Sunday, February 10, 2013

On naming ourselves…Transitional Faculty

…or "transitional scholar" (or pedagogue, teacher, etc), who is sometimes also a "Transitional Traveler" or homeless as in the OpEd News article cited below. 

"Transitional Traveler"
This article is about changing the perception through euphemism. We have changed the wording of "Genocide" to "Ethnic Cleansing." We have changed the wording of "Shell Shock" to "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder." And, as much as I do not like this practice, I believe it can and does work on some level. So I wish to try it with "homeless," and change that to "Transitional Traveler." There, I wrote it. way of illustration, change "travelers" to "faculty" (or term of your choice)
Now to managing all these Transitional Travelers [Faculty]: we need to stop the scapegoating; we need to stop the blaming.  Even if it is someone's own fault (which can be debated about what 'fault' means) about how they got on these streets [permanent NTT], who cares?  All the Moral Indignation in the world is not going to help fix or manage them.  It's not going to do anything other than keep Us out here.  Calling Us names will not help.  So if you are going to behave this way, we do not need your help.  And if you're not going to help, get the hell out of the way.  A lot like an American Bureaucrat, you're obstructing.  Also try and remember that lots of these people have been ... abused at as well.  So blaming them is not only punitive but it's, again, immoral. 
We need to have Our basic needs met.  And we are getting some of that, as good church folks are helping out with their time and food.  But as far as the State is concerned, we're on Our own.  As far as the cities [colleges and universities] are concerned, we are on Our own.  As far as housing [next semester's teaching assignment] is concerned... we are on Our own. 
Thanks + HT to James Armstrong II and his OpEdNews - Article: "Transitional Traveler" for the idea...Besides being reminded of just how precarious any we all truly are, another takeaway here needs to mindfulness of the very real problem of our colleagues who are homeless adjuncts or on the brink. Stop looking away. Paul Haeder has sent some excellent ideas, do-able albeit perhaps not likely solutions, to blog separately.

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