalism never winds up shaking liberals' convictions.

Anonymous said...

a young curmudgeon,

how could Europe possibly have less of a chance at survival than America? Europe has far less diversity and an actual right wing.


Anonymous said...

With the privilege walk comes the assumption that all ought to be given an equal chance. Such is absurd.

While wealth disparity's can become too large, it's natural for parents to work hard for their children, and to promote them.

That's not to say those who are less well off have worse parents, often the reverse is true with workaholics, but a society that equalises care would likely be one with very little care to give.

It's all a big game to see how much can be taken from whites, especially white males. What happens if too much is taken? Such isn't possible...


I just hope those they let into your med school via affirmative action are well trained.

ben tillman said...

They seem to have left out the most important question of privilege:

If your ethnic group has a homeland whose government does not discriminate against its native ethny and is not importing dissimilar foreigners to replace the natives, take 100 steps forward.

Laurel1861 said...

Similar exercises are done in teacher credentialing programs; in addition to these, I've seen more horrific verbal abuses of White males in certain required courses.

It was sad to see the poor White guys squirm in their seats when the teachers took them to task for whatever imagined fault of theirs.

God bless, would love to hear how this went, or didn't go, as the case may be.


Anonymous said...

You should definitely take it upon yourself to stop this outrageous privilege exercise. The sooner you identify yourself as someone who won't stand for anti-white programs, the sooner others around you will know who to trust.

Hermes said...

Fortunately, this never came to pass. There's only so much time allotted for our liberalism seminar, and apparently things like "LGBT issues in medicine" were considered more important.