Friday, May 27, 2016

"And what color should this couch be?"

Alize Wallace-Hadeeb, Safe Space Inspector:

"We at the University have done everything to make this Safe place the safest of safe Places on any American campus."

"You have done everything?"

"Uh: everything we could think of."

"Were those doing the thinking white? Because this looks like a white person's idea of a Safe Place."

"Well, some of them on the committee were white..."

"Some of them?"

"Okay, most of them. But we had a lesbian in the group; I think she's Mexican, too."

"I'll make sure to include that in my report. So: you think that couch is appropriately safe?"

"It has big deep cushions, and a soft, welcoming upholstery."

"So you don't see it?"

"Don't see what?"

"Of course you don't see it, because it's not there. Pillows: there are no comforting pillows on the couch."

"Oh goodness, you're right. We'll get on that immediately: pillows."

"And I can't help but notice the lack of a blanket. Blankets provide a sense of security in a tumultuous environment."

"Blankets: I can see that now."

"As for the couch: don't you see the most obvious concern?"

"It needs pillows and a blanket, obviously."

"Yes. But it is one color. Students of color expect a couch that speaks of their diversity."

"I'm sure we can get a wonderful multi-colored slip-cover."

"I notice there is only one couch. Do you expect different groups to have to share the same couch?"

"That would be terrible: I see that now. Another couch: got it."

"And what color should this couch be?"

"Multi-colored, of course."

"Brown. The second couch should be one color: brown. That will be welcoming solidarity showing that the University understands that Black Comfort Matters."

"This is all making sense to me now..."

"Now: the table."

"The coffee table?"

"You don't see it? Is there a black person I can talk to?"

"Oh -- wait! The table has corners!"

"Very good! There should be no sharp edges in a Safe Place."

"I'll get Maintenance to sand those down right away..."

"Also: you refer to it as a 'coffee table'. That is an affront to those who haven chosen to forgo caffeine, not to mention the impoverished lives of the indigent coffee growers."

"I am learning so much!"

"Wait until we get to the bookshelf..."

I am Laslo.

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