College Liberals Judged a Book by its Cover…Literally!
From a great column by George F. Will today.
In 2007, Keith John Sampson, a middle-aged student working his way through Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis as a janitor, was declared guilty of racial harassment. Without granting Sampson a hearing, the university administration — acting as prosecutor, judge and jury — convicted him of “openly reading [a] book related to a historically and racially abhorrent subject.”
“Openly.” “Related to.” Good grief.
The book, “Notre Dame vs. the Klan,” celebrated the 1924 defeat of the Ku Klux Klan in a fight with Notre Dame students. But some of Sampson’s co-workers disliked the book’s cover, which featured a black-and-white photograph of a Klan rally. Someone was offended, therefore someone else must be guilty of harassment.
The column also features the actions last year at the University of Wisconsin-Madison when the provost urged students to show up and protest a speaker invited on campus to talk about a pending Supreme Court case on college affirmative action. The students managed to completely shut down the event (which the administration called “awesome”).
Diversity’s great, if it is about making sure a nearly 90 percent white state like Wisconsin has minorities at its top conference — if they qualify to be there just like anyone else. If should not be a reason used to justify the shutting down debate.