Thursday, May 21, 2015

Trigger Intellectualism

The History of PTSD and the Evolution of Trigger Warnings | The New Republic:

The linked somewhat pretentious article can be summarized as:

  • "Trigger Warnings" -- for survivors of rape, domestic abuse, PTSD, etc are on the rise, especially in universities. 
  • The root causes for sensitivity of the "PTSD sort" has been going down -- it used to be surviving things like genocide, famine, the plague, the holocaust, and is now being applied to things like "bullying", "sexual harassment". 
  • We used to see human suffering as potentially spirit enhancing in a heroic, transcendent, religious way ... now it is purely "cause for therapy" ... and protectiveness "safe places". 
The article closes with: 
It’s easy to caricature the vanguard of the so-called politically correct: to paint them as fanatics who are trying to destroy well-established norms of free speech. But they are not caricatures; they are products of history. Most current college students grew up in the shadow of September 11, with the specter of large-scale terrorism always looming and with a steady stream of soldiers returning home to grapple with their demons. It is no wonder that they feel that they, too, deserve security, even in the precarious and flimsy form of trigger warnings and safe spaces.

It is always "easy to caricature". Some kids indeed had to grow up after 9-11, some had to grow up with the constant spectre of nuclear war "duck and cover" in the Cold War, some had to grow up after WWI and WWII with 10's of millions killed in Europe, some Jewish kids grew up after the holocaust killed 6 million of their families and friends -- some even wrote books like Victor Frankl "Man's Search for Meaning".

I'd argue that to claim that post-9-11 is somehow understandable as a "special product of history" **IS** very much a caricature that shows a complete lack of understanding for humanity and human history. The Plague killed around 50% of Europe's population in like 10 years around 1350. That we are here is strong evidence that "life went on".

Yes, 9-11 was a big event -- 3k dead out of over 300 million in the US, and the deaths of nearly 7k servicemen as of 2015. The Civil War on the other hand killed over 600,000, and total WWII deaths civilian and military were over 60 million.

The hallmark of the "intellectual" used to be perspective and intellectual distance -- a "bigger picture". Somehow, our supposed intellectuals have COMPLETELY lost that!

'via Blog this'

No comments:

Post a Comment