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Let the camel onto campus

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POSTED May 21, 2014 1:12 a.m.

I used to look forward to listening to the Sacramento talk show Armstrong and Getty on my way to work in the mornings. The hosts were light-hearted, humorous and at times sophomoric – right up my alley. But all things change with time, and now more often than not A&G is more like Fox News lite with the constant haranguing and criticizing of Barrack Obama, and when that happens I just flip the channel. 

The other morning they took a stab at political correctness – and hit the target right between the eyes.  

Both topics had to do with schools – one a first-grade class at a school talent show and the other a college – and the first one had to do with hump-day activities. “Hump Day” is a moniker for Wednesday and symbolizes getting over the hump in the work week, but in this case a group of students at University of St. Thomas in Minnesota planned to bring a camel on to campus for an end-of-year celebration, for getting over the hump of not just the week but the year.

The camel is owned by a local vendor and is used for events such as this which would be a petting-zoo environment where students could get their picture taken with the camel. But some students complained because, according to Fox News, “…bringing a camel on campus could offend those of Middle Eastern cultures.”

The camel was not allowed to be brought on campus.

Really?

Unless you have been under a rock for the last 36 years, you have heard the 1978 cult classic from the Village People entitled, “Y.M.C.A.” where the Village People dress up like a cowboy, biker, soldier, policeman, construction worker and Indian – or to be politically correct, Native American. A first-grade class in Fargo, North Dakota, was to dress in character as members of the Village People and perform the song, but a parent objected that dressing up as an Indian is offensive and stereotyping toward Native Americans. The song was pulled from the production.

Double really?

When is somebody going to stand up to the do-gooders who claim to be bastions of sensitivity and expose them for the corrupt tyrants that they are? Diversity is something that should be a choice, not a mandate. 

I was raised color blind. My best friend was Mexican, but he was just my best friend – race was never a topic. Ditto my daughter’s God parents and our best friends – they are Mexicans, but that never has been nor will it ever be an issue. My association with them was because I wanted to, not because I had to. 

I got blind-sided when I joined the service. Raised in Northern California – true Northern California – it was instilled in me that minorities were victims of White dominance. Within a week of being a soldier I found out the hard way that non-Whites could be every bit the victimizers that Whites could be. When I would walk into a gym with eight basketball games going and call “next” at one of them, the fact that I was the only White boy in the gym should not have made a difference – but it did. 

Being a soldier in the ‘70s was not like it is today – we were looked upon as pariahs, not heroes. So I endured discrimination on multiple fronts – both on and off the base – and as a result today I try not to pre-judge anyone. However, I am extremely intolerant of anyone who uses their group – race, gender, sexual orientation or anything else people wrap themselves up in – as a wedge or a tool to force their way down my throat and claim I am intolerant if I do not accept it. 

Let the camel onto the campus and let the first graders be first graders. To do otherwise is in the words of my father “borrowing trouble” and there is enough heartache in the world today without scratching where it does not itch.

 

Comments can be addressed to davegcampbell@aol.com.

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