Bret Weinstein, a biology professor at Evergreen College in Washington State, has committed a crime. The crime is so egregious that there have been calls for him to be fired. It was bad enough that 71 of his fellow professors have joined the students who are demanding his firing. Law enforcement officers even said they could not ensure his safety.
What was his crime? Daring to say he would show up for work.
What’s Going On?
In the past, some ethnic minorities at Evergreen State College had participated in a so-called “Day of Absence.” On that day, minority groups left campus for a day to bring awareness to their presence and to racial issues. Weinstein has previously supported this effort.
However, what the students wanted to do this year crossed a line, even for Weinstein (who is a progressive and Bernie Sanders-voting evolutionary biologist). This year, the plan changed from a Day of Absence to a day of exclusion: minority students insisted that white people stay off campus instead.
Juvenile publicity stunts such as the Day of Absence are bad enough. However, we now have students and professors actively endorsing racism disguised as “bringing awareness.” Needless to say, one can only imagine what would happen if the shoe was on the other foot. Imagine if some alt-righter declared Evergreen to be a minority-free campus for a day.
When Weinstein announced that he would stay on campus during the day of absence, students aggressively protested against him and other “racist” faculty. Evergreen quickly descended into chaos. The campus was evacuated due to threats, and some students even roamed campus with baseball bats, threatening and assaulting their peers.
This is Washington State’s “Normal”
For readers unfamiliar with higher education in Washington State, this may seem like a parody of left-wing college insanity. However, it is not. As some of us up here in Bellingham like to say, Evergreen makes Western look sane by comparison.
We have seen craziness on campus before. From Berkeley to Yale, hardly a week goes by without some form of insanity. However, a mob of students and faculty demanding a professor be fired for daring to say he plans to show up for work might be a first.
If Weinstein’s comments are proof of “institutional racism” then that should prove that the phrase is utterly meaningless. Such claims further dumb down of the word “racism” to mean simply that which the leftist disagrees.
Saying that a group of people should not be barred from campus because of their race is the opposite of racism. Ironically, firing a professor for opposing forced segregation could very well be defined as institutional racism.
A Bad Omen
What kind of message does this send to future generations? That showing up to work is a fireable offense? Imagine having to tell your children that you were fired because the mob was outraged that you insisted on doing what you were contractually obligated to do. In this case, it was to teach biology to college students. What would that do to their sense of work ethic?
College students are adults. If they want to skip class for a Day of Absence and possibly have their grades suffer as a result, that is their choice. But to demand that a professor be fired for “wrongthink” is immoral.
If students at Evergreen College cannot handle a Bernie Sanders-voting biologist, just wait until they meet a conservative.
(Actually, that may never happen either, at least on the western side of the Cascades. Apparently, one can live their entire life, get elected to the Seattle City Council, and boast about having a grand total of zero Republican friends.)