Princeton Gives in to Student Tantrums
After a 32-hour sit-in protest put on by student activists, Princeton University president Christopher Eisgruber announced Thursday night that the institution would begin addressing the students’ concerns. What are those concerns? Those concerns, that so deeply troubled Princeton’s black student population that they were moved to such a dramatic protest? Racial injustice? Violent bullying? Brutality from the university’s security officials?
Um, not quite.
The students are upset because Princeton’s legacy comes with a heaping helping of President Woodrow Wilson, a progressive Democrat who once held the same position Eisgruber now occupies. His name adorns the School of Public and International Affairs, and a mural of Wilson hangs in the student dining hall.
“Having to walk by buildings that have his name, having to walk by his mural, having to live in residential colleges that didn’t want our presence on campus, that’s marginalizing,” said Asanni York, a black junior. “People are hurt by that. All this matters because, at the end of the day, black people’s feelings matter just as much as any other people’s feelings matter.”
How quickly these movements deteriorate! We’ve already gone from Black Lives Matter to Black Feelings Matter. One can only assume that by next November, we’ll be down to Black Chewing Gum Matters.
Wilson could be regarded as somewhat racist, though that wasn’t anything particularly unusual for a Democrat in those days. Once elected president, he permitted his cabinet appointees to continue segregating their respective departments, though this process was already in progress before he got there.
President Eisgruber said Princeton would take the student activists seriously. “We appreciate the willingness of the students to work with us to find a way forward for them, for us and for our community,” he said. “We were able to assure them that their concerns would be raised and considered through appropriate processes.”
Princeton will now consider a proposal to remove Wilson’s name from the Public and International Affairs building, and they will also consider removing the mural. Also in the works: Better “cultural sensitivity training” for the faculty and special rooms on campus for “cultural affinity groups.”
Instead of doing any of that, Princeton would be better served to sit these students down in a “wake up and smell the coffee” room.
When there is real injustice, no one can fault any man or woman who demonstrates the courage necessary to stand against that injustice. But when the only injustice is that done to your feelings…then you are not protesting for a just cause. You are throwing a temper tantrum.
Wilson is hardly a conservative icon; his view of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution as irrelevant and restricting documents that are subject to almost endless interpretation is the root of much evil in our modern federal government.
But in a 1912 campaign speech, we see that even this progressive liberal was leagues ahead of the modern Democratic Party and light-years ahead of the current Black Lives Matter movement:
I am not one of those who wish to break connection with the past; I am not one of those who wish to change for the mere sake of variety. The only men who do that are the men who want to forget something […] Change is not worthwhile unless it is improvement.
Oh, if today’s liberals only understood that, our conflict with them would not be nearly so vicious or uncompromising.