Fresno State Professor Calls For All White Editors Everywhere To Resign After “Ableist” Poem Published By Nation Magazine

unknownRanda Jarrar, a professor of English at California State University at Fresno, became an infamous character when she previously celebrated the death of former first lady Barbara Bush.  The horrific tweets by Jarrar led to calls for her termination, which I previously opposed on free speech grounds.  Now, Jarrar is back after calling for the resignation of all white editors everywhere because The Nation published a poem that some viewed as “ableist.” In the meantime, the editors of the liberal magazine have been on a public campaign of self-flagellation over the publishing of the short poem.

The outpouring of liberal angst and handwringing was triggered by the publishing of a poem entitled “How-To,” by Anders Carlson-Wee.  The 14-line poem  has this line “If you’re crippled don’t flaunt it. Let em think they’re good enough
Christians to notice.”  Carlson-Wee appears to be discussing social norms and roles but the poem was denounced as “ableist” which defined below and distinguished from “disablism”:
Ableism – The practices and dominant attitudes in society that devalue and limit the potential of persons with disabilities. A set of practices and beliefs that assign inferior value (worth) to people who have developmental, emotional, physical or psychiatric disabilities.

Disablism – A set of assumptions (conscious or unconscious) and practices that promote the differential or unequal treatment of people because of actual or presumed disabilities.

The Nation editors immediately went prostrate before their readers in pledging to bar such writers in the future. They said (as many do) that they did not read the poem as a celebration or advancement of “ableism” but a social critique but then declared themselves as reeducated by the outcry of irate readers:


Editor’s note: On July 24, 2018, The Nation and its poetry editors, Stephanie Burt and Carmen Giménez Smith, made this statement about the poem below, which contains disparaging and ableist language that has given offense and caused harm to members of several communities:

As poetry editors, we hold ourselves responsible for the ways in which the work we select is received. We made a serious mistake by choosing to publish the poem “How-To.”  We are sorry for the pain we have caused to the many communities affected by this poem. We recognize that we must now earn your trust back.  Some of our readers have asked what we were thinking. When we read the poem we took it as a profane, over-the-top attack on the ways in which members of many groups are asked, or required, to perform the work of marginalization. We can no longer read the poem in that way.

We are currently revising our process for solicited and unsolicited submissions. But more importantly,  we are listening, and we are working. We are grateful for the insightful critiques we have heard, but we know that the onus of change is on us, and we take that responsibility seriously. In the end, this decision means that we need to step back and look at not only our editing process, but at ourselves as editors.

 For her part, Jarrar could not get past the race of the writer.  In her signature style of embracing racial discrimination as a progressive ideal, Jarrar called for the resignation of white editors everywhere.  She tweeted “At some point, all of us in the literary community must DEMAND that white editors resign. It’s time to STEP DOWN and hand over the positions of power.”  She expresses impatience in having to actually wait for a reason to remove white editors: “We don’t have to wait for them to f— up. The fact that they hold these positions is f— up enough.”
Jarrar expresses utter comfort with adopting a purely racist position that judges all editors solely on the basis of their skin color.  She has taken her Twitter account private so that she can only express such discriminatory thoughts to a select group, but her tweet was passed along by one of the viewers.
Jarrar’s views are not unique.  They represent a growing acceptance of racial discrimination and intolerance disguised as advancing diversity and equality.  My criticism of calls for Jarrar’s termination is not because I respect her views or her scholarship.  Rather, there is a shrinking space for free speech for many employees in this country, including academics.  I can certainly understand the feeling that Jarrar, who does not respect the free speech rights of others, does not deserve such considerations or protections.  However, civil libertarians are often in a position to defend those who are the least compelling persons for such efforts. Jarrar is entitled to speak freely about her political and literary views. It is not simply an exercise of free speech but academic freedom.
In other words, Jarrar is worthy of condemnation but not termination.
Who knows, with the support of the free speech community, Jarrar might ultimately recognize the racism and intolerance of her positions as part of the school’s motto Lucem Accipe Ut Reddas (“Receive the light that you may give it forth.”)

104 thoughts on “Fresno State Professor Calls For All White Editors Everywhere To Resign After “Ableist” Poem Published By Nation Magazine”

  1. Jarrar is white, based on her photo and her ethnicity. According to Wiki, she has a Greek-Egyptian mother and a Palestinian father. I’m wondering if she’s including herself in her call to fire white people.

    1. She’s Arab basically. The US census counts them as white. Whether they see themselves that way depends on the person I guess. She probably doesn’t.

      I wonder if she said that to someone’s face and they said “I call you you and all your Arab American editors to retire. If any.” would she be mad? or would that just be fair dinkum?

      1. and personally I like Arabs. Most are not obnoxious fools like that person.

  2. “At some point, all of us in the literary community must DEMAND that white editors resign. It’s time to STEP DOWN and hand over the positions of power.”

    “At some point, all of us in the tax-paying community must DEMAND that wholly dependent self-entitled persons abusing their positions at publicly funded university resign. It’s time to STEP away from feeding at the public trough and provide for yourselves.

    Best of luck.

  3. Let’s call Jarrar what she is, a racist.

    Sadly, judging people on the color of their skin rather than the content of their character is seeing a revival on the Left. #Walkaway.

    1. As for the free speech of employees, from an employer’s perspective, if an employee makes public comments that materially damages the reputation of the employer, or drives away customers, that person might have to be let go. Most businesses are not in the business of political statements. They exist to make money, just like everyone works in order to make money.

      I cannot see this racism holding much water in the Fresno community. The university should also investigate to see if she was ever discriminatory in the classroom.

      She should be treated just the same as if it is discovered that a professor is a card-carrying member of the KKK. Has she graded students fairly? Will enrollment plummet due to the university’s hiring practices? I sincerely doubt that Jarrar hid her racist proclivities from the school during the hiring process. That kind of bigoted behavior gets rewarded at universities. However, their customers need to vote with their dollars if they do not care to send their children to racist, bigoted professors.

  4. What do you expect from Democrats??? There are some people here who are trying to portray Randa as some kind of outlier, a one-off, and a nut, who is outside the mainstream of Democratic Party politics. But she isn’t.

    Nanci Pelosi has basically called borders, “racissst!”, and the entire party is negative toward white people, blaming them for the situation their black base finds themselves in. When the problem is obviously crappy choices and the 77% illegitimate birth rate. The Democrats in California, and some other places like Philadelphia and New York are in open defiance of Federal law regarding illegal immigrants.

    So no, Randa is not an outlier. She is mainstream Democratic Party. So I ask again, why would any self-respecting white person vote for a Democrat??? That is like a Jew voting for a Nazi.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

    1. It’s not that she’s mainstream, it’s that faculty have no tools – intellectual or visceral – which they can employ to argue for her expulsion, and they aren’t motivated to develop them. Part of the reason they have no tools is that discourse about these matters has been fraudulent for 40-odd years. Talk about ‘racism’ and what not is an improvisation to expel opposition from the public square, not a discussion of a significant social problem.

    2. I am a white person who votes for Democrats because I believe immigration helps the country.

      The country needs more young people because birth rates have been plummeting over the past few decades due to better contraception and high child care costs.

      We won’t be able to fund public services for the elderly in 40 years unless we double the rate of immigration. We won’t have enough working people to pay into elder care with low birth rates and low immigration.

      1. Some people do believe that, and I believe that it is an incorrect belief. Mainly because the math does not work out. First, most of the illegals are low skilled and low wage people. Say they make $8/hour for a 40 hour week, and actually pay in social security. Remember, many work for cash and do not contribute at all to social security.

        That worker who does pay will pay in about $25 per week into social security (8% x $320) and the employer will pay in a like amount. That’s about $2,000 per year going in. Which, with costs of operations pays for about a month and a half of benefits for an older person, assuming a $1400 per month average benefit.

        Therefore, it would take 8 low wage workers to pay the social security for one current senior citizen. Currently, there are 61 million Americans receiving social security benefits. If there were only illegals working at low wage jobs, it would take 480 million of them to fully fund social security.

        Then, when those workers retire, and begin receiving benefits,it would take about 3 and 1/2 billion illegals to fund them. Now that is if there were no higher wage people, which we know there are. But still, it would take about an 8 to 1 ratio for your assumptions to work. That is assuming that they were not receiving benefits themselves. Which, again, the math says no. And the facts say, no:

        “When he ran the 2017 California numbers using the Current Population Survey, he found that 41 percent of immigrant households receive public assistance, whereas 24 percent of native households do. In 2012, 49.5 percent of immigrant and 25.3 percent native households received government assistance in California.”

        There are some ifs, ands, and buts in the cited link, but whatever, a pretty significant number of immigrants are receiving benefits no matter how you cut it. Not to mention the ancillary effects on our society. Because of the illegals, our school systems are having difficulties teaching anybody anything.

        In addition to all that, I would submit that the American birth rate would go up if we dump the feminist BS, the current love affair with all things gay and sexually freakish, and end abortion.

        Japan is facing extinction as a result of excessive masturbation and sex dolls. I project that we will see the sexual revolution coming to a halt in Japan in the next few decades as the reality sinks in.

        I think you are thinking the same thoughts that the slave owners thought a few hundred years ago, that “Gee, ain’t cheap labor a swell thing!” and “Lookit at all the money we are going to make off these subsistence level workers!”

        BUT, the Old South’s economy was already suffering under the burden of that cheap labor, and slavery was becoming rapidly unfeasible as an economic proposition.It will do the same thing with cheap illegal labor.

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

        1. I never said anything about increasing illegal labor. I said we should raise immigration quotas and let more people in legally so they will pay taxes and contribute to the country.

          If those who oppose immigration were correct, then Japan, an immigrant-unfriendly country, should be an economic juggernaut. It is not. Japan is facing an economic and demographic crisis. “Japan has the world’s oldest population, as well as a low birth rate and little immigration, but its growth problems go far deeper,” noted a recent analysis by Bloomberg. “In the early 1990s, the country’s postwar growth boom collapsed – decades of deflation followed and Japan started to suffer a shortage of workers.”

          In contrast, the National Academy of Sciences concluded, “Immigration supplies workers, which increases GDP [gross domestic product] and has helped the United States avoid the fate of stagnant economies created by purely demographic forces – in particular, an aging (and, in the case of Japan, a shrinking) workforce.”

          The immigration debate hasn’t kept up with reality. it remains focused on illegal immigration from Mexico, even as illegal immigration has fallen and Asia has overtaken Latin America as a source of new arrivals.

          Americans might suddenly go crazy and again start having lots of kids. But that’s not likely given the cost of raising children nowadays. And even if there was another baby boom, that wouldn’t help for another 18 years or so, when those newborns start entering the workforce.

          So the only answer to keep the Social Security and Medicare system functioning is to allow people from other countries to come here to work, pay taxes and contribute to it.

      2. You are a race baiter who plays the race card.
        You must have put a lot of thought and effort into your username, and I give you some credit for being so upfront about your delight in playing the race card.

        1. No, I think it’s hilarious and ridiculous all of the dirty looks I get from grey-haired Trump people when I walk around holding hands with my Mexican wife.

          You would think that the taboo against miscegenation would have died a long time ago… But then we saw this generation for over a decade support a campaign baselessly claiming Obama’s parents lied about his birth location.

          Birtherism is coded racism. Everyone knows John McCain was born outside the US at the Panama Canal but no one cares.

          1. My sister is married to a Mexican-American, and my brother lost his Mexican-American wife to cancer years ago.
            The difference between MarryAMinority and my siblings is that they didn’t make a point of saying “Look at me, I’m an Anglo married to a Hispanic”.
            There’s really no legitimate reason for doing so.

            1. Tom Nash – in my family it works the other way. Marry a Trump voter and Anger a Liberal Spouse.

          2. You keep saying this. How do you know that the “grey-haired” people are Trump supporters? And, how do you know that their dirty looks are due to your Mexican wife? Maybe your inherent evil aura is setting them off, you know?

            1. FFS – My grey-haired wife and our grey-haired friend and I had dinner at a Mexican restaurant where we were the only non-Mexicanos in the building. My wife and our friend are flaming liberals and not to be trusted. I did not see anyone giving us dirty looks while we were eating. And the place was very busy.

          3. Birtherism is coded racism. Everyone knows John McCain was born outside the US at the Panama Canal but no one cares.

            No one cares because he was born on a Naval base on an American territory.

      3. The low birth rate is a result of feminism and anti-male sentiment. The left destroyed the American family. Call me when you wake up in a few years and see angry brown faces staring at you with hatred.

        1. Rod, you are sooooo correct. All we need in the US are more people who are on welfare (and they are on it, rather than work) and low wage people entering our country, and contributing NOTHING except voting for DimmiRats. The Moslems are now running for seats in our government when Sharia Law is their law; most Moslems DO NOT/WILL NOT assimilate, period (look at Dearbon); And, I could go on……

  5. If you need a reason to not give out social promotions Jarrar will do on it’s own merits.Now they have reached the Doctorate stage I’m going to continue my never ending education by following the wisdom of Frank Zappa. “If you want an education, read a book. ”

    The town of Fresno to it’s credit has an active movement to get Jarrar canned. But it is California. On a side but connected note Four States are screaming for federal aid to help with their triple digit billions of debt See if this surprises you.
    California, New York, Connecticutt, Illinois and New Jersey. None of the above however include Puerto Rico

    One of them is in single digit biilions of debt. Second part of the game is pick the State that is inviting even more free loaders and moochers and illegals by offering free stuff including $500 a month cash. But they can’t pay their bills

    So much for the worlds seventh largest economy. Do not accept a check from California.Its worth less than a devalued Obama Dollar. Easy to understand remove the space between worth and less.

    No longer leading in anything but using the most federal welfare funding

    1. However on the bright side we won’t have to worry about improving the infrastructure in California. What is burned up is not worth the effort. UNLESS you put a federal tax on pot producer and use it for some good purpose.

      Like paying their bills.

    2. Michael Aarethun – I am doing self education through the Great Courses. I get top professors from world-class schools and I am filling some holes. The best part is no final. Yah!!!!!

      1. PC Schulte,…
        If you want to “bid” against Marry A Minority, here ‘s a good opening for you.

        1. PC Schulte,…
          To be more specific, the race card game is being played, although the one instigating it isn’t playing with a full deck.
          So if you do decide to play, be aware of those things before sitting down at the card table.
          Also, day shift is due to chime in, in c. 6-7 hours with thousands of words on this and other subjects, so keep the coffee on.

    3. Those states are spending their energy suing the Trump administration. Virtue-signaling idjits.

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