Category Archive 'Yale'
15 Nov 2018

Snowflakes & SJWs Upset: Satirical Flyers Posted on Yale Cross Campus

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According to the Yale Daily News, mocking African-American group poses is “racially provocative.”

The Oldest (and seriously competing for Left-est) College Daily was outraged.

The Yale Police Department is investigating reports from Yale students who witnessed two masked people post racially provocative flyers on bulletin boards around Cross Campus on Tuesday night. …

Yale students took photos of the posters, removed them from the bulletin board, replaced them with messages of support for people of color and reported the incident to Yale student life staff and the YPD on Tuesday night. The flyers depicted the symbol of a “White Students’ Union of Yale” and quoted slavery advocate and class of 1804 graduate John Calhoun — the former namesake of what is now Grace Hopper College. The quote reads, “In looking back, I see nothing to regret, and little to correct.”

YPD officers are currently reviewing camera footage to identify the perpetrators, Goff-Crews told the News. … The department has also stepped up its patrols in “sensitive areas on campus,” including the center of Yale’s campus, where the incident occured [sic].

“I find the sentiments signified by these flyers deeply troubling, and I want to be clear: hate is not welcome on our campus,” Salovey wrote in a campuswide email. “As I have said in the past, the answer to speech one finds repugnant is more speech. [Flyers aren’t speech? Quotations from Calhoun aren’t speech? – JDZ] I have no doubt that the members of the Yale community will respond to expressions of hate, racism, and exclusion on this campus with even stronger affirmations of our values—and a renewed commitment to creating a diverse, inclusive community where all people are welcomed.”

In the email, Salovey confirmed that the perpetrators violated a University policy which only permits registered student organizations to post flyers on campus [Oh, my! that is an expulsion-worthy offense for sure. –JDZ].

Yale has notified the Southern Poverty Law Center — which monitors hate groups in the U.S. — and the Anti-Defamation League — a Jewish group that fights anti-Semitism and bigotry — about the incident, according to Salovey’s email. …

On Tuesday night, a student posted a photograph of the flyer on the popular Facebook group “Overheard at Yale,” prompting heavy backlash against the perpetrators among commenters.

Students and alumni interviewed by the News condemned the flyers. Prior to Salovey’s email, at least two individuals told the News that they contacted Salovey’s office calling for the University to respond to the incident.

On Wednesday morning, Gene Lyman ’92 also emailed Salovey’s office calling on the University to investigate the situation thoroughly, discipline any current students involved and “reassert Yale’s values as an inclusive and intellectually honest community.”

“Even if this should prove a hoax, or someone’s sick idea of a joke, I cannot emphasize enough how unacceptable the sentiment expressed in these flyers is,” Lyman wrote in the email to Salovey.

Lyman said he received a response from Joy McGrath, Salovey’s chief of staff, as well as Salovey’s email to the Yale community.

Sohum Pal ’20 sent an email about the incident to Salovey, Goff-Crews and Dean of Yale College Marvin Chun on Tuesday night. In his email, Pal called for the establishment of a Title VI office, which would enforce the federal law that prohibits discrimination based on race, ethnicity, color and national origin at educational institutions, and for a systematic change in University responses to grievances around racial discrimination. Pal said that the University should create a “mechanism for change” instead of releasing emails to “reaffirm its commitments.”

“Tonight, people put up these fliers around campus,” Pal wrote in his email. “I felt vulnerable — is it any surprise? My time at Yale has been many things — sometimes empowering, but more often I’ve been struck at how expendable students, faculty, and staff of color must be to the university.” Unlike Lyman, Pal said he received no direct response to his email.

Ashtan Towles ’19, a former peer liaison for the Afro-American Cultural Center, told the News that while the perpetrators remain unknown, the act was “done in cowardice,” comparing the masked individuals to Klu Klux Klan members who don masks to protect their identities.

“This incident is merely one of thousands through which white nationalists have attempted to stoke fear in Black communities, but I am always in awe of the resilience and pride that exists in the Black community at Yale,” Towles said in an email to the News.

According to Simon Ghebreyesus ’21, the sentiments of white pride in the flyers are a “sinister presence” for students of color to grapple with at Yale and across the country.

Epongue Ekille ’21 told the News that she had generally viewed Yale as a racially inclusive place but the flyer incident “negates it all.”

“It was both surprising and not at the same time. Although Yale is proud of its diversity, the matter of the fact is that the student population is majority white and wealthy,” Ekille said. “I’m not surprised that people who have these opinions exist at Yale, I’m just surprised that they would publicly advertise it.”

RTWT

Evidently, the answer to speech satirizing the rhetoric and poses of African-American Identity Group activists is not actually “more speech.” The answer is to publish hysterical news stories, to refer to the “repugnant speech” as “discrimination,” and “exclusion,” and “hate,” to suggest that it constitutes a possible violation of federal anti-discrimination law, and to treat it as a proper basis for investigation, notification of national left-wing speech and thought supervisory groups, and disciplinary sanctions.

How terribly cowardly it was of those right-wing students to conceal their identities!

25 Oct 2018

Let’s All Wear Blackface for Halloween

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and piss off the SJWs.

Halloween is getting to be downright dangerous in this country. Back in 2015, the wife of Yale’s Silliman College Master Nicholas Christakis, and Associate Master, Erica Christakis, responded to an admonitory pre-Halloween email from the Intercultural Affairs Council — a group of administrators from the cultural centers, Chaplain’s Office and other campus organizations — sent to the undergraduate student body warning against wearing Halloween costumes which could be interpreted as belittling or offensive: no sombreros, no blackface, no turbans, defending freedom of expression and arguing against hypersensitive prohibition and censorship.

Well, Master Nicholas and a black dean were confronted by angry student mobs demanding his firing or resignation. There was a march on President Salovey’s house and a presentation of outrageous radical demands, most of which President Salovey promptly granted. The Yale Administration assured the Christakises that free speech would be upheld, it was solidly behind them, and then quietly got both of them out of Silliman College and out of town. (Professor Nicholas Christakis was paid off for keeping quiet with the award of a prestigious Sterling Professorship a couple years later.) Mrs. Christakis no longer teaches at Yale, and is giving lectures and doing free-lance writing. Boo!

And the PC Halloween Monster strikes again! This time it is NBC Today Host Megan Kelly riding the tumbril in the direction of the stake for, yes! you guessed it, questioning the blasphemous nature of Halloween blackface. Burn, witch, burn!

Roxanne Jones, “a founding editor of ESPN Magazine and former vice president at ESPN,” lays down the law at CNN:

Sometimes “I’m sorry” just doesn’t cut it — a hard lesson that NBC Today show host Megyn Kelly now understands. Reportedly, Kelly’s morning show “Megyn Kelly Today” may be cancelled, according to CNN sources and Variety reports.

Kelly, who never really seemed like a good fit for the NBC morning show, overplayed her popularity earlier this week when she passionately defended people who don blackface costumes for Halloween — a thing that most Americans understand is definitely not okay, unless their intention is to offend.

“But what is racist?” Kelly asked on her show. “Because you do get in trouble if you are a white person who puts on blackface on Halloween, or a black person who puts on whiteface for Halloween. Back when I was a kid that was OK, as long as you were dressing up as, like, a character.”

The backlash was swift. Kelly was roasted across social media and more importantly her colleagues and bosses were appalled by her comments. NBC executives forced Kelly to apologize first, internally to her colleagues, and then to the viewers.

But Halloween is tricky and the blackface flap didn’t die down.

Ironically, for me, the most revealing part of Kelly’s explosive comments was their illumination of her true face as an out-of-the-closet racist, in my opinion.

I didn’t buy Kelly’s innocent act of contrition. Maybe I’ve just become desensitized to these knee-jerk, teleprompter apologies for public misdeeds. Maybe we all have. Maybe we should.

But Kelly shouldn’t be surprised that her racist statements met resistance. And she shouldn’t be surprised that NBC, like so many other employers who have taken action against talent for incidents of racism, has apparently decided that her brand of bigotry is simply not worth the risk anymore. Even her NBC colleague Al Roker, who said Wednesday, “The fact is, she owes a bigger apology to folks of color around the country.”

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Jenée Desmond Harris, at leftist Vox, explains to you ignorant bigots why defending blackface is a prosecutable thought and speech crime.

Put down the black and brown face paint. Step away from the bronzer 12 shades darker than your skin. That is, if you’re at all interested in not being a walking symbol of racism this Halloween.

Wait, what’s wrong with blackface? A lot of people, thankfully, don’t need this question answered. To many, it’s obvious that it’s a lazy, non-funny costume bad idea with a depressing history that is the opposite of celebratory. Each Halloween serves as a reminder that a giant gulf remains between people who understand that blackface is in bad taste, or are willing to defer to black people who tell them so, and people who are still asking “But why?” (You know, the ones who are thinking as they read this, “You say it’s racist but I can tell you right now I’m not racist, so it’s fine if I wear it! Come on, get over it! Stop with the political correctness! I don’t understand how this is offensive! It’s a joke!”)…

For the “why” crowd (and for anyone who feels moved to have a dialogue with one of its members), here’s an explanation of what, exactly, is wrong with wearing blackface, on Halloween or ever:

Blackface is much more than just dark makeup used to enhance a costume.

Its American origins can be traced to minstrel shows. In the mid to late nineteenth century, white actors would routinely use black grease paint on their faces when depicting plantation slaves and free blacks on stage.

To be clear, these weren’t flattering representations. At all. Taking place against the backdrop of a society that systematically mistreated and dehumanized black people, they were mocking portrayals that reinforced the idea that African-Americans were inferior in every way.

According to you, Jenée, but it’s really a lot more complicated, and far less negative than that.

Minstrel shows and blackface performances, it’s true, did include unflattering stereotypes of African Americans, but white performers were not merely donning blackface to mock and belittle colored people. They were commonly doing it in order to become black. White performers wanted to become black in order to perform music with African-American roots and in order to pay affectionate tribute to old-time Southern African-American humor and culture.

When I was a boy, for several years, I grudgingly sacrificed a hour of extra sleep in order to get up and catch Amos n’ Andy re-runs on early morning television. There were things very much other than mockery and condescension that motivated me. There was a fascination in the flavorful and witty colored dialect. There was enormous charm in the very human foibles of the principal characters. And I distinctly admired the absolute brilliance, the polytropic enterprise, and the thoroughgoing rascallity of the Kingfish. Heck, if I’d been able to find examples at my local haberdasher’s, I’d likely have started wearing string ties and a tail coat in emulation of that great man. I loved the Kingfish, and –just like most American– I respected and admired the straight arrow cab driver Amos Jones.

Pre-Politically-Correct America actually had lots of diversity, and Americans loved and enjoyed that diversity. Popular entertainment reveled in exploiting ethnic stereotypes for humor and as an expression of affection. Jewish Molly Goldberg‘s ethnic characteristics were funny, but they were also heart-warming. Brooklyn Irish Chester A. Riley was crude, vulgar, and unmannerly, but he was also tough, loyal, and a good guy underneath it all.

It was the same with the old minstrel shows and Amos n’ Andy, which was a kind of continuation of the former right into the television era. Americans watched them to laugh at the characters and they also loved those characters.

It’s the Left that hates and wants to harm people.

03 Oct 2018

“We all Live in a Yale Residential College Now”

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My old entryway, left of the Dining Hall, in the South Court of Berkeley College. I lived on the top floor for two years.

Say Rich Lowry. Unfortunately, he does not mean we’re living in linenfold panelled rooms inside granite and sandstone Gothic and Tudor architecture furnished luxuriously in oak and leather, where they cook our meals for us, and wash our dishes, and a janitor arrives every morning at our door to empty our wastebasket.

No, what he means is we’re all living in an environment filled with ideologically-deranged fanatics whose heads are full of irrational grievances and unappeasable ethnic and class-based animosities who are ready to form lynch mobs or create star chamber proceedings to punish the sane and normal for deviation from the religion of Intersectionality at the drop of a hat.

Brett Kavanaugh was a very good boy, with better report card ratings in Deportment than you or me, and that has not saved him. If they can take out Brett, they can get to anybody.

HT: Bird Dog.

21 Sep 2018

Kavanaugh Accused of Connection With 1985 Yale Mock Panty Raid

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Panty Raid at Berkeley, May 18, 1956.

The same establishment elite that views Larry Flint as a free speech hero, that lectured us that we were guilty of censorship if we didn’t want tax money paying for Robert Maplethorpe’s anal horse whip art, that defends flamboyantly obscene gay pride parades down main street, and that wants sex education for third graders is shocked, shocked that members of the same fraternity that Brett Kavanaugh belonged to, back in 1985, took part in pledge hijinks alluding to the 1950s college panty raids.

Diane Herbst, at People magazine, basically quotes a hatchet job from a couple of little left-wing reptiles at the Yale Daily News:

In his first year at Yale, embattled Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh joined the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity, which had a culture “notorious for disrespecting women,” according to a new report from the Yale Daily News.

Julie Klein, who graduated in 1987 alongside Kavanaugh, described the frat as an “animal house,” while another classmate of Kavanaugh’s, Jennifer Lew, recalled on the YaleWomen Facebook page how frat brothers would “ransack” female students’ rooms while they attended classes and steal “undergarments,” reports the Yale Daily News.

On Thursday, the student newspaper published a January, 1985 photo of Kavanaugh’s DKE frat brothers holding a flag created with women’s underwear and bras as they marched across campus. Kavanaugh, reportedly a sophomore member of the frat at the time, does not appear in the image.

RTWT

Obviously what the DKE pledges were doing in 1985 was some sort of tongue-in-cheek parody of student behavior of the ancient past.

Wikipedia: Panty raid

A panty raid was an American 1950s college prank in which large groups of male students attempted to invade the living quarters of female students and steal their panties (undergarments) as the trophies of a successful raid. The term dates to February 1949.

Panty raids were the first college craze after World War II, following the 1930s crazes of goldfish swallowing or seeing how many students could fit in a phone booth. …

By the 1970s, mixed dorms and less inhibited attitudes to sexual intercourse on campus led to fading of panty raids.

But when lefties find an opportunity to smear an adversary like Judge Kavanaugh with accusations of guilt by association, the libertine left goes all Puritan on us.

15 Sep 2018

Jamie Kirchick : “Reflections on the Revolution at Yale”

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Jamie Kirchick, Pierson 2006, is running as an outsider candidate for a seat on the Yale Corporation. In Quillette, he describes the disgraceful events of 2015.

Three years ago this Fall, Yale University descended into what can only be described as a fit of mass psychosis.

On November 9, 2015, over 1,000 people—about one fifth of the undergraduate student body—walked out of classrooms and into the quad to participate in a ‘March of Resilience.’ An a cappella group led the crowd in a medley of “We Shall Overcome.” Native Indian performers formed a drum circle. “We are not victims,” a student organizer affiliated with the school’s Latino cultural center declared. “Today, we are on our way to being victors.”

Against what sinister forces did Yale’s students feel compelled to summon up their stocks of ‘resilience’ in righteous battle? The first grievance cited by the student protestors was an alleged ‘white girls only’ party thrown by one of the university’s fraternities. Word of this event had gone from a Facebook post to international headlines, tarnishing Yale’s good name in the process. Had such a party actually taken place, it indeed would have been cause for protest. But it’s hard not to be skeptical about this sort of thing, as many of them turn out to be hoaxes, often perpetrated by the very people claiming offense.

Which is exactly what an investigation by the Yale College Dean’s Office determined a month later, finding “no evidence of systematic discrimination against people of color” at said ‘white girls only’ party. The Dean did, however, fault the brothers of Sigma Alpha Epsilon for “creat[ing] a chaotic environment,” demonstrating “little regard to crowd control and overcrowding inside the house” and “behavior” that “fell short of the community standards and the kind of civic engagement that I have sought to promote.” He found them guilty, in other words, of being frat brothers.

The second supposed incident of racial injustice involved an email sent by a professor, Erika Christakis, questioning an administrative warning to students regarding Halloween costumes that perpetrate ‘cultural appropriation.’ Because Christakis had suggested that young adults should be able to make their own decisions about masks and capes, a mob of students, faculty, and deans demanded that Yale remove Christakis and her husband, fellow professor Nicholas, from their positions as residential advisors. During a two-hour, outdoor harangue of Nicholas, captured on a video that went viral, students yelled, cursed, and physically intimidated him as four Yale deans and administrators watched impassively.

While the university did not succumb to demands that the couple be sacked, the administration essentially sent the message that sided it with the students. Two weeks after the ‘March of Resilience,’ the administration announced a doubling of budgets for the various (African-American, Latino, Native American etc.) cultural centers, racial sensitivity training for faculty and administrators, and the creation of the Center for the Study of Race, Indigeneity, and Transnational Migration (which has since become the institutional home of the postmodern cultural studies journal Social Text, known primarily for its embarrassing role in the Sokal hoax). This diversity-budget bloat is part of a larger trend. And it has coincided, not coincidentally, with a doubling of tuition since the time I was a Yale freshman 15 years ago. As for the students who mobbed Nicholas Christakis, not only did the University (disregarding its own undergraduate regulations) conclude that their behavior fell short of grounds for disciplinary action, it rewarded two of them with prestigious class prizes upon graduation in 2017. …

It would be nice to have university leaders whose instinct, upon being confronted with baseless accusations that their school is suffused with racism, would be to defend the institution’s good name, not bow and capitulate. There are, no doubt, racist people at Yale, just as there are racist people everywhere. But there is no reason to believe—and, indeed, very much reason to doubt—that Yale is any more racist than the country at large (unless one takes into account its potential discrimination against Asians, which the university has implicitly acknowledged by signing onto an amicus brief defending Harvard’s allegedly anti-Asian undergraduate admissions policy).

That Yale does not, presently, have leaders willing to speak plainly to such attacks is one of the reasons I am now mounting a petition candidacy to join the university’s board of trustees (formally known as The Yale Corporation).

RTWT

04 Sep 2018

Yale Humor Magazine Retracts Issue After Snowflake Staff Proceeds to Melt

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You cannot imagine the Harvard Lampoon or the Yale Record, back in the brave old days of yore, retracting an issue because the featured humor was too raunchy or in questionable taste. Hey! we were in college.

But things are different today. Today’s students are precious, sensitive snowflakes, all woke and everything. They get triggered by references to women being rawed on basement mattresses in fraternity houses. Tasteless humor, today, is Streng verboten! meine Herren. Streng verboten!

The Yale Daily News’ own Ellsworth Toohey reports gravely:

[T]his weekend, the Rumpus crossed a line. Editors were forced to retract the publication’s annual first-year issue on Saturday in response to backlash from staff members who took offense at jokes about sexual assault that had made it into the issue.

“The black out/hooking up w freshmen jokes are really not funny,” one staffer wrote in an internal Rumpus group chat on Saturday morning, as writers and editors distributed hundreds of issues across campus. …

The staffers were reacting to an editor’s note, or “Rump’s View,” that made light of sexual assault, and to a square on the publication’s traditional “Hookup Bingo” page that included the option “Freshman’s first blackout (FREE).”

“We here at Rumpus are happy for you and would also like to congratulate you on losing your virginity,” read the editor’s note, which was addressed to the class of 2022. “Now, before you think, ‘Shit, does Rumpus know I blacked and let a senior on the baseball team raw me on that foul mattress in the Sig Nu basement?’ the answer is yes, but we’ll unpack that later.”

On Saturday morning, Rumpus reporters and editors went into damage control mode, scrambling across campus to remove copies of the new issue from residential college dining halls.

In a statement posted on the Rumpus’ Facebook page on Saturday afternoon, Kaylor and Kristina Cuello ’20, the other editor-in-chief, apologized for publishing “unacceptable content” and said the new issues were pulled from dining hall shelves immediately after a staffer raised concerns about the material.

“As editors-in-chief, we are deeply sorry that we allowed this content to be published,” the statement said. “Its presence in the issue was a major editorial oversight entirely on the part of the editors-in-chief, who were the only ones to have access to the final version of the issue.”

Twelve students have quit the publication since Saturday’s incident, according to Kaylor and Cuello. Nearly half the staffers who left were not actively involved in the publication, the editors said. Kaylor and Cuello said they plan to stay on as editors-in-chief.

RTWT

16 May 2018

Thomas Kennerly Wolfe, Jr. (1931–2018)

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When his Yale professors rejected the topic of his thesis – Communist influences on American writers, 1928–1942 – Wolfe showed his versatility in a letter to a friend dated June 9, 1956:

These stupid fucks have turned down namely my dissertation, meaning I will have to stay here about a month longer to delete all the offensive passages and retype the sumitch. They called my brilliant manuscript ‘journalistic’ and ‘reactionary,’ which means I must go through with a blue pencil and strike out all the laughs and anti-Red passages and slip in a little liberal merde, so to speak, just to sweeten it. I’ll discuss with you how stupid all these stupid fucks are when I see you.”

Molliter Ossa Cubent. [“May the earth lay lightly on his bones.” — Ovid, Heroides, VII, 162.]

HT: Vanderleun.

27 Apr 2018

“Huddle” (1932)

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My wife Karen and I watched last night an old movie I had recorded earlier that day from TCM, set at Yale.

IMDB describes the plot:

Tony, the son of Italian immigrants, works in a smoky steel mill in Gary, Indiana. He wins a company scholarship which will enable him to attend Yale college. Over the four years of his college career he learns about football, love, and class prejudice.

I can add more. Tony Amato’s (Ramon Navarro) four-year scholarship to Yale amounts to $2000 ($500 a year for tuition, room and board)!

Tony arrives at Yale (we see lots of real images of the Yale campus), and starts rooming in Fayerweather Hall, part of the long-gone Berkeley Oval that was torn down in the early 1930s.

Rooms in Fayerweather Hall were a lot bigger than in Yale residence halls in my day, and –even for Freshman Italians on scholarship– they were two-person, three-room suites! The evil Yale Administration later turned all of those into four person, three-room suites: more money to spend on hiring additional bureaucrats and funding Identity Studies Departments.

Life at Yale circa 1932 was not all rosy, however. Conniving upperclassmen arrived rapidly to meet gullible freshmen and to sell them all the furniture that came as part of the room. The audience twigs to what is going on when, after upperclassman 1 has already collected for a bureau, bed, mattress, and carpet, along comes upperclassman 2 trying to sell the same bureau.

You would think that Tony would have more problems, as a working-class Catholic of immigrant background, and an Italian to boot, fitting in. He does have a pretty thick (Mexican) accent, which he never really loses. But his suit is just fine. The only problem he has is his slightly Italianate hat. It is a bit too Chico Marx, and when it is negatively remarked upon, Tony discards it and goes bare-headed, but that, too, is a faux pas for a Yale freshman. Before long, the problem is resolved. Tony gets a perfectly suitable fedora, just like those worn by everybody else.

Surprisingly, Tony has no academic difficulties at all. We see little of him in class, but –as the football coach assures him– “You’ll learn more here outside the classroom!”

Even more surprisingly, Tony has no financial problems. He can keep up with his rich classmmates without difficulty. He dresses the same. He is never seen laboring at any student job. He hangs out at Mory’s and intends to join DKE, just like all the millionaires.

The only financial issue is the romantic one: he falls in love with a young heiress, but her father in a private talk persuades Tony that it would be wrong for him to let her marry someone like himself, lacking the means to keep her in her accustomed life style. Tony gallantly gives her up, but the young lovers –of course– do get back together in the end, complete with the rich dad’s approval.

Tony does have social problems. He is too arrogant and pushy and insensitive to others. He is bull-headed and, despite a promising start, messes up at football. His teammates and contemporaries at Yale write him off. He does not receive membership in Deke, and his best friend and roommate nobly declines his own bid out of solidarity with Tony.

The best scene, I thought, came when the angry Tony starts trying to fist fight his football coach in the coach’s office. The older coach has some defensive skills and a good punch, and he knocks Tony down. Tony barely resists the temptation to (unsportingly) pick up a blunt object and try evening the odds, and the two men wind up reconciled and friends again, laughing, admiring each other’s shiners, and the coach tending to Tony’s facial wounds.

The fateful Harvard game nears. Tony is unfortunately unwell. He covertly consults a doctor off-campus. It is appendicitis! The doc wants to hospitalize the young man and operate immediately, but Tony escapes and goes to play in the Big Game.

Predictably, Tony is visibly unwell. He performs poorly and gets benched. But as the fourth quarter’s end draws near, with the game still tied 0-0, Tony begs to go back in, and scores a touchdown. He then fails again and Harvard ties in the final moments of the game.

After the game, at the post-game banquet, students are speaking ill of Tony’s performance, but Tony’s roommate indignantly breaks his vow of silence and tells them Tony is lying near death in the hospital with a ruptured appendix. Now, they know.

In the final scene, we see Tony’s class marching into Woolsey Hall in graduation robes. The girl charges up and kisses Tony, while her father and his classmates applaud.

Real Yale students performed as extras for $5 a day (big money in 1932). The film incorporates lots of absolutely delightful real scenes of the Yale campus and New Haven. And you get to hear a ton of Yale songs, including the now-I-think-forgotten:

“Oh! More work for the undertaker,
‘Nother little job for the casket maker
In the local cemetary they are
Very very busy with a brand new grave:
No hope for Harvard, No hope for Harvard!”

And:

And a number of fraternity songs not heard in many years.

11 Apr 2018

“Free Speech” at Yale

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Woodbridge Hall, home of the Yale Administration.

How leftist exactly is Peter Salovey’s Yale Administration? So leftist that its representatives will strong-arm Yale students to prevent them from counter-demonstrating when a leftist pseudo-labor organization (i.e., a “union” of graduate students) stages a “strike” in order to shakedown the university.

Current undergraduate Esteban Elizondo describes “free speech at Yale” today in the Washington Examiner.

In April 2017, the Yale College Republicans and I organized a counter-protest against graduate students’ symbolic “hunger strike” for unionization. Our counter-protest was a barbecue right next to the grad students, but either a mistake was made or someone regretted sanctioning our event, because a few hours after the event was approved, I received an email from Holloway asking for me to call him. That is when he delivered his admonition to me.

During the barbecue, participants were actively forbidden by Director of Administrative Affairs Pilar Montalvo from engaging with the graduate student union, lest we be shut down. Montalvo’s office had a view of the protests, and when we disobeyed, she stormed out onto the plaza wildly, reiterating her threats. I later learned that it was Montalvo, who works in the Office of the President, who contacted multiple deans at Yale to pressure me to cancel the barbecue.

Regardless of who is ultimately right, it is important that campuses encourage controversial discourse. It is through these conversations that we seek out truth, and intellectual controversy should be an essential part of any university. Yale shamefully attempted to stifle a peaceful counter-protest at multiple levels and forbade two ideologically different groups from engaging with each other.

The larger message Yale intended to send us was clear: Certain discourse is forbidden on campus. Yale simply maintains the facade of free speech to pacify students and the press while intentionally fostering a campus with little ideological debate. Yale professors usually prefer classes without rigorous debate, and I noticed that, controlling for quality, students generally received higher marks when they conformed to the professor’s opinion.

RTWT

27 Mar 2018

Interpreting the Bolton Appointment

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John Bolton’s entry in the 1970 Yale Old Campus (the kind of entering freshmen yearbook that inspired Facebook). “CC” means he was in (the recently renamed) Calhoun College.

Charles Hugh Smith offers some over-the-top, and consequently amusing, speculations on the meaning of Bolton’s National Security Advisor appointment.

This wing of the Deep State, unquestionably in charge until the election of Donald Trump, finds Trump, well, interesting. Trump can congratulate Vladdy Putin on his shoo-in re-election one day and eject a bunch of Russian diplomats the next.

This sort of non-linear, non-ideologically pure “policy” (or lack thereof) discombobulates the Deep State, which is accustomed to presidents rubber-stamping their agenda and supporting their narrative.

They’re having a tough time controlling Trump, as it’s difficult to read how best to play him: is Trump a master of the Crazy Ivan or is he just winging it? Assuming the latter leaves those acting on that premise vulnerable to a Crazy Ivan once Trump has extracted whatever value he sought from the person or policy.

So how do we decrypt the appointment of Bolton? Here are two possibilities:

1. Trump appointed bete noire Bolton to do the dirty work of cleaning house and ridding the National Security Council and staff of any loyalists to previous presidents or cliques. This Bolton seems prepared to do with both alacrity and relish. This appointment also throws a bone to those demanding a harsher, more interventionist foreign policy.

Once Bolton has cleaned house and disrupted or fired the status quo holdovers from the Obama administration, he’ll be fired like everyone else. Crazy Ivan!

2. The neo-liberal /neo-conservative /neo-colonial wing of the Deep State has given up trying to evict Trump from the White House or manage him. Both of these strategies carry high risks and the assessment has likely been made that both have not just failed, they’re increasingly counter-productive, eroding the legitimacy of those pushing them.

So perhaps the dominant wing of the Deep State is finally willing to cut a deal with Trump: Trump appoints Bolton, whom the Deep State views as the adult supervising the playground, and in return, the Mueller investigation goes away and the Clintons will finally lose the protection of the security agencies. (They’ve become enormous liabilities anyway, and there’s no benefit to the high cost of continuing to protecting them.)

RTWT

28 Feb 2018

Now That’s What We Need: “A Kinder And More Generative Masculinity”

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The old Yale.

Back in 1920, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Princeton ’17, in This Side of Paradise described “The Idea of the Yale Man” this way:

    I want to go to Princeton,” said Amory. “I don’t know why, but I think of all Harvard men as sissies, like I used to be, and all Yale men as wearing big blue sweaters and smoking pipes.”

    Monsignor chuckled.

    “I’m one, you know.”

    “Oh, you’re different—I think of Princeton as being lazy and good-looking and aristocratic—you know, like a spring day. Harvard seems sort of indoors—”

    “And Yale is November, crisp and energetic,” finished Monsignor.

    “That’s it.”

    They slipped briskly into an intimacy from which they never recovered.

The Yale man in fiction was traditionally portrayed as the All-American, square-shooting man-of-action. Fictional exemplars included Frank Merriwell, Dink Stover, Flash Gordon, and even Bruce Wayne.

——————————–

At least one millenial undergraduate these days has lots of problems with that tradition.

Jun Yan Chua (a senior in Saybrook), in the OCD, writes:

Today, the idea of the “Yale Man” inspires disdain. Memes that denigrate Yale men proliferate on Facebook… Some of this outrage is well-deserved: At its worst, Yale masculinity can be sinister — indeed, criminal — as evidenced by recent allegations about sexual assault at Delta Kappa Epsilon and other fraternities. …

As scholars of gender studies have understood for years, the “patriarchy” harms men as well as women. By setting an impossibly high standard for the elusive, ideal Yale Man, the dominant culture condemns the vast majority of men to fall short, prompting them to act out and hurt others — primarily women. …

To be a “successful” Yale Man is to check off a daunting list of boxes. One must be tall, fit and subtly dressed. Outgoing and social, but not loud or crass. Not just funny and intelligent, but effortlessly so. In reality, few live up to the demands of the normative Yale Man, yet his specter lives on as a figment of our cultural imagination, haunting we who fall short.

While women face similar pressures, men probably have fewer ways of conforming to this aesthetic of Yale cool. You can be the idealized boy next door — the frat bro or student-athlete, who also happens to be in Phi Beta Kappa. Or you might become a Yale politico — Yale Political Union extraordinaire in the streets, policy wonk in the sheets. Or you could be a man of arts and letters — think theater, a cappella or The New Journal. Fall outside these tropes, and goodbye social capital. The intense pressure leads Yale men to seek out sites of male bonding, only to find that these, too, disappoint, with their petty cruelties and oversized egos.

I exaggerate, but only slightly. In fact, the vision of the idealized Yale Man has a long cultural history. In 1912, Owen Johnson published his best-selling novel, “Stover at Yale,” which documents the titular character’s attempts at navigating Yale’s social hierarchies. Driven by its ladder of fraternities and societies and its emphasis on football, brutal competition characterized Yale at the turn of the 20th century.

That atmosphere took a toll on real-life as well as fictitious Yalies. …

We urgently need to reimagine Yale masculinity. … So how might we create a kinder and more generative masculinity? Instead of focusing on Yale cool as an aesthetic, let’s transform it into an ethic. Rather than fixate on who we are, let’s think about what we can do — for ourselves as for others. And let’s tell more varied stories about “real men” at Yale — stories of redemption as well as perfection, of struggle as well as triumph, of vulnerability as well as strength.

I expect the reader can easily imagine what I think of people who take courses in “Gender Studies,” who take that kind of contemptible nonsense seriously, and my response to the idea of a “Kinder and More Generative Masculinity.” The latter phrase provokes in my mind the image of a frail, sissified young man sitting on an egg.

20 Feb 2018

Deconstructing Whiteness at Yale

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Claudia Rankine, genius!

Claudia Rankine is a professional aggrieved-African-American. In 2014, she received the National Book Award for poetry for Citizen: An American Lyric, a tract exposing America’s “systemic racism.”

Two years later, she was awarded the $625,000 MacArthur genius grant for her poetic efforts at making people “understand that whiteness is not inevitable, and that white dominance is not inevitable.”

So thoroughly committed to its own denunciation is the American Establishment, that Rankine is now teaching a combined English/African American Studies course at Yale.

Yale Course Catalog:

* ENGL 233B/AFAM 232B, CONSTRUCTIONS OF WHITENESS Claudia Rankine
An interdisciplinary approach to the study of whiteness. Discussion of whiteness as a culturally constructed and economically incorporated entity, which touches upon and assigns value to nearly every aspect of American life and culture. HU [meaning its a “Humanities” area course]
T 1:30 PM — 3:20 PM

The College Fix obtained a copy of the course syllabus, which explains that the goal of the class is to “create a lab for the construction of counternarratives around whiteness in any creative form: play, poem, memoir, etc.”

The class is divided into eight topics: Constructions of Whiteness, White Property, White Masculinity, White Femininity, White Speech, White Prosperity, White Spaces and White Imagination.

Readings include: Michael Kimmel’s “Angry White Men: American Masculinity at the End of an Era,” Richard Dyer’s “White: Essays on Race and Culture,” and Richard Delgado’s and Jean Stefanic’s “Critical White Studies: Looking Behind the Mirror,” Hazel Carby’s “White Woman, Listen!,” Juliana Spahr’s “My White Feminism,” and Professor Rankine’s own work, “The White Card.”

Obviously, if you are a normal person, you would think that the United States has for the last 60-odd years made constant and extravagant, even sometimes highly questionable, efforts to eliminate racism and to integrate and advance African-Americans.

It is painfully obvious that Ms. Rankine’s awards, recognition as a poet and “genius,” her opportunity to teach at Yale, and the very recognition of the nonsense and stupidity that she professionally spouts as some kind of serious discourse worthy of inclusion in the curriculum of a great university constitutes racial favoritism requiring the most extreme kind of intellectual and moral acrobatics on the part of the precise tippy-top of this society’s establishment.

But when you can get $625,000 genius awards, national literary prizes, an apartment in a Manhattan high rise, and a teaching gig at Yale, all for whining, complaining, and kicking your benefactor culture and society in the teeth, you are obviously going to bitch, and whine, and kick to a fare-thee-well.

Personally, I’d rather pay these kinds of people to sing about Jesus and play the banjo.

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