The University of Connecticut has segregated its dorm buildings to create a “safe space” for students who identify as African-American, and they want you to know this isn’t racist.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. has to be rolling in his grave about this one.
In a controversial move, the University of Connecticut has introduced a racially-segregated dorm intended only for those who identify as African-American.
According to its website, the ScHOLA²RS House (“Scholastic House Of Leaders who are African American Researchers & Scholars”) is a “designed to support the scholastic efforts of male students who identify as African American/Black through academic and social/emotional support, access to research opportunities, and professional development.”
One UConn official explained to the local Fox affiliate that the ScHOLA²RS House is “a space for African American men to, one, come together, and validate their experiences that they may have on campus… it’s also a space where they can have conversation and also talk with individuals who come from the same background who share the same experience.” Application is voluntary, and while separate, the facilities will be equal to the other dorms.
Separate, but equal. That sounds awfully familiar.
Where did we get this idea that a “safe” space is a better space for young Americans to prepare for life in the real world? There are no safe spaces in the real world, and life is hard.
It’s our responsibility as parents and educators to teach young adults the skills necessary to cope with the harsh realities of the world. Instead, we are doing them a disservice by coddling them and giving young people unrealistic expectations of the adversity and challenges that are all part of life.
Let me echo the sentiments of Oklahoma Wesleyan University President Everett Piper, when he said:
Oklahoma Wesleyan is not a “safe place”, but rather, a place to learn: to learn that life isn’t about you, but about others; that the bad feeling you have while listening to a sermon is called guilt; that the way to address it is to repent of everything that’s wrong with you rather than blame others for everything that’s wrong with them. This is a place where you will quickly learn that you need to grow up.
This is not a day care. This is a university.
Amen, Mr. Piper.