Efforts to control language are closely coupled to efforts to control ideas. This is why we detest PC. However, a new reason has emerged to control not only language but also the various types of non-verbal signals we send to people. Raise and eyebrow when a student says something completely off the wall and you could be guilty of a dreaded "micro-aggression." Don't pay adequate enough attention to something your college says in a faculty meeting---micro-agression. Do or say anything some else doesn't like........yep, you are guilty of a micro-aggression.
Micro-aggressions represent, at least to us and to some others, as another mechanism the academic left has created to control people. This time, however, it's not just to control ideas but to protect people from perceived slights, harsh criticism, or emotional discomfort.
In a recent paper, "Microagression and Moral Culture," sociologists Campbell and Manning add some insight into the development and understanding of the terror of being micro-aggressed. The paper was picked up by Haidt and has been discussed in other outlets.
We see the rise of micro-aggressions as an extension to the elevations of feelings and emotions over reason. Emotional life is complex, to be sure, but emotions are no substitute for honest and frank discussions rooted in facts and science.
John Paul Wright and Matt DeLisi
Professors of Crime and Criminology