Evergreen State College asks student vigilantes to put away their baseball bats and stop patrolling the campus

This is something you’ll see only on right-wing websites, so I’m seeking confirmation elsewhere to assure those who automatically reject reports appearing on places like The College Fix. (Granted, some of their reports have been mistaken or exaggerated, which is why I check.)  As I reported yesterday—and this has now been confirmed by police—over the past few days some Regressive students at The Evergreen State College (TESC) in Olympia, Washington, have been patrolling the campus with baseball bats, and there has also been some damage to property, including graffiti and rocks thrown through the windows of science buildings. As the Fix reported on Monday:

An official at Evergreen State College sent a memo to students Sunday asking an apparent group of campus vigilantes who have taken to patrolling the grounds armed with bats or batons to end the practice, according to an email forwarded to The College Fix. 

The email was from Vice President for Student Affairs Wendy Endress, who in her memo addressed to “colleagues” included the message sent to students Sunday by Sharon Goodman, director of Evergreen’s Residential and Dining Service, or RAD, asking the “community patrol” to lay down its weapons.

The Olympia, Wash.-based campus is closed today due to an unspecified “external threat”; it was also closed for nearly two days last week due to a “direct threat to campus safety.”

Now comes word that students apparently took their safety into their own hands. The June 4 memo from Goodman to students states in part:

Dear RAD Students,

We are aware of a small group of students coordinating a community patrol of housing and campus. We acknowledge and understand the fear and concerns that are motivating these actions. We also understand that these students are seeking to provide an alternative source of safety from external entities as well as those community members who they distrust.

Community patrols can be a useful tool for helping people to feel safe, however the use of bats or similar instruments is not productive. Some members of this group have been observed carrying batons and/or bats. Carrying bats is causing many to feel unsafe and intimidated. The bats must be put away immediately in order to protect all involved. Non-students participating in this activity are advised to leave campus.

Goodman’s note goes on to invite students to workshops Monday with “trained restorative justice facilitators” to help them finish out their final week of school.

Goodman and Endress did not respond to several requests by The College Fix seeking comment Monday to confirm their emails or comment further on the matter. An email and phone call to campus spokesman Zach Powers on Monday afternoon was also not immediately addressed.

As always, Evergreen keeps its mouth shut, especially Zach Powers, who is supposed to field questions but apparently has decided that silence is the better part of information.

Note the osculation of the students’ rumps by the college: “Community patrols can be a useful tool”, and “We acknowledge and understand the fear and concerns that are motivating these actions.” Seriously? What are the bat-wielding students below afraid of? Who are they trying to protect? Are there any right-wing students who are intimidating people? No. Are there students who are endangered for their beliefs? No, except by the kind of goons you see in the picture below. No, the vigilantes aren’t trying to protect people; they’re trying to intimidate them.

This is from the Twitter page of Professor Bret Weinstein, who ignited protests at TESC by refusing to leave campus when white people were “encouraged” to do so by students. He says that people were actually struck by the thugs, but haven’t reported it. I can understand why!

Here’s graffiti posted by Weinstein:

And further reprisals against Weinstein, in the form of a fake Facebook page, to damage him for his single email.

It is interesting that YouTube videos showing the bullying students attacking Weinstein and the invertebrate President Bridges—videos that were taken by the students—are being removed. This can only be because the students realize that they don’t look so heroic after all, but rather like a vigilante gang, which is what they are. Their narrative is undermined by evidence they produced themselves.

As I’ve noted before, both Bret Weinstein and his wife Heather Heying are biology professors at TESC, and both have superb teaching evaluations (see here and here).  A student I know took their courses as an undergraduate and sent me this evaluation:

They were my mentors in undergrad and are truly exceptional teachers — really, unparalleled; they taught me most of what I know about how to think. 

. . . they are phenomenal teachers — I doubt there are any like them in the world. 

I think it’s likely that Weinstein and Heying will part company with TESC, though I hope the University will create a way for them to stay in safety. And if that happens, it would be a terrible loss for Evergreen, but they’ll have only themselves to blame.

54 Comments

  1. Randy schenck
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    Surprising the “students” settle for baseball bats. Why not guns? After all, this is America and what better way to create that safe place for all of you at the school.

    • Damien
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 10:32 am | Permalink

      Supposedly baseball bats are easier to acquire thant guns. I know, this is America, guns might be easy to acquire but bats have to be cheaper.

      It’s the wild west all over again !

      • Randy schenck
        Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:01 am | Permalink

        I’m guessing if mom and dad could spring for the tuition and all that goes with it, they could throw in another grand for a good semi-automatic. They could then weigh which was a larger waste of money, the tuition or the gun.

    • jrhs
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 10:42 am | Permalink

      This brings up the question: What if this happened at the University of Texas at Austin where students are allowed to carry handguns on campus?

    • loren russell
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      The “external threat” was an anonymous caller who said he [I assume!] had a .44 magnum and would shoot as many liberals as possible. I’m sure baseball bats are effective against the guy with the .44.

      But at least they’re putting the “Green” in Evergreen — wooden bats only!

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      Because guns are championed by the NRA and therefore bad.

      Beating people to death with a baseball bat is far more civilised. Hell, they can wrap it in barbwire and give it a girls’ name like Lucille and play Zombie Apocalypse all day because college isn’t for learning anymore, it’s just cosplay.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

      Guns would require a “trigger” warning.

  2. Damien
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    This evaluation by the student is incredible. I want to meet these teachers. Their classes should be filmed.

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      I was thinking the same thing. I really wish his classes were on youtube.

      Since you had the same thought I did I strongly recommend you take a look at Robert Sapolsky’s UC Berkeley class on Human Behavioral Biology on Youtube.

    • dabertini
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      My feeling exactly. You can tell by the email that Bret wrote and the way he interacts with the abusive students that he is an excellent teacher.

      • BJ
        Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

        Well, that’s why the student protesters made a list of all his current students (with pictures and addresses!), harassing and intimidating several (according to Weinstein, even going so far as to follow them around campus and show up at some of their homes). They knew he wasn’t a racist or white supremacist because their in his class and have interacted with him, and therefore had the temerity to disagree with the protesters.

  3. GBJames
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 10:53 am | Permalink

    “restorative justice”.

    This is a weird phrase that I heard in another context just two days ago. It was a neighborhood meeting to discuss a liquor license application for a restaurant that is going to open in the location of a former bar. The bar had not been a good neighbor and one of the speakers was demanding “restorative justice”. I have no idea what might constitute such a thing. Free meals?

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      If I am not mistaken, it is taken from various Native American (and I think also, but could be wrong, African) traditions, where someone who commits a wrong has to more literally put things right, and get the community he broke back together again.

      • GBJames
        Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

        So how is it supposed to work when the culprit is no longer around?

        • BJ
          Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

          You take everyone who looks like that person (no matter how long ago this person did the thing they’re talking about) and treat them like pariahs, demanding they bow to your every whim.

          Isn’t that what the hierarchy of oppression all about?

        • Posted June 8, 2017 at 11:43 am | Permalink

          I think that’s where it is community-to-community sometimes. Or family-to, etc. I agree that the principles are harder (and more unjust) in these cases.

  4. Posted June 7, 2017 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Yeah, i can see how this is getting out of hand. The Uber-Left has gone nuts. Unfortunately they don’t understand that this is one of the things that helped elect Trump. Something they themselves didn’t want.

    I’m seeing Liberals and Progressives fragment in a way that wouldn’t have seemed possible 10 years ago. If this keeps up Conservatives will own the government for the foreseeable future.

    • GBJames
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:07 am | Permalink

      Something they themselves didn’t want.

      This isn’t necessarily so. Case in point:

      Susan Sarandon.

      On the extremes, people aren’t able to detect the obvious differences between Republicans and Democrats, between Clinton and Trump.

      • Zeph
        Posted June 7, 2017 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

        I am reminded of something Noam Chomsky said many years ago at a lecture I attended. During Q&A, somebody asserted that there wasn’t any difference between the Democrats and the Republicans so we needed to ignore them and follow other avenues. One might think that Chompsky would agree, given his critical analysis of American foreign policy under administrations from both parties; clearly he has no illusions that one of the mainstream parties is pure. However Noam spoke with some passion to the effect that the difference amounts to thousands of lives around the world and we would be ethically remiss to dismiss that as unimportant.

        In today’s speak, seeking purism over pragamatism in voting is a sign of privilege, coming from believing that the Republican/Democratic difference won’t affect oneself too strongly – while ignoring the massive differences it can make for others with less cushion. Even well meaning extremists (like some non-violent but radicalized students) should be able to grasp that.

        • Posted June 8, 2017 at 11:45 am | Permalink

          As a non-American I always say the foreign policies are often times where the two main parties are closest. Domestically, there seems to be a bit more variation – hence my labels of “Plutocratic Party” and “Theocratic Plutocratic Party”.

  5. Taz
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    Apparently some Evergreen students are fed up with what’s going on:

    Open Letter from Evergreen Students

    • darrelle
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:43 am | Permalink

      An excellent letter. The students who signed it are brave to have risked being targeted.

  6. Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    I see Weinstein makes the claim that youtube is removing video’s of Evergreen students bullying. What evidence does he have of that because I’ve had no problem finding them, including this one which has been up since May 27, and has nearly a million views?

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:47 am | Permalink

      I’ve seen some disappear. I can’t give the URLs as they don’t exist any more. Why don’t you email Weinstein since you’re so curious?

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:51 am | Permalink

      I see Weinstein makes the claim that youtube is removing video’s of Evergreen students bullying

      Did Weinstein claim that all of them have been removed? I’d like to see your evidence of that.

      • Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

        “Did Weinstein claim that all of them have been removed? I’d like to see your evidence of that.”

        The tweet above certainly implies a double standard which is hardly evidenced by a simple search for “Evergreen State College” on youtube. In fact I couldn’t find a single video that is supportive of the students, which is completely contrary to the right wing narrative that what’s happening there is typical liberal behavior rather than the radical SJW fringe.

        • BJ
          Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

          If you’d like to stop giving ammunition to the right, stop trying to defend these people at every turn.

          • Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

            “If you’d like to stop giving ammunition to the right, stop trying to defend these people at every turn.”

            Show me people who are defending them beyond the fringe who occasionally share their idiotic ideas. If you point me to mainstream news outlets, or respected mainstream voices that are doing that I will speak up against them. The problem is that group doesn’t really exist except in the mind of right wingers, and in their propaganda it’s all, or the majority of liberals who are “SJW libtards”. And no matter how many liberals speak up against instances like that at Evergreen they will continue to broad brush all liberals that way because it’s to their benefit.

            • Posted June 7, 2017 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

              Yes. This is correct. That brush goes both ways (the left is just as guilty), but you are right.

              Our society has passed the point of reasoned and civil debate. If there ever was such a time in our culture it is well and truly dead now.

        • Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

          The reason the Right are able to tar the broader Left with their insanity is because for every actual unhinged SJW there are a hundred fellow travellers who might not resort to violence themselves but who are willing to defend their actions because otherwise they might seam like they support the Right.

          It’s precisely the same dynamic with Islamists and their apologists. Don’t criticise! You are fuelling the Right!

          Evergreen is the most nakedly anti-science movement yet. It’s gone beyond epistemic relativism or denunciation of faculty staff – now it’s actual violence against students taking worthwhile degrees.

        • Davide Spinello
          Posted June 7, 2017 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

          Of course, entire academic departments are “radical SJW fringe.”

    • Adam M.
      Posted June 7, 2017 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

      I think it’s more likely that the students posted the videos and then hid them or took them down themselves because they make them look bad. It’s unlikely that they rose to the level of something YouTube would remove unilaterally.

      I think the ones that remain up were uploaded by people not sympathetic to their cause, leading to the students to “demand that the video created for Day of Absence and Day of Presence that was stolen by white supremacists and edited to expose and ridicule the students and staff be taken down by the administration by this Friday.”

      • Posted June 7, 2017 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

        “I think it’s more likely that the students posted the videos and then hid them or took them down themselves because they make them look bad.”

        Much more reasonable supposition than Weinstein’s implication that social media is conspiring against him and in support of the students.

        • fizziks
          Posted June 7, 2017 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

          That’s not what Weinstein claimed.

          Weinstein is pointing out that social media platforms took down videos of the students at the students’ request, but apparently Facebook is stalling on taking down the obviously fake Weinstein page at Weinstein’s request.

          • Posted June 7, 2017 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

            “That’s not what Weinstein claimed.”

            No he’s not specifically claiming social media is “conspiring against him”, but he’s clearly implying there’s a double standard which amounts to the same thing. I didn’t mean a conspiracy in the sense that social media is working together against him, but they are treating him differently for what he seems to think are ideological reasons.

            • fizziks
              Posted June 8, 2017 at 7:49 am | Permalink

              Correct. Social media companies are treating the students more favorably, and Weinstein less favorably, for either ideological or lazyness reasons, and Weinstein is right to point that out.

              • Posted June 8, 2017 at 11:52 am | Permalink

                “Correct. Social media companies are treating the students more favorably, and Weinstein less favorably, for either ideological or lazyness reasons, and Weinstein is right to point that out.”

                If you think that is true, or think the one sided story of this situation is accurate, listen to this very good in depth analysis of What’s Really Going On at Evergreen College.

  7. Posted June 7, 2017 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    Ha! PZ Myers is claiming he applied for a teaching position there – and got turned down!

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

      Just… tragic:

      • loren russell
        Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

        To be fair, I know several junior faculty in the biological sciences who were excited about what was going on at Evergreen in its early years [so more like 40 years ago], and a couple of them got positions there. My impression was that they were attracting decent students and doing a decent job of interdisciplinary teaching for a while at least. And that was likely still the situation when PZ chased a position.

        • Posted June 8, 2017 at 10:55 am | Permalink

          Given some of his recent posts, he would go along well with the trouble-making Evergreen students.

  8. Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Myers retconning of his past awe inspiring. He wasn’t a life-long intersectionalist until what, five years ago? Something like that? Now he’s been SJW since before the millennials were born?

  9. nicky
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    A photo of one black male and seven white females, at least four of which, and the male, are carrying baseball bats.
    They do not look as if they are going to play baseball, nor do they look scared, nor really agressive. They look smug, mischievous and provocative. Naughty kids or spoiled brats.
    Does one need to say more?

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

      The girls don’t look like they’d really harm anybody but the guy with the sunglasses is on the fence.

      (I’ll get my coat.)

  10. fizziks
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    ratemyprofessor? Seriously?

    I have no doubt that Weinstein is an outstanding and dedicated teacher, but ratemyprofessor (home of the “hotness” ranking, FFS) is about as reliable an indicator of that as a random number generator would be.

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

      I suspect ratemyprofessor is more biased towards negative reviews than positive.

      If someone fails they are more likely to blame their teacher whether or not that teacher was bad; but nobody is going to write ‘Professor X was great but I pissed away my time playing Suicide Squad’ not are they likely to give a positive rating if they passed with little or no help from their teacher.

      • fizziks
        Posted June 7, 2017 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

        They can also rate the professor from 1-5 on the hotness scale. Sounds legit to me.

      • Posted June 8, 2017 at 11:48 am | Permalink

        I remember reading (in the McGill alumni magazine, I think) a lot of professors there were finding RMP to be damaging, because of that bias. I don’t know if it was justified.

  11. Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    Damn. This travesty just keeps going on and on. I feel bad for the majority of students at TESC as it is unlikely now the school can avoid serious problems. Some years ago I hired a TESC biology student for a tech position in my lab, straight out of school. He was and still is a top-notch scientist. There is some good schooling going on there. Such a shame.

  12. Alpha Neil
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    The social/political universe is starting to resemble the actual universe in that all of it is accelerating away from me in all directions. I hope there is some kind of political “event horizon” past which ideas become so idiotic that they cannot interact with the outside world. I once thought super-liberal college campuses were within such a horizon but that theory seems to be breaking down. I only hope that it is craziness getting across the horizon and not us getting sucked in.

  13. Mark
    Posted June 7, 2017 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    I graduated from Evergreen in 1991, having attended for my junior and senior years. One day, while walking onto campus, I was accosted by a professor whom I did not know. He informed me that the shirt I was wearing would be highly offensive to many on campus and that I should consider going home and changing. I considered it for about half a second before telling him he could kiss my ass. The shirt? A concert tee from Tom Petty’s Southern Accents Tour.

    • Posted June 7, 2017 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

      Maybe he was worried about the offense to good music that was Tom Petty.

      :-O
      *runs away*

      • Posted June 8, 2017 at 10:58 am | Permalink

        Anyway, it was none of his damn business.


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