URLs du Jour


Oy vey! Again with the sluggard, in Proverbs 26:14:

As a door turns on its hinges, so a sluggard turns on his bed.

It's nice to know that even thousands of years ago, (a) there were door hinges; (b) people liked to sleep.

■ An eminently predictable trajectory of news stories over the past week, focusing on the University Near Here.

  1. Students with nothing better to do shortly before finals fill their empty lives with alcohol at the slightest excuse [Seacoast Online]: Drinking UNH students celebrate Cinco de Mayo. Attractive young ladies wearing sombreros are pictured, with young men named Alex Sanchez and Andre Filadelfo, who don't seem to have any problems with it. There's misbehavior, of course:

    Kristine Claremont was dropping off her daughter at Oyster River Middle School around 1:30 p.m. and witnessed a man urinating in the parking lot of the school. “It’s disgusting. Absolutely disgusting,” she said, questioning why the district would even hold school.

    … but, other than drunken rowdiness, no problemo!

  2. Ah, but that's not to last! [NH1]: UNH student says others behaving improperly toward Mexican culture on Cinco De Mayo.

    A University of New Hampshire student's video calling out another student for wearing a poncho on Cinco de Mayo has sparked a national conversation about cultural appreciation.

    Danique Montique, a sophomore at the University of New Hampshire, posted to Facebook about her feelings regarding the "students who chose to demean and appropriate Mexican culture," on Cinco de Mayo.

    In her post, Montique added a video posted to YouTube of her yelling at a student for wearing a poncho, saying he is perpetuating stereotypes of Mexican culture.

  3. And things escalated [WMUR]: Students, faculty at UNH discuss recent racial incidents.

    Following accusations of racial injustice from students at the University of New Hampshire, the school’s administration is hoping it can work with students to solve the problem.

    The university held a packed meeting on campus following protests overnight.

    The students involved in the protest said it started when one of them posted videos from Cinco de Mayo of fellow students dressed in sombreros and ponchos, something she took offense to. The videos went viral and prompted a backlash, including threats and a social media post of someone in blackface. The group called that a tipping point.

    UNH issued a written statement! So you know it's serious.

    "There has been an increase in incidents involving uncivil, even hateful, behavior," UNH said. "We condemn all such acts. Every member of our community deserves to feel safe and respected, and we will not tolerate threatening behavior or bullying on social media or in person."

    No word as yet about how many "incidents" were fabricated "to draw attention to concerns about the campus climate”.

    People were really hacked off about that "blackface" thing, though:

    “Blackface is a direct death threat,” another student said. “You will never know how that feels because you cannot take this skin off. I’m black and you’re white, and you’ll never understand what it feels like to walk on this campus as a person of color.”

  4. But for the record, the blackface guy pleads innocence [NH1]: UNH student seen in 'racist blackface' on Instagram says it was bedtime facial mask.

    Twenty-one-year-old Eric Buchwald said he is wearing a red robe and a dark-gray clay mask in a photo posted to Instagram by another user. The photo of Buchwald was posted to the account "blackoutlamers" Wednesday with the caption, "as a black woman, I was forced to become the very thing society deemed me to be; angry."

    The caption was apparently added by someone else.

  5. And even the Boston media is taking notice [NBCBoston]: University of New Hampshire Group Calls for Change After Cinco de Mayo Celebration.

    A community group at the University of New Hampshire is calling for change after a wild Cinco de Mayo celebration at the Durham campus. The group says students who celebrate with sombreros, fake mustaches and ponchos are appropriating Mexican culture.

    Representatives from a Facebook group called “All Eyes on UNH” refused to be identified and wouldn’t talk on camera, but told NBC Boston over the phone, “It’s time for students to understand that Americans celebrating Cinco de Mayo in this way is not only culturally insensitive.”

    It's unclear whether the alleged student on the phone stopped talking without completing that thought, or if the NBC reporter just stopped listening.

    You can check out the Facebook group All Eyes on UNH; their "About" says: "We are members of the UNH community that hold the mirror up to those who act unjustly."

    Because political activism at UNH is not strident enough.

■ Possibly related, although I hope not: the College Fix notes a recent editorial from the WaPo, and the reaction: Washington Post urges colleges to censor speech if someone thinks it’s racist.

In response to the racist-banana incident at the private American University – now under investigation by the U.S. attorney in D.C. as well as the FBI – the editorial board has declared that all colleges should censor students if someone thinks their speech or behavior is racist […]

That editorial didn't sit well with many First Amendment fans, including Eugene Volokh at the Volokh Conspiracy blog, hosted by … the WaPo itself.

And the editorial’s proposal is an awful idea. At public universities, it would violate the First Amendment; at private universities, it would violate many of the universities’ stated commitments to open debate, as well as basic principles of academic freedom.

As usual, the "liberals" are getting increasingly illiberal.

■ Advice to convenient Constitutionalists from David Harsanyi at Reason: You Want Checks and Balances? Stop Ignoring the Constitution When You're in Power. He applies Occam's Razor to recent news:

It's difficult to believe that President Donald Trump is both a clueless idiot, unable to spell or read or earn a single cent on his own merit; and a nefarious mastermind, capable of bamboozling the entire nation so he can hand over the White House to Russia. The truth is the plausible explanation for the timing of the Comey firing—and the many other political missteps of this administration—is remarkably undramatic. Trump just isn't very good at being president.

There, that was easy.