Where else but an American college campus could an image of a gorilla trigger a problematic gender response?
A student housing director at the University of Kansas advised a resident assistant against using a picture of a gorilla in a jungle-themed floor decoration as it’s way too masculine and should be replaced with something more inclusive. And making sure all bases were covered, the RA was reminded that there may be other “stereotypes” gleaned from his use of a primate. Is he implying it could be perceived as racist, too?
Campus Reform posted the e-mail, which read:
I think it would be best if your floor chose a different theme animal to be more inclusive. First, gorillas represent a very masculine image, and I feel that this would not be inclusive to all of our residents on that floor. Second, this animal could be triggering to some people as their [sic] are stereotypes that surround this animal. All you have to change is the picture and the words.
A friend of the RA spoke to Campus Reform and clarified that the gorilla was part of the theme, not a solitary image.
The director, identified by CR as Dale Morrow, is obviously up-to-date on the latest campus lunacy. Not only can he spot a triggering image from a mile away, his e-mail signature appears to provide his pronoun preferences: (He/Him/His). See below:
Who knew that a gorilla could represent both white privilege AND too much masculinity all at the same time!