Once upon a time, Wesleyan students would have responded through grassroots organizing, not through supplicating at the feet of administrators and committees, asking them to do their protesting for them. The radical students I remember from Wesleyan’s past had a do-it-yourself ethos, understanding that they could not expect to change structures by working within them. Today’s Wesleyan students could have reacted to the piece in question by writing a response in the Argus. They could have started their own radical newspaper. They could have leafleted, or invited speakers, or used any other means to respond with better, more enlightened speech. By going straight to authority, they have instead embraced establishment power and asked it to be part of a liberatory struggle. That is folly. Institutions like Wesleyan may be made up of radicals, but they are by their nature conservative entities; that’s the nature of self-protective institutions. I’m sure many Wesleyan activists are familiar with Audre Lorde’s wise advice that we will never tear down the master’s house with the master’s tools.
Freddie deBoer. The kids of helicopter parents assuming that it’s in the order of things that social problems are solved by the university’s assuming an in loco parentis role — because deference to parental authority, both in its literal form and in its various extensions, is what they have been indoctrinated into — this is today’s Stockholm Syndrome. “Be a better daddy, Daddy.”