Stanford Releases Guide to Eliminate 'Harmful' Language

California's Stanford University has published its Elimination of Harmful Language Initiative, an index of "harmful language" it plans on deleting from the school's website and computer code. It also includes a list of replacement terms.

Stanford Releases Guide to Eliminate 'Harmful' Language
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Facts

  • California's Stanford University has published its Elimination of Harmful Language Initiative, an index of "harmful language" it plans on deleting from the school's website and computer code. It also includes a list of replacement terms.
  • The index has 10 language sections, including ableist, ageist, colonialist, culturally appropriative, gender-based, imprecise, institutionally racist, and person-first words.
  • Among the words are "American," to be replaced with "US citizen," "immigrant" to be replaced with "person who has immigrated" or "non-citizen," and "walk-in-hours" to be swapped with "open hours" so as to include people with disabilities. The school added that the phrase "beating a dead horse" should also go away because it normalizes violence against animals.
  • The term "abort" is to be replaced with "cancel" or "end" due to moral concerns, and the word "Karen" will be replaced with "demanding or entitled White woman." Under its racial category, words like "black hat" or "black sheep" are to be scrapped due to "negative connotations to the color black."
  • Under the gender category, "preferred pronouns" should become "pronouns" because the guide alleges the former implies that gender is a choice, and the words "freshman" or "congressman" should go because they exclude women. The ableism category includes "blind review," which it says should be replaced with "anonymous review."
  • Initially announced in May, the guide gained traction on social media on Monday and has since been removed from public view.

Sources: Express, Independent, New York Post, Daily Mail, and Wall Street Journal.

Narratives

  • Left narrative, as provided by Stanford IT Community. Stanford University is a diverse, inclusive, and highly respected institution of higher learning, which is why it has taken steps to redesign its website to that effect. Though small linguistic changes like these may seem inconsequential, they can have a monumentally positive impact on the communities that have historically been put down by the use of biased language. This is a welcome gesture.
  • Right narrative, as provided by Stanford Review. While Stanford claims to be fighting for the disenfranchised through this new initiative, what it's really doing is implementing Big Brother tactics that, ironically, have long been used to silence the marginalized. No matter your race or gender, the best way to combat this is by speaking your mind — uninhibited by administrative rules — and exposing what a mockery of education and freedom the university's Orwellian guide is.