“life doesn’t have trigger warnings” — why does every anti-TW writer think this is so freaking insightful and hilarious?
I am a teacher because I want the world to be better. I am not interested in reproducing all the negative aspects of the rest of “real life” — whatever that is — in my classroom for the sake of reinforcing the status quo. I want my students to inherit a better world than I grew up in. I want them to know how to advocate for their emotional health better than their forebears did. I want to live in a world where people are allowed to have limits and feel free to ask for disability acommodations, and where different ways of living and processing information are not only tolerated, but celebrated and made room for. So who fucking cares if the rest of the world doesn’t have the TW’s I choose to provide. That world is a bad one. I want it to be better.
Besides, life does have trigger warnings sometimes. Like the content advisories before films or tv shows! Or when a doctor or nurse encourages you to look away before drawing your blood! Or when cop cars and fire trucks purposefully park in front of an especially grueling scene of an accident! These warnings, like TW’s, exist not because people are coddled emotional wrecks who cannot function without them. They exist because they are easy, considerate things to do that help accommodate very common human reactions. TW’s are an accessibility tool. They help students navigate the educational environment. Life doesn’t always have braille or wheelchair ramps or tutors or sign language interpreters, either. But life should. I’m not interested in denying my students a small consideration in hopes that it will toughen them up. It’s an asshole move to ignore a simple request for accessibility and accommodation. Actually it’s worse than assholish- it’s exclusionary and discriminatory.