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Campus derangement comes to Washington

The Kavanaugh affair is college politics transposed onto the real world

It was bound to happen. The brutal, drawn-out confirmation battle over Brett Kavanaugh may have seemed like a shocking development to some. But to those of us who are familiar with campus politics, it was honestly more of the same. The Kavanaugh affair is the logical next step in the political philosophy that has reigned over college campuses for years now: An evidence-free, ideological crusade that relies on mere allegations and feelings rather than facts and logic.

The particular circumstances of this whole controversy were also markedly similar to what we often see on campuses across the country: A man accused of a sex crime on the basis of either no evidence whatsoever or else contradictory evidence. In this case, Kavanaugh’s various accusers could find absolutely nobody to corroborate their claims; there was no contemporary evidence of any kind to support their accusations; and their stories changed multiple times and in critical ways; and all of the named witnesses in each case could not substantiate the claims in any way.

Whatever you think of these allegations on a personal level, it was impossible to deny that they simply couldn’t carry the weight of the charges. But that didn’t stop people insisting that Kavanaugh had to go. And when it was clear the evidence wouldn’t suffice, he was attacked on several other, familiar grounds: He was a frat boy, he reportedly drank a lot, he is privileged, he is white. This is the stuff of campus tribunals, brought all the way to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The politics predictably raged on campus: A group of students at the University of Texas had their pro-Kavanaugh signs destroyed by a furious student who was part of an angry mob. The Harvard undergraduate council demanded the school investigate Kavanaugh “before he is allowed back on campus to teach.” Socialists at that university turned out to oppose him. A Georgetown professor demanded that the “entitled white men” who were “justifying a serial rapist’s arrogated entitlement” be murdered, castrated and fed to pigs. And so on.

We have sadly come to expect these sorts of things from our colleges and universities. It is another thing entirely when this sort of behavior spills into the halls of Congress. One thing is certain: It will not end with Kavanaugh. This is in all likelihood the new normal. We can almost certainly look forward to the spread of campus politics, off-campus. And it will not be pleasant.

MORE: The worst of the worst school-related Brett Kavanaugh stories

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