PA colleges: ‘reverse racism does not actually exist’

Anthony Gockowski
Investigative Reporter

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  • A guide on "allyship and anti-oppression" produced by Haverford, Swarthmore, and Bryn Mawr Colleges declares that "reverse racism" cannot exist.
  • The guide also covers the concepts of "microaggression," "microassault," "microinsult," and "microinvalidation."
  • A tri-college coalition in Pennsylvania has published a resource guide on “allyship and anti-oppression” that brazenly affirms people of color cannot be racist towards white people.

    The guide, made available for students attending Haverford, Swarthmore, and Bryn Mawr Colleges, provides a seemingly-exhaustive list of terms on the topic, including “reverse racism,” which, it then contests, is not actually existent.

    "Reverse racism does not actually exist...people of color do not structurally oppress white people."   

    “Reverse racism does not actually exist, because racism is a structure, and people of color do not structurally oppress white people,” the guide argues, making a fine distinction between “racism” and “discrimination,” the latter of which can be directed at white people.

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    “Most social justice activists agree that ‘reverse racism’ doesn’t make sense. Many think the idea of reverse racism is invalid because the term ‘racism,’ especially in academic and social justice circles, has a specific meaning that relates to institutionalized oppression,” the guide states.

    Meanwhile, the guide expands upon the ubiquitous “microaggression,” also offering definitions for terms such as “microassault,” “microinsult,” and “microinvalidation,” with a “microinvalidation” being “explicit racial derogations characterized primarily by a violent verbal or nonverbal attack meant to hurt the intended victim through name-calling, avoidant behavior or purposeful discriminatory actions.”

    “Microinsults,” on the other hand, are “behavioral” or “verbal remarks or comments that convey rudeness, insensitivity and demean a person’s racial heritage or identity, or other marginalized identities,” while “microinvalidations” are “verbal comments or behaviors that exclude, negate, or nullify the psychological thoughts, feelings, or experiential reality of a person with a marginalized identity.”

    [RELATED: UW lists ‘you guys, ‘ugly’ among ‘offensive’ terms to avoid]

    The list also provides a definition for the increasingly-elusive “gender,” which, according to the resource guide, is a “repetitive performance of gendered symbols that becomes a coherent identity,” noting that since it is “performative,” it therefore “gives space for “alternate iterations of gender.”

    Finally, the guide provides a definition for the phenomenon of “feeling unsafe,” which it then asserts is “always legitimate.”

    Campus Reform reached out to Haverford, Bryn Mawr, and Swarthmore for comment on the matter, but did not receive a response in time for publication.

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @AGockowski



    Anthony Gockowski

    Anthony Gockowski

    Investigative Reporter

    Anthony Gockowski is an Investigative Reporter for Campus Reform. He has previously worked for The Daily Caller, Intercollegiate Review, and The Catholic Spirit.

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