Critics of political correctness allege that America’s college students are now so immersed in ideological political activism that they are not learning very much. How to write English, for example.
Editors at the Wellesley College student newspaper, The Wellesley News, recently wrote an editorial defending the intolerance now sweeping the nation's universities. Unfortunately, in their zeal to defend the suppression of ideas they find undesirable, they unwittingly contributed to the growing evidence that Political Correctness sucks your brains out.
The editorial argues for what amounts to a suspension of the First Amendment on college campuses. It not only demonstrates an apparent lack of simple rhetorical skills, but also shows that the student editorialists who wrote it don't seem very adept at English grammar.
The editorial contains everything from awkward phrasings to flat-out mistakes. Here is Wellesley's PC Times trying to say that conservative ideas constitute hate speech:
“Shutting down rhetoric that undermines the existence and rights of others is not a violation of free speech; it is hate speech.”
To what, exactly, does “it” refer? It sounds like they are saying that their own behavior—“shutting down rhetoric that undermines the existence and rights of others”—is hate speech. In other words, in trying to criticize others, they ended up criticizing themselves! They are probably anti-gun, too, and it's a good thing. They would only succeed in shooting themselves.
Or this one:
“The founding fathers put free speech in the Constitution...”
Huh? The founding fathers did not “put free speech” in the Constitution; they put free speech “protections” in the Constitution. In other words, not only are these alleged journalists advocating the suspension of the First Amendment, but they can't even state correctly what is in it—giving the founding fathers two reasons to roll over in their graves.
Another line from the editorial:
“It is inevitable that there will be moments in this growth process where mistakes will happen and controversial statements will be said.”
Where “controversial statements will be said”?!? Me journalist. Me write editorials for Wellesley News. Me write English like it be second language.
There needs to be a new rule at Wellesley that student journalists only be allowed to use hand signals for communication. It could save the English language. Trust me on this.
And can one of the language experts from the movie Arrival please explain in what language the following sentence is written?
“However, we argue that these questionable claims should be mitigated by education as opposed to personal attacks.”
Questionable claims “mitigated... by personal attacks”?!? Do they even have dictionaries at this newspaper?
The next time the army needs people who speak an obscure language in order to make it hard for the enemy to understand their communications, forget the Choctaw Indians or the Navaho. Just recruit a few politically correct editors from the Wellesley News.
Martin Cothran is the editor of Classical Teacher magazine, published by Memoria Press, and the director of the Classical Latin School Association.