Phi Beta Cons

The Latest Campus Lunacy—Trigger Warnings

A few months ago, we were reading about the terrible problem of “microaggression,” but apparently that has been succeeded by a new bit of campus lunacy, namely the call for “trigger warnings” on book. That is, if a book might for any reason cause a student distress, it’s obligatory to post a “trigger warning” about the content.

In this SeeThru post, William Murchison comments on this new mania.

Almost any book might “trigger” an emotional response in someone, so if this nutty idea catches on, we’ll see trigger warnings everywhere. Perhaps even lengthy ones, listing all the possible “triggers” in the book. Why, there could be many new jobs for out-of-work academics in poring through books to find potential triggers.

And who will be held responsible for the failure to warn if a student is “triggered” by something that was overlooked as possibly dangerous material?

George Leef — George Leef is the director of research for the John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy.

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