"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Snowflakes At Yale

Letty Parsons travelled all the way from Providence to New Haven in a Peter Pan bus with 50 of her Brown classmates for the protest of the year.  Peter Brownley, a shill for the Trump Administration, a capitalist homophobe with a silver tongue who had spouted his fascist rhetoric up and down the East Coast had been invited by the Yale Conservative Caucus to speak.  

The title of his speech, ‘Snowflakes At Yale’ was incendiary enough, a facile disparagement of one of the Ivy League’s most woke campus, one whose activists had been successful in renaming of one residential college, forced the dismissal of over ten professors for their insensitive attitude towards gays, women, and minorities, and had successfully encouraged the university to establish a ‘Women’s Court’, a body which would hear women’s grievances concerning male predation, judge on the rightness of their accusations, and demand automatic suspension of the offender before trial.   Yale activists had temporarily shut down Delta Phi, for decades the redoubt of the worst macho males and their sycophants and home to gross displays of male pride and phallic arrogance; and exacted a public apology from the President.

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We are heartily sorry, he said, for our gross negligence in letting such abusive and intolerant behavior persist for so long on our campus.  I would like to apologize especially to our women students who have rightly brought this intolerable situation to my attention and who have suffered enough indignity already without having insult added to injury,  This will not stand.

At the same time the university refused to consider changing the name of the University  Elihu Yale was a British merchant, slave trader, President of the East India Company settlement in Fort St. George, at Madras, and a benefactor of the Collegiate School in the Colony of Connecticut, later renamed Yale College in his honor.  It was unconscionable that the university, despite Elihu Yale’s well-known slaving past, would continue flying his banner.  It was equally unthinkable that residential colleges would still be named after slaveowners George Berkeley, John Davenport, Timothy Dwight, Jonathan Edwards, and Ezra Stiles; and Benjamin Silliman and Samuel Morse who either profited from the slave trade or were active in promoting it.

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The University, under increasing student pressure, began its program to divest itself from all financial investments in unacceptable enterprises.  Any company which had neo-colonial holdings in Africa and had exploited African labor and excluded African leaders from oil profits was removed from the university’s portfolio.  Any company that even hinted at relations with Israel was banned for life, and even the popular Israeli-made Soda Stream water carbonator was forbidden on campus.

Student activists demanded that 75 percent of all new professors should be women, the high number justified as compensation for years of gender discrimination, and all of them should be carefully vetted for their adherence to progressive principles.

Perhaps most important of all, students policed themselves, and called out those who used insulting pronouns or crude remarks about anyone off the heterosexual grid, who did not promote black people and women at every turn and opportunity, who supported Israel, and who considered the economic works of Hayek or Friedman.

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Due to its slavish obeisance to the past and its outdated views on so-called ‘free speech’ and its total misrepresentation of the First Amendment, activists said, the university continued to allow fascists to speak on campus.  While administrators had taken courageous steps to expunge abusive speech among the student body, it had doggedly and ignorantly refused to, in their words, ‘cloture free speech’.  Although it was good and right to remove all hateful, discriminatory, and offensive speech within the campus, the university had an obligation to allow ‘philosophical’ speech to be heard – this a phony tribute to academia and its supposed ‘objectivity’.

Now, Peter Brownley was not just any Trump supporter.  He was even more provocative, politically incorrect, and insensitive to and dismissive of any and all criticism than his boss; and for that very reason Trump sent him out to stir up the woke masses.  Not that his speeches calling out the idiocy of snowflake wokeness and the anti-liberal closing of the American mind would have any impact at Yale, Harvard, or any of the Ivy League colleges; but it would be part of the marvelous vaudeville act that had premiered in Washington in 2016.

Brownley did everything right.  His speech would not be on proper conservative values but on the ignorance of the revisionist, anti-historical juggernaut to cleanse the past and the present, and the self-righteous arrogance of those who claimed higher moral authority – all of which was intended to enrage his audience and the student body as a whole.

Not only that, Brownley travelled with a Hells Angels-type of security guards.  Taking a lesson from the Rolling Stones concert at Altamont years ago, he hired goons to stand at the perimeter of the stage from which he would deliver his speech.  Of course these goons were dressed in conservative suits and silk ties, but their beef, crew cuts, and Tonton Macoute sunglasses made it clear that they meant business.  Brownley told the university that these men were his ‘attendants’, there for considerate crowd control to work hand-in-hand with campus police who were to be deployed in force. 

Rather than adhere to the age-old policy of academic independence – i.e. a focus on teaching, writing, and lecturing and keeping a distance from politics at all costs – the Yale administration had capitulated to the demands of Prof. Richard Hawkins, a tenured professor of comparative literature, a loud and demonstrative anti-war, peace, and civil rights movement back in the day, and now one of The Movement’s most ardent supporter of the progressive canon, and gave him free political rein.  

Professor Hawkins had in recent years been everywhere – and his name associated with the most obscure environmentalist cause, the most public cases of gender abuse, and the campus leader for linguistic reform, social reconfiguration, and doctrinal purity.  He was a combination of the early, ambulance-chasing Al Sharpton, academic hip-hope Princeton professor and black activist Cornel West, and notable Southern preachers.  There was no more woke professor on campus, a man who judged all by his own progressive Calvinist standards, whose friends carefully toed a straight political line, whose very conversation, no matter how congenial or incidental turned to radical politics.  Professors were obliged to take sides in this, the era’s most important struggle.

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So Prof. Hawkins led a phalanx of protesters, now swollen to unimaginable size thanks to inter-Ivy League advocacy and busloads of students from Brown, Smith, and Dartmouth.  The signs and banners of protest were everywhere – Nazi flags, enlarged photographs of Hitler; bloody, ripped and torn gay pride flags; a naked woman dressed like Marianne, hero of the French Revolution; and every possible defamatory, ugly, distorted, maniacal image of Donald Trump. 

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The hall was filled to capacity, and Brownley was prepared for loud and disruptive protests.  He had installed a concert-strength high-amp sound system which would drown out everything from Dwight Hall to Branford; so when the students began to chant and yell, he had one of the goons amp up the volume, and Brownley’s voice boomed and shuddered.  “You are all snowflakes”, this magisterial voice thundered.  “Snowflakes one and all, spoiled, childish, trust fund babies. Get over it.  The Revolution has begun, and it is not yours”. 

With that the goons lit up the stage and behind Brownley an image of a smiling, waving Donald Trump with his beautiful trophy wife filled a huge screen. “And this is the man to lead it”, Brownley went on. 

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It was pure Las Vegas, a show that Yale administrators had never expected even from this loony.  Brownley’s goons, the 1000 watt amplifiers, and the megachurch video screen had somehow, in all the concerns about security, had been overlooked or disregarded.  When the President of the University made a frantic call to the Chief of Campus police on the scene, he could not be heard.  “What, what, Mr. President?” shouted the Chief into a dead-sounding phone. “You want me to do what?”.

Brownley thundered on.  “You coddled, milk-fed, infants.  Grow up.  You will soon be irrelevant.”

He of course had no intention of giving a temperate, thoughtful speech on conservative values or populism; so his job done – a thousand hysterical, wild child-students ranting and raving inside the hall and 25-deep outside it – he went out a back entrance, slipped into his limousine and left his goons to pick up the pieces.

Yale was never the same after the Brownley fiasco.  The university, so humiliated from top to bottom, redoubled its efforts to close the campus to all non-woke intruders and to purge both professorial staff and student body of any and all offenses, real or imagined.  The Trump strategy had worked.  Wealthy alumni, like their counterparts at Princeton, Harvard, and Brown, began to withhold their donations.  This ridiculous ‘progressive’ nonsense had to stop or the financial spigot, the very one that poured millions into university coffers every year, would be turned off for good.

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When the university saw Old Blues and even young Blues demurring on their alumni support, the administration got the message; and it wasn’t long before the gender kangaroo courts and the speech control apparatus were dismantled, and the hysterical, almost daily demonstrations for one cause or another stopped.

It had to happen.  Eventually campuses will return to some semblance of academic rigor and student academic seriousness; and although panty raids and drunken dicks-for-swizzle sticks parties at jock fraternities might come back along with them, it will be a thankful change for the better.

(Note - For those of you who have not already noticed, this story is all fiction, but we know it could happen)

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