U of T Prof Who Opposes Gender Neutral Pronouns Said ‘Social Justice Warriors’ Glued His Office Door Shut
White man can't open a door.
Professor Jordan Peterson. Screenshot via YouTube
University of Toronto Professor Jordan Peterson claims he's made far more friends than enemies in the weeks since he waged a war on political correctness, but that didn't stop someone from allegedly gluing his office door shut.
On Saturday, Peterson, a psychology prof who refuses to recognize non-binary gender pronouns, tweeted "Some SJW filled my U Toronto office door lock with glue. Made it difficult to see clinical clients. Another step towards a better world."
He told VICE he had to cancel his weekend appointments because of the "incident."
"That's exactly the kind of tactic I would expect of the people trying to deprive me of my job and reputation," he said, slamming "social justice warriors" as people who will do whatever is necessary to "enforce their view of the world."
Peterson sparked a debate over gender pronouns when he posted a YouTube video in September called "Professor against political correctness: Part 1," in which he said there isn't "any evidence" that non-binary gender identities exist.
"I don't know what the options are if you're not a man or a woman," he said.
As such, he refuses to use pronouns like "ze" or "zer" sometimes used in place of traditional pronouns like "he" and "she." He's also opposed to Bill C-16, which would protect trans Canadians from harassment and discrimination.
Since the media caught wind of the video, Peterson has received considerable support and backlash. A letter signed by U of T admin, including the Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Science advised Peterson that he was trampling on the human rights of trans and genderqueer students by refusing to acknowledge their preferred pronouns.
But, despite being concerned about his job, Peterson said he sees the "made up words" as the "consciously articulated expression of this radical politically correct philosophy that I have nothing but contempt for."
"I don't like those people so I'm not going to say their words," he told VICE, adding he's received a flood of positive letters from transgender individuals.
He also said he thinks the pronoun talk is just a "side show" and that the real issue is that progressives want systems of power to be restructured based on equity (i.e. 50 per cent women in positions of authority.)
"Discussions of those sorts that are predicated on group identity have gone so far they pose a far greater threat than any possible good they can do."
Asked how he responded to charges that his words have resulted in threats of violence against LGBTQ and black students, Peterson said it's "absurd" to hold him responsible. He also chalked up the talk of threats to "part of the politically correct game."
"Two things social justice warriors always do is claim anybody opposed to them is a bigoted tyrant and that any active opposition is inappropriate because it decreases safety and produces fear."
But Cassandra Williams, vice president of student affairs at the University of Toronto Students' Union, previously told VICE some of Peterson's supporters have contacted family members of trans students, making them feel unsafe.
"Students are worried for their safety when going to class or just when walking around campus. Many students will not do this alone," she said.
Fellow U of T prof A.W. Peet, who is trans and goes by "they/their," sent out a series of tweets condemning Peterson.
"Suffice it to say if you're a professor and you're causing NEW traumas in your students, you're a shitty person." Peet also said Peterson's views are soaked in "toxic masculinity and toxic whiteness."
Peterson said he's still receiving several media requests a day and that he is in discussions with the university about hosting a debate. If it falls through, he said he will organize it himself.
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