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26 Aug, 2016 13:42

Obama’s alma mater warns students not to expect ‘safe spaces’ or ‘trigger warnings’

Obama’s alma mater warns students not to expect ‘safe spaces’ or ‘trigger warnings’

President Barack Obama’s alma mater, the University of Chicago (U of C), is telling its incoming students not to expect “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings,” leaving many fearing they will be exposed to racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamophobic, or other forms of bullying, harassment, and aggression.

In a letter sent to the university’s incoming class of 2020, Dean of Students John Ellison directly challenged the growth of political correctness on US college campuses and upheld U of C’s “commitment to freedom of inquiry and expression,”Colorlines reports.

“Our commitment to academic freedom means that we do not support so-called trigger warnings, we do not cancel invited speakers because their topics might prove controversial, and we do not condone the creation of intellectual safe spaces where individuals can retreat from ideas and perspectives at odds with their own,” Ellison wrote.

“Fostering the free exchange of ideas reinforces a related University policy-building a campus that welcomes people of all backgrounds. Diversity of opinion and background is a fundamental strength of our community. The members of our community must have the freedom to espouse and explore a wide range of ideas,” he added.

‘Diverse’ opinions at the private university have led to right-wing dictatorships in Central and South America, the development of the world’s deadliest weapon, and comments by Obama, a former U of C law professor and student, who urged students earlier this year not to “shut folks out” if you don’t agree with them.

The ‘Chicago Boys,’ a group of Chilean economists who trained at the university under Milton Friedman and other ‘neo-classical’ economists, went on to work for dictator General Augusto Pinochet, pushing deregulation, privatization and other “free market” policies.

The issue of safe spaces in America’s learning institutions has been a growing debate - with mostly white males defending the rights of free speech over what they pejoratively called ‘political correctness,’ even if it means people feel discriminated against or intimidated in their own classroom.

In another incident, a Yale University lecturer was forced to resign after defending ‘cultural appropriation’ by students who wear Halloween costumes such as “feathered headdresses, turbans, war paint, blackface or redface, or costumes that made fun of people,”reported the New York Times.

READ MORE: Yale students march against racist incidents on campus

Her comments in an email combined with an alleged ‘whites-only’ sorority party sparked an uproar on campus which led to her “voluntary decision not to teach in the future.”

To make things more confusing - and contentious, the term “safe space” is now being used by the ‘alt right’ to mock the issue.