The Conversation

The latest neurotic campus brownshirt freak-out: Camels are racist

There are reasons to be deeply concerned about the fascist tendencies of campus pressure groups, which are reveling in their use of the Heckler's Veto to drive speakers with challenging ideas (or even politically incorrect resumes, such as Condoleeza Rice) away from what used to be revered as bastions of free speech and intellectual exploration.  The American student mind is increasingly not merely closed, but welded shut and surrounded by land mines.  As with all forms of thuggery, we're getting more of this because it works, as craven or sympathetic administrators buckle under to one whiny protest group after another.

But there are also reasons to laugh at the brownshirts, who - in a healthy society - would be actively mocked before they were ignored into impotence.  For example, Campus Reform notes that the special snowflakes at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota decided that camels are racist.  

The “Hump Day” event, put on by the Residence Hall Association (RHA), was supposed to be “a petting zoo type of atmosphere” in which students could hang out and take photos with a live camel. According to Aaron Macke, the group’s advisor, the camel is owned by a local vendor and trained for special events.

But the event was subsequently cancelled after students took to Facebook to proclaim their concerns. The students said they were concerned about the money spent on bringing the camel to campus—around $500—and the implication that it would be racially insensitive to Middle Eastern cultures.

The Facebook group called “Protest Hump DAAAAAAY!” had more than 100 RSVP’d attendees before it was deleted on Wednesday.

“RHA’s goal in programming is to bring residents together in a fun and safe environment where all people can enjoy themselves,” RHA president Lindsay Goodwin said in a statement on RHA’s Facebook page. “It appears however, this program is dividing people and would make for an uncomfortable and possibly unsafe environment for everyone attending or providing the program. As a result, RHA has decided to cancel the event.”

The Residence Hall Association was seriously worried that protesters would create a "possibly unsafe environment?"  Over bringing a camel to a petting zoo?  Okay, maybe this is more disturbing than funny after all.

I presume the brownshirts will now turn their efforts toward banning the popular TV ad that presumably created the idea of having a camel visit for a "Hump Day" event.  I mean, this thing is just dripping with racial insensitivity, isn't it?  Note the implication that Mike might not know what day it is.  Check your privilege, GEICO camel.


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