According to the Brown Daily Herald, Brown’s students are now undergoing a severe hardship: they had to work so hard on leftist activism that school burdens became too much. “There are people breaking down, dropping out of classes and failing classes because of the activism work they are taking on,” said one undergraduate student, adding, “My grades dropped dramatically. My health completely changed. I lost weight. I’m on antidepressants and anti-anxiety pills right now…I had deans calling me to make sure I was okay.” Other students have been given notes by the dean’s office to allow them extra time to do assignments; Assistant Dean of Student Support Services Ashley Ferranti says that 90 percent of such notes are accepted by instructors, and that social justice work is an “important part of the academic learning experience.” Ferranti showed up personally to offer “academic and emotional support” to Jew-hating anti-Israel protesters earlier this semester.
The parents of these dolts should be ashamed they’re spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to turn their teenagers into useless members of society more focused on feeling microaggressed than learning life skills.
The purpose of a university is not to provide a forum for your teenage angst. It is to receive an education. That education is not secondary to your activism. If you want to be an activist first, go sleep in a park and poop on police cars like the rest of the members of Occupy Wall Street. If you want to be a student, shut up and learn about perspectives with which you may not agree.
But that’s not acceptable at universities anymore.
What, exactly, set off the students at Brown?
Apparently, a “Latinx” student – these morons won’t use Latino because it’s gender-specific, so instead they make up words – was allegedly assaulted by a Department of Public Safety officer. What actually happened? A drunk student was confronted by two DPS officers, who according to Dartmouth student Geovanni Cuevas, made “severe eye contact” with the student and patted him down “in a way that made it clear that the power was in the officer’s hands and that the person that was being touched just needed to sit there and take it.” Which is what cops do when dealing with people violating the law.
Cuevas alleges that he began arguing with the officers, who told him that if he entered one of the dorms, he would be considered trespassing; he then went into one of the dorms anyway, and the cops then “slammed” him against the wall and “threw” him to the ground. He was then handcuffed and detained until another Brown student verified he was a guest on campus.
This spurred massive protests across the campus as well as a full university investigation. The Latinx conference Cuevas was attending suspended itself in order to spend its time rabblerousing nonetheless. Delegates demanded that Brown apologize, reimburse all the conference participants, fund another conference, and have meetings with “students of color.” Students complained that police issued descriptions of suspects that included racial characteristics. One student yelled at administrators, stating, “Everyone that you have right now making the decisions is part of the system that perpetuates this racism.” Another said, “It’s not racism; it’s white supremacy.” A third explained, “You’re not of color so you can’t really tell us how we feel about this. You’re also not the person who’s feeling unsafe.” Students complained that they were feeling “emotionally traumatized” by the debate itself.
Two other incidents drove all of this weeping and gnashing of teeth: the publication of two columns that offended students in the Brown Daily Herald. Both columns were written by student M. Dzahlia Maier. One, titled, “The white privilege of cows” suggested that perhaps natural inequality could be at least partially attributed to differences in biology between races; he wrote, “whenever I see a white college student, reeking of privilege, I recall the coincidence (or causal relationship) between white physical features and animal agriculture.” This is dumb and yes, racist. But it is no more racist than people protesting the column by stating that only people of particular races have the capacity to speak on particular issues. And it is certainly no more dumb than the pathetic specimens at Brown attempting to censor the column for offensiveness.
The second column by Maier has been completely removed from the Brown Daily Herald. Titled “Columbian Day Exchange,” the newspaper left it up for all of an hour before pulling it. It’s totally unavailable now on the website. A version appears elsewhere; if that version is accurate, the column discusses why Native Americans should be grateful for Columbus Day because of all of the material advantages brought to the New World by the Europeans. This isn’t only non-racist, it’s correct. The column itself states:
It is factually inaccurate, as well as wrongheaded, to deny the horrific truth of the crimes perpetrated by the American government. Should Native Americans get their lands back? Of course they should. But wishing to revert to a past circumstance, before Columbus, has hundreds of caveats (in the form of fruits, vegetables, animals and medicines), and wishing for a brighter future requires reconciliation with a modern world glimmering from stem to stern with Old World trimmings, atop foundations established by Columbus.
But it offended some Native American students, and so the column was pulled, protests were declared, and students had to take anti-anxiety pills. The Brown Daily Herald released this pusillanimous statement:
This column has been removed after it was unintentionally published due to an internal error. The column made a racist argument about how Native Americans should interpret the meaning of Columbus Day and its history. We apologize to our readers for the offensive claims made in the column and for the shortcomings of our editorial process. After initially deciding the column was suitable for publication, a couple of editors read the column late last night and decided not to publish it.
These students aren’t learning anything but the self-righteousness of self-declared victimhood. Brown is a private university, so it’s parents who bear the burden, not taxpayers. But our universities are creating an entire generation of morally and psychologically ill students thanks to their kowtowing to the squeakiest, saddest wheels. Jonathan Haidt of New York University rightly wrote last year in The Atlantic, “A campus culture devoted to policing speech and punishing speakers is likely to engender patterns of thought that are surprisingly similar to those long identified by cognitive behavioral therapists as causes of depression and anxiety. The new protectiveness may be teaching students to think pathologically.”
Clearly, Haidt is right. Brown is the proof. And we’ll all be paying the freight for these self-appointed victims who wallow in their victimhood, to the detriment of society and the country.