He provoked ‘white supremacist backlash’
Bret Weinstein was driven off campus to teach because the campus police said they weren’t allowed to protect him.
Now the white biology professor might be driven off campus under Evergreen State College’s own disciplinary process.
More than 50 professors at the public college – nearly a quarter of faculty – have signed a statement as of Friday afternoon calling themselves “angry and frustrated and concerned” by the backlash against students and the university.
They demanded Weinstein be punished for his response to students who cornered him and called him racist after he refused to leave campus on the anti-white “Day of Absence”:
Demonstrate accountability by pursuing a disciplinary investigation against Bret Weinstein according to guidelines in the Social Contract and Faculty Handbook. Weinstein has endangered faculty, staff, and students, making them targets of white supremacist backlash by promulgating misinformation in public emails, on national television, in news outlets, and on social media.
The Social Contract, however, would seem to validate Weinstein’s response, which was largely critical tweets, a Wall Street Journal op-ed and media interviews. Its second paragraph, which is bolded:
A central focus of those [Evergreen] values is freedom—freedom to explore ideas and to discuss those ideas in both speech and print; freedom from reprisal for voicing concerns and beliefs, no matter how unpopular. It’s this freedom that is so necessary in a vibrant, dynamic learning community.
Faculty seem to be referring to sections further down that Weinstein allegedly violated:
The individual members of the Evergreen community are responsible for protecting each other and visitors on campus from physical harm, from personal threats, and from uncivil abuse. Civility is not just a word; it must be present in all our interactions. …
All members of the Evergreen community should strive to prevent the financial, political or other exploitation of the campus by an individual or group.
The statement is being circulated by Julie Russo, whose expertise is “media studies, gender & women’s studies, sexuality and queer studies,” and Elizabeth Williamson, whose expertise is English literature and theater studies, according to a Friday listserv email from Russo obtained by The College Fix.
At the request of a staffer who received the email, Russo added a “staff in solidarity” section for staffers who want to sign. Fewer than 20 staff have signed so far.
It says whites on campus “who have power within the institution … bear a particularly large share of responsibility” for “the racist actions of others,” and faculty must “honor and live up to the demands” of student protesters.
They pledge to participate “actively and self-critically” in unspecified “mandatory trainings” each year, which seem to be race-related: “Holding each other accountable when we act in racist ways against our colleagues or our students, according to shared language and understanding developed in the trainings.”
The statement applauds Bridges for not punishing student protesters under the “misguided language” of the student conduct code:
We vehemently reject the claim that students have been violent simply because they have been loud and emphatic. There is a difference between exercising the right to freely voice an opinion and inciting violence—and that difference has nothing to do with volume or forcefulness. We support the demands made by students and honor the positive institutional change they have already achieved through their protests.
Their “most urgent demands” that don’t involve punishing Weinstein:
Center student perspectives in a persistent media approach to counter the alt-right narratives that are demonizing Evergreen and Day of Absence specifically.
Take seriously the threats made to individual community members [apparently not including Weinstein] and use all available institutional resources to protect them.
The Fix has asked the administration for comment on the faculty statement.