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The UNC List of Microaggressions Says Inviting Someone To Play Golf Is A No-No

North Carolina Central v North Carolina

Washington Times - At the University of North Carolina, it’s not just the students walking on politically correct eggshells. Guidelines issued on the university’s Employee Forum aim to help staff avoid microaggressions in their interactions by cautioning against offensive phrases such as “Christmas vacation,” “husband/boyfriend” and “golf outing.”

The guidebook, first reported by Campus Reform, categorizes examples of potential microaggressions by “social identity group,” including race, gender and sexual orientation.

People always complain that they didn’t learn how to do anything important in college like balance a budget, learn about taxes, learn what a mortgage is, manage a 401K or trade in the stock market. That may be true, but what about the valuable insight you get on how to communicate with other people without ever offending anyone at any time ever? Can’t underestimate the importance of that.

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Under the “Religion” tab, the guidebook says organizing vacations around Christian holidays further “centers the Christian faith and minimizes non-Christian spiritual rituals and observances.”

With regard to “gender” microaggressions, the guidelines discourage comments such as “I love your shoes!” to female colleagues or otherwise complimenting the appearance of women.

To compliment a woman on her appearance, the guidance warns, is essentially to say, “I notice how you look and dress more than I value your intellectual contributions. How you look is really important.”

The guide also discourages staff from inviting others to play a “round of golf,” which assumes “employees have the financial resources/exposure to a fairly expensive and inaccessible sport.”

Microaggressions against “sexual orientation” include using the terms “husband” or “boyfriend” when addressing a female colleague, or “wife” or “girlfriend” when addressing a male colleague, instead of the asexual “partner” or “spouse.”

At faculty award ceremonies, be sure not to ask honorees to “stand and be recognized” for their achievements, which assumes “that everyone is able in this way and ignores the diversity of ability in the space.”

Whew, probably the most comprehensive list I’ve seen yet. I like to jot down every microaggression I read about onto a Post-It note and stick it on the wall above my desk, that way I can avoid upsetting any of our readers. Today I learned not to ever ask anyone how their Christmas vacation with their girlfriend went and to never invite any of my poor friends to play 18. Thanks UNC.


I think the biggest mystery in the world right now is how you can talk without offending someone. Like, how you can open your mouth, and say words and sentences without using a single term that is a microaggression. I mean I can’t invite any guys to play golf, and I can’t compliment any girl’s looks or outfits. How the fuck am I supposed to have any friends or ever get laid ever again?

[h/t Washington Times, Campus Report]