Impressions from the sanitary campus
Report by Julien Beillard - 8 March 2022, original to the Toronto Moon.
This was my first day back to teach on campus in two years. It was shocking and deeply disturbing to be there.
I can remember, over the years, thinking that this horrific corporate "university" couldn't sink any lower. Every minute on campus was miserable apart from the class time, which was generally a good experience. But now it's just so much worse. Card locks on buildings. Pathetic dehumanized "members of the university community" walking around in masks.
I went to the coffee shop and everyone was maskless at tables. Pretty crowded, pretty normal. A tiny oasis of something resembling tolerable human life.
Yet this is not allowed in class. I "taught" a class wearing a mask. There were a dozen people in a large room, all masked. A few others on a Zoom call, listening in (maybe). I felt trapped in a new social system aimed at stamping out even the faintest hints of human decency.
It was a bit like watching CNN after a few years of abstinence. How can this disgusting insanity even exist? For me, the whole campus felt like it was possessed, in the grip of a pervading Evil. That sounds hyperbolic, I guess, but it really did feel that way.
Sadly, I had to be there pretty much all day. In between classes I took a nap in my car, in an underground parking lot. It felt like a "safe space" compared to the hallways and classrooms. I really hope this is not a glimpse of what the whole world will be like in the future. It's truly unfit for human life.
After my first class a student from eastern Europe who I'd only ever met over Zoom came up to tell me "It's nice to have a professor who doesn't act like an apparatchik". That was the high point. What a fucking nightmare this is. I feel terrible for the students.
Dr. Julien Beillard teaches philosophy at Ryerson University.