What Changed?

Every week now we get reports of racist incidents on our campus. I’ve been here for 8 years, and there was never anything like this. Our student demographics have not changed, the tenor of instruction was not changed. But all of a sudden people started coming into the classrooms and the dorms and the shared areas to find racist slogans written on blackboards, doors, bulletin boards, etc. And I mean really vicious racist shit.

So what changed? I think we all know the answer. Students are mostly very young kids, teenagers many of them. I’m not trying to justify them but the young are like sponges. They absorb what’s in the environment and react to changing social norms. The perpetrators will be discovered, castigated, and probably expelled. But what about those who taught them that this vile shit is ok? When will they be punished?


8 thoughts on “What Changed?”

  1. But what about those who taught them that this vile shit is ok? When will they be punished?

    I guess you mean Trump? Not until the Special Prosecutor has enough to provoke an impeachment.


  2. Our school has almost no minority population; so there hasn’t really been an uptick of racially-fueled incidents. But my colleagues and I have all noticed a general uptick in rudeness. We all noticed it independently from another. I thought maybe I was imagining a trend that didn’t exist but one day a bunch of us were talking and have all noticed it: students just acting rude in ways we have never quite experienced.

    But it goes beyond students. I’ve just seen a general increase in rude behavior lately. It’s like a collective notion of acceptable public behavior suddenly shifted.


    1. We have a sizeable African American student population. But that’s been the case forever. I look at my students and I just don’t want to believe any of them are capable of this vile piggishness. It keeps happening and happening, though. I find it incredibly demoralizing.


      1. Yes, also in our (relatively liberal) university campus, we have had a couple of racist incidents this year. This is the first time this has happened in the ten years I have been here.


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