Yale is efficient. They’ve been debating whether to rename a building named after John Calhoun, the 19th century racist defender of slavery. Remember, this is the guy who said
I hold that the present state of civilization, where two races of different origin, and distinguished by color, and other physical differences, as well as intellectual, are brought together, the relation now existing in the slaveholding states between the two, is, instead of an evil, a good. A positive good.
One could reasonably make an argument that it is unfair to impose modern moral standards on a man dead for a hundred and sixty years, and I’d agree that yes, John C. Calhoun was a product of his time and place, the antebellum South. However it is also unfair to expect that antebellum Southern standards be respected in 21st century America — it works both ways. Yale made the right decision to rename the building after Grace Hopper.
The debate might not have gone on so long if everyone had known that the decision would also drive Geraldo Riviera to sever ties with the university.
Resigned yesterday as Associate Fellow of Calhoun College at Yale. Been an honor but intolerant insistence on political correctness is lame.
Political correctness. There’s a phrase that has become a solid tell for reactionary idiocy. I’ve never seen the words used for anything but to complain about reasonable actions by people with some degree of empathy. I imagine Riviera, if he’d lived at the time, would have called the Emancipation Proclamation a
politically correct document, as if there were no moral force behind the liberation of slave and that it was just Ol’ Abe
At least Yale has managed to purge two assholes at once with one action.