Professor resigns from APA, calls its woke agenda 'loudest and, frankly, most bullying set of voices'

A psychology professor resigned his membership with the American Psychological Association due to an increase in leftist ideology.

Much of the controversy stems from 2020 conflicts around race and social justice.

A psychology professor at Florida’s Stetson University is resigning from the American Psychological Association due to too much “wokeness” in the organization. 

“My concern is that the APA no longer functions as an organization dedicated to science and good clinical practice,” Christopher Ferguson announced Dec. 31 on Quillette. 

While active with APA, Ferguson served on the Council of Representatives for three years and was involved with much of the policy set for the association. He also maintained the title of President for the APA’s Society for Media and Technology.

Campus Reform spoke with Ferguson about his decision to leave the professional association. 

“The APA has a longer history of overstating the evidence for psychological theories,” Ferguson said, explaining that it also has a “weird deviation into relaxing their ethical standards to allow psychologists to participate in harsh interrogations.” 

[RELATED: 2021 in review: Medical schools’ push for social justice health care]

”[It] is the loudest and, frankly, most bullying set of voices,” he said of “woke-ism” and professional organizations that are “caving in so they don’t get accused of racism [or] transphobia.” 

”I’m all for diversity and there are many healthy things we can do to promote diversity, but in the current moment, organizations like the APA have pretty obviously abandoned any critical thinking and are doing things that are actually harmful, particularly for the groups they’re ostensibly trying to ‘help,’” Ferguson stated. 

Ferguson has not always agreed with the APA’s judgment but had made the decision to “fix from within.”  

In his Quilette announcement, he regards the organization as introducing “misleading policy statements,” with one example being ignoring pleas from scholars to refrain from publishing the notion that violence is associated with video games. 

Other examples Ferguson paints as misinformed perceptions include highlighting the benefits of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in treating Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, as well as promoting guidelines for males that disregard traditional worldviews in favor of heightened regard toward the patriarchy, feminist theories, intersectionality, and privilege. 

The 2020 controversy surrounding the death of George Floyd, however, sparked a red flag that tipped the association to embracing the pillars of leftist ideologies.

“What we don’t need is our science organizations going all-in on one side of our polarized divide and stoking furor with hyperbolic statements,” Ferguson writes. “Unfortunately, that is exactly what the APA and other left-leaning organizations did.”

The APA took a clear partisan stance summer 2020, releasing a statement declaring the United States was living in a “racism pandemic.”

Ferguson slammed the association for fueling the flames of racial divide, arguing that the statements concerning police brutality were untrue.

“APA threw gasoline on the fire. The idea that black citizens can’t go outside without being shot by police is statistically untrue, but also inflames racial tensions and, ironically, creates anxiety in minority communities,” Ferguson writes.

Additional left-wing apologetics adopted by the APA include an apology statement for systemic racism, the creation of a mission to oppose systemic racism, and a draft policy concerning health inequities.

Ferguson acknowledges the theatrics, stating “Put simply, these are statements of leftist ideology, not science nor even good clinical practice.”

[RELATED: American Psychological Association sides with view that America is ‘born from the blood of white supremacist ideology and capitalism’]

The most recent implementation of left-wing ideology in the association’s operation was the establishment of an “inclusive language guide”. The use of guides has grown increasingly popular among higher education institutions, as Campus Reform has tracked. 

At the University of California, Irving, the IT department was informed of a language guide that stipulated what words or phrases should not be said in classroom conversation. Such language included pronouns, “blacklist and whitelist,” and “native feature.”

The American Medical Association, as well, instituted their own principles for what language should be discontinued to remain inclusive. The words “handicapped,” “morbidly obese,” and “homeless” have all been suggested to be scrapped.

Ferguson told Campus Reform, ”we need people to find the courage in themselves to challenge bad ideas.” 

”But people are afraid to confront it for risk of losing their jobs which, of course, has sometimes happened,” Ferguson said.

Campus Reform reached out to the APA for comment; this article will be updated accordingly.

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