Mentioned on GrumpyPolitics.
Ann Barnhardt takes Graham’s recent remarks on free speech into context and accordingly delivers him a dose of reality.
- Ann Barnhardt Bookmarks the Koran with Bacon then Burns it. (yourdaddy.net)
- No Asterisk in First Amendment (kylesmithonline.com)
- Senator Graham and Free Speech (roninsjourney.wordpress.com)
- Sen. Graham voices support for restrictions on free speech (valorfreedom.wordpress.com)
- Two Congressmen We Need – Out Of Congress (via Gadaboutblogalot’s Blog) (wdednh.wordpress.com)
This past evening, I received an e-mail from the director of The Vagina Monologues at UCSD.
The e-mail reads:
My name is Van Nguyen and I am the co-director of The Vagina Monologues at UCSD this year. It has been brought to my attention by several members of V-day that you have recently posted a conflicting image in regards to The Vagina Monologues. As a key member in this organization, I would like to extend an invitation to this year production on opening night.
We would love to take this opportunity to educate you about our organization. There will be a ticket waiting for you at will-call on Wednesday, February 16th at the PC East Ballroom. Doors open at 7pm and show begins at 8pm. If you are able to make it, I believe this will be a valuable experience for you.
Although the director was kind enough to offer me an invitation to the play, Nguyen largely ignores the fact that I have not produced any written material (i.e. articles, print articles, or blog posts) criticizing The Vagina Monologues thus far.
Before she, her respective organization, and the cast wage a full-fledged campaign against any critique of the play, I would kindly appreciate criticism after an article is published, not beforehand.
King Gupta is back…and with a vengeance too! He’s out to restrict free speech again. I thought that madness had its place last school year? Why, oh why, UC-San Diego? We do not need to be haunted again with Gupta’s call for abridgment to free speech.
Nevertheless, enjoy the following for your viewing pleasure!
Following the suspension of the University of California—Irvine’s Muslim Student Union this past June, members of the MSU are bitter about the university’s decision. I reported on NewsReal Blog back in June about the suspension as it was a milestone in suppressing their antics. Obviously, their reaction to the decision has only prompted their hate and schemes more. Do not buy into their lie of wanting free speech, as they wish to deny it to their opponents.
A writer for New University—UC-Irvine’s paper—lamented how sad it was that the Muslim Student Union’s presence was sorely missed during Welcome Week festivities. This girl—including other fanatics—failed to register in their brains that the Muslim Student Union breached university rules when interrupting Michael Oren’s speech in February. UC-Irvine’s administration stressed civility and respect at the event—standard protocol expected when speakers come to campus to engage in dialogue. Let this be known: the Muslim Student Union’s cries of having their free speech “deprived of them” is hypocritical, as they heckled Oren by showing their continual efforts to suppress the speech of pro-Israel views.
The suspension of the MSU for the duration of the school year, including a two-year period of probation, is obviously “unjust” for this group according to Madiha Shahabuddin. She points out:
Or is it that this apparent trend of the university shutting down student voices and actions is somehow here to stay?
Since when are other Muslim Student groups on universities being shut down on a routine basis? The UC-Irvine MSU’s suspension is the only action of its kind in existence! The only groups that could justify their voices being shut down are conservative and Republican organizations.
An event or protest in which a few individuals take part is not reason enough to suspend an entire group on which so many Muslims on campus rely for their social, spiritual and humanitarian needs.
When a group fails to respect the wishes laid out by administrative officials—regardless of the number of people involved— association will be noted and collective punishment will result. Universities ruthlessly punish right-leaning groups in high frequency compared to any radical Muslim group. You can thank the leftist agenda at universities for this endless persecution of conservatives on campus.
The MSU is not an honest group, as it disguises its anti-American efforts as free speech and derides those “impairing” them.
Alec Weisman, Editor-in-Chief
As you know, we’ve been closely watching the recent antics of the BSU and their allies, and we’re deeply disheartened by how thoroughly they’ve lost sight of Martin Luther King’s ideals. So many of their demands push not for color-blindness, but for explicit race-based favors.
In response, we’ve compiled a list that reflects our view of what UCSD would be like under Dr. King’s dream.
This is not a slate of demands. We will not occupy the Chancellor’s office, or plant a noose, or otherwise disrupt campus life, if our quiet voice of reason gets lost amidst the opportunistic aggression of the race-baiters. We’ll live in a world that’s a bit more racist, we’ll have a bit less pride in our alma mater, and our best potential successors will be a bit less likely to come here… but life will go on.
And this is not the work of a disembodied intelligence; you’ll see the stamp of our individual life experiences. One of our staff members is an economics student, frustrated by the disconnect between “pay people to dig ditches and refill them” Keynesian orthodoxy and the complexities of the real world. Others have sat in philosophically or politically biased classes, wondering about (and sometimes discovering) the consequences of articulating a coherent dissenting perspective. And most of us have grappled with that eternal mystery, “Why?”… in the context of the meal point system, at least. But we understand that our pet peeves are not as important as universal issues like maintaining academic standards. It’s okay if some items receive much more attention than others.
With that said, here’s what we wish to see:
• a school that hires the best and brightest of academia, regardless of race or creed or politics.
• a school that continues to respect the spirit of Proposition 209, admitting students on the basis of academic merit and personal accomplishments without any reference to race. This is in the interest of all parties; the black graduation rate at UCSD doubled after the proposition’s passage.
• a school that helps minimize exploitation by informing students of their legal rights. Perhaps a list can be provided to every student during Welcome Week.
• a school that applies its standards of taste to its own buildings, not just its off-campus parties or rogue publications. For instance, the name “Che Café” is, at best, of questionable propriety; “Revolutionary Cafe” preserves the theme without giving too much sanction to a mass murderer. (Yes, we realize it doesn’t rhyme. On the other hand, it is good enough for an etude. Anyway, we’re open to other suggestions.) It can be repainted with a mural of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Mohandas Gandhi, and Henry David Thoreau.
• a school that does not withhold funding from student organizations following the rules. We believe the Koala should be socially sanctioned for its inflammatory and vulgar response to recent events. But it should not be forced to shut down, unless it actually broke the law.
• a school with transparent student government. Transparency is a powerful enemy of organized favoritism. All Associated Students meetings should be open to the public; and we believe it is also now practical and desirable to film and broadcast them live on the A.S. website.
• a school that provides funding and resources to ethnic groups in an equitable manner. There’s room for debate regarding what that entails; quite a few of the BSU demands can be accepted under this principle (and we’re okay with that). But certainly not all of them.
• a school that fosters a racially integrated community by hosting inter-group dialogue and activities.
• a school that offers more humanities classes with a neutral point of view. We believe in intelligent diversity of thought on campus, not just diversity of color.
• in the same vein, a school providing an economics education not any more wedded to Keynes than the facts justify.
• a school that minimizes the financial burden it places on its students by taking advantage of digital books and other cost-effective technologies.
• a school that enforces financial discipline on its programs. Departments and organizations should not be allowed to disproportionately drain UCSD’s resources by accruing massive debts; that hurts everyone, regardless of color.
• financial transparency of the UC Regents, the University of California, San Diego, and the Associated Students of UCSD.
• a school that respects voluntarism, not just “official” forms of social work.
• a school that encourages active citizenship by promoting involvement in student media. (Granted, since we are a student media organization, this request is self-interested.)
• a school that honors greatness, regardless of its source. We think a showcase of student, alumni, and faculty achievements, at a central visible location on campus, is a good way to do this.
• a school that demonstrates its commitment to economic efficiency by allowing students to opt out of purchasing meal points.
• a school that properly disciplines any student who violates another student’s rights.
• a student government structured to defend student rights. We recommend renaming the A.S. position of Associated Vice President of Student Advocacy to Vice President of Student Rights; this would confer voting privileges on the position, allowing its occupant to be an effective force for respect of student rights at UCSD.
• and finally, an administration and A.S. committed enough to peaceful inquiry to consider this list, despite our lack of threats.
Alec Weisman, Editor-in-Chief
First I wanted to let everyone know we are working on a story on everything over the weekend, but we wanted to send out this brief update in the meantime.
More Letters to the Editor:
Through the Lens of an Underrepresented Minority
Mario Medina, Marshall Senior
In light of the ridiculousness that has consumed our campus, and it is ridiculous on all sides of the political spectrum, I thought it only best to serve up my two cents and talk a little about some things that have really got me going.
First, while the Compton Cookout and the Koala could have been a little more sensitive, it is their right to do what they please as long as what they do not physically harm others. Emotional pain is understandable, but let’s get some things straight. First of all, PIKE has unfairly been singled out for blame for an event that was simply a party, a themed party, hosted by several members of the UCSD community. I have heard tons of hate directed towards them, when in reality the party was simply that, a party. Was the invitation offensive? Maybe. I can’t speak for those who are African-American, but in all fairness, people throw themed parties all the time, and I have personally attended some. They don’t promote stereotypes; they openly mock the ridiculousness of the stereotypes themselves. Not all black people behave in a certain way. Not all Latino people are illegal immigrants. Are all white people rednecks as well? No, but until black media stops promoting images of thugs and gangsters, talking about banging every chick they see, then what else do people expect. In the end, it is merely entertainment.
Ever wonder why the first amendment, you know the insignificant one containing that little snippet bout freedom of speech, is the first one? DUH, because it is the MOST important one. It’s not like the founding fathers rolled the dice and picked a number for each of the amendments randomly. They had a purpose. The Koala, while offensive, is free to print what they want, whenever they want it, and for whoever they want, it. It is their right.
AS is a totalitarian system. They know they are powerless because nothing trumps the good ole Constitution. So their response is predictable: fascist. My father escaped communism, and let me tell you one thing, it is not a pleasant political system. It sucks. People want to talk about oppression, well, live in a communist state and then talk about how much America sucks. The reality is that the Koala is a response to the uptight, PC system that tries to indoctrinate students at most universities. I hear all this talk about privilege, yet have not found one person who can truly define it. Am I privileged because I own a vehicle, or because I have a college education? Privilege does not equal whiteness. Trust me, I have met plenty of white people who are as poor as any other poor people, and they do not toss the word privilege around. Freedom of speech is what reminds us that we live in a truly FREE society, one that values dialogue and seeks not to destroy dissidence.
Oh those kids from BSU and MECHA. Yes, we get it, the world hates you and you can’t ever amount to anything because whitey is keeping you down. I mean it’s not like blacks and Latinos are in politics, or CEO’s, or millionaires or highly educated. Oh yeah, they are! This is not 1960’s Jim Crow South. Nowadays, minorities are highly desirable because everyone wants to add a little color in their board room. Therein lies the problem with focusing on race so much. Affirmative action only hurts minorities. No one will take people of color seriously knowing that they may have only gotten there because of the color of their skin. I heard someone once say, “Racism exists because when all you think about is race, you can always find racism.” I believe in America, and the rights of all Americans. BSU had a reason to be upset and hurt, but they did what race based organizations do best: they took it to the extreme. They took a small test sample of ignorance and turned it into a crusade against a repressive UCSD society. I have been here for over three years and I can tell you that I love UCSD. People like me because the only thing I care about is how awesome a person is, not how awesome you are because of the color of your skin.
Black people listen up: you are not entitled to anything! No one is. In America, you work for what you have, and you earn your stripes through your hard work. I am sick and tired of people feeling like they deserve all these things because of perceived slights in the system. Wake up America. We have a black president who became the leader of the free world because he is a smart, talented, charismatic and eloquent individual. He didn’t sit back and whine about racism. Obama confronted it with the best available tools he had: the power of his mind. BSU’s demands were so ludicrous, I actually thought they were joking around. Half of their demands focused on segregating the black community from UCSD, which they already do not need to do. BSU blew up a small event to pass a radical agenda. Their agenda is inherently leftist, which explains why MECHA, who are the epitome of racism, attended in stupidity, I mean solidarity. All this brings me to the reason why I wrote this opinion.
Underrepresentation is harsh, especially when you are someone who looks as brown as Hugo Chavez, but bleeds Ronald Reagan. Do I sit back and whine about how I get called a race traitor, or how I have been actually spit on by other people of color. No. That’s right, it’s not about racism. This whole charade is about people trying to make others believe what they believe. This whole drama is because people want everyone to believe what they want, to live in the world they want, and to act in the manner that they want. If people want to believe certain things, they are protected by the Constitution of the United States of America. I am conservative because I believe in the American resolve to overcome all forms of hatred, in the pursuit of a more harmonious union. Students who feel underrepresented listen up: try to see what happens when you vote for a republican and your last name is Medina. People think you’re the second coming of Hitler. Want to know my secret for success? I don’t care about my skin color, the skin color of the President, or what race is in charge of the world. I care about myself and my loved ones. I care about preserving our rights. I care about America, because I love her, and thank her for every minute of freedom she allows me to experience. The media, BSU, MECHA, and the UCSD administration should be ashamed of themselves. Black people are not being targeted for hate crimes, Latinos are not being rounded up for deportation on our campus, so lets be real about this people. It started off with a misguided attempt at humor, and has now blown up on the 7th floor of Geisel. I bet if the reactions of some weren’t so extreme, the reactions of others would not have been so extreme as well.
Feel free to disagree, after all, this IS AMERICA…
Brett Cook, Warren 2011
What we’re currently witnessing at UCSD shouldn’t surprise anyone. In fact, it’s the predictable and logical consequence of how UCSD operates as a system. Specifically, it’s UCSD’s bloated bureaucracy in combination with its institutionalized political correctness that has made this madness possible. Hear me out.
Clearly there is a gap—a ravine, for that matter—between the actions of the frat boys and the insanity that has ensued. This is not to minimize any legitimate gripes that individuals may have with those frat boys. There are, after all, few activities undertaken by frat boys that the majority of individuals would not find offensive. That isn’t the issue. The question is this: How did a stupid frat party bring us incessant Chancellor Fox e-mails, Koala TV segments, circus AS meetings, awkward demands from the BSU, nooses, news cameras, mass protests, and the overall obnoxiousness that no one wants to have to deal with when they’re trying to get an education? The answer may liberate you.
The University of California San Diego is a bureaucratic monstrosity. If you’re a student at UCSD, I don’t need to explain this. You know what I’m talking about. Practically speaking, this means that there is an incomprehensible network of departments and administrators to which everyone must answer but for which no one is accountable. It’s a joke. We all know it.
Ok, now take this bureaucracy and add extreme political correctness… You now have a system in which the very hint of racism can set off a bureaucratic domino-effect. This happens because of the fact that the bureaucracy is accountable to nothing (except political correctness); thus, the tendency of the bureaucracy is always to placate rather than to ameliorate. The result is what we are seeing now: a rapid series of concessions with the hope that the placations might outpace the controversy (in much the same way that one might hope to outpace a fire with a gallon of gasoline).
To be clear: This has become a game, the object of which is to see how many goodies can be squeezed out of the UCSD bureaucracy. It’s a race to the bottom. Whether or not the participants see it that way, make no mistake: What you are seeing at UCSD is a game in progress.
Just look at what happened. After word got out about the party, the first response by the UCSD bureaucracy was to send everyone e-mails that apologized for the party, calling it an “insult to all thinking members of our community”. In full panic mode, the bureaucracy stated that, although this was a private, off-campus event, they were going to “utilize the harshest sanctions in responding to the organizers of this event.” Furthermore, they announced a teach-in to make their apologies, condemnations, and hollow grovelings as conspicuous as humanly possible. It worked.
Like blood in the water, it could not have been any clearer: the UCSD bureaucracy was open for business. The firesale had begun!
Enter: The Black Student Union (BSU). The BSU has, dare I say, acted completely rationally (considering the incentives at play). The louder they yelled, the more they got; the more ridiculous the situation became, the more power they acquired; and the more preposterous the accusations, the more seriously they were taken by the administration.
The supporters of BSU and their “demands” had every incentive to put a noose in Geisel. I’m not saying that they did, only that it would make perfect sense if they did. After all, what’s a noose in a library when you can get the UCSD administration to “take responsibility for implementing institutional action to develop and maintain a critical mass of underrepresented students”—whatever that means.
The point is that we shouldn’t be surprised by all of this. More importantly, we shouldn’t labor under the illusion that this is anything other than what it is. So, if you’ve been stressed out, angered, annoyed, or just generally frustrated attempting to wrap your mind around what’s going on, don’t. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. Bask in the madness. It’ll all be over soon. Just try not to think about the fact that you’re paying for all of it.
February 26, 2010
Tags: black student union, california review, chancellor fox, compton cookout, first amendment, freedom of speech, library, nooses, the koala, ucsd, UCSD Associated Students
Alec Weisman, Editor-in-Chief
*** FIRST RACIAL CONFLICT SPREADS AS NOOSES DISCOVERED IN GEISEL.
(This photo was initially posted on someone’s Facebook. I was sent it by a contributor who felt it was too important to not post here. If you would like to be credited for your photograph, please email us at TheCalReviewUCSD@aol.com.)
If you have more information on this, please let us know. This is absolutely despicable and those who perpetrated this should be punished.
I won’t make any assumptions about who the perpetrators are. I just wonder: cui bono?
UPDATE: POLICE CRIME ALERT BULLETIN (9:25 am 2/26/10)
UPDATE: A female student has turned herself in. Since they know the gender of the student, they almost certainly know her ethnicity as well… and if she’s white, that would have been excellent news fodder. Therefore, we tentatively conclude that she’s nonwhite, but we’re waiting for more precise information.
Next, our feed of the media forum below currently only contains the first ten minutes for some unknown reason. We will update with the full video over the weekend for all of you who could not attend the meeting.
UPDATE: VIEW THE STREAM FROM LAST NIGHT HERE (9:40am 2/26/10): http://www.ustream.tv/discovery/recorded/all?broadcast=3162001
We will probably be on hiatus for much of the weekend because I do not know if I will have access to a computer to continue research and work.
Also, the Saltman Quarterly, which abdicated their First Amendment rights at the AS meeting on Wednesday, just so happens to be “sponsored by the Division of Biological Sciences, with advisors in the Biology Dean’s Office.” So they don’t get their funding from the Associated Students at all, and they just wanted to take a free shot at the Koala.
Finally, I leave you with this Letter to the Editor that I received from an individual who chose to remain anonymous.
“The Man” Is Getting All of Us Down
So I would like to begin this with a disclaimer. I am in no way connected to the Greek community at UCSD nor do I ever plan to be. In all honesty I am basically 100% opposed to the Greek system over all. Also I am not a crazy conservative, I do not subscribe to any specific belief system be it political or religious. I simple create my own opinion based on what I observe around me.
The significance of the “Compton Cookout” has been blown way out of proportion. The so-called racist event was a harmless party made by a bunch of ignorant white people, no offense. The event was clearly offensive however it was definitely not racially charged. The reference to Black History month was clearly inappropriate and I am positive that all of them will admit this. However this was clearly not a KKK meeting nor was anything of the sort. It was just another excuse for a bunch of bored college students to dress up congregate and get drunk out of their minds.
The administration of UCSD felt the need to comment and condemn the even just in case it could some how possibly be blamed for the event. The e-mail that all of the students and faculty received from Chancellor Mary Anne Fox condemning the incident was unnecessary. The only reason that I can possibly think that the Fox sent us an e-mail is because she was afraid that there would be a racial backlash. However most students had no idea that the event even existed. People were not given very much information about the event in the e-mail that she sent so many people became mad with out knowing all the facts. Others became angered because they feared that if they were not against the “Compton Cookout” that they too would be labeled as racists. Maybe Fox knew this would be a possible out come, and maybe she didn’t, but it does not change the fact that before her e-mail the issue was relatively contained and taken care of.
Somehow the media took a liking to this incident and made this small mistake by a bunch of people just trying to have a good time into a statewide racial crisis. If I have learned anything at UCSD it is that race does not matter. Although only 1.3% of UCSD’s students identify as African-American it does not change the fact that that 1.3% of students is just as likely to score better than me on the midterm as the other 98.7% of students. Also I have learned that the students at UCSD really do not care very much about anything else other than scoring better than their peers on the exams. When the tuition, and fees were raised and all of the other UC schools were protesting in mass and making sure that their voices were heard what was UCSD doing? They wrote their grievances in chalk on the sidewalk on their way to the library. There were several other attempts to protest but the vast majority of students (enough so that I can say roughly all of the students) did not participate in any form of protest. The “Compton Cookout” is also not that big of a deal to the vast majority of students. Some still really do not even know exactly what happened to cause such an issue.
So today when I was walking back from my morning classes I was shocked to see what looked like hundreds of students marching and chanting “We’re fired up, We cant take it anymore.” As I was watching the spectacle I realized that today was the “Teach In” that was organized to solve the “racial tension” at UCSD. I was also informed that many of the people that were marching were bussed in from other schools such as UCLA and USC. Suddenly it all began to make sense. While I am sure that there were UCSD students among the masses, I am equally sure that they make up only about half (a generous estimate) of the people that were marching. I would love to be proved wrong here so if you know more than I do please fill me in. In all honesty this was the largest gathering of people I have ever seen on campus at UCSD since Ellen had a special event in Price Center to get tickets to her show. This makes me think that the real race problem is not at UCSD; rather it is at UCLA and USC because these students felt the need to skip a day of class and organize buses and rides to get down to San Diego form Los Angeles. In conclusion I feel that the administration and the media created this statewide incident. People want to the school to discipline the creators of the “Compton Cookout” however they forget that this event was not related to the school nor was it related to any of the Greek life, nor the PIKE fraternity. I believe that it says something about the media and the administration that they created such a racially charged incident over the poor choices of maybe ten individuals at most. The man, or the media and the administration have labeled UCSD, one of the most peaceful and laid back college campuses that I have ever stepped foot on, as a racist community. Also I feel that had the “Compton Cookout” been created by members of a predominately Asian-American fraternity none of this would have happened. What this says to me is that a bunch of ignorant white people running the media and the administration of this campus (Fox), that will from here on out be known as The Man, felt the need to cover their asses and condemn the event out of fear; because God forbid that in some way someone might think that they supported the event. Also The Man had no reason to comment on the private party in the first place.
It saddens me that people must act out of fear of being labeled racist. Also in reflection today I am curious as to why Chancellor Fox did not issue apologies for the following things that actually did happen on campus:
-The man handing out blatantly anti-Islam flyers during Islamic awareness week on library walk
-The man telling everyone and their mother that they are going to hell because they are not Christians
Chancellor I am expecting to see apologies to the Islamic community, as well as to basically every other religious minority group including the atheists first thing tomorrow morning. I wonder why race gets so much more press over things that were not intentionally hateful compared to people who blatantly preach religious intolerance and hatred on school campus. If there is a reason why race and religion are different issues I would very much like to hear what it is. Chancellor I challenge you to change it from “Racial Intolerance: Not in our Community” to “Intolerance: Not in our Community” or “Racial and Religious Intolerance: Not in our Community” either of these would be more fitting and make you and this movement seem less hypocritical.
Alec Weisman, Editor-in-Chief
On the evening of February 24, 2010, I attended the UCSD Associated Students Senate official meeting. While there, the Associated Students attempted to stifle the First Amendment rights of Freedom of Speech and Freedom of the Press for me and other media organizations at the University of California, San Diego.
(Go to California Review. net to watch the videos)
The footage is below, with only minor editing. (I list and explain the few cuts I made.)
The first two videos consist of BSU members and their supporters airing their grievances to the AS.
The third video consists of the Saltman Quarterly’s abdication of free speech and more airing of grievances by members of the BSU and allied organizations.
Then Peter (a California Review staffer) gets up to speak in opposition of the AS’s unconstitutional actions. I follow with a brief statement, and defer the rest of my time to Kris Gregorian, Editor of the Koala.
Kris Gregorian continues his antics at the AS meeting. But what do you expect, it’s the Koala.
At 5:21 in this video, I walk over to Peter (my staffer) to call him away. Nine seconds later, a girl associated with MEChA and the BSU hits me and my camera and then freaks out on me. I was at least an arm’s length away from her, and she leans under Peter to hit me.
I then get furious that they are trying to violate my freedom of the press AGAIN! and ask the AS if I am allowed to film at the event, to which they say yes…
And then, at 7:03, they change their mind and claim I actually don’t have the right to film them. They also threaten to call security to take me away.
I turn off my camera, and thirty seconds later I am told by another student that the AS is wrong. I then turn my camera back on and tell the AS that I am filming again and that they are wrong.
I tell them they can either call security or show me where in the law I am prohibited from filming the meeting. They call a recess for 5 minutes in response to try to find a way to stop me from filming.
This is the break during the forum. I discuss this issue with multiple people. You hear me ranting about the three violations of my First Amendment rights by individuals associated with the BSU, MSU, and AS, as well as me being angry about being hit by the girl.
A girl also approaches Peter to talk. I cut out his number and last name, and I also cut out bits near the end of the video where I hear the phone number from other students.
After AS resumes their proceedings, they agree that I have the right to film the public meeting.
An AS council member attempts to use the girl’s assault on me as an example of a disruption, but this is dismissed.
They start discussion of the media funding freeze.
The AS considers extending the media funding freeze. The Sixth College Senator, John Condello, does his best to argue on behalf of respecting the First Amendment and the media organizations. Our hat goes out to him, and I know who my new favorite AS Council member is. When all this is over I want to give him an award for standing up to tyranny.
AS VP of Finance & Resources Peter Benesch then argues why “feeling safe” is more important than the First Amendment.
This video opens with AS admitting that they are targeting the Koala by redoing the media guidelines and the media freeze, but cannot admit that because of legal reasons. AS President Utsav Gupta knows he can’t say that on camera, so he just gives a thumbs up.
They vote on the media organization freeze. Only four members of the Associated Students could be heard to vote in support of free speech.
SRTV then made its appeal to be reinstated.
SRTV continues its attempt to be reinstated. SRTV (temporarily TRTV) manager Thomas Dadourian makes his plea to get back to filming.
Campus Wide Senator Bryant Pena questions the SRTV manager. AS President Gupta voices his opposition.
At 7:30, SRTV manager Thomas Dadourian even asks AS to fire him so that SRTV can continue running.
18 seconds later, Campus Wide Senator Desiree Prevo speaks up: “As a student of color on this campus that has been continuously marginalized, your voice is only silent temporarily. My voice is silent permanently on this campus. So I’m just asking you this, please consider more time. Your voice is silenced temporarily. I’m silenced permanently because of the color of my skin. So consider, just a little more time. That’s all I’m asking.”
A person would think we were still living in Jim Crow Alabama from statements like this. The media and the BSU have blown this issue tremendously out of proportion, and now free speech is in chains at UCSD.
In the final video, despite all of SRTV manager Thomas Dadourian’s arguments, the AS remains opposed to the reinstatement of SRTV.
To show your support for free speech, please come to the forum on the fourth floor of Price Center East at 8 pm today (Thursday 2/25).
UPDATE: UTSAV ADMITS HIS INTENTIONS ARE CENSORSHIP!!! (9:15 am, 2/25/10)
UPDATE 2: WE RECEIVED COPIES OF THE EMAILS THAT UC BERKELEY AND THE UCSD GRADUATE STUDENTS SENT OUT REGARDING THE CONTROVERSY (12:45pm, 2/25/10)
In the petition by the Graduate Students they claim that opponents of the actions taken by the Administration “will continue to hide behind legal rights, such as free speech, to justify actions and rhetoric that prolongs a long history of racism in which black culture and heritage is treated as their private property.” They later add that members of the BSU “face physical threats from supremacist groups and individuals on campus.” I want to see police reports. As of this point, I have been personally assaulted by someone supporting the BSU and can provide documentation backing it up (see above).
Alec Weisman, Editor-in-Chief
Below is our uncut video footage of the two hour long “Black Student Union Press Conference and Rally.”
Unfortunately, midway through the teach-in, the Black Student Union rudely stood up and instigated a walkout because they weren’t the center of attention. UPDATE: According to the La Jolla Light: “Fox agreed immediately to providing solid funding for the African-American studies minor and ethnic studies programs. Some of the other more complex demands, such as creating a ‘diversity sensitivity requirement’ for all undergraduates, Fox delegated to vice chancellors for further study.”
As the walkout was occurring, many students and faculty kept out of Price Center West because of the overflow moved into the main room to participate in the teach-in. One of the students who stood up to speak was the Chairwoman of the College Republicans at UCSD. Her comment during the teach-in was: “There’s so many things I’d like to say. First off I think that the vast majority of people in this room would come to the starting point that the Compton Cookout was disgusting. I don’t think a lot of people support. I think most people in this room find it absolutely disgusting, many of us find it racist, including me. However I’d also like to say that I appreciate this forum, the fact that I do feel that this is starting becoming more of a dialogue, and that everybody can get up and get up say what they think about this, so I do appreciate that and the administration for providing that. But what I don’t hear is, I guess my problems with this are the solutions. I read the list, the thirty three demands from the BSU, and it doesn’t seem to be in line with what Dr. Martin Luther King dream for this country would have been. I think that Dr. King represented a dream, and eloquently put forward a dream to this country of a united culture, and a united, he spoke about sitting down at a table of brotherhood [Applause] And I’m not seeing that. I think it’s cool if you want to have these centers and to have programs and stuff like that, but the coercion that is going on, ok we are going to force people to take certain classes, we are going to force people, and I don’t think the message of the classes, I think learning history is really important, but I don’t think the message of those classes are necessarily uniting. Martin Luther King said his dream is deeply embedded in the American Dream, deeply embedded in those words ‘That All men are created equal’ not that all end up with exactly the same outcomes or exactly the same percentages in every university for every particular group of people, and I think to do it that way makes a mockery of ‘judging people by content of their character rather the color of their skin.’ [Applause] Furthermore, I think that the most important kind of diversity, is one that I’m not hearing anybody talking about these days, and that’s diversity of thought. The University was supposed to be the marketplace of ideas, and it’s supposed to be the place where people come to learn to exchange ideas and to have a civil dialogue which once again I appreciate the University for providing a place to have a civil dialogue, because these problems, and these racial tensions are never going be resolved if one side is making demands on the other. I think its much more important that we sit down and talk about it, and we understand there are really high emotions running through these types of instances, and yea they were pretty disgusting and racist; they don’t represent the entire community at UCSD, or even the majority of the community at UCSD. [Applause] Alright I’m just going to wrap it up. I just want to say, I also don’t think it’s fair to generalize and say that oh yea because of the color of your skin you have a certain amount of privileges. My parents risked their lives to come to this country, and they came here with three hundred bucks, [breaks down] three hundred dollars, and they didn’t receive anything, as even a gift, based on the color of their skin.”
Other great statements were made during the public commentary portion of the teach-in, and we are working to get the entire audio up online.
P.S. Thanks to Vercingetorix who left a concise report about the teach-in on our blog. Below is his comment:
“Let’s examine some of the ‘Facts’ and arguments put forth at the televised ‘teach-in’ (I would love to see if anyone has a recording or info on what went down at the ’spontaneous’ event too).
‘I was offended when the administration said there was nothing they could do because it was an off campus event…It is clearly stated that the vice-chancellor of student affairs has power over off-campus events’ [2nd to last student to speak]
This is entirely wrong and unlawful. The UCSD administration has no power over unofficial events hosted by students that take place off campus, particularly if no crime is committed. This is a First Amendment right.
‘Only two courses on Africa or Race and Ethnicity were offered in the History Department this quarter’ [I think this is what she said, but I'm not sure; in any case, she implied that the History department did not offer enough race and ethnic history courses- this was the last speaker]
UCSD’s history department already offers an entire introductory course every quarter on race and ethnicity to go with its 2 other introductory courses in US History and East Asian History (that sounds like plenty of emphasis on race to me). This quarter, the History Dept. is offering 3 courses on Africa, a course on African American legal history, a course on Mexican-American History, a course on women in America, a course on gender in antiquity, and a course on race and sexual politics in addition to the intro course. I count 9.
‘Our demands are not at all for separation.’ [BSU students]
Read their demands. They’re all about separation and special ‘privilege’ (not in the abstract, theory sense either- very specific privileges with ethnically disproportionate results!).
‘When I think about my gender and I know that I’m male, I know that gives me a lot of privilege…I have had entirely too many conversations with people who don’t understand because they haven’t first thought about their own privilege.’ [Director of the LGBT Center]
This is a classic argument used to shift the nature of any debate involving race, sex, age, size (yep, size-ism), disabilities, etc. from a discussion about the facts of the case to the identities of the people involved in the case. ‘Privilege’ is a vague term bandied about quite often in the post-modern academic literature that acts as a catch-all term for any perceived inequality in outcome; graduate from a university? You’ve got privilege! Have a job? You’ve got privilege! Were born with above-average intelligence? You’ve got privilege! Their reasoning goes that if you have privilege, you simply cannot understand what other people without that privilege are thinking and thus any arguments you make are invalid. Despite being logically deficient, this is one of the most common arguments used to defend why nobody except ‘the oppressed’ has a right to speak on these issues. (For the logical conclusion to some of the efforts made to ‘correct’ privilege, see Harrison Bergeron)
‘Real Pain, Real Action’ [T-shirts of BSU members]
Like Abraham Lincoln did, I would like to introduce some ’spot’ resolutions: can you point me to the exact ’spot’ where people were ‘hurt’? Provide examples of how exactly people’s rights were violated? Show me where laws were broken? Prove to me how ‘pain’ was a direct outcome of a Facebook event posting?
‘It’s not about you. It’s bigger than you.’ [someone explaining why this incident was a big deal]
This is a pretty blatant attack on individualism and ties many of these arguments into larger Marxist/socialist theories. According to this view, individuals don’t matter; it’s large groups, in this case ethnic groups, that do. Thus UCSD shouldn’t make admissions decisions about each individual student, they should look at all AA and Hispanic students as part of the same group and make admissions decisions about the group. Ironically, I’ve heard many anecdotes from ethnically minority students complain about how they’re always called upon to be the ‘ambassadors’ for their group’s point of view in classes. The point of affirmative action and ‘diversity’ is that those points of view could not possibly be represented by other non-ethnic students in the class, so the university needs to admit students to provide those points of view. If someone can actually logically explain how these two points of view can be reconciled, I will tip my hat to you.
‘Take classes on these issues if you don’t see anything wrong’
Yes, take these classes and find out what? That you’ll fail the class if you don’t agree with the professor? This is the problem with trying to defer to academia on this issue; you’ll only get one side of the story because the whole point of having these classes is that there is only one ‘true’ side to the story. If you disagree, you’re a privileged racist. The best way to avoid this would be to study these issues in regular sociology, anthropology, and history classes as parts of larger issues, but sadly that doesn’t seem to happen enough.
‘You’re allowed to have a white trash party, you’re white…so long as someone is being hurt, then something you’re doing is hurtful’ [Visiting Professor who spoke]
So is this the same line of argument addressing why the n-word is cool if you’re AA, but a sign of evil racism inside you if you’re white? I strongly disagree with the idea that people should be limited in their speech by their skin color (even informally; if you say something, it shouldn’t matter what your ethnic background is). Also, people get ‘hurt’ by many things, and it’s their own right to be offended but NOT a right of other people to be forced to change their behavior to avoid that if it does not violate the laws of this nation. It’s like if I’m grading a paper and I comment that you failed to understand the argument, you have a right to feel ‘hurt’ if you want, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad that I told you that you were wrong.
‘There is no trust on this campus…The atmosphere is toxic and hostile…It has become unbearable’ ‘Unless the demographics change… I don’t know how much longer I can take it… the faculty and administration have fostered a toxic environment.’ [Theater professor who spoke]
All this without one actual example of a ‘toxic’ environment, much less how the faculty and administration are at fault. I really would like to hear about what the administration has done ‘wrong’ in the eyes of BSU (I personally think they erred by sending out emails that blew the whole thing out of proportion).
Finally, a few good things that came out of the event:
-The self-proclaimed ‘white guy’ who offered a very earnest point of view that was completely ‘underrepresented’ at the event.
-The high school teacher from Compton at least provided facts about how Compton is majority Hispanic now.
-The guy who got up there and said, ‘UCSD is institutionally racist. They sponsor the Che Cafe. I’m Cuban. Che killed my family. Thank you.’
-The moderator was as a whole very fair and strongly encouraged students to respect the speakers and not pull a UCI. I respected her for that, even if she clearly seemed to sympathize with the ’spontaneous’ protest.”
* BREAKING NEWS: A California Review staffer discovered that many of the individuals at the rally were in fact bussed in to the event. It was also overheard that either UCSD or their own school paid for the busing. If anyone can find further information on this we would be extremely grateful.
The press continues to weigh in on this matter, most of whom have thrown their journalistic integrity to the curb in order to jump on the bandwagon of “tolerance” and “diversity.”
NBC San Diego quoted me: “They want to insult and offend everyone; that’s fine,” said UCSD senior Alec Weisman, editor of “California Review”, a political magazine whose ASB funding is being withheld pending the further tweaking of policies governing student media. “But they’ve never advocated to harm or hurt an individual.”
For the record, I was misquoted in their article, as during the interview I said that as far as I knew, the Koala has never advocated PHYSICALLY harming or hurting an individual. It’s also interesting to note that I was the only free speech supporter mentioned at all.
Other media outlets have covered this story as well. They include the San Diego News Network, which has covered the petition to shut down the Koala; the Los Angeles Times, which outlines the controversy and cites The Guardian’s editorial article; and KPBS, which claims that the Compton Cookout is a symptom of broad changes in popular media and culture, and analyzed the new generational trends. Earl Ofari Hutchinson also weighed in, arguing that the UCSD partiers’ behavior, while troubling, distracts from the real problem: “the endless parade of gangster rappers, some black filmmakers, and comedians [who] routinely reduce young black women to ’stuff,’ ‘bitches’ and ‘hoes’. Their contempt reinforces the slut image of black women and sends the message that violence, mistreatment and verbal abuse of black women are socially acceptable.”
The Daily Aztec, San Diego State University’s student newspaper, has joined the mob favoring censorship over free speech.
A poll was taken by SurveyUSA regarding the controversy at UCSD. Every demographic surveyed believed that the party was an expression of free speech, though only young people aged 18-34 and blacks believed it was not offensive.
The Koala has become so popular that American Dad showed covert solidarity with them by introducing their own C.I.A. Koala, Reginald. To watch the show and their own “offensive” little Koala,tune into this Hulu video at the 3:25 mark.
Does anyone want more proof that the BSU only cares about limiting the rights of those who disagree with them? Well, they refused to allow TRTV to film their “Honest and Open Dialogue on Campus Climate” last night. Watch the video and listen carefully at the 20 second mark to hear someone in the background say that filming is not allowed. It was very clever of the BSU to rephrase the question in the end and then go on with their meeting.
According to the TRTV, their “goal was to record the event from a purely historical viewpoint, and to give voice to the members of the BSU and the attendees of the dialogue … We have approached the BSU multiple times about broadcasting an interview or providing an outlet for their voice, yet despite our efforts we have been met with hostility and a negative attitude.”
For the record, it is legal to film on a public university in almost all cases, and most prohibitions of it are just attempts to intimidate you into stopping and leaving.
Here’s another example of the self-centered blindness of the “distressed students.” From a speech made in Solis Hall: “And to all of you who think it’s funny, it’s not funny. And for freedom of speech. Where’s my freedom of speech? I feel so silenced at this University.” What freedom does he think he’s taking advantage of at that moment? Is anybody preventing him from speaking?
We had agreed to permit the Koala to break this story on administrative hypocrisy at the “Teach-In” today, as it was just too comical. Unfortunately, they were unable to attend the “teach-in”, so they broke it on their website instead. We’re now joining them. The “UCSD Black Alumni: Down Home Reunion,” called the “UCSD Black Alumni Reunion: Kool-Aid ‘n’ Chicken” until a recent hasty name change (see the Google cache result below), is scheduled for February 26.
The menu includes such stereotyped foods as “Collard greens, macaroni & cheese, roast beef, fried chicken, mashed potatoes, sweet potato pie, peach cobbler, sweet tea or Kool-Aid.” Is it just me or do I see a strange resemblance to the foods from the “Compton Cookout,” which included such delicacies as “40’s, Kegs of Natty, dat Purple Drank – which consists of sugar, water, and the color purple, chicken, coolade, and of course Watermelon” (although, due to its satirical nature, DJ Jiggaboo Jones did not bother to compose a real menu). This event is sponsored by the Black Alumni Council, UCSD Alumni Association, 2010 Black History Month Planning Committee, and other campus sponsors.
Finally, we were sent a statement from the College Republicans at UCSD, the Young Americans for Liberty, and the Young Americans for Freedom at UCSD. Read it below:
Institutionalizing Segregation and Racism at UCSD
Dear Fellow UCSD Students,
Undoubtedly, the UCSD students who went to the “Compton Cookout” party and the organizers of the party showed poor taste and insensitivity. Even more obviously, The Koala, a publication that exists purely in order to offend people with standards (no need to be standards of decency, it offends just about any standards), circulated an incredibly offensive response on their TV channel. But the explosive response to these actions is the worst part of the whole affair.
Among the BSU’s demands are: that UCSD change its admissions policy from a comprehensive to a “holistic” review system – we all know that means affirmative action; that UCSD pay for everything from stipends for BSU members since they are “doing the work that should be done by the University,” to a new African-American Resource Center, to cultural murals; that all UCSD students take three “diversity requirement” courses from the ethnic studies department to graduate; and finally that the “campus climate” become UCSD’s “number one priority” – excuse me, isn’t that supposed to be all of our educations?
Are you kidding me? The University is supposed to shell out what looks like millions of dollars, in the middle of its fiscal crisis, to pacify people offended by some students’ behavior at a distasteful off-campus party? Worse than the monetary issue, however, is the insidious idea that the way to heal these alleged racial divides is, naturally, by institutionalizing those divides. It seems that the BSU’s dream of racial harmony is significantly different than Dr. King’s, whose dream was to see people of all different races sitting down together, at “the table of brotherhood;” a dream he said was “deeply rooted in the American dream” and the creed espoused by our Constitution – that “we hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.” Instead, the University’s response to racial tensions has been to segregate us, to create isolated spaces that separate us, separate educational programs that drive us further apart, and separate admission standards that make a mockery of the idea of judging candidates by their character and their achievements, and not their skin color.
Out of respect for Dr. King’s principle, we have a few demands of our own:
• We demand that the University stop supporting racist and segregationist policies by funding a separate resource center for every aggrieved population’s personal use.
• We demand that the UC system no longer tolerate “separate but equal” graduation ceremonies for racial minority groups.
• We demand the UCSD administrators reject all future attempts to extort money and special privileges from this esteemed University on the basis of a controversy caused by a just a few students.
Let us judge those who have created these offensive situations on campus and off by the “content of their character” – they’re childish attention-seekers with poor taste. Let’s not glorify and give power to their attempts by clamping down on free speech. Instead, let’s laugh it off and move on with our lives, united by the American creed and our American values of freedom and equality of opportunity. Wouldn’t that be a more fitting tribute to Dr. King’s dream?
Inez Feltscher, Chair of College Republicans at UCSD — Joined by Young Americans for Liberty at UCSD & Young Americans for Freedom at UCSD & College Republicans at UCSD