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posted by LaminatorX on Monday May 19 2014, @06:24AM   Printer-friendly

Raw Story summarizes a New York Times report that Colleges across the country this spring have been wrestling with student requests for what are known as "trigger warnings," explicit alerts that the material they are about to read or see in a classroom might upset them or, as some students assert, cause symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder in victims of rape or in war veterans.

The debate has left many academics fuming, saying that professors should be trusted to use common sense and that being provocative is part of their mandate. Trigger warnings, they say, suggest a certain fragility of mind that higher learning is meant to challenge, not embrace. "Any kind of blanket trigger policy is inimical to academic freedom," said Lisa Hajjar, a sociology professor, who often uses graphic depictions of torture in her courses about war. "Any student can request some sort of individual accommodation, but to say we need some kind of one-size-fits-all approach is totally wrong. The presumption there is that students should not be forced to deal with something that makes them uncomfortable is absurd or even dangerous."

Greg Lukianoff, president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, said, "It is only going to get harder to teach people that there is a real important and serious value to being offended. Part of that is talking about deadly serious and uncomfortable subjects."

A summary of the College Literature, along with the appropriate trigger warnings, assumed or suggested in the article is as follows: Shakespeare's "The Merchant of Venice" (anti-Semitism), Virginia Woolf's "Mrs. Dalloway" (suicide), "The Great Gatsby" (misogynistic violence), and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" (racism).

Note: The Raw Story link was provided to provide an alternative to the article source, the New York Times, due to user complaints about the NYT website paywalling their articles.

 
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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @06:39AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @06:39AM (#45101)

    For crying out loud, if the fragile little 'snowflakes' can't even handle literary references to violence and racism how the hell are they going to handle real life? posting anon because my account is jacked and can't be retrieved.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Kell on Monday May 19 2014, @07:00AM

      by Kell (292) on Monday May 19 2014, @07:00AM (#45107)

      I agree. While PTSD is debilitating, this seems a hugely disproportionate response for a problem that does not have credible evidence for its existence. There has never been such a calling need for such warnings in a society that is awash with gun violence and warfare related material, even when there are many documented cases of veterans experiencing PTSD triggered by such things. Society did not deem that accounts of violence or warfare imagery should be so prefaced; why do we suddenly feel that college students who have never even been exposed to such things should be so sensitive?
       
      Putting on my fireproof underwear for a moment, I will hazard a guess that this initiative comes from the same cuckoo segment of the population who feel they are 'victims' for all manner of sundry things that the rest of us would consider no big deal, and who fall all over themselves to brand about half of the populace as deviant predatory abusers. You know who I'm talking about.

      --
      Scientists ask questions. Engineers solve problems.
      • (Score: 1, Troll) by Maow on Monday May 19 2014, @07:32AM

        by Maow (8) on Monday May 19 2014, @07:32AM (#45119) Homepage

        I agree with your first paragraph.

        Putting on my fireproof underwear for a moment, I will hazard a guess that this initiative comes from the same cuckoo segment of the population who feel they are 'victims' for all manner of sundry things that the rest of us would consider no big deal, and who fall all over themselves to brand about half of the populace as deviant predatory abusers. You know who I'm talking about.

        Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?

        Or would that be the conservatives, always on the attack, always slagging others as professional victims, but once called out on their own bad behaviour, instantly embrace shrill victimhood? i.e. Rob Ford of Toronto, Stephan Harper (Ottawa), or innumerable other examples?

        I guess if we say the "cuckoo segment" are aka "the political fringes" then ... it's settled.

        If you disagree, then obviously YOU'RE REPRESSING ME LIKE A NAZI WOULD!!1!

        • (Score: 2, Informative) by Oligonicella on Monday May 19 2014, @12:12PM

          by Oligonicella (4169) on Monday May 19 2014, @12:12PM (#45177)

          "Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?"

          Yes, yes it would be. One simply need read the names and affiliations of those demanding these strictures to see this.

          • (Score: 2) by Maow on Tuesday May 20 2014, @10:38AM

            by Maow (8) on Tuesday May 20 2014, @10:38AM (#45551) Homepage

            "Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?"

            Yes, yes it would be. One simply need read the names and affiliations of those demanding these strictures to see this.

            Yes, way to miss the point.

            There is more than one "cuckoo segment" of society that's perpetually offended / victimized. They exist on both sides of the political spectrum.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @04:44PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @04:44PM (#45282)

          Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?

          Or would that be the conservatives, always on the attack, always slagging others as professional victims, but once called out on their own bad behaviour, instantly embrace shrill victimhood? i.e. Rob Ford of Toronto, Stephan Harper (Ottawa), or innumerable other examples?

          Yes.

      • (Score: 1) by VortexCortex on Monday May 19 2014, @01:15PM

        by VortexCortex (4067) on Monday May 19 2014, @01:15PM (#45198)

        Society did not deem that accounts of violence or warfare imagery should be so prefaced; why do we suddenly feel that college students who have never even been exposed to such things should be so sensitive?

        Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thought-crime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it. Every concept that can ever be needed will be expressed by eactly one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its subsidiary meanings rubbed out and forgotten. ... The process will still be continuing long after you and I are dead. Every year fewer and fewer words, and the range of consciousness always a little smaller. Even now, of course, there's no reason or excuse for commiting thought-crime. It's merely a question of self-discipline, reality-control. But in the end there won't be any need even for that. ... Has it ever occcured to you, Winston, that by the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will be alive who could understand such a conversation as we are having now?

        - George Orwell, 1984

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by davester666 on Monday May 19 2014, @07:05AM

      by davester666 (155) on Monday May 19 2014, @07:05AM (#45108)

      Next up, better kill debate club, because the losing side will feel bad.

      Might as well just kill all debate on campus, because you never know when you might use an argument that will send the other person into a murderous rampage.

      • (Score: 2, Funny) by Horse With Stripes on Monday May 19 2014, @10:09AM

        by Horse With Stripes (577) on Monday May 19 2014, @10:09AM (#45148)

        Next up, better kill debate club, because the losing side will feel bad.

        Not if you give them "Everyone Who Participates is a Winner" ribbons or little trophies. Those make everyone feel better. BUT, you must provide a trigger warning "contains competition and inequitable distribution of accolades based on performance" to make sure everyone knows what they are getting in to.

      • (Score: 3, Funny) by tangomargarine on Monday May 19 2014, @02:30PM

        by tangomargarine (667) on Monday May 19 2014, @02:30PM (#45223)

        Might as well just kill all debate on campus, because you never know...

        Whoa, whoa! You didn't warn me that we were going to be talking about killing stuff. Now I'm traumatized.

        --
        "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
        • (Score: 1) by GrumblyStuff on Monday May 19 2014, @06:05PM

          by GrumblyStuff (4351) on Monday May 19 2014, @06:05PM (#45313)

          Balls to the debate club, I say. As TV pundits and presidential candidates have shown, "winning" debates is a matter of firing a barrage of short arguments at your opponent, each of which would require an explanation longer than the whole debate.

          • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Monday May 19 2014, @06:50PM

            by tangomargarine (667) on Monday May 19 2014, @06:50PM (#45327)

            My favorite instance was when we had a political debate on my college campus and someone stood up and asked, "Why does the Republican Party hate women?" Those were their exact words.

            --
            "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
      • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday May 19 2014, @02:43PM

        by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday May 19 2014, @02:43PM (#45232)

        Do you think the same thing about epilepsy? Do you think something known to send people into epileptic shock should have a warning?

        I doubt this warning was suggested to prevent sad feelings. It was probably suggested to warn someone sensitive to extreme images. Overkill outside of an extreme, obviously. But i really question how someone sensitive to torture images would take a class on torture and not expect to see it, lol. Which makes the whole warning pointless.

        --
        SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @04:57PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @04:57PM (#45288)

          I doubt this warning was suggested to prevent sad feelings. It was probably suggested to warn someone sensitive to extreme images. Overkill outside of an extreme, obviously. But i really question how someone sensitive to torture images would take a class on torture and not expect to see it, lol. Which makes the whole warning pointless.

          On the drive to work today I passed a van covered with graphic photos of a foetus which had been aborted at 26 weeks. Pretty graphic, actually. I was driving along and, without warning, there it was in traffic right in front of me. Shouldn't someone have given me a warning ahead of time? What do you think? Should I sue someone?

          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by zafiro17 on Monday May 19 2014, @05:20PM

            by zafiro17 (234) on Monday May 19 2014, @05:20PM (#45298) Homepage

            Any snowflake taking a university level course on human rights violations/torture who is unable to handle actually seeing pictures of actual torture, has made a strategic life choice error. If you can handle the pictures, you shouldn't be studying the subject. Go change majors and enjoy your new lifestyle studying something else, fer crying out loud.

            --
            Dad always thought laughter was the best medicine, which I guess is why several of us died of tuberculosis - Jack Handey
          • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday May 19 2014, @08:00PM

            by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday May 19 2014, @08:00PM (#45351)

            Unfortunately, warnings are often done as a courtesy and not a legal requirement. They should probably remain that way as well. So even though you were grossed out and didn't want to see that image, it was their right to display it. Discourteous, for sure.

            The more common version of this is participating in an image board where shock images are not banned (free speech). You're going along and reading some comics then bam! goatse taking up a huge part of your display.. staring right back at you.

            --
            SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
      • (Score: 2) by umafuckitt on Monday May 19 2014, @07:48PM

        by umafuckitt (20) on Monday May 19 2014, @07:48PM (#45347)

        You joke, but I think you're on to something. Mockery is the best way of dealing with this stuff. We should all start petitioning for random crap, like your debate idea, to become part of higher education.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by c0lo on Monday May 19 2014, @07:09AM

    by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Monday May 19 2014, @07:09AM (#45110) Journal

    Unfortunately it will happen.
    Because being conditioned to act so serves both:
    * the govt - create the need for more governance and lowers inclination to disobedience
    * the corporate interests - "consumers" not "customers" ('nough said)

    And it would seem to serve their interest, but it will be on a short term only (granted, it will take one or two generations, this is still short comparing with the time required to undo the effects). But who is thinking long term today? Not those in power anyway.

    --
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0 https://soylentnews.org/~MichaelDavidCrawford
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @07:17AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @07:17AM (#45112)

    In 21st century academia, disagreement of any kind IS violence. Violence shall not be tolerated. You WILL Obey.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by isaac on Monday May 19 2014, @07:20AM

    by isaac (500) on Monday May 19 2014, @07:20AM (#45114)

    While I respect the argument that there's no reason to be gratuitously insensitive to actual victims of trauma, I am deeply suspicious of this "trigger warning" movement's authenticity.

    This feels like an organized effort to discredit academia in general and whip up reactionary sentiment. "Look at those stupid PC ivory tower academics, they're idiots, you don't want to listen to them."

    I hate the political jargon "useful idiots" but it seems to apply here.

    -Isaac

    • (Score: 2) by BsAtHome on Monday May 19 2014, @12:04PM

      by BsAtHome (889) on Monday May 19 2014, @12:04PM (#45175)

      Not only does it, or intents to, discredit academia, it is a direct attack on education as a whole. I agree that there are groups of people that are "sensitive" to a certain subject, but the point of education is to make one think, regardless of subject. Especially higher education is supposed to be about confronting the status quo and look beyond it. How else do you expect "progress" to happen? The status quo is by definition stagnation.

      Any group holding on to the status quo is simply trying to consolidate their power. That in itself should be enough to question their motives and actively resist them.

      • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Monday May 19 2014, @02:32PM

        by tangomargarine (667) on Monday May 19 2014, @02:32PM (#45225)

        If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.

        --
        "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
      • (Score: 1) by tftp on Monday May 19 2014, @07:38PM

        by tftp (806) on Monday May 19 2014, @07:38PM (#45343) Homepage

        Any group holding on to the status quo is simply trying to consolidate their power.

        Or it could be that the status quo correctly depicts the situation. For example, how would you move past the claim that all people have right for life? Should the society go past that obsolete concept and, for example, propose a theory of involuntary cannibalism? Would you like to read a book that describes this theory in detail and proposes some specific recipes? What would you do if the teacher tells you to read such a book?

    • (Score: 1) by Oligonicella on Monday May 19 2014, @12:19PM

      by Oligonicella (4169) on Monday May 19 2014, @12:19PM (#45178)

      I've been following this for a while. It's more of the professional victim organizers doing this. These people are always couching what they want in terms of how it will affects "others" rather than themselves. It's the logical offshoot of all the other sensitivity crap.

    • (Score: 2) by Yog-Yogguth on Thursday May 22 2014, @11:29AM

      by Yog-Yogguth (1862) Subscriber Badge on Thursday May 22 2014, @11:29AM (#46317) Journal

      Cultural Marxism [wikipedia.org].

      --
      Bite harder Ouroboros, bite! tails.boum.org/ linux USB CD secure desktop IRC *crypt tor (not endorsements (XKeyScore))
  • (Score: 2) by gringer on Monday May 19 2014, @08:02AM

    by gringer (962) on Monday May 19 2014, @08:02AM (#45127)

    We had this problem in our university sex course -- human reproduction, evolution and sexuality. A few people sent around a petition saying that they didn't like seeing pictures of STDs, and the students should be warned in advance about graphic content. They were particularly annoyed because the pictures were shown at a time in the course after which you couldn't get refunded if you decided to quit.

    --
    Ask me about Sequencing DNA in front of Linus Torvalds [youtube.com]
    • (Score: 1) by hoochiecoochieman on Monday May 19 2014, @12:48PM

      by hoochiecoochieman (4158) on Monday May 19 2014, @12:48PM (#45189)

      If the precious little flowers don't like pictures of that kind, they should have taken the "gardening" course, instead of something called "human reproduction, evolution and sexuality". I know what I would tell them, if I was the teacher: "Fuck off!"

      Come on, let other people live. If one is so fucking sensitive, stay at home.

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by tangomargarine on Monday May 19 2014, @02:35PM

        by tangomargarine (667) on Monday May 19 2014, @02:35PM (#45229)

        I know what I would tell them, if I was the teacher: "Fuck off!"

        I thought the purpose of showing the STD pictures was to encourage them NOT to do that ;-)

        --
        "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @08:42PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @08:42PM (#45362)

          No one gets herpes from intercourse with bug spray.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @05:04PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @05:04PM (#45291)

        I know what I would tell them, if I was the teacher: "Fuck off!"

        Strangely, given the context, this seems like an eminently reasonable response.

  • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @08:03AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @08:03AM (#45128)

    RefControl [mozilla.org] has been mentioned here numerous times [google.com]--once, about this specific issue. [soylentnews.org]

    Just tell NYT that you're always coming from Google and it will shut up and behave.

    -- gewg_

  • (Score: 2) by Lagg on Monday May 19 2014, @08:42AM

    by Lagg (105) on Monday May 19 2014, @08:42AM (#45130) Homepage Journal

    "This biology chapter on digestion is a trigger for me because I'm a vampire and vampires don't have anuses. It's insensitive to people like me who identify as vampires."

    --
    http://lagg.me [lagg.me] 🗿
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @08:50AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @08:50AM (#45134)

      Don't you mean "respiration" because "vampires don't breathe."

      • (Score: 2) by Jaruzel on Monday May 19 2014, @09:36AM

        by Jaruzel (812) on Monday May 19 2014, @09:36AM (#45140) Homepage Journal

        In Vampire lore (and I'm pretty sure in the later Anne Rice books as well), it's explained that Vampires drink blood to replenish their own blood and thus keep their bodies looking hipster and trim. They don't digest the blood as 'food' - it just gets inserted into their cells and bloodstream somehow. Ergo, they either have no anus or it's puckered up so tight that you couldn't even shit a needle through it.

        Wow, I don't know what's worse; that a) I know this much about Vampires, or b) I actually bothered to type the above.

        -Jar

        --
        This is my opinion, there are many others, but this one is mine.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @10:09AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @10:09AM (#45147)

          That must be awfully inconvenient for vamps who enjoyed anal in life and want to continue doing anal in their unlife.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @10:52AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @10:52AM (#45160)

          I assumed that vampire anuses were present, but non-functional.
          Like men's nipples.

      • (Score: 1) by Horse With Stripes on Monday May 19 2014, @10:12AM

        by Horse With Stripes (577) on Monday May 19 2014, @10:12AM (#45149)

        How about "Vampires don't breath through the anuses they don't have"?

      • (Score: 1) by Oligonicella on Monday May 19 2014, @12:23PM

        by Oligonicella (4169) on Monday May 19 2014, @12:23PM (#45180)

        Don't correct him, you bastard! He's sensitive!

      • (Score: 3, Funny) by nitehawk214 on Monday May 19 2014, @03:43PM

        by nitehawk214 (1304) on Monday May 19 2014, @03:43PM (#45256)

        No, he is just the DM from the Anus Shade campaign. [bash.org]

        --
        "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Tom on Monday May 19 2014, @10:14AM

    by Tom (4259) <reversethis-{gro.airumel} {ta} {mot}> on Monday May 19 2014, @10:14AM (#45151) Homepage

    I'm so sick and tired of the "oh, protect everyone from the big, bad world" attitude.

    There is one result from that mindset: If you ever do encounter the real world when it has a bad mood, you are completely unprepared.

    I wouldn't hire people that I know have been sheltered like that.

    --
    Might & Fealty [mightandfealty.com], my political sandbox game
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by VLM on Monday May 19 2014, @11:19AM

      by VLM (445) on Monday May 19 2014, @11:19AM (#45163)

      "If you ever do encounter the real world when it has a bad mood, you are completely unprepared."

      And that's the purpose of the whole project, now they'll depend on the corporation and government to "protect" them.

      There is an aspect not discussed in that its "mostly" sold for rape and soldier PTSD, with a quiet side dish of "this sure is intentionally a PITA, wouldn't it be much easier not to have a world full of raped women and PTSD damaged soldiers?" And especially with literature, it sure would be simpler just to pretend the Merchant of Venice and Huck Finn don't exist, that way people with "obsolete" values can run around unseen and undiscussed and unopposed, after all, the .gov and .com will have to work extra hard to protect us from them...

    • (Score: 2) by marcello_dl on Monday May 19 2014, @11:09PM

      by marcello_dl (2685) on Monday May 19 2014, @11:09PM (#45420)

      > If you ever do encounter the real world when it has a bad mood, you are completely unprepared.

      Yes, and the more you are unprepared the more you'll be shattered and become a cynic.

      Which is probably what education is all about: the system which rules using money and raw power needs people with the least possible amount of ideals and scruples.

      Ever wondered why a corrupt system churns out good sentiments and politically correct material? It's because "don't worry, it will all be fixed by the end of the episode" and "be good and let the bad ones escape unaffected, you'll win in the end" opens the road to being duped and become bitter more than "I send you out like sheep among wolves".

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @11:49AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @11:49AM (#45170)

    No company wants to hire a professional victim, particularly after the firestorm Adria Richards brought about. Companies have an interest in not hiring people who are high-risk, and professional victims are exceedingly high-risk to a company, especially a startup. The only "career" that tolerates this horseshit is working for anti-male nonprofits. Everyone else wants nothing to do with it.

    • (Score: 2) by kaszz on Monday May 19 2014, @12:59PM

      by kaszz (4211) on Monday May 19 2014, @12:59PM (#45191) Journal

      Must be this [venturebeat.com]. What a mess..
      Lesson: Work is business not friends and don't socialize with uptight people. It's doomed.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @12:26PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @12:26PM (#45181)

    That's what should be written on big red cards and handed to anyone who complains about needing "trigger warnings."

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by VortexCortex on Monday May 19 2014, @01:57PM

      by VortexCortex (4067) on Monday May 19 2014, @01:57PM (#45208)

      I was watching the evening news with a friend of mine. A segment about a local murder came on. She shielded her eyes with her hands and looked away. I asked her if the content was upsetting her and if I should turn the channel to something else. She said, "No, just tell me when the flashing lights are over, I have epilepsy and flashing lights can trigger my photosensitive seisures."

      I thought about it and said, "Oh wow, I never noticed how often the news just shows blatant flashing lights like that, damn it must suck for you. I wonder if they shouldn't at least put up a warning or something so it doesn't trigger your seizures?" This was the first time I actually thought a 'trigger warning' wasn't a moronic idea... She told me, "No, it's OK. It sucks sometimes, but the whole world shouldn't have to suffer just because there's something wrong with me." ...and that was the last time I ever thought a trigger warning wasn't a moronic idea.

      These professionally offended Social Justice Warrior nutters make victims out to be some kind of permanently damaged social invalid, as if their trauma is so bad the world should try to save them from the reality of it. What kind of fucked up message does that send actual victims? You're so screwed up, you'll never be the same... If it was me I'd be thinking, "Well, I'm messed up forever. Being abused is worse than murder. I'll never be the same, I've lost myself. I might as well off myself so I'm not a burden to society." That's why people are NOT defined by their being a victim.

      Protip: Disabled folks just want to be treated as normal people. SJWs aren't helping anyone.

  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by kaszz on Monday May 19 2014, @01:01PM

    by kaszz (4211) on Monday May 19 2014, @01:01PM (#45192) Journal

    College may confront your ideas and concepts. It's not for the feeble mind.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @06:23PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @06:23PM (#45323)

      College may confront your ideas and concepts. It's not for the feeble mind.

      B-b-but, I don't want my ideas and concepts challenged!!! I might have to rethink some of my precious beliefs if that were to happen! Soon, no institution of higher learning will be safe for those of us who would rather not have to re-examine our prejudices. Whatever hope is there for unreconstructed reactionaries like me?

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by gman003 on Monday May 19 2014, @01:35PM

    by gman003 (4155) on Monday May 19 2014, @01:35PM (#45205)

    The original intent of "trigger warnings" was for PTSD - and it was used only on extremely graphic violence or rape scenes, because those are the things people have PTSD about. And I have absolutely zero problem with that - even if you don't have PTSD, it's good to know to expect something like that.

    Now? I've seen Tumblr posts with trigger warnings for "carnivorism". Because some whiny vegans apparently can't even handle the thought that mos people eat meat. The trendy "social activism" that seems to permeate that certain subculture, the "social activism" that's more about words than deeds, and picking up any cause as long as it's a minority, seems to love the idea that you can "accomplish something" just by putting enough trigger warnings in front of stuff, because someone might get upset, and we can't have that.

    Guess what? I'm upset about this. I guess you need to start putting "Trigger warning: Contains trigger warnings" in front of things as well!

    You want to put a trigger warning in front of, say, "All Quiet on the Western Front", because it has a lot of violence in it? Fair enough, although when we read that book way back in middle school, they didn't need a formal list to explain "yeah, this is a book about war, it's gonna get kinda rough". But if you need to start putting "Trigger warning: racism" in front of "To Kill a Mockingbird", you're missing the whole point of both the books, the classes, and the entire purpose of trigger warnings.

    • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Monday May 19 2014, @02:38PM

      by tangomargarine (667) on Monday May 19 2014, @02:38PM (#45231)

      Just put a trigger warning in front of everything you say or post or anything. If they want to be butthurt about something I say, why should I make it easy for them to find? And if they read it anyway because you put the warning on everything, you can just point at it and laugh.

      --
      "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
  • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday May 19 2014, @02:33PM

    by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday May 19 2014, @02:33PM (#45226)

    Since people with PTSD are the minority, we don't need trigger warnings for these kinds of things. I know a lot of people are offended by the thought of these warnings. But i'll bet you almost all of them feel strong emotions when they click an unlabeled NSFW link while at work. If someone has PTSD they will have to learn how to cope in a world of violence.

    I witnessed one of the most (might still be THE most) deadly car-bombing in history. Halloween props were not nearly as silly after that. Do i think warning labels should be put on anything that may trigger bad thoughts in myself? Heck no. But please, never forget the NSFW warning!

    --
    SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
  • (Score: 2) by DrMag on Monday May 19 2014, @03:09PM

    by DrMag (1860) on Monday May 19 2014, @03:09PM (#45241)

    Really, both sides do have a point. The idea of warning people about racism in Huck Finn is ludicrous; when the point of a class is to discuss such topics, a warning is hardly necessary, and points to people being overly sensitive and wanting the world painted white for them. On the other hand, using graphic images of torture in a history class? Perhaps I'm jumping to conclusions, and the class is specifically about the horrors of war and such, but I never saw such images in any history class I had, and yet I don't have a rosy-colored, glamorized view of what war is. I *know* war is terrible; I *know* about the kinds of things that have been done to people and the effect it has had on them (and on their captors, to be truthful). And I *know* it's wrong, and I'm offended at the thought of my country having ever done anything in that regard. You don't need to show the images to teach others the truth.

    The professor herself said it--"higher learning is meant to challenge". Challenge--not provoke.

    There's a middle ground here--let people learn for themselves the difference between right and wrong. That means not sheltering them, but it also means not throwing them into the fire.

  • (Score: 2) by nitehawk214 on Monday May 19 2014, @03:46PM

    by nitehawk214 (1304) on Monday May 19 2014, @03:46PM (#45258)

    This sounds more like an excuse to round up certain "illegal texts" and put students caught reading these texts on a criminal watchlist.

    --
    "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
  • (Score: 1) by lcklspckl on Monday May 19 2014, @10:23PM

    by lcklspckl (830) on Monday May 19 2014, @10:23PM (#45401)

    Well done, Ethanol-fueled. Well done.