Enraged UC Riverside student steals “Make America Great” hat off fellow student’s head, says that it promotes genocide

This incident and video, which was first reported by the right-wing media and now by the Los Angeles Times, shows the extent to which college students have absorbed the toxicity of the Regressive Left. I normally wouldn’t call attention to just a single act like this one, but this student seems to instantiate all the tropes of her ideology and, more important, she had to absorb these from somewhere. Whether it was the Internet, her peers, or her teachers, one doesn’t mouth such pieties without having learned them.  If I were HuffPo, and decided to write about this (don’t worry; there’s ZERO chance they will), I’d collect all the disapprobation this woman has received on Twitter and write a piece called “Twitter perfectly shuts down college student hater.”

And a hater she is: she hates Trump, she hates the guy who wears a “Make America Great” hat, she hates free speech, she hates the law, she hates America; the list of her hatreds, as expressed in this video, is long.  Truly, her politics seem to have made her not only full of hate, but also unhinged.

I always argue with Grania about whether the Regressive Left is “winning” (by that I mean gradually taking over the entire Left), and she always assures me that it’s not, and this is just a temporary phenomenon, but I’m not so sure. One by one we see mainstream Leftist media, and American universities moving towards regression, and we see college students, nearly all on the Left, increasingly trying to shut down speakers they don’t like. (Trump of course isn’t a Leftist, so I’m not talking about the damage he’s doing.) The culture that demonizes those who are ideologically impure is not on the Right, but on the Left.  So I’m not so sure that Regressivism isn’t growing.

But I digress. You’ll need to watch the 10-minute video below, which is enlightening, and at least read this summary from the L.A. Times piece. “UC Riverside” is the University of California at Riverside, an important branch of the state’s university system located about 60 miles east of Los Angeles. It’s a good school even if it does have Reza Aslan on the staff.

Part of the article:

A UC Riverside student asked campus police Friday to arrest a fellow Highlander who allegedly grabbed his Make America Great Again hat from his head and verbally attacked him with profanity-filled accusations of promoting “genocide.”

A video of the young woman’s actions against Matthew Vitale, a senior majoring in economics, drew heavy coverage by conservative media outlets that painted it as another assault on the free speech rights of right-leaning college students. The video was first posted Thursday by Campus Reform, a conservative news site.

Many conservative students say efforts to silence them have escalated since President Trump’s election last year. Massive protests shut down campus talks by right-wing firebrand Milo Yiannopoulos at UC Davis and UC Berkeley this year and led to unprecedented security costs for other speakers, such as conservative writer Ben Shapiro.

Vitale said Friday that UC Riverside’s generally mellow campus climate has hardened in recent months.

“There has always been an undertone of liberalism and mild hostility towards conservative students, but nothing this blatant,” he said in a Facebook message.

“Free speech is under attack on campus, no question. Too many college students and other people in my generation have bought in to the lie that it’s OK to silence people or bring harm to them or their property just because they think differently.”

. . . Vitale, a member of UCR’s College Republicans, said he was attending a university meeting for student organizations Wednesday when a woman allegedly grabbed his hat and took it to the student life office. As Vitale repeatedly asked for it back, videotaping the encounter, she verbally attacked him.

When you watch the nine-minute video, which was put up by Campus Reform (but inserted in the L.A. Times piece), note that the student says that the “Make America Great” hat (Trump’s campaign motto, of course) represents “genocide”. (The exagerration of language so that Trump’s election is equivalent to “genocide” is a hallmark of the Regressive Left).

When Vitale tells her that she’s broken the law by taking his property, she says “Fuck your laws!” When he tells her he has the freedom of speech to wear the hat, she replies, “Your fucking freedom of speech is genocide, homeboy.” Later she says “Your freedom of speech is literally killing a lot of people out there.” Truly, she believes that, as do so many students who equate right-wing speech with physical violence.

When she says that the hat is calling for the genocide of “people of color”, Vitale tells her that he’s half Nicaraguan. In response, she says, “You’re WHITE, boy, you’re WHITE!”. Does that mean that President Obama is white? I guess you’re only a person of color when she decrees so.

What’s clear is that she’s bought into some idea that a Trump hat = genocide, and that Vitale has no right to wear that hat on campus.

The woman has no idea why freedom of speech is important, she has no respect for laws (even though I, too, would be and have been willing to practice civil disobedience for some political ends), and she wants to control everyone’s behavior. God forbid that she ever gets power over people’s lives. If ever there were an Antifa-ite in the making, it’s her.

Apparently her university wasn’t fully behind her actions. As the Times reports:

UC Riverside spokesman John Warren said he could not discuss any disciplinary actions because of student privacy laws. But he said campus officials did not approve of efforts to shut down free speech.

“Taking a hat off someone’s head does not conform to the university’s principle of community,” Warren said.

But notice how the staff tries to placate her, giving her a chance to blow off steam, and don’t really tell her to give Vitale back his hat. That shows a bit of consideration, since she seems unhinged, but, to my mind, they’re too considerate. If she didn’t surrender the hat immediately, I would have called the cops. It is, after all, theft.

This woman’s name has been publicized, but I’m not going to give it because she’s apparently been subject to threats. I don’t want to be part of that; I only want to show what’s happening to Left-wing college students. And I want to emphasize that the presence of this video does nothing to further progressive causes. If anything, it makes the Left look unhinged and further solidifies support for Trump. We can’t afford that.

h/t: Cindy


  1. Posted October 2, 2017 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    Vitale tells her that he’s half Nicaraguan. In response, she says, “You’re WHITE, boy, you’re WHITE!”. Does that mean that President Obama is white?

    It seems that being “white” is no longer about skin colour or race, and is now about your political attitudes and about whether you are “oppressed”.

    • Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

      Nicaragua apparently was never settled by Europeans. Only the USA and Canada displaced the native populations and only they should feel guilty. Mexico and all ports South are all untainted by whiteness. They picked up the Spanish language on crystal radios built by the Incas and the Aztecs. Nor was slavery a thing down there.

  2. Travis
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    “your freedom of speech is genocide homeboy”


    She at least continues the sentence to ask (rhetorically I’m guessing) “is this what you’re trying to represent?”

    He doesn’t answer (and hell he doesn’t have to because the reason for his speech is irrelevant) and she of course wouldn’t care what his answer was anyway.

  3. Posted October 2, 2017 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    Very unpleasant. What really annoys me is that after calling him a racist she makes several racist generalizations about whites and uses the term ‘white’ as an insult.

    I’m sure this makes Steve Bannon very happy. It translates to thousands more votes for Trump in the next election.

    • Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

      I think she is calling him, since he has just revealed his own mixed race in an attempt to connect, I would say, she is calling him an Oreo, that is black on the outside and white inside(is this term still around?). Same way native Americans sometimes call each other Apples-red on the outside, white inside. But yes, in that context-white is intended as an insult.

      • Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

        Native Hawaiians call the Japanese “bananas”; yellow on the outside. The hate is two for the insult of one.

        Hatred is everywhere.

      • XCellKen
        Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

        I believe the Regressive Left’s ™ current preferred term for race traitors is House N*****

        • Posted October 2, 2017 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

          That is a lot harsher and more aggressive than oreo which still retains an element of humour.

          • XCellKen
            Posted October 2, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

            Most Regressives are rather harsh, and lacking in humor

            • Posted October 2, 2017 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

              Well, just to be clear-the lady in the video did not use either term.but maybe the language has morphed yet again. And to echo another respondent to this thread in my view too much is being made of a minor incident.And also kudos to the staff folks present whose moderate behaviour calmed what might have become more serious.

      • John Frum
        Posted October 2, 2017 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

        One of my Thai friends told me the word they use for white people means bird shit in that bird shit is white.

  4. Posted October 2, 2017 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    I’m afraid I have to agree with you and not Grania. The rot has gotten too deep and spread too far; it can’t be unmade. I fear that in terms of civil order and rights we are in uncharted waters now.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      Really, “uncharted waters”? I can remember when Sunday school kids were getting blown up in church, and college kids could get themselves lynched for registering voters. The Hate was much thicker on the streets back then. The Republic can survive this hat-nabbing nonsense, no sweat.

      Mark me down in sister Grania’s column on this one.

      • Posted October 2, 2017 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

        I hope you’re right, but I don’t believe you are.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted October 2, 2017 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

          Call me a pie-in-the-sky meliorist if you wanna, Mikey, but I think it’s all gonna work out ok. 🙂

          • Posted October 2, 2017 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

            I wouldn’t call you that. I hope I will be able to call you; “Ken who was right after all, thank Ceiling Cat.”

  5. Jeff Rankin
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    “I always argue with Grania about whether the Regressive Left is “winning” (by that I mean gradually taking over the entire Left), and she always assures me that it’s not, and this is just a temporary phenomenon, but I’m not so sure.”

    I’m not sure either. I do think inasmuch as it’s become more mainstream (having begun in academia and then moving to the web) it’s necessarily effecting a larger demographic.

    If what happened on the web is a model for the mainstream, a subset of reasonable people will discover what this brand of far leftism is about, and abandon it accordingly.

    I think it will take a while.

  6. DrBrydon
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    Not just a free speech issue, also theft and possibly assault. #makeideolicalconformitygreatagain.

    • Carey Haug
      Posted October 2, 2017 at 11:40 am | Permalink

      Since she is the victim of microaggessions she feels entitled to engage in macro-aggressions. She clearly thinks she has won the oppression Olympics and is above the law.

      • Travis
        Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

        I hope he gives a microapology and she is given a macro fine for her actions. Sounds fair I guess?

  7. Posted October 2, 2017 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    Thank god no-one got shot. They both just got backed into a wall-eh. I think she was on the point of laughing a couple of times.Looks like scenes from a marriage. He stayed slightly cool but stiff enough not to try any other tactic. I
    His stance essentially required her to back down-which she certainly was not about to do.But eventually had to.Good for her.
    I remember stripping Nixon stickers off car bumpers when I was that age.

  8. Chris G
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    I just watched the 9 mins with my jaw dropped, shaking my head in utter disbelief.
    Total respect for the way the MAGA guy controlled himself.
    But I’m at a loss as to how we turn the tide on this continuing slide to increasing regression, not at all sure Grania is right in claiming it’s a temporary thing.
    Even for those on the left who, surely deep down, know what she did/argued/extrapolated/accused is plain wrong wrong wrong, they’ll still find ways to sympathise with her, argue that the micro-aggression she claims she suffers daily somehow excuses this behaviour.
    It doesn’t.
    And what will the college do about this incident?
    Not holding my breath.

    • Carey Haug
      Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      As Bill Maher said, shouldn’t micro agressions make you micro angry? She is obviously triggered by micro aggressions so tiny it would take an electron microscope to see them.

      • Chris G
        Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

        Micro angry, ha – not heard that before, very good.
        Ultimately, folk like this college student are bursting to find any and every opportunity to vent their anger, prone to exaggerate any and every incident to display their SJW credentials: as if they need to virtue signal to themselves as well as every other sap willing to tolerate it.

  9. Randy schenck
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    Yes, these are just the type of people that need lots of weapons. Sorry example of the human race.

  10. biz
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    We are in such a terrible vicious cycle right now where people get more and more riled up in their ideological social media echo chambers, then act ridiculously because they are so riled up, the footage of which then gets the other side more riled up in its social media echo chamber. Contributing to it all is that everything minute is recorded and transmitted across the world now.

    Meanwhile gerrymandering and closed primaries have made it so that political candidates can usually only win office by appealing to their side’s most rabid base, which leads to permanent partisan gridlock, reducing the ability to tackle any problems, and giving further fodder to the social media outrage machine.

    I sometimes wonder if we’ve finally answered a question that thoughtful people must have grappled with for thousands of years. What if people had broad instant access to basically all of the information in the world – would they make wise choices and live in peace, harmony, and prosperity? Now we know the answer, and it is no.

    It seems like there is only a small minority of people that are interested in deciding political questions based on first principles, evidence, and thought. For example, the view that there should be free speech even if my side is currently in control because one day your side might be in control has been reduced to being held by a small rump of people it seems. For everyone else, principles are purely situational, and the only thing that matters is that their side wins. I was reading a conservative blog and they couldn’t even bring themselves to condemn Tom Price for taking private jets on the taxpayer dime.

    Civilization is in grave danger, from Right and Left.

  11. Posted October 2, 2017 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    I don’t see a difference between this and ripping the scarfs of Muslim women.

    • Posted October 2, 2017 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

      Who ever said it was okay to rip the scarves off Muslim women?

      • Posted October 2, 2017 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

        I think he meant: “… which the left would regard as an ultimate sin”, i.e. calling them hypocrites.

        • Posted October 2, 2017 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

          Ah; I’m slow today, suffering from irony deficiency.

          • infiniteimprobabilit
            Posted October 2, 2017 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

            Don’t worry, the commentariat has plenty to spare 😉


            • Diane G.
              Posted October 3, 2017 at 2:05 am | Permalink

              Lol. Some might even say a surfeit…

      • Posted October 3, 2017 at 4:06 am | Permalink

        Nobody. That’s my point. If someone tears the headscarf from a Muslim that would be reported as a hate crime.

  12. dd
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    Isn’t what the unnamed student did assault and battery?

    • Paul S
      Posted October 2, 2017 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think meets the criteria. Petty theft probably, but being an obnoxious jerk isn’t assault and or battery.

  13. Heather Hastie
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

    Unlike most of you, I think Grania is probably right. There are too many people around who go to extremes to try and make their point. However, they’re also the ones who get the publicity. Most people are in the centre, and the equilibrium will return when the GOP, and especially Trump, is gone.

    Remember, the election of Trump has also empowered the extremists on the right like the Evangelicals and other Christian extremists. They actually have access to real power. Paula White is visiting the White House on a weekly basis, Dominionist Mike Pence is VP, Steve Bannon (conservative Catholic and white supremacist) still has the president’s ear, Kelly Anne Conway (conservative Catholic) is a senior advisor happy to spread “alternative” facts as much as the president. The list goes on.

    The far right hasn’t gone away. It’s getting bigger and stronger. So, it’s natural there’s going to be reactions like this one on the left. She behaved wrongly, but at the same time you can understand her frustration. Plenty of people must be feeling quite helpless with a president like Trump and his constant failure to make any effort to even pretend he’s there for everyone or to try and unite the country in a positive way.

    I also think the staff were right to try and resolve the issue peacefully. Getting heavy-handed is not going to change hearts and minds but will just confirm her in her attitude.

    • DiscoveredJoys
      Posted October 2, 2017 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

      The far right hasn’t gone away. It’s getting bigger and stronger. So, it’s natural there’s going to be reactions like this one on the left.

      My only quibble is that the Far Right and the Far Left have always been there and both grow off the excesses of the other. At times the Far Right was ascendant and then the Far Left was ascendant, but the pendulum is swinging backwards and forwards more quickly recently.

  14. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

    Donald Trump- making America grate again.

    When I was on a liberal campus in the early 2000s I had a briefcase boldly emblazened “O’Reilly and Associates”.
    This is a brand of computer books founded by TIM O’Reilly, who is a major activist for the ethical use of computers, and quite progressive in his politics. He was the one of the most vocal opponent of the monopolistic practices of Microsoft in the 1990s.

    Nonetheless, quite a lot of students thought my briefcase was promoting BILL O’Reilly, and my assumption that since we were in Silican Valley, most folks knew who Tim O’Reilly was turned out to be false.

    Needless to say, I was never the victim of any vandalism, theft, etc., but a few shunned me before I tried to clear the air.

    Wonder what would happen today.

  15. Jake Sevins
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    A lot of my liberal friends (I am a professor) believe these incidents like Yale, Evergreen, Middlebury, Berkeley, etc., are rare incidents that get a lot of media attention, but are not indicative of any real threat to University culture and won’t have any real impact on social attitudes. On my campus (Univ. of Colorado at Boulder) there really isn’t any hint of this regressive behavior. And the hat-snatching seems pretty small potatoes to me.

    Though I wonder if a white student snatched a “Black Lives Matter” hat from the head of a black student, would things play out differently? What would PuffHo say then?

  16. Posted October 2, 2017 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    I’m glad the guy remained cool-headed. Someone else might have taken the hat back by force and later gotten assault charges.

  17. Ullrich Fischer
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    Yes, the MAGA hats do indirectly promote genocide, but stealing a guy’s hat doesn’t make your point. It makes you a thief and discredits the left. By all means, demonstrate against the MAGA assholes wherever they show up to spew their hatred, but don’t be the one to promote further disregard for the rule of law. Leave that to Trump and his bonehead supporters.

    • Posted October 2, 2017 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      “Yes, the MAGA hats do indirectly promote genocide”

      They do? Which genocide is this?

  18. Jake Sevins
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    The woman featured in the video (whose name many new outlets won’t print, attempting to protect her from threats), has apparently started a GoFundMe to get help for a downpayment on an apartment. The majority of her donors seem to be Trump supporters with comments like, “MAGA is about helping others, even if they hate us.”

    If you are a liberal like me, this is an embarrassment. The shrieking self-righteous young lady is now being shown kindness by folks who are supposedly racist sexist hate-mongers. We really need to flip the script.

    P.S. I cannot vouch for the authenticity of most of what I’ve said above. Please judge for yourself. GoFundMe page: https://www.gofundme.com/d67by-down-deposit-for-apartment

  19. FB
    Posted October 2, 2017 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

    This is just more political fragmentation of the left, or, in this case, the Regressive Left. I’d call this new branch the Ridiculous Left.

    • Posted October 4, 2017 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

      Bah…mangled the link there…should have read “this statement of solidarity.”

  20. Posted October 4, 2017 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

    Bah…mangled the link there…should have read “this statement of solidarity.”

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