Shel | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Re: “South Burlington Student's Post on 'White Fragility' Goes Viral

Eric Hoffer (1971): "The young have a genius for discovering imagined grievances. It goes without saying that imagined grievances cannot be cured but they enable the young to evade those aspects of reality which do not minister to their self-importance. . . ."

This case presents a prototype of Hoffer's observation. While the innocuous SBHS Rebel name has been eliminated, at least for the time being, murder (mostly black-on-black) is still rampant in Chicago and other cities, the national debt is still $20 billion and growing, freedom of speech is under attack on college campuses, and innocent civilians in the Middle East, Europe, and the U.S. continue to be murdered with no end in sight by cowardly terrorists, which in turn leads to less and less privacy for ordinary people who just want to go about their business. These real problems cannot be solved by claiming victim status.

51 likes, 35 dislikes
Posted by Shel on 06/02/2017 at 10:29 PM

Re: “South Burlington Student's Post on 'White Fragility' Goes Viral

We are told that African Americans are constantly subject to racism and that unless you are AA you cannot possibly perceive it and know how it feels. With so little understanding of it, a non-AA has no standing to talk about race. At the same time, if you are a non-AA, talking about race makes you so uncomfortable that you cannot bring yourself to do so and you are considered "fragile." So a non-AA is not permitted to talk about race, but if the non-AA does not talk about race, then it is because he or she suffers from the mental condition known as "white fragility." Only those steeped in critical studies can possibly understand this. If you are not, don't even try.

49 likes, 31 dislikes
Posted by Shel on 06/02/2017 at 9:58 PM

Re: “'Rebels' Yell: Protests Build Over South Burlington's Mascot Change

Yesterday, April 19, was the anniversary of the Shot Heard Round the World,the first shots fired in the American revolution against the British sovereignty over the colonies. Revolution is synonymous with rebellion, which of course is conducted by rebels. It is a perfectly good word and numerous positive connotations. The controversy is entirely manufactured.

The school board's virtue signaling tells the students that they must never be offended, and if they are, everyone must stop it. The world revolves around them and their perceived injuries, regardless of the impact on others. This is how we get the recent incidents at Middlebury, Berkeley, and other institutions of higher learning.

My thoughts turn to the young men and women, not much older than these students (and many of the minutemen "rebels" were younger) who in the past and the present have put their lives at risk to defend free speech among other freedoms. Being shot at, having shrapnel explode right next to you, and watching your buddies die is truly offensive. These young people have no perspective, and the school board is not helping them get it.

21 likes, 25 dislikes
Posted by Shel on 04/20/2017 at 10:25 AM

Re: “South Burlington Man Arraigned in Rebels Stalking Case

For most of the commenters, Dan Emmons is guilty until proven innocent. To what other criminal defendants does that standard apply? Does it depend on the hue of the accused's skin? On the hue of the purported victim's skin? On the accused's or the alleged victim's belief system? What happened to innocent until proven guilty?

When did the name, which has been in place over 50 years, become racist? Is opposing the name change, which many commenters accuse Dan Emmons of, a crime? What is the punishment? Death? Re-education camp? Loss of civil rights? Just asking.

The accuser may actually be a victim, if not necessarily by Dan Emmons. Regardless of what occurred in the GW store, he appears to have been victimized by the adults around him who taught him that claiming to be a victim can give you awesome power over others. He is further victimized by many of the commenters on this page, who further enable his victimhood. The problem is that being a victim is generally not a good strategy for lifelong success. There are notable exceptions of course. A few well known activists have parlayed the purported victimization of others to great personal power and wealth.

28 likes, 36 dislikes
Posted by Shel on 04/15/2017 at 9:37 PM

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