Like a lot of colleges, the University of Oregon has a formal complaint system students can use to report claims of bias. It's a well-intentioned idea, writes Catherine Rampell in the Washington Post, but she thinks a quick glance at the 85 complaints in the school's annual report highlights a bigger problem: Students are turning into babies who run to administrators instead of trying to solve problems on their own. Yes, some legitimate complaints are in the bunch, but far more are along the lines of a student who complained about being ignored by a tutor. "When in doubt, blame any unsatisfactory encounter on bias, and call in the authorities."
All kinds of factors might be at play here, from helicopter parenting to schools' dread of bad PR on social media. "Whatever the cause, infantilizing students does them—and the social causes they support—no favors." College is precisely the place where students are supposed to learn how to think critically, engage with people who hold opposing views, and figure out ways to resolve conflict. Instead, they're being rewarded by turning to "Daddy Administrator," as the headline puts it. The polarized political culture in the adult world is already bad enough. "It’s hard not to see a sort of caricature of this problem on campuses today, where students don’t learn the tools they’d need to engage even if they wanted to," writes Rampell. Click for the full column.