The problem with race and gender studies is … they promote hate

I see a hand up in the back row. Yes, young sir. Your question, please. Surprise us with your intelligence.

“Uh, uh, Professor Blaskafield, it’s interesting that the argument you’re making against the “Problem of Whiteness” class offered at the University of Wisconsin-Madison [found here in the syllabus) is the same one made often by politically correct liberals: You don’t like the ideas presented here and you want them quashed. Courses like this fuels questions and discussion, the idea of education.”

Here is a quarter, Mr. Jake A. Call your mother and tell her she sent a dolt to the Stately Manor’s School for Liberals, etc.


From Prof Sajnani’s Facebook page

Where Jake A stumbles is his hope and a wish that professor Damon Sajnani will entertain a robust discussion of ideas — including the notion that his obsession with race is just so much poppycock. Bad science. Modern-day alchemy.

It is the notion that skin color is destiny. That the amount of melanin determines success, or lack thereof. That black people think different from white or yellow. That to have dark skin is to be victim in need of the ameliorative powers of the state. That is just plain racist.

Sajnani teaches that white skin is oppressive. That not until whites repent, cast out their implicit racism, can the likes of Ben Carson truly succeed. That is a terribly destructive message. And just plain stupid.

If anything, Sajnani proves that reverse racism is alive and taught for credit at Wisconsin’s flagship campus, a stone’s throw from Camp Randall, where thousands of boys mustered for service in the war against slavery and secession and never came back.

“Critical Whiteness Studies aims to understand how whiteness is socially constructed and experienced in order to help dismantle white supremacy.’” — The Problem of Whiteness, African Cultural Studies, College of Letters and Science.

The “Problem of Whiteness” is, of course, Marxism served hot. That the individual is determined (passive voice) — not that the individual determines (active voice). No surprise, then, that Prof. Sajnani uses an image of the communist dictator Fidel Castro as his on-line avatar.

The other problem, young master Jake, is that where does the bewildered undergraduate at UW-Madison go for conservative, original intent constitutionalism these days? In what lecture hall does the clash of ideas spark intellectual inquiry?

Such settings are as rare as a conservative sociologist. (I once asked the then UW dean of Letters and Science, a sociologist himself, to name one. He came up empty.)

No, master Jake. If young Suzie Creamcheese from Bonduel rose to say Prof. Sajnani’s entire edifice is so much race-baiting poppycock (should she even muster the courage) she can count on being mau-maued by her classmates and getting a major hit to her grade-point average. The very title of the course prescribes the answer: Whiteness is a Problem!

The problem, of course, is that the market for The Problem of Whiteness is a matter of self-selection. Those majoring in community organizing will gravitate like iron filings to a magnet. Young people who want to contribute to a better world will study something more lasting.

There is something very racist about assuming that African-Americans (for one instance) think in lockstep. But that is the very foundation of identity politics, now the lifeblood of the Democrat(ic) party. Surely there are greater differences between Al Sharpton and Herman Cain, DeeRay McKesson and Allen West, than pigmentation?

Hellz bellz! Who needs pigment? Just “identity” like Seattle NAACP president Rachel Dolezal and you can be whatever you want to be. Which kind of defeats the whole idea, doesn’t it Prof. Sajnani?

American liberalism has slipped into a kind of moral panic about racial, gender, and sexual identity that has distorted liberalism’s message and prevented it from becoming a unifying force capable of governing. One of the many lessons of the recent presidential election campaign and its repugnant outcome is that the age of identity liberalism must be brought to an end. — Mark Lilla in the New York Times.

Blaska’s Bottom Line

The fixation on race and gender is itself anti-intellectual. At UW-Stout, Historical paintings of French voyageurs and their Native American partners were moved to storage due to “the potentially ‘harmful effect’ on students.

On November 17, protesters took over the stage at UW-Madison’s social studies building and attempted the heckler’s veto during a presentation by conservative writer Ben Shapiro. They’re now attempting to decertify the student organization that invited him or, failing that, submit its members to “intensive” sensitivity training.

A group of Washington State University professors have decried “discourses of free speech” in an open letter to the campus community, suggesting such defenses of the First Amendment hurt “marginalized students.” according to the College Fix.

Register your opinion with the key legislators in the column at right.


About David Blaska

Madison WI
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14 Responses to The problem with race and gender studies is … they promote hate

  1. Jake A says:

    Blaska assumes much about this course. Has he interviewed the prof? Has he examined the syllabus? He, a white guy for whom race has never and will never be a problem, claims that liberals and African-Americans are “fixated” on race.
    I challenge him to read just one of the books on the reading list for this course. I read this blog, so maybe Blaska can read something by W.E.B. DuBois or Ta-Nehisi Coates.


    • davidblaska says:

      Have I examined the syllabus? I LINK to the syllabus, Jake! And yes, I have read Ta-Nehisi Coates (you haven’t). The in-print Atlantic even published my response.


      • Jake A says:

        LOL! I read your letter and noted you couldn’t resist using the Trump-approved “free stuff” bit. Hey, thanks for putting in another year of sticking up for the big guy, Dave. How would entitled white men ever get along if you didn’t have their backs? Happy Holidays!


      • Jake A says:

        “you haven’t”
        Merry Christmas.


  2. Gary L. Kriewald says:

    While the “Problem with Whiteness” course is deplorable on many levels. it is merely a symptom of a larger problem in colleges today, namely the proliferation of departments and programs designed to appeal to every supposedly “marginalized” (i.e., special interest) group under the sun. The “Whiteness” course is offered by the African Cultural Studies Department. According to the UW-Madison website, there are two other similar departments, African Studies and African American Studies. (Meanwhile, there is one Chemistry Department, one English Department, one Math Department, etc.). These programs, originally created to appease aggrieved racial, ethnic, and gender groups, now account for a sizable chunk of UW’s departments. And what do they teach? The kind of self-indulgent leftist agitprop so nicely illustrated by Prof. Sajnani’s course.

    Bogus departments like Afro-American Studies, Women’s Studies, Queer Studies, Latina/o Studies first proliferated in the late 1960s and early 1970s, when spineless college administrators caved to every demand, no mater how preposterous, made by student “activists.” Besides being a travesty of real academic disciplines, these programs do an enormous disservice to the students (mostly minorities) enrolled in them. Can you imagine finding yourself on the job market with a degree in African Cultural Studies tucked under your arm?

    A state legislator has suggested canceling this course and firing its professor. While I would be glad to see both these things happen, I think a more productive action would be to de-fund any department at UW-Madison with the word “Studies” in its title.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. LiberalTruthTelling says:

    It takes some doing for me to find something more cringeworthy than Nass’ longstanding criticisms of UW. But an antiwhite college course — and the duck & cover responses of UW leaders — have topped Nass for me. Along with starting to wonder if he may have a point.

    Foolishness like the antiwhite UW course — b/w the repressive SJW bullcrap on campus that shouts down any dissenting views and enforces their expectation that Whitey toe the line and carry their water — does just as much damage to the UW brand as repeated massive budget cuts.

    This current situation unfortunately is a twofer–antiwhite racism AND the very real potential for more massive budget cuts.

    I wonder if UW administrators would jump to defend a course titled “The Jewish Problem” put on by the Arab-American Studies department….or “The Problem of Islamic Terrorism”….or “The Problem of Single Black Mothers.”

    I’m sure those would sail through the approval process and be rigorously defended.


  4. Madison Expat says:

    How about “The problem with eunuch Regents”?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. davidblaska says:

    Jake A: you need to up your game. Trump never once talked about “free stuff.” In fact, he has proposed free stuff, regrettably. Fair Warning, Jake A.: Stately Blaska Manor requires accuracy from reader responses.


    • Jake A says:

      Did I say he talked about it? I did not. Accuracy? Read your own blog, DB? Happy Holidays, all the same.


      • davidblaska says:

        You wrote that Trump “approved” warning about the debilitating effects of ever-more free stuff (as I did in my response to The Atlantic). When did he do that? The answer is he did not. One lump of coal is on its way. Merry Christmas — in jail!


  6. Jake A says:

    I’m awaiting concern on your part about some conservative campus group disrupting an anti-gun info table at the student union last week. Probably didn’t show up on the McKenna show, as she tends to favor free speech rights for her causes only. But that doesn’t describe you, does it, Dave “Free Speech For All” Blaska?


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