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It's all Greek to me

Eugene Volokh points us to this exceptionally silly bit of political correctness at San Diego State University:

San Diego State is . . . dropping the word "foreign" from the general catalog's "Foreign Language Requirement."

According to Dean of Division of Undergraduate Studies Geoffrey Chase, the University Senate decided to delete the word "foreign" from the title last Tuesday. Chase said the extraneous word carries negative connotations and should, therefore, be omitted in the next publication of the general catalog.

This calls to mind Ted Turner's infamous edict banning the use of the word "foreign" from CNN in favor of "international." The difference there, though, was that Turner was trying to market CNN as an international media outlet, rather than an American one. Hopefully, SDSU isn't trying to market itself as a non-American university.

I did find this amusing, in the story:

Members of the Undergraduate Council, who drafted a rationale, in support of this initiative wrote: "The term 'foreign' has been used to designate something alien and is as ethnocentric and inappropriate as using 'oriental' to designate a person of Asian descent."
juxtaposed with
Although the action does not change graduation requirements, linguistics and oriental languages professor Zev Bar-Lev disagrees with the council's decision and considers it harmful.
I think they're coming for you next, Mr. Bar-Lev.


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