I keep trying to get away from writing about colleges. But colleges keep powerfully serenading me with their sweet song of dumbness.
On Saturday night, Columbia University sang a mighty catchy tune when SNL cast member Nimesh Patel took the stage to perform some comedy. He apparently hadn’t been reading my articles, so he expected campus life to be a microcosm of real-worldness.
Nimesh’s set was part of cultureSHOCK, a night focusing on Asian and Pacific Islander culture.
As personally recounted by PJ Media’s Toni Airaksinen:
“Having attended it twice during my time at Columbia, I know that the catered show typically begins with a fashion show and culminates with a comedy skit.”
This year’s show took a different direction than 2017’s:
“Last year, cultureSHOCK ended with a standing ovation for Phil Kaye, a Japanese-American poet whose work is mainly personal, not political. But this year, cultureShock organizers chose Emmy-nominated Nimesh Patel, the first Indian-American to write for SNL.”
Nimesh delved into the ol’ basket of “offensive’ humor, including a claim that being a gay black man is surely not a choice, because “no one looks in the mirror and thinks, ‘this black thing is too easy, let me just add another thing to it.'”
The students didn’t seem to mind, though there wasn’t much laughter.
Then halfway through, show organizers took to the stage, confiscated the mic, denounced Nimesh’s jokes, and requested that he wrap it up.
Nimesh asserted that he was only exposing students to “real world” ideas.
His mic was then cut, and students booted him from the stage.
Speaking to TJ Media, Barnard College attendee Elle Ferguson described it this way:
“Although [my friends and I] weren’t laughing at the jokes, we were all surprised when he got kicked off. None of us were thinking, ‘God, this is so bad. Someone should get rid of him.’ I was very surprised. Either that means I’m not as sensitive as I should be, or the whole thing was just dramatic. I’m open to hearing other perspectives.”
Of course, some felt differently — Barnard student Sofia Jao explained the coolness of her generation to The Columbia Spectator:
“When older generations say you need to stop being so sensitive, it’s like undermining what our generation is trying to do in accepting others and making it safer. Obviously the world is not a safe space but just accepting that it’s not and continuing to perpetuate the un-safeness of it… is saying that it can’t be changed.”
Dear Sofia: It can’t be changed.
Columbia isn’t the only school trying hard to protect their students from the harshness of…harshness:
- The University of Montana has banned mean speech (here).
- Chick-fil-A got banned for not being left-wing (here).
- Delaware University is trying to protect their fragile students from the terrors of snow (here).
- And then, of course, there’s this.
Standup comedians have been avoiding college campuses for quite some time now; the audiences just can’t take it. Without a doubt, school is no longer a place of Reading, Writing, and Reality. Columbia’s official slogan is “In lumine Tuo videbimus lumen.”
“In Thy light shall we see light.”
At Columbia, someone must’ve forgotten to pay the power bill.
Find all my RedState work here.
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