Earlier this week, College Insurrection reported that the student government of Cornell has proposed a social justice requirement. Opponents of the proposal are now fighting the idea.
Aniket of the Cornell Insider has the story.
10 Theses Against The Social Justice Requirement
With reference to the Campus Liberty Project’s campaign against a proposed mandatory Social Justice Requirement at Cornell, here are 10 compelling arguments to sign the petition:
1. People who are interested in the concept of social justice have plenty of classes to choose from across departments ranging from philosophy to economics. There is no need for any compulsory general requirement.
2. What is Social Justice? Who gets to define it? One of the definitions I received from an advocate of the new requirement was this: ” When a society is committed to the pursuit of fairness, redress of grievances, inclusion, human rights and humanism.” But something seems wrong when to define one loaded word, one has to use five more loaded words. Besides, if freedom is seen as an integral component of justice, then it is an inherent contradiction to force students to take a course.
3. Social Justice should not be interpreted as political correctness. It should not degenerate to silence on controversial issues. The idea of justice is itself complex and dates back to Plato who defined it as the harmonious reconciliation of different parts of the whole.
4. The SJ requirement is reactionary in the sense that it rests on the presumption that prejudice is simply a product of ignorance and that people can be forced to overcome their deep seated beliefs by mandating a class. Searching for an instant solution to “hate crimes” should itself be seen as simplistic and unfair.
You can view and/or sign the petition against the requirement here.