America’s religion of anti-racism has reached peak absurdity, with anti-racist gestures now themselves defined as discrimination. A recent controversy in Madison, Wisc., exemplifies the contradictions required to feed the narrative of America’s endemic bigotry.
A black senior at West High School in Madison allegedly stole another student’s cell phone on October 9. The alleged thief then pushed an assistant principal who tried to intervene; she called for assistance. A black security guard, Marlon Anderson, tried to escort the student out of the building; the student let fly a race-based tirade, calling Anderson the N-word and a slew of racial epithets. Anderson, repeating the word, told the student to “Stop calling me that.” The assistant principal started recording the interaction on her walkie-talkie — to document not the student’s insubordination but, rather, Anderson’s.
Anderson had violated the Madison Metropolitan School District’s (MMSD) zero-tolerance policy toward the N-word. Any iteration of the word, with whatever intent, by school staff would result in the user’s firing. According to Interim School Superintendent Jane Belmore, the district adopted the policy in order to “unequivocally protect” black students.
At least six MMSD teachers and staff members were fired or forced to resign over the last year for mentioning the N-word in front of students. The district has refused to discuss the circumstances of their removal. But the Madison teachers union says it is unaware of any instance where a staff member or teacher used the word to refer to students with derogatory intent. In one case, a teacher in an alternative high school was reading from a book that contained the word. (The district would not say what book.)
Heather Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith fellow at the Manhattan Institute, contributing editor at City Journal, and the author of the bestselling War on Cops and The Diversity Delusion. Follow her on Twitter here.
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