Saturday, 17 March 2018

College Library Calls “God Bless You,” “Merry Christmas” Oppressive Language

Written by 

The library at Simmons College in Boston has issued guidelines for language that may be considered oppressive to others, and among the phrases that are considered “microaggressions” are such greetings as “God Bless You, ” “Happy Easter,” and “Merry Christmas” — because they are based in Christianity.

The guide, appearing on the private school's website, “is intended to provide some general information about anti-oppression, diversity, and inclusion as well as information and resources for the social justice issues key to the Simmons College community,” the webpage explains.

The site offers hyperlinks to scores of videos, articles, and other resources on the wide-open areas of “diversity” and “inclusion,” and includes eight subsections: anti-oppression, anti-racism, anti-transmisia, anti-ableism, anti-Islamomisia, anti-sanism, anti-queermisia, and social justice zines.

The college's enforcers of cultural correctness explain that they replaced the term “phobia” with “misia” in the guide because — well, calling something a phobia may be offensive to a person who suffers from phobias.

“So when we use terms like ‘homophobia,’ we are equating bigotry with a mental health disorder,” the guide explains. “Misia (pronounced ‘miz-eeya’) comes from the Greek word for hate or hatred.”

The guide condemns such greetings as “God Bless You” and “Merry Christmas” as “microaggressions” against Islam, going on to explain: “Islamomisic Microaggressions are commonplace verbal or behavioral indignities, whether intentional or unintentional, which communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative slights in relation to the beliefs and religious practices of Muslims. They are structurally based and invoke oppressive systems of religious/Christian hierarchy.”

The guide appears to especially target Christianity, stating: “In North America (and throughout much of the western world), people who follow Christianity have institutional power, therefore Islamomisia is a systematized discrimination or antagonism directed against Muslim people due to their religion or perceived religious, national, or ethnic identity associated with Islam.”

The guide goes on to warn against the “microaggression” of Christian privilege: “In the United States and many other Western nations, Christianity and its various denominations and religious practices hold institutional and cultural power. Christian privilege is the unearned benefit that Christians in the U.S. receive that members of other faiths (or non-religious people) do not.”

The guide declares that “within this dominant social environment, Christians come to expect social comfort and a sense of belonging and superiority. They may become defensive, positioning themselves as victims of anti-Islamomisic work and co-opting the rhetoric of violence to describe their experiences of being challenged on religious privilege.”

A spokesperson for Simmons College told Fox News that the guide is not official policy for the school.

To make sure no one is left out, the guide goes on to warn that no one is immune “from the limits and hidden biases of our own privileges and perspectives as allies. We welcome and greatly appreciate any feedback and suggestions for the guide, particularly from the perspectives and experiences of the marginalized groups listed and not listed here.”

Photo: Ildo Frazao/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Please review our Comment Policy before posting a comment

Affiliates and Friends

Social Media