I genuinely try to avoid stories that are just going to upset me but have no actual relevance to my life (because there is enough going on in the world today that scares the pants off me.) But if you wake up in the morning looking for something to be outraged about, Twitter disappoints. Apparently, today is “College students doing something stupid day.” Marc has already covered the MSU student who filed a complaint against his roommate for the unpardonable sin of watching a Ben Shapiro video. Then I stumbled across a news story about college students protesting their school’s Chief of Police because – get this – he LIKED something that Trump Tweeted!
There’s an old episode of the Simpsons where a news story flashes on TV about a rebellion at a children’s camp and Homer starts muttering “Please don’t let it be the boy. Please don’t let it be the boy.” But of course it is! That’s how I feel whenever I see these stories: “Please don’t let it be Smith College. Please don’t let it be Smith College.” And sadly, I am often correct. Because of course it is.
That’s right. This happened at my alma mater. The school that issued me the diploma I will be paying for until the day that I die. Protest has been a way of life on campus since I was a student and we all marched against apartheid. But now apparently, protest is the whole REASON to attend colleges like this and students attend convocation in their underwear (seriously. It’s a thing now.)
Daniel Hect was appointed the new chief of police for both Smith College and nearby Mount Holyoke (also notorious for protesting the “Vagina Monologues” because it does not include “women without vaginas.”) back in February. He announced his new job on his personal Twitter account, thus alerting the people who troll through every Twitter post you’ve ever made just hoping to find something offensive you’ve written. Students soon found that he had “liked” such controversial Tweets as the NRA wishing everybody a Merry Christmas and asserting the “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.” Oh yeah, and one of President Trump’s Tweets about building the wall.
Note that Hect is not accused of writing anything racist, homophobic or sexist. There’s no threats, no profanity. He didn’t reTweet Alex Jones or Milo or some alt right group. Nope. He just liked some fairly innocuous things that the NRA and the president Tweeted out. And for that, he has been put on administrative leave.
My first thought was “My God, these kids are going to have such a hard time when they get out in the world.” And my second thought was “Twitter is going to be the death of us all.”
There’s been a pattern over recent months for people to go dumpster diving through Twitter looking for offensive comments. It’s why Tucker Carlson no longer has any advertisers besides My Pillow and Fox network promos. It’s why The Oscars went without a host this year. But now, some ordinary Joe has been suspended from his job for merely LIKING some things others Tweeted out (that you might disagree with but don’t even border on being offensive.)
The student who found these horrible Tweets wrote that it was
“unacceptable for someone in charge of keeping any community safe, let alone a campus as diverse as MHC’s, to be publicly displaying his support for hateful regimes and organizations, as well as for individuals who demonize migrants from Mexico or other latin american nations.” In an attempt to head off the controversy, the colleges held several events to try to ease the students’ worries. Students questioned Hect and he responded that he wanted the campus police to grow a better relationship with the community so students can get to know “the campus police as human beings.” But students were more concerned about his offensive Tweet liking than their personal safety. Hect assured them that he wasn’t a Trump supporter but that “when [Trump] did something that I thought he did well,I wanted to like [the tweets] in hopes to lead to more good behavior.” He apologized for liking the Tweets that referred to “building a wall” and called that a huge mistake.
Hect also apologized for liking the tweets that mentioned building a wall, calling it “a huge mistake.”
He concluded that he was “committed to developing relationships and trust with all members of our communities — students, faculty, staff and campus police.”
And yet the colleges still put him on leave.
I have really bad news for these snowflakes (and I think that term gets tossed around way too much but is appropriate here.) They are going to have a really hard time finding any law enforcement officers to protect them that DON’T have at least some affinity for the NRA and president Trump. I’ve been pretty vocal about disliking the president and I don’t follow him on Twitter. But that doesn’t mean I refuse to associate with people who do. Are you going to do this for the rest of your life? If your mother needs open heart surgery, are you going to ask for a specialist with experience, or go through Twitter making sure the doctor isn’t a Trump supporter? When you take your car in for service do you first check the parking lot to make sure there aren’t any NRA bumper stickers on the cars in the employee section? Where does this insanity end?
So for any of you parents out there considering bribery or claiming that your daughters row crew in order to get them into one of these elite colleges, please note that tuition room and board at Smith College will run you about $75,000 a year. Or you can get them liberal indoctrination for free by watching MSNBC.