So – I just discovered that I am an “Oppressor.”
Well three reasons actually.
Because I am White. I am a Male. And I am a Christian.
This according to James Madison University – which is supported by the tens of thousands of dollars I pay annually for my son to be educated there and which is, of course, likewise supported by every citizen in the state via their hard-earned tax payments.
Need more information?
Here go: (From Fox News and verified by multiple news outlets.)
James Madison University Trains Students That Christians, White Males are ‘Oppressors’
James Madison University in Virginia is training student employees to recognize that people who identify as male, straight, cisgender, or Christian are “oppressors” that engage in the “systematic subjugation” of other social groups. (Yep – that just might be you.)
According to documents obtained by Fox News, student employees in charge of facilitating orientation for first-year students this fall at JMU underwent training in recent weeks to learn about social justice and inclusion. (Not to be confused with indoctrination.)
A training video mandated for student staff, hosted by coordinators Jessica Weed and Jennifer Iwerks, described oppression as “the systematic subjugation of one social group by a more powerful social group for the social, economic and political benefit of the more powerful social group.” (I wonder who trained up Jessica and Jennifer? Given the general tone of things maybe we should question if there’s something to females whose names begin with a “J.”)
The video defined an “oppressor” group as one that has the power to define reality for themselves and others, and in turn, the “target” groups “take in and internalize the negative messages about them and end up cooperating with the oppressors (thinking and acting like them).” (Is that not the irony of all ironies?!)
The presentation defined privilege as the “unearned social power accorded by the formal and informal institutions of society to ALL members of a dominant group at the expense of targeted groups.” It also said members of both the oppressor and target groups are “socialized to play their roles as normal and correct.” (Ahh … We’re the victims of unearned social power and have been socialized to play our roles that way – it’s GOT to be true!)
The JMU training materials listed the various races and nationalities they considered “privileged” or “agents” and those they characterized as “oppressed” or “targets.” Among the privileged, according to the presentation, are people who identify as male, cisgender, heterosexual, heteroromantic, Christian, White, Western European, American, upper to middle class, thin/athletic build, able-bodied, or ages 30s to early 50s. (What about us 60 somethings – are we free and clear after all? Of course the “thin/athletic build, able-bodied” might settle the question for me anyway . . .)
Among the oppressed groups, according to the presentation, are people who identify as Black, Asian, Latinx, non-Western European, LGBTQ+, homoromantic, Muslim, Jewish, working class, overweight, or disabled, among others. (OVERWEIGHT! Well then – I AM of the oppressed!)
After the training was completed, student employees were sent an email instructing them to “not share these materials with others.” (Imagine that . . .)
A JMU spokesperson told Fox News in a statement that the training was an “opportunity” for students who work in the Office of Student Affairs. (Oh, OK – just for them – we’ve got it.)
“The training was held to help ensure that every student guide for freshmen orientation had the tools and understanding to work with incoming students, who might have a different background than their own,” the statement read. “At JMU, we strive to create an inclusive and welcoming community for all students. We also seek feedback on the training to constantly work on improving how we communicate and train student staff members.” (Here’s some sought after feedback for you: Do you really think you are providing the appropriate “tools and understanding” that will provide an environment that is “inclusive and welcoming? “Are you really seeking diversity? It seems pretty clear where your policies will ultimately lead.)
Suffice to say this will be my son’s final year at JMU. We will find a better way. And my advice to others is to start taking a stand anywhere and any way you can. Enough is enough. The culture is spinning wildly out of control and if those of us who see the depth of it and where it all leads don’t start speaking up AND ACTING on our understanding(s) we too will be accountable for the ultimate malaise to come.
Godspeed and Blessings to All.
– Stuart Revercomb