13.5.08

TOE THE PARTY LINE, OR ELSE. At the University of Toledo, one form of identity politics cannot be held superior to another. A columnist in the Toledo Free Press, writing, she thought, as a private citizen, observed,
As a Black woman who happens to be an alumnus of the University of Toledo's Graduate School, an employee and business owner, I take great umbrage at the notion that those choosing the homosexual lifestyle are "civil rights victims." Here's why. I cannot wake up tomorrow and not be a Black woman. I am genetically and biologically a Black woman and very pleased to be so as my Creator intended. Daily, thousands of homosexuals make a life decision to leave the gay lifestyle ...
Leave the psychology aside and focus on the identity politics. She continues,
The normative statistics for a homosexual in the USA include a Bachelor's degree: For gay men, the median household income is $83,000/yr. (Gay singles $62,000; gay couples living together $130,000), almost 80% above the median U.S. household income of $46,326, per census data. For lesbians, the median household income is $80,000/yr. (Lesbian singles $52,000; Lesbian couples living together $96,000); 36% of lesbians reported household incomes in excess of $100,000/yr. Compare that to the median income of the non-college educated Black male of $30,539. The data speaks for itself.
Leave the social science aside: this is a culture war theme I've seen elsewhere.

Focus, rather, on the reaction of the University of Toledo.

The University of Toledo has suspended with pay one of its administrators for writing a newspaper op-ed that questions whether homosexuality is a civil rights issue. The school said the administrator was suspended precisely because her views on homosexuality do not comport with those of the university, a state institution.

Crystal Dixon, associate vice president of human resources at the Ohio-based university, sparked controversy Apr. 18 when she wrote in the Toledo Free Press that she did not agree with comments by the newspaper's editor that portrayed homosexuals as civil rights victims.

This is the same University of Toledo that takes strategic planning beyond parody.

John Lott asks,
If she had written a piece say the opposite, what would have happened to her? Even if she had listed her affiliation at the university, nothing would have happened.
I'm not sure what he means by "opposite?" Privileging the claims of homosexuals over those of people of color? Or suggesting that the oppressions are equivalent?

Robert VerBruggen at Phi Beta Cons notes this:

I'd add that this is not a school publication but a local paper — one could argue that advancing such views on campus could conflict with her human-resources job.

On a side note, why is a public university "on record" supporting controversial legislation?

Perhaps more to the point, someone in headquarters could ask whether an associate vice-president's public reservations about a university policy might make her less effective at implementing that policy.

As far as "supporting controversial legislation," what's new? Student Affairs and Human Resources and more than a few curriculum committees treat the provisions of civil rights laws as indecently minimal requirements, and seek to have their more aggressive practices codified as law. Thus do professors have to retrain as special education teachers.

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