University Vows to End North-Normativity

Compass rose isolated on white. Vector illustration.

Compass rose isolated on white. Vector illustration.

Madison Dibble

Through an impressive and ground-breaking tuition-supported campaign, “Check Your Compass, Bro,” the University of Minnesota has taken the important strides to end the North-Normativity that has plagued western civilization for years.

Starting with a map in the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, the University is proud to have shifted the campus map and placed East on the top.

“It is a very big moment for this campus,” stated Director of Diversity and Inclusion of Directions President Carol Halpert (who makes $400,000 per year), “North Privilege is a cancer that this campus has had since its conception, and it is time that other directions have the opportunity to be on the top.”

The student representative Ima Victim is truly the backbone of this campaign: “I have personally seen the impact that North Privilege has had on other directions, and it is shameful. I am truly honored to be able to help to end this privilege, and to give each direction its time at the top,” Victim said.

Sadly, North Privilege is not a new phenomenon. Since the conception of directions by Anaximander, North has always been on top, but it is no secret that North only got to where it is today by standing on the backs of the other directions.

“When you look through history,” said Victim, “it is truly astounding that North has continued to suppress the voices of its fellow directions; yet, it continues be on the top.”

Critiques of the “Check Your Compass, Bro,” campaign state that North has always been on top because its name is the Proto-Indo-European language word basener which means left, as in the sun rises and North is to the left.

Director of Diversity and Inclusion of Directions Halpert stated sarcastically, “You have to love being North-splained.”

“You know, the North-splainers have a point,” continued Halpert, “Why is it that East gets to see the sun first? Let me tell you why. North has a position of privilege and always has. East spends every morning squinting into that God-forsaken sun while North never has the sun in its eyes. This is another point of systematic oppression by the North.”

Others confronted Halpert, asking if it was unfair of her to write off North’s struggles.

“I know North has always been the top of the Compass Rose, but it has not always been easy,” stated “Check Your Compass, Bro” critic John Map.

“In fact, for half of a year, all people do is insult and mock North, taunting it by asking questions like, ‘Who would want to live in the North in Winter?’ and ‘Way to go North, you messed up everyone’s travel plans again,'” Map complained.

“Who cares about North’s struggles?” Victim stated in response to Map’s criticisms, “They are on the top, and society is at its best when no one is on top.”

The University of Minnesota has a proud history of combating North privilege. Inan attemptto spread equality, the university took it upon itself to name its two main campuses, West Bank and East Bank, to begin ending campusNorth-normativity.

“Naming the Banks East and West was a big step towards equality, but we still have a long way to go,” stated Halpert; “The maps are just the beginning.”

Their next step is a big one: They plan to rename Northrop Hall to Southrop Hall.

“We have done a lot for the West and East communities, but we have failed in our attempts to promote Southern culture here on campus,” says Victim. “Changing the name of Northrop Hall will show to the campus and the nation at large that we are not going to tolerate North supremacy.”

While the “Check Your Compass, Bro” campaign is focused mostly on the University of Minnesota campus, this is not the end goal for Direction Diversity’s movement.

“We hope that one day we will be able to have direction-free lives. The biggest step we could take is to remove the labels from the states, and—eventually—the continents. We know these are lofty goals, but we believe it can be done,” notes Halpert.

The new campus maps can be found in most campus buildings. These maps are only the beginning for the “Check Your Compass, Bro” movement.