coddling of the American Mind

Introduction

The coddling of the American Mind is an article that seeks to answer questions posed about the recent trend of the leftist student activism that is violent and disruptive. The report argues that young individuals in America are overprotected from challenges making them vulnerable to lack of solutions when challenges pose themselves in colleges. It discusses how the youth in the United States need to face different challenges to make them strong, arguing that for one to be strong, they need to face different challenges.  The article also advises people to avoid opening up to others about what they are going through. The coddling of the American Mind also talks about how the students in American universities use violence for their voice to be heard and how the political atmosphere in the United States has become more hostile.

As one continues to read the article, one can see how the university bureaucrats are overprotective and how they stifle the children. This article aims to emphasize the importance of the well-being of the students. It explains how American universities no longer carry out the tasks like they used to. This is because the article shows how the parents, teachers, and students tend to avoid common mistakes that they make, lowering the chances of young people adopting better and healthier habits of the mind. The book uses the analogy of a journey to Greece based on explaining the untruths that are affecting the college students and how the students came about, and things that can be done to improve the students for a brighter future themselves and America at large.  This article generally talks about how the individuals that form the backbone of America’s future are over-sensitive to different opinions leading to high protests in the American colleges against their professors, which later might affect America’s future.

 

Summary

 The article is divided into four parts. The first part has majored into three chapters; The untruth of fragility, followed by the untruth of emotional reasoning, and lastly, the untruth of ‘Us versus Them.’ In the first chapter, the authors use the analogy of peanuts. They show how parents prevent their children from eat-in peanuts because of the fear of peanut allergies. However, the more children are prevented from eating peanuts; the more prone they are to contracting allergies. This account shows how parents tend to be overprotective of their children, increasing more risks to them. The authors go on to explain that for individuals to thrive, they need stressors in their lives. In the same chapter, we are shown how students are prone to getting upset when speakers express their views that the students disagree with. This can cause PTSD among children. Avoiding PTSD is not the solution. However, when one has PTSD, they can learn how to deal with everyday stressors. Parents are advised not to overprotect their children because it causes them to be overly sensitive to situations that cause them to be fragile.

In the second chapter, the authors give an example of a prominent Roman imprisoned. The imprisoned Roman imagined himself having a conversation with Lady Philosophy, who helped him reframe his thinking and shut off his negative emotions. We are advised to replace negative thinking with more reasonable alternatives that will help in calming down our feelings. In campuses, cognitive distortions can be assumed to be a microaggression, leading to stifling communication between the professors and the students. We are encouraged to deal with our problems in a more constructive manner than blaming other people, making them feel like they have little control over situations.

The final chapter explains how humans tend towards being tribal. Once they find themselves in an argument that does not involve their tribe, they tend to pay minimal or no attention to the opinions and information that challenges their team’s narratives. Individuals would prefer being in a relatively peaceful situation. The chapter also talks about everyday humanity identity politics that focus on an individual’s shared needs and problems. In universities, we can see how students with a typical enemy band attack the enemy. We are also able to depict various oppressions that can be caused by gender discrimination. In this chapter, the authors show how life is; the battle between good and evil, and for one to overcome, one needs to be strong.

The second part is divided into two chapters; intimidation and violence and Witch hunts. In the first chapter, we see different riots and protests from students in other institutions: Milo Yiannopoulos, a speaker at UC Berkeley. However, Antifa riots and beat-up bystanders causing great havoc. Surprisingly, most of the rioters in the context wanted to shut down the hateful speech on campuses. In Middlebury University, students riot and physically attack the speaker and injure one of the professors in the institution. In Claremont McKenna College, other students protest to prevent a conservative speaker from speaking because of their differences in views. The author of this chapter tells us how protests can affect the speaker’s speech by inflating horror in their remarks. In the University of Virginia, we see the death of one person and injuries of 19 others following a racist protest, leading to one of the white supremacists driving into a crowd causing the end and the injuries. Generally, we can see how students use violence to justify what they feel.

In the last chapter of this part, we see how human beings function in personal and group levels connected by rituals that increase group cohesion. Groups of people appear to form more quickly to seek out ways of punishing wrongdoers. Critical ideas in today’s times are the ones that change the world and inspire people to do great things. For example, people with better presentation ideas are more influential and successful. As the chapter continues, In Evergreen college, we see a group of students confronting their President after their Biology teacher expresses concerns about skin color. The President agrees to their demands which leads to significant threats posed to the teacher. The teacher blames the institution for not stopping the students, which leads to his resignation and that of his wife. Other workers in the college step down and while others leave, which indicates their passion for standing up against injustice.

The third part is divided into six chapters; the polarization cycle, anxiety and depression, paranoid parenting, decline in play, and safety bureaucracy. In the first chapter, we see how safetyism has been affected by various aspects such as political polarization, which has increased in the US, dividing people, political parties, and even media services. We can see in this chapter that most Americans vote because of their hate for their opponent’s candidate, which has led to an increase in hate crimes in the country and the colleges.  The second chapter is also a facet that affects safteyism, anxiety, and depression, with reports that there has been an increase in depression, suicidal, and self-harm cases that result from the extensive use of new technologies like the iPhone. Reports also show that the rate of students attending counseling has also increased. Paranoid parenting is another factor that affects safteyism. The authors argue that too much parenting can create problems worse. They advise parents to allow their children to take risks that will make them less likely to develop the skills they require to succeed in life. Parents refusing their children to play can jeopardize a child’s health. This can result from a child’s interest in a particular co-curriculum activity that the parent has declined the child’s access to in the name of wanting the child to attend a prestigious college. The bureaucracy of safteyism majors on the responses to perceived threats and potential injuries characterized by overreaction and over-regulation, which involves the prevention of possible offenses. The last factor that affects safety is the quest for justice. Justice is the perception that people are receiving what they have and how they are divided is very important.

In the last part, we can see some principles that help a child and university becoming wiser. Parents in this chapter are advised to assume that their kids are getting more capable and letting them take some risks.  An exaggeration of ones’ problem is what causes the situation to be worse. Parents are also advised on giving people the benefit of the doubt. The fourth principle is helping the school oppose the great truths, as discussed in this summary. Principle five is limiting and refining the children’s device time, and the last principle to a wiser child is encouraging young people to take a year off college. The principles that will result in a wiser university are the freedom of speech, picking out the best people to perform a mission, teaching people how to disagree productively, and building the sense of a community.  People living in a society are also encouraged to keep off from things that cause stress and depression for a wider community.

Critique

From this article, some aspects related to the current political debates in the US. For example, the increase in political polarization. There is a division of many political parties in the United States because of various aspects, such as the rise of identity-groups politics, the growth of religious diversities, the increase in racial and ethnic diversities, and political party sorting causes. How resources are distributed is also important to ensure that justice has prevailed. However, in the US, the unequal distribution of food and wealth has led to a great debate in the political field. The developed states tend to spend a relatively small amount of income on their food than the less developed states, which causes a significant inequity in food distribution.

Discrimination based on gender and race can cause great oppression to the affected people. In the United States, the most significant problem is racial discrimination. Many protests have been witnessed from the people due to police brutality towards the blacks making the black residents live in fear of their lives. People with better presentation ideas are more influential and successful. Taking a case example of Michelle Obama, who raised awareness of childhood obesity a helped military families is an excellent example of a person with good presentation and ideas.

Conclusion

The article was essential for us. It greatly encourages people to face problems, which will make them stronger to face other issues. The report also gives one the morale to face difficulties without fear but hoping that solutions will be found for the particular problem. It also advises parents to let their children discover new things without fear because once the children take the risk, they will be able to handle obstacles that come their way. The article also advises people on keeping themselves away from depression by giving minimal time to technologies and focusing on other things that are more beneficial to them.

People should avoid over-emphasizing their problems but seek solutions to alter their negative thinking, which enhances a greater emotional strength to deal with more challenging situations. Students in colleges are advised to find better ways of airing their views rather than choosing violence to air their points. Political leaders are reported to be Just and fair to avoid conflicts which may later lead to hate cases in their countries. In conclusion, the article was fascinating and helpful in the marked fields of life; individual, political, social, and educational.

References

Political Polarization in the American Public. (2021, April 09). Retrieved from https://www.pewresearch.org/politics/2014/06/12/political-polarization-in-the-american-public/

 

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