Cornell Rock-Climbing Course Drags People Into ‘The Pit’ of Identity Politics

It’s become clearer each day since last year’s summer of unrest that, for liberals, the way to combat racism is to practice racism – usually of the anti-white variety.

Cornell University in New York provides an example.

Among classes on biking, hiking, paddling, and “circus arts,” Cornell this spring featured a physical education course on rock climbing.

For $315, on top of credit fees, students could receive a “high degree of individual attention and a supportive space to explore the vertical world!” the online course catalog promised.

“We will introduce you to rock climbing movement and techniques, belaying, equipment, knots, rappelling, and safety,” it adds. “Graduates of this course will have the knowledge and skills to push themselves to new challenges while climbing safely and responsibly.”

Sounds good. A tough, yet seemingly fun, way to explore the great outdoors.

Yet while promising to show students how to literally scale new heights, Cornell also dragged them down into the pit of woke liberalism.

See, the title of the class isBIPOC Rock Climbing.”

And the course description noted that the class “will also talk about BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) individuals and groups in rock climbing.”

“This class is designed to enable Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian, or other people of color underrepresented in the sport of rock climbing to learn the sport and to feel included and supported,” Cornell says.

But then it immediately adds, “The class is open to all Cornell students interested in learning rock climbing with this special focus.”

One interpretation of that sentence is that white students would take the class not so much to learn how to climb a mountain, but to be lectured as to how they or their oppressive ancestors are somehow responsible for minorities being “underrepresented” in learning rock climbing.

Yet surprising as that may be, Cornell actually toned down the course description from earlier, more radical language.

When originally referenced, the online catalogue said (emphasis added), “This class is for people who identify as Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian, or other people of color.”

In short, no whites allowed.

That flouts the New York attorney general’s office’s insistence that equal opportunity exists in education.

“Students in New York schools are protected by federal, state, and local laws that prevent discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, religion, disability, and other categories. These laws also provide protection against bullying and require schools to take certain affirmative steps to guarantee an equal education for students with disabilities,” the office maintains.

“Federal, state and local laws protect individuals from education discrimination in different ways.”

Against that backdrop, consider Cornell’s description of the basic rock-climbing class.

That says: “We will introduce you to rock climbing movement and techniques, belaying, equipment, knots, rappelling, and safety. Courses ensure a high degree of individual attention and a supportive space to explore the vertical world! Graduates of this course will have the knowledge and skills to push themselves to new challenges while climbing safely and responsibly.”

No mention of BIPOC.

In other words, it was open to people who may want to just climb rocks, and not view the rocks through the prism of politics.

Only in today’s hypersensitive, race-above-all-else culture could Cornell get away with offering a class that so blatantly pits people against each other.

The situation is a reminder of the ridiculous reports from last summer that America’s national parks system is racist because research, based on self-reported surveys compiled by the government, reveals that relatively few minorities visit the parks.

Surely, the mountains — like the trails, prairies, and waterways in those national parks — don’t care who is climbing, or what color they are.

Rather, only Cornell’s faculty cares about that.

Can’t we just rock climb as people, and not bring skin color into it?

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