From the Urban Dictionary: A term for someone that thinks they are unique and special, but really are not. It gained popularity after the movie "Fight Club" from the quote “You are not special. You're not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You're the same decaying organic matter as everything else." Began being used extensively as a putdown for someone, usually on the political left, who is easily offended or felt they needed a "safe space" away from the harsh realities of the world, but now has morphed into a general putdown ...

The Campus Left vs. the Mentally Ill

By Clay Routledge,
from The Wall Street Journal,

Berkeley offers counseling to those upset by a guest speaker. Other students have genuine problems.

Conservative commentator Ben Shapiro is scheduled to speak Thursday at the University of California, Berkeley, and school officials are prepared. A campuswide announcement promised “support and counseling services for students, staff and faculty” who feel Mr. Shapiro’s presence threatens their “sense of safety and belonging.” You don’t have to be a psychologist to see the absurdity of an elite American university offering mental-health services in response to a talk no one is required to attend. But such political theatrics aren’t objectionable only for free-speech reasons. A minority of students on college campuses legitimately struggle with mental illness, and they deserve support. They are collateral damage of psychology’s abuse for ideological purposes. For one, the misappropriation of psychology contributes to the snowflake narrative. It is hard for people to appreciate that there are students who genuinely suffer from mental illness when they see so many academics, administrators and student activists making a pretense of psychological trauma in their quest to purge the campus of any ideas or experiences that do not conform to leftist orthodoxy.

The students we need to worry about usually aren’t the ones demanding safe spaces, obsessing over so-called microaggressions, or claiming words are violence. Many of those grappling with real mental illness do not seek or receive any mental-health services. That includes those at risk of suicide, the second leading cause of death among Americans between 15 and 34. One large national survey found that less than 20% of suicidal students were receiving treatment.

Mental-health professionals working on college campuses have noted an increased demand for services from students. There are reasons to debate the extent to which we are experiencing an increase in the prevalence of mental illness, as opposed to a decrease in college students’ preparedness for normal life stressors. Do young adults need mental-health services or more experience independently navigating the world? This issue is complex, and experts have diverse opinions.

More From The Wall Street Journal (subscription required):

365 Days Page
Comment ( 0 )