- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 29, 2015

A “Bias-Free Language Guide” used by the University of New Hampshire includes “American” in a list of “problematic” words.

“American” joins “illegal alien,” “mothering,” “fathering,” and a collection of other words that are frowned upon by the university, education watchdog Campus Reform reported Tuesday.

The online guide suggests that students who wish to discuss a topic that would require using “American” instead use phrases such as “U.S. citizen” or “Resident of the U.S.”

The guide recommends against the term because it “assumes the U.S. is the only country inside” the continents of North and South America.

UNH’s “Bias-Free Language Guide” also includes sections on how to navigate “microaggression,” and gender issues. Those aggressions are broken down into the categories “micro-assault,” “micro-insult,” and “micro-invalidation.”

“Micro-aggressions hold a lot of power and especially because of their frequency in our culture. They may appear subtle and harmless, but we must address them if we wish to consider ourselves a truly civil society,” the guide says, suggesting students try to use “micro-affirmations” instead.


President Mark Huddleston, the University of New Hampshire’s president, responded Campus Reform’s story Wednesday after it went viral.

“While individuals on our campus have every right to express themselves, I want to make it absolutely clear that the views expressed in this guide are NOT the policy of the University of New Hampshire. I am troubled by many things in the language guide, especially the suggestion that the use of the term `American’ is misplaced or offensive,” Mr. Huddleston said, The Associated Press reported.

AP reported that the guide was created by students and staff in 2013.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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