Patterico's Pontifications


Thoughtcrime Excused

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:09 am

In March, I told you about a university janitor pursuing a communications degree who received a threatening letter from the university’s Affirmative Action office for the thoughtcrime of reading a historical book about the KKK during his breaks from work. (He was told it was “poor judgment” to read the book in front of black people.)

The university has apologized. But it sure took a lot of pressure to get to that point.

6 Responses to “Thoughtcrime Excused”

  1. The university? What about the shop steward who didn’t listen to him? What about the co-worker who started the whole mess?

    Arthur (59a997)

  2. As a black man, stories like this frustrate me to no end. The rush to take offense is regrettable, but, sadly, expected. Much worse is the way the victim industry is not deterred when they are revealed to be committing crimes against logic.

    It mattered not that the book in question was about the defeat of the Ku Klux Klan — somebody who supposedly belonged in an institute of higher learning couldn’t cope with the almost-defunct domestic terrorist group being the subject of academic examination. Worst of all: the affirmative action and union thugs refused every attempt to put the situation in its proper context, choosing instead to clamp down on an innocent man like a pit bull would to a small child, even after it became clear to THEM they didn’t have a legal leg to stand on. They weren’t about to admit they were wrong — they were going to prove he was a racist even if they had to LIE.

    Supposedly existing for the purpose of fostering equality and justice, poverty pimps at IUPUI have instead made black people seem anti-intellectual, hypersensitive, viciously abusive of the legal system, and unwilling to admit when they are proven dead flat wrong. Good job, idiots.

    L.N. Smithee (d1de1b)

  3. I’ve read elsewhere that is still held to be guilty of some unspecified crimes–see FIRE

    Larry Sheldon (86b2e1)

  4. From the FIRE website:
    First, a shop steward told Sampson that reading a book about the KKK was like bringing pornography to work (apparently this holds true in his eyes regardless of the context in which a book discusses the KKK, the position it takes, and so on). Likewise, a co-worker who happened to be sitting across the table from Sampson in the break room remarked that she found the KKK offensive. On both occasions, Sampson tried to explain what the book was really about. Both times, the other individual refused to listen.

    A few weeks later, Sampson was notified by Marguerite Watkins of the school’s Affirmative Action Office (AAO) that a co-worker had filed a racial harassment complaint against him for reading the book in the break room. Once again, he attempted to explain the book’s content, but Watkins too had no interest in hearing it. Despite his not being given a chance to defend himself, he subsequently received a letter from Lillian Charleston of the AAO, dated November 25, 2007, informing him that AAO had completed its investigation of the matter…

    aunursa (1b5bad)

  5. Also from the FIRE site.

    Unfortunately, public statements by others within Bantz’s own administration prevent this matter from being completely resolved. Far from it, actually. As FIRE reported last week, university relations officials at IUPUI went on record for a recent Wall Street Journal article claiming that the racial harassment finding against Sampson stemmed not from his reading the book in question, but from other, undisclosed conduct. These officials have refused to reveal what this conduct consisted of—to the Wall Street Journal, to FIRE, even to Sampson himself. Instead, they have apparently decided to publicly smear Sampson with vague, unsubstantiated statements and insinuations, and simply leave it at that.

    Larry Sheldon (86b2e1)

  6. I belong to a charitable organization that every year raises money for the mentally retarded. We have done this for decades and our charity has the words “mentally retarded” in our legal charter because that is the medical definition of the condition we are raising money for. While standing in the hot Southern California sun with a donation can in my hand I have had people yell at me for being insensitive to the “mentally retarded”. After calmly explaining that I was helping people, not repressing them they angrily told me to change all the legal documents, signs and banners that we use every year. I told them that we would rather use the money to help those that need help. They drove off in a huff after telling me I should change all of that stuff out of my own pocket. To some people, what they were doing was a “good deed” and what I was doing was “disrespecting the mentally challenged”. or whatever. In my case and Sampson’s case it has become clear:

    Political correctness has become what is sought to erase.

    tyree (139bd6)

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