A few days ago I wrote about Bret Weinstein, a professor of evolutionary biology at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington—a university hotbed of Regressive Leftism. After refusing to leave campus after the demands of students on the “Day of Absence” (in earlier years, students of color left campus on that day to engage in anti-racist activities, but this year they demanded that white people leave campus and white students don’t go to class), Weinstein was viciously defamed by students, who showed up at his class, and was called a racist. There were many demands for his resignation. It was a debacle, and embarrassing to the College. It didn’t help that the College President, George Bridges, appeared to be cowed by the students’ demands. Naturally, very few no left-wing newspapers or websites mentioned this incident.
Yesterday Dave Rubin did a live interview with Weinstein. I’ve embedded the video below, which is two hours long (it doesn’t begin till 3 minutes in). I haven’t yet watched the whole thing, but Grania has, and sent this summary—despite her broken left arm:
An interview with the beleaguered and much abused Bret Weinstein about the recent racial turmoil on Evergreen Campus surrounding the Day Of Absence. Weinstein comes across as a remarkably sane and fair person, never losing his compassion and understanding for others. A point of interest is where this recent spate of authoritarianism—and the subsequent tendency to anarchy comes from. As a footnote, ever the evolutionary biologist, Weinstein notes that the same thing that makes a mother love her infant can lead humans to view the outsider as the enemy; however he adds that we can control this once we are aware of it.
In the meantime, President Bridges has issued a statement, “Tolerance and respect show the way forward,” which shows he’s less of a coward than I thought. Although he doesn’t mention Weinstein, he seems to be highly critical of the treatment meted out by the spoiled and entitled students. However, I think the statement below is sufficiently ambiguous that the Regressive students could interpret it as supporting them (the “destructive course” could be seen as that of people like Weinstein, though surely Bridges intended it to refer to the students themselves).
At The Evergreen State College over the past week, we have had deep and sometimes intense exchanges among a group of students, faculty, and college administrators over equity and treatment of students. Some students on campus experience racism that interferes with their education. Others, including faculty, believe their freedom of expression is being restricted.
These are important issues. Discrimination of any form is not acceptable or tolerated on our campus. Free speech must be fostered and encouraged. We are an institution dedicated to learning. We must treat each other with respect and care. Every faculty member, student, and staff member must have the freedom to speak openly about their views.
Unless we continually seek to listen and to understand, rather than listening to react, we will not fulfill Evergreen’s mission to learn across differences.
We may disagree with each other. However, disagreement is one thing; dehumanization is another. Over the week, a few members of the Evergreen community have used traditional and social media to malign, mock, or misrepresent those with whom they disagree.
While the majority of students, faculty, and staff are fully engaged in the teaching and learning work of the college, a few are on a destructive course of action that hurts themselves and gives a distorted and false impression of our community.
This behavior is wrong and must stop. It does not represent us, and we will not allow it to define us.
Our students are as always Evergreen’s top priority. We must continue to support our faculty and staff, who are educators by intent, action, and example. Evergreen Police Services will remain an essential part of ensuring safety for all. Campus remains open and classes are in session.
Conversations about equity and free speech will continue. These are incredibly complex issues to navigate. We at Evergreen have the courage to try. With tolerance and respect, my belief is that we can succeed, and continue to learn from each other.
In the meantime, Weinstein is still considered by police to be endangered, and has been advised to stay away from campus. Why doesn’t President Bridges do something about that?
h/t: Grania, Robert