The powers that be at Dartmouth College have canceled classes for all-day left-wing indoctrination today. Like the warden in Cool Hand Luke, they mean to get the students’ minds right. Where can I go to get the pro rata portion of my daughter’s tuition back? Dartmouth senior Blake Neff hasn’t answered that question, but the same issue is on his mind and he has kindly responded to our request for a summary of the doings on campus. Mr. Neff reports:
The events began last week, during the Dimensions weekend for admitted students. During Dimensions, there was an event where prospective students were assembled in the food court, Class of 1953 Commons, for a surprise musical show about Dartmouth put on by students. During the Dimensions show for admitted students, this happened:
The next night Dean Charlotte Johnson sent out an all-campus email saying that these protesters were being threatened and that that’s completely unacceptable. She said nothing about the protesters except that their “choice of venue [could] be debated.” Keep in mind, they broke into a closed event by violently shoving people out of the way.
Then yesterday said protesters met with the administration and delivered a letter listing the threats and attacks made on them since the protest. Almost all of these attacks were made on Bored@Baker, an anonymous internet forum popular with students. Several of the comments were objectionable, but at the same time they were par for the course (or even tame) for anonymous Internet commentary. Based on these attacks, the one request they could come up with was to cancel classes and replace it with a day of indoctrination.
Naturally, the administration has completely folded, while so far there has been no talk whatsoever of punishing the protesters for grossly violating the Code of Conduct by violently breaking into the event. For the sake of comparison, last year an anti-abortion display was run over by a car and there wasn’t so much as a public statement about it from the College. About 15 years ago, two professors were murdered and the school didn’t shut down. Now, a handful of threats made against a handful of students apparently warrant shutting down a school of 6,000 students.
I am unfathomably angry about all of this, given that I’ve been robbed of a day of classes and about $290 in tuition. I imagine many faculty members are upset as well; one of them pointed out to me that if standards were consistent, the protesters should face a minimum of a three-term suspension. Instead, everybody else is getting punished, while they receive exactly what they want.
UPDATE #2 from Steve: File this under “Folt is a dolt”: Dartmouth’s interim president Carol Folt compared the atmosphere at Dartmouth to “a pressure cooker about to explode.” Seriously; Randall Jarrell would have trouble making this up.