Politics

Black Lives Matter Owns Dartmouth

Administration says BLM will not be punished for violent, profane library protest

Fearing the consequences of crossing the Black Lives Matter movement’s agenda, Dartmouth College is refusing to punish several unruly activists for their disorderly conduct in the college’s library last November.

The incident in question involved a mob of BLM student activists storming the college’s library and hurling profanities at studying students. Some activists even shoved the students and engaged with them physically, including one woman who was pinned up against a wall as the protesters shouted “filthy white b***h” at her.

“F*** you, you filthy white f***s!”

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“F*** you and your comfort!”

“F*** you, you racist s***!”

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These are some of the things the protesters shouted at the students inside the library, according to The Dartmouth Review.

Shortly after the protest occurred, Dartmouth’s Office of the President released a statement indicating its intentions to investigate “all reports of violations of college policy” and to “enforce appropriate sanctions.”

“Such behavior is antithetical to our values and goals as an institution.”

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“Such behavior is antithetical to our values and goals as an institution,” the statement read. “And as Dartmouth’s citizenship pledge reminds us, we must treat each person with dignity and respect. Abusive language aimed at community members — by any group, at any time, in any place — is not acceptable.”

But fearing severe backlash if it appeared to conflict with the BLM activists, Dartmouth ultimately succumbed to the movement’s power when Meg Ramsden, the Assistant Director of Alumni Relations, wrote that the students in question would not be punished. After concluding its investigation into the 13 complaints that were filed as a result of the disruption, Ramsden wrote that Dartmouth determined that “no rules for which there are recorded and communicated sanctions were broken.”

Although Ramsden said that the BLM activists did not violate Dartmouth’s standards, she added that “the spirit of the recent Moving Dartmouth Forward Citizenship Pledge was clearly violated.”

“In these cases when it is a struggle to find the balance between that freedom and respectful behavior, it’s imperative that the Dartmouth community affirms its core principles of respect for every member of the community and everyone’s right of freedom of expression, and then reflect on the mistakes made against the backdrop of a commitment to civil discourse,” Ramsden wrote.

Ramsden’s lack of logic did not escape further notice.

“Just what principle are we to derive from Ms. Ramsden’s tortured logic: that any group can invade the library and verbally insult students who otherwise were calmly and quietly studying there?”

“Just what principle are we to derive from Ms. Ramsden’s tortured logic: that any group can invade the library and verbally insult students who otherwise were calmly and quietly studying there?” wrote ’79 alumnus Joseph Asch on the Dartblog.

Asch proceeded to point out that the disruption in the library clearly violated several of Dartmouth’s policies against disorderly conduct, including “conduct (including by way of example, obstruction, noise, or the display of banners or objects) that prevents or disrupts the effective carrying out of a college function or approved activity.”

These blatant contradictions in policy beg the question: Would Dartmouth have responded in the same dismissive manner if a group of conservative college students stormed into the library, pushed students around, and hurled profanities and insults at them?

“If the College Republicans are still in a playful mood, they might go nuts in Baker [Library] night after night and see how the administration reacts,” Asch wrote. “Will Meg [Ramsden] and the lawyers who wrote her letter still believe that high-volume, in-your-face behavior falls under the principle that ‘In an academic institution, however, freedom of speech is mission-critical’?”

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