To the Editor:
In her review of Heather Mac Donald’s book, Abigail Shrier wrote: “With administrators’ encouragement, charges of campus ‘microaggressions’ proliferate like bacteria and destroy like them, too” (“Ivy-Covered Dystopia,” November). She goes on: “In November 2013, nearly two dozen graduate students at UCLA marched into an education class and accused professor emeritus Val Rust of having created a racially hostile environment by correcting his students’ grammar and spelling.”
I entered Penn State University in 1960. The school ruled that every freshman had to take a basic English class—and for many, this class was necessary. My professor not only marked down papers for spelling and grammar but also for incorrect margins and indentations; he measured the latter with a centimeter scale. We were all better for it; no microaggressions allowed.
An additional point: The success or failure of any student, regardless of race, often comes down to IQ. The lower the IQ, the greater the chance of failure at the university level. This has nothing to do with “making it harder to learn”; without the requisite IQ, one cannot learn the material.
Affirmative action is a recipe for failure. Academic achievement takes the shape of a pyramid: There are many at the bottom and a few at the top. We fail society by establishing social preferences, and worse, we fail individuals.
Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
To the Editor: