Education

Who Will the Evergreen Mob Target Next?

It’s been almost a year since violent student protests erupted at Evergreen State College—enough time for the “non-traditional” Olympia, WA university to draw useful lessons from a fracas that made it a byword for campus identity politics run amok. Unfortunately, a report from an Independent External Review Panel, tasked by college President George Bridges with finding ways to attain closure on the events of last Spring, provides scant hope this will happen.

Heather Heying

On April 12, 2017, Evergreen observed a “Day of Absence,” during which white members of the school community were “invited” to leave the campus as part of an exercise designed to “explore issues of race, equality, allyship, inclusion, and privilege.” In the run-up to the event, an Evergreen professor of biology, Bret Weinstein, wrote an email in which he expressed opposition to the idea that self-segregation was a useful exercise. Weinstein became a target of student protestors, and at one point was forced to avoid campus while they searched for him in parked cars. He and his wife, Heather Heying, also a professor of biology at Evergreen at the time, sued the college for failing to protect them. As part of the half-million-dollar settlement, both resigned from their teaching positions.

This month’s report summarizes the unraveling of campus life in the aftermath of Weinstein’s email. But in regard to analyzing why all of these events transpired, the report’s authors double-downed on the same narrative originally peddled by the university. Overarching blame is placed on nebulous factors such as “racial tensions,” “social inequities,” and “the speed and potency of social media.” The authors also victim blame, complaining that Weinstein “took advantage of this situation to make a national news story out of it through high-profile interviews with national media, including the FOX News Network.”

The authors exhort the college to “require all faculty and staff to participate in on-going educational programs on cross-cultural awareness, implicit bias, institutional racism, harassment, and discriminatory behavior.” They also urge “a comprehensive reform and restructuring of the curriculum that makes the academic experience more ‘student-ready’” (whatever that means).

It seems that the trio who authored the report—a retired judge, a former college trustee, and an expert in higher education—are overthinking things. Most onlookers to last year’s events at Evergreen were simply horrified to see that an academic institution would permit the shaming and mobbing of a tenured faculty member—instead of defending his right to voice a politically incorrect (yet by all means reasonable) opinion.

As we saw in the exchange last spring between President Bridges and a mob of students holding him physically captive in the library, the inmates essentially took over the asylum. (At one point during the chaotic meeting, students actually forbade him from using the bathroom.)

Now, the college is set to capitulate further to the fits of the mob, with “lists of student demands prepared by various groups” having been integrated into the report’s findings.

One wonders if Evergreen would have descended into mayhem if Bridges had acted like a true leader, and implemented a measure of discipline on campus, rather than playing the role of passive hostage. In the past, the Bridges has stated that he might be a white supremacist, simply by dint of his skin color. How can someone so consumed with inappropriate guilt exercise a leadership role?

Also missing from the report is any expressed concern that Evergreen had lost two of its top professors. And while there is much fretting in the report about the emotional “environment” on campus, the authors seem unconcerned about the actual quality of students’ education—including, specifically, whether students learn critical thinking or other useful skills that might be applied toward productive employment.

Perhaps the most appalling part of the report is the claim that students and educators had collectively experienced a “trauma”—a term more typically reserved for survivors of wars and natural disasters. Indeed, at some points, the campus is depicted in maudlin terms, as if it were a fire-charred city targeted for carpet-bombing: “While time has healed some wounds, the scars remain and the underlying issues are perceived by many as largely unaddressed. As a result, the campus has [endured] a legacy of uncertainty and vulnerability.”

The only Evergreen protagonist to whom these words might accurately apply is Weinstein himself. During the events of Spring, 2017, he was savaged and demagogued by faculty and administrators with whom he’d worked for 15 years. Campus police told him they couldn’t guarantee his safety, leaving him with no choice at one point except to teach his class in a public park, days after being harassed and detained by students secretly armed with mace. Weinstein has also faced accusations of encouraging alt-right campus harassment, which is a particularly disturbing and distasteful accusation in light of his Jewish ancestry.

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Weinstein for an episode of Wrongspeak, a soon-to-be-released Toronto-based podcast I co-host with Quillette editor Jonathan Kay. Weinstein presented himself as exactly the rational, well-spoken figure who appeared on YouTube videos, a year ago, trying to reason with the protestors who had disrupted his class. And he emphasized that in his political views, he remains a liberal. Not a surprise, given that the infamous email Weinstein wrote in Spring, 2017 was based on a bedrock liberal idea: “On a college campus, one’s right to speak—or to be—must never be based on skin color.”

Only one other professor at Evergreen (from amid a total faculty of 223), a fellow professor of biology named Mike Paros, had the nerve to speak publicly in Weinstein’s defense. Many other would-be defenders likely believed that they could avoid similar persecution by staying silent. But the frightening truth is that what happened to Weinstein could happen to just about anyone. In an environment where mob behavior is tolerated, anyone can become a target, and it is usually the victim who ends up going into academic exile, not members of the mob.

The authors of the Evergreen report—its full name is Report of The Independent External Review Panel on The Evergreen State College Response to the Spring 2017 Campus Events—note that over the last year, the college has “seen staff turnover and suffered substantial declines in applications, enrollment, and retention.” But the effects have not been confined to Evergreen. Indeed, one of the reasons why Weinstein’s story struck a nerve nationally, and even internationally, is that many of us who have recently passed through higher education can relate, albeit at a smaller scale, to what he endured.

I chose to leave the field of sexology because I found that the number of acceptable research questions one could pursue was growing increasingly smaller by the semester. Colleagues in my field—including tenured professors whom I know to be open-minded, empirical, and liberal—live in fear that they will be targeted by an Evergreen-style mob if they make some misstep in a lecture or social media post; or if they include some true but unfashionable scientific result in a published article.

Within the text of the Evergreen report, one finds muddled acknowledgment of the need to preserve “freedom of expression” and viewpoint diversity on campus. But there is no systematic effort to explain how this battle can be won in the face of increasingly intolerant student and faculty activists, who regard heterodox opinions as a form of violence. One of the prescribed changes is an “ethnically, intellectually, and ideologically diverse faculty, administration, and staff.” But if the mob could successfully target Weinstein, a liberal whose only sin was to protest a day celebrating the racial segregation of Evergreen’s campus, how could the school possibly attract a legitimately “ideologically diverse” academic staff?

Evergreen is emblematic of a larger intellectual disease plaguing college campuses everywhere. And Weinstein’s treatment is symptomatic of a social-justice ideology that, however well-intentioned in its original form, has mutated into an extremist creed that radicalizes students and university administration. This report presented an opportunity to authoritatively diagnose the problem, and perhaps even prescribe first steps for fighting it. Instead, it repeats old clichés, and offers no fresh ideas. The only question now is who will the Evergreen mob target next.

 

Debra W. Soh holds a PhD in sexual neuroscience research from York University and writes about the science of sex, politics, and culture. Follow her at @DrDebraSoh.

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40 Comments

  1. A useful update and reminder of the long battle of ideas ahead if we are to protect free speech as the foundation value of a free society. It’s good to see that prospective students are learning about the declining standards of the Evergreens and avoiding them. It would be good to see more publicity for those universities that are resisting, so students know where they can turn.

    Things have shifted since my student day protests against our involvement in the Vietnam war, when we were harangued by booming megaphoned attention-seekers calling us “comrade” and saying that we were the vanguard of the “glorious peoples revolution”. Now, as then but much more so, it’s an internal subjugation of public institutions by gangland style intimidation under threat of disruption and violence.

    Along with spreading into industry, the attack on free speech has been extended to an attack on merit, with CEOs making public apologies for their errors like the victims of Soviet era show-trials.

    Three cheers for Mike Paros.

    dai

  2. ga gamba says

    This is a decent summary of the events and the dismal future facing academics who don’t toe the ideological line.

    If one is interested to delve much deeper in this topic I encourage you to check out the reporting of Benjamin Boyce’s ExposéEvergreen series on youtube – 55 videos currently including several in-depth interviews with many of the participants.

    • this situation was in part, at least, caused by the total lack of leadership by the very professors that are now so afraid of the same happening to them- there adherence to liberal socialist philosophy went overboard and now they reap what they sowed- children should have respect for their teachers and free speech must be endured by all- but unchecked liberal ideology, that is the norm on campuses, is destroying those that feed on it! Leonjvr

  3. Jack B. Nimble says

    Wait a minute…. there were no violent protests at Evergreen last year. The report cited above says that there were NO incidents of injury or property damage…. were the authors lying or covering up?

    Everyone involved in the ‘events’ at Evergreen came off looking bad, including Weinstein–there were no heroes OR villains on campus. But it is important not to over-react to the events.

    Here’s a suggestion–listen to the Vice News video with the sound off and just watch the body language of the students. You will see students milling around, some with arms folded, others taking cell phone videos–hardly mob behavior! The loud, vulgar language of a few students might be considered verbal abuse, but that’s not mob violence. Otherwise, you lose the ability to distinguish these events from those at Middlebury College, Charlottesville, etc. To be clear, I don’t condone students disrupting a class to the point that the lecture has to be cancelled.

    Weinstein’s behavior fits a recent pattern of individual faculty members who challenge their university’s administrative policies by going public with their complaints, instead of working through a faculty senate or faculty union or regular channels. See also Nicholas and Erika Christakis at Yale U., A. D. Dreger at Northwestern U., Paul Griffiths at Duke U., etc., etc. That’s usually a terrible career move, and sometimes results in the professor leaving the university.

    Today’s typical university administration is not only terribly risk averse [fearful of negative publicity that will be amplified by the right-wing noise machine] but also disdainful of faculty input. Administrators prefer to cover for each other, rather than accept legitimate faculty grievances.

    Weinstein’s other mistake, apart from going public, was that he decided to feed the right-wing noise machine by going on Fox News. Bad move!

    In this unfavorable academic environment, faculty members would do well to remember the following two rules:

    There is no such thing as a ‘teachable moment,’ ever.

    Social media is not your friend, ever.

    • Pizza Pete says

      I disagree – Weinstein came off looking good. He’s been on a continuous, epic media tour that continues to this day.

      I also disagree that the type of awfulness we saw an Evergreen shouldn’t see the light of day. It should.

      Enthusiasm for radical identity politics on the left has resulted in major collateral damage by creating a class of highly effective internal critics with progressive bonafides. See: Laura Kipnis, Sam Harris, Mark Lilla, Bret Weinstein, etc. etc. etc. There are no conservatives left on campus to guillotine, and it is reasonable to expect the class enemies lined up and judged to be insufficiently ‘progressive’ will protest loudly.

      Our blithe ignorance of the 20th century history of assigning class guilt is astounding.

      I’ll add that the students of Evergreen certainly were guilty of crimes against good taste: https://twitter.com/BretWeinstein/status/871864321629868033/photo/1

    • ga gamba says

      The report cited above says that there were NO incidents of injury or property damage…. were the authors lying or covering up?

      There were assaults and batteries but no reports of injury, due in part by the victims being pressured to keep silent – students even spoke to trustees about violence later. Still, police reports were filed. Further, because of security concerns the graduation had to be moved off campus to a stadium in Olympia, costing the school (and taxpayers) $100,000. Benjamin Boyce has covered the events extensively, and this video addresses what the ‘investigators’ did and didn’t do.

      Stills of students wielding baseball bats and acting as a vigilante police force can be found on all corners of the internet. Images of scores of armed members of the Washington State Patrol, clad in riot gear, patrolling campus offer a frightening look at what happens when campus administrators lose control of a college, wrote former provost Michael Zimmerman, www(dot)huffingtonpost(dot)com/entry/5959507ee4b0f078efd98b0e,

      Weinstein’s other mistake, apart from going public, was that he decided to feed the right-wing noise machine by going on Fox News. Bad move!

      Could be. He mentioned in earlier interviews that it was only Fox that contacted him. Seems all the other media outlets ignored it or wanted the story to go away. However, it appears you’re unaware the Weinstein also tried to contact the Board of Trustees to discuss the issues privately, and they refused to talk to him, youtu(dot)be/a_iOuwFsUgQ?t=4m7s . And Weinstein often emailed peers on important issues facing the college only to be called a racist.

      Administrators prefer to cover for each other, rather than accept legitimate faculty grievances.

      Perhaps, yet George Bridges was very happy to handle some of faculty’s grievances, or pet projects, to launch the equity canoe. Zimmerman wrote: The [Equity] Council created a plan without any public input and scheduled a meeting in the middle of November to present it to the campus community having announced that it had already received the blessing of President Bridges. The plan, as presented, was built on a statistical analysis of retention, achievement and graduation data and proposed to make significant changes to faculty hiring practices as well as to the structure of the curriculum.

      All professors would be required to teach social justice too. A student discusses how her combined science and dance class became exclusively social justice dance in two weeks, youtu(dot)be/6uTm7_GE6So?t=3m19s .

      The meeting offered no opportunity for open discussion of the plan and was structured as an opportunity to celebrate the plan’s creation. Building on the region’s Salish culture, the meeting concluded with attendees being asked to metaphorically climb into a canoe to embark on a journey to equity. The implication was that if people failed to board the canoe, they would be left behind. Indeed, the sentiment was expressed by some that if you were unwilling to get on board, perhaps Evergreen was not the place you should be working.

      Weinstein exchanged several emails with the members of the committee.

      In response, he [Weinstein] was branded a racist and an obstructionist. A faculty member who sat on the Equity Council [Naima Lowe] explicitly called him a racist in two different faculty meetings. When Professor Weinstein asked for an opportunity to defend himself, he was told that a faculty meeting was not the appropriate venue for such a defense.

      Faculty meetings are only for offensive accusations, apparently.

      When he asked what the appropriate venue was, he was told that no such venue existed because he was a racist. Neither the president nor the interim provost interceded to make it clear that leveling such charges against a fellow faculty member was unacceptable within the college community.

      A faculty or administrative member of the list server who had access to Weinstein’s messages released them to the student body and the campus newspaper, and this put a target on Weinstein long before the Day of Absence.

      As mentioned above, the Equity Strategic Plan was built on a statistical foundation. When the validity of that foundation was called into question, including by a robust analysis by an Evergreen alum currently in graduate school, the same faculty member who publicly called Professor Weinstein a racist began attacking scientists generally claiming that their reliance on data was dismissive of the concerns of students.

      And here is Bridges conspiring with the Equity Council to target certain ‘obstructionist’ professors, youtu(dot)be/VfVRaExw1lI?t=4m30s. Our job is to bring them all in or get them out. And what I hear is us stating that we are working toward is: bring ’em in, train ’em, and if they don’t get it, sanction ’em.

      Once a professor is sanctioned a few times s/he may be fired.

      If you continue viewing the video listen to the rhetoric of the canoe-launch pow wow: “You either with us or against us.”

      Seems you me you’re ill-informed about this subject. Lucky for you, there’s plenty of footage on youtube.

      Apologies for not embedding all the links; it appears this site allows only 2 or 3 without tossing the comment into moderation where it languishes.

      • Jack B. Nimble says

        I’m neither pro-Weinstein or anti-Weinstein. Somewhat like the unfortunate Prof. Melissa Click at Mizzou, Prof. Weinstein injected himself needlessly into an ongoing student-led controversy and ended up destroying his career at Evergreen. As I said above, there are channels for faculty grievances on most campuses: Weinstein could have joined or helped organize an AAUP chapter or faculty union, joined the faculty senate, helped organize an ad hoc committee, etc. or even started an anonymous blog to air his complaints. Instead, he chose to wash Evergreen’s dirty linen in public, starting with a broadcast email or ListServ thread sent to all faculty at Evergreen [that leaked, naturally] and progressing to an interview on national news.

        It’s much better to appear on your dean’s or provost’s radar screen because you have been awarded a monster grant, or won a national or international award, than because you got interviewed on Fox News because of your political views, not your science.

        Also, if you are going to burn your bridges behind you, make sure you have another job lined up first. And try not to set yourself on fire in the process. I’m not a Weinstein-ologist, so I don’t know if he was job hunting when he sent those emails.

        Today’s college administrators are mostly careerists, rather than faculty members who plan to return to teaching at some future point. As such, today’s administrators are cheerleaders, happy-talkers and trouble-shooters, who tend NOT to give faculty members the benefit of the doubt when controversies arise.

        Look, I would like to see professors [and all public employees in the US] given stronger job protections that make clear that all speech by public employees enjoys 1st amendment protection, including whistle-blowing and social media posts that might embarrass the institution or even create a disharmonious work environment. Unfortunately, US courts have not been sympathetic to this view and have sometimes held that public employees can be dismissed for speaking out on issues not directly related to their area of expertise or job description.

        • Bashir says

          The comparison to Melilssa Click would be apt, except for the fact that Click was trying to stifle free speech (and freedom of the press) on public property whereas Weinstein was trying to defend it on public property. Click was attempting to violate the law, whereas Weinstein was trying to uphold it. Oh, and Click was on the side of the bullies whereas Weinstein was the target of bullies. Otherwise a perfect comparison.

        • Doug says

          Somewhat like the unfortunate Prof. Melissa Click at Mizzou, Prof. Weinstein injected himself needlessly into an ongoing student-led controversy

          Melissa Click was not “unfortunate,” she was canned for making a physical threat to one of her own university’s students (“We need some muscle over here!”) who was merely recording the ongoing left-wing temper tantrum. That canning was exactly what she deserved.

          Prof. Weinstein, by contrast, was speaking out against the overtly racist “Day of Absence.” You think he should have maintained silence. That’s interesting in light of the following thought experiment: imagine the “Day of Absence” was asking African-Americans to stay off campus for the day. If Prof. Weinstein, or anyone else on the faculty, were silent in the face of such an event, you’d be the first to accuse them of complicity in the racism, and probably call them white supremacists to boot. But since the target of the racism in this case was white people, you say Prof. Weinstein “injected himself needlessly into an ongoing student-led controversy” and should have kept his mouth shut.

          By the way, this logic of yours also requires you to hold that a woman who was raped while wearing a short skirt “injected herself needlessly” into the situation. If this makes you uncomfortable, you should probably re-examine your tendency to blame the victim.

          • Jack B. Nimble says

            Good grief. I never said that Weinstein should keep silent; that’s a false dichotomy between silence and going public. As it happens, Evergreen does have a faculty union [UFE]:

            http://www.ufevergreen.org/

            whose mission statement includes the following: ‘The purpose of the UFE is to represent all eligible faculty members in bargaining, grievances, and in all matters relating to terms and conditions of employment with The Evergreen State College…..

            The union has a CBA that covers all faculty. Did Weinstein file a grievance or try to work through the UFE to address the issues he was so concerned about? I have no idea, but in retrospect that would have been the smart move. But working with colleagues, building consensus, etc. takes more time and effort than sending off angry broadcast emails.

            Is Weinstein a martyred truth-teller or a self-important publicity-seeker? Maybe a little of each, but at this point the Weinstein saga is mostly a cautionary tale to other faculty, particularly the untenured, about how NOT to advance your academic career. The recent events involving Randa Jarrar at Cal State-Fresno (and others) show that a lot of academics still haven’t learned the lesson.

    • MarkJ says

      “Weinstein’s other mistake, apart from going public, was that he decided to feed the right-wing noise machine by going on Fox News. Bad move!”

      The fact that you consider Fox News an illegitimate “noise machine” says a lot more about you, and your view of the First Amendment, than it does about Professor Weinstein.

      Ruminate on this and consider your ways.

      • Jack B. Nimble says

        I never said that Fox News is illegitimate–that’s in the eye of the beholder. Objective numbers show that Fox gives more airtime [and more repetitive coverage] to scandals like Clinton-gate than they do to scandals like Russia-gate, compared to other news outlets. That puts them on the political right along with the GOP. They certainly have that freedom under the 1st amendment. Advertisers also have the freedom to flee.

        I never watch Fox News, except when one of their over-the-top segments gets flagged by one of the blogs I follow. But anyone on the political left who thinks he can inform the public on important issues by giving an interview on Fox News is delusional.

        • Deafening Tone says

          Literally EVERY OTHER MAJOR NEWS OUTLET has been running “Russia-gate” stories non-stop for 18 months, and the FBI for a year. Yet you require that Fox News align themselves with a hegemonic narrative or else be outside the pale? Do you even hear yourself?

          After all of this attention, can anyone show ANY evidence of Trump/Russia collusion in the 2016 election? [Crickets]

          It’s not Weinstein that is delusional.

    • Burlats de Montaigne says

      While there may not have been bloodshed, there was a great deal of threats and intimidation. There was a mob mentality that brooked no dissent or compromise. If the shoe was on the other foot, and it was the campus authorities employing such heavy-handed tactics there would have been cries of “fascist” and authoritarian repression from the sweet little darlings wielding the baseball bats; you can be sure of that.

  4. cacambo says

    I share many of the concerns voiced by the author of this article but the assertion that “Evergreen is emblematic of a larger intellectual disease plaguing college campuses everywhere” needs further empirical support.

  5. Pizza Pete says

    I’ve come to a conclusion similar to that of Jordan Peterson: all ideology is a perversion of some sort.

    There’s a spectrum along which we can categorize whether people are more or less organized and functioning in terms of doing meaningful work, more or less connected to the world by good relationships with friends and family, and more or less morally centered.

    Identity politics really does have great power to mobilize the lonely, confused, and morally and emotionally malformed and misshapen. An update of Nietzschean ressentiment would be helpful to crystalize the ethos of identity politics. I’m obviously not the first to make this point:

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2015/06/nietzschean-concept-explains-todays-pc-culture-jonah-goldberg/

    There’s a pretty robust administrative, ideological, and media apparatus to process class enemies like Weinstein. What’s needed are just a few more Weinsteins. A good thing is that if you look hard you can always find more class enemies.

    • dirk says

      About Peterson’s complaint about ideologies being perversions, and to speak with Christopher: Nietzsche ( THE psychologist) once said “Ohne falsche Urteile kann ein Mensch nicht leben” (man cannot live without wrong judgments). Harari’s Homo sapiens also was one long statement on this human, societal need.

  6. Evergreen was already a hotbed of radical politics. Rachel Corrie, the radical pro-Palestinian girl killed in Israel a few years ago while trying to block an armored bulldozer was an Evergreen college student.

  7. Not too many years ago, the students of UMich, discovering the film “American Sniper” was to be shown on campus, informed the administration that they would have the sadz if that happened. So the administration cancelled the showing. After some outcry, the film was resurrected. The students, having to manifest the threat to their feelz, were provided a safe space including Play-Doh and stuffed animals. Similar issues occur from time to time on one campus or another, including massive movements resulting from hoaxes or false-flag operations.
    To insist that Evergreen is sui generis in this department is not actually accurate. It could be said, probably, as the most radical. But not the only one.

  8. TMLutas says

    Here is the solution to the problem. Repeat after me, “If you think that words are violence, you are not mentally suited for the life of the mind and should skip attending university”.

    No institution calling itself a part of higher education should be eligible for student loan funding through the government if they do not subscribe to that sentiment or one very similar to it. It is the death of the USA as a going concern if the universities cease to support a basic bedrock principle necessary to have a free nation. We talk out our differences and no matter how harsh the language, words are not violence.

  9. Rick Caird says

    Undisciplined children will run rampant. The best way to let the campus crowd make fools of themselves and you is to let them run rampant. Does anybody really think an Evergreen degree will be worth more than squat?

    • TarsTarkas says

      Just wait until they apply Disparate Impact Theory statistics to workers in private industry with college degrees. You don’t have enough Evergreen College graduates in your work force! You will hire the proper number of them immediately! SARC

  10. Joaquim C says

    It’s a tragedy that some place like that being named a ‘College’ . The Board should be ashamed for giving false expectations to those poor kids…
    Good luck …

  11. Bashir says

    The notion that Weinstein bears some or any responsibility for what happened at Evergreen is a laughable evasion, on par with the “report” itself. And the idea that he should have “worked through the system” instead of going public is like suggesting Havel should have worked through the Czech authorities instead of broadcasting his dissent. No one except Fox would touch the story, b/c it didn’t fit the narrative. That it perfectly fits Fox’s narrative is entirely the fault of Evergreen: the pathetic administration and the cowering, cowardly faculty.

  12. Jonathan Silber says

    To restore the law and order on campus, along with its academic freedom, no “fresh ideas” are needed; old existing ideas will do: administration needs only to expel the students who disrupt the activities of the university or infringe upon the rights of its members, and to bring complaints to the police, for prosecution to the full extent of the law, students who commit criminal acts.

  13. Joe Halstead says

    “Weinstein has also faced accusations of encouraging alt-right campus harassment, which is a particularly disturbing and distasteful accusation in light of his Jewish ancestry.”

    You know…. I’m REALLY getting tired of the implication that it’s okay to automatically assume bigotry so long as the subject is white and not Jewish.

    If it were a non-Jewish white man, would you ACTUALLY say, “well… no actual evidence of bigotry, but he’s not Jewish and still white, so, what the heck, maybe it’s true!”

    It’s not logical to say, “well, it can’t be true because so and so is a minority.” It makes far more sense to say, “it’s not true because, based on the evidence surrounding the person’s BEHAVIOR, the accusation is absurd.”

  14. It serves Weinstein right for identifying with the progressive Left. That’s a game you can NEVER win.

  15. Daniel Tebbe says

    This is exactly what happens when the college administration (as a group-thinking group,) and the individual members of the administration, all have a goal other than developing the students. Their goal clearly is to keep as much of the tuition money as possible.

    How much more valuable would the students’ experience have been if the administration gave them a taste of how an employer would handle their behavior?

    College students everywhere are famous for behaving badly, but if that bad behavior is shielded from consequences, how on earth can they learn from it?

    Don’t be too down on these kids. If they’re not shielded from consequences now, they’ll be shielded from success for a long, long time.

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  18. Bashir says

    “the Weinstein saga is mostly a cautionary tale to other faculty, particularly the untenured, about how NOT to advance your academic career.”

    Jack B. Nimble, ca. 1965: “the Mario Savio saga is mostly a cautionary tale to other students about about how NOT to land a sweet gig at General Dynamics.”

  19. Advanced Self Studies says

    Evergreen has for decades had a reputation in Washington as the state school that will accept anybody who can pay; a school that will print whatever the student asks for on the degree they award after four to eight years are up and the last check has cleared. It has also for decades held a reputation as a great place to get yelled at by a vegan, if you enjoy that sort of thing.

    Their enrollment numbers are dropping like a stone and the market value of a degree from Evergreen wasn’t particularly high to begin with. If their intent is to become exclusively a boutique institution offering artisanal degrees in nothing-in-particular then they may find the market for that is over-served.

    I hate to see commerce dictate the content that can be taught in schools, but in this case I suspect the very high cost of higher education is colliding rather forcefully with the perception of return on investment. Rich kids have always had the luxury of studying whatever they want, but the working class kids who the state public college system is intended to serve are right to feel like they have a stake in their future prospects for employment, especially when balanced against student loan debt.

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  21. A degree from Evergreen is worth less than a single sheet if TP…. (whoops.. that is an insult to toilet paper!)

  22. A degree from Evergreen is worth less than a sheet of tp…(whoops! That’s an insult to toilet paper)

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