Occasionally, we receive mail from readers that follow up on articles by our writers, providing new information.
The following is one such email from an anonymous correspondent. The subject line of the email was “Juniata College Events,” and the article enlarged upon was this one by Ben Bowles titled “Black college prof hurls racist slurs at Ben Carson, Colin Powell: Guess what he teaches.”
From the letter it sounds as though Juniata has left no politically correct stone unturned.
The well-written missive is published as-is, though we took the liberty of adding internal links to the text where appropriate. All are culled from the list that Anonymous helpfully provided at the end of the email.
I am writing to thank Ben Bowles for reporting on the Peace and Conflict Studies professor at Juniata College who made Twitter comments about Ben Carson and Colin Powell. Unfortunately, Professor Ragland’s comments are just one example of a much larger problem at the college. Here are some examples of what has been going on over the past few years:
During the fall semester, Dr. Ragland brought a group of protesters to campus from the Black Lives Matter movement as part of a new “Activists in Residence” program. The protesters riled up students against the campus food service due to alleged unfair labor practices, while still eating in the school cafeteria throughout their visit. A group of students was going to start a petition against the company until they discovered that the protesters’ claims were not rooted in facts. One student, however, was so inspired by the messages of activism that he stole a Confederate flag from a member of the Huntingdon community and burned it, even posting a video of the burning to social media. Despite the fact that stealing is a suspension-level offense at Juniata according to the Dean of Student’s Office, this particular student was not punished, and the Huntingdon resident declined to press charges. The incident was swept under the rug.
Each year, the college spends hundreds of thousands of dollars to bring speakers from one narrow perspective to campus. There is a Beyond Tolerance Series of events which are organized by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, and the speakers are almost exclusively focused on race and white privilege. The office has also set up a program known as Stewards of Diversity, which trains current employees to pressure their coworkers into hiring minority candidates for campus positions, even in cases where the candidate may be less qualified than majority candidates.
During the spring 2016 semester, a sophomore student was ordered to take down a picture of himself dressed as a woman from his Facebook profile by the Dean of Students office because an LGBT student was offended by the image. Even though the picture was on the student’s private Facebook account, the offended student believed that the photo was meant to mock trans individuals (though he had no evidence of this being the case) and submitted a report to the campus Bias Response Team. Instead of removing it, the offending student changed his Facebook privacy settings so that the administration was no longer able to view the photo.
During the fall 2014 semester, there was a trip using college funds for students and staff to attend a political event. The “Day of Anger” Millions March was organized to protest police brutality, and the college sent a bus to join the controversial march.
In the spring 2014 semester, the editor of the college newspaper was heavily criticized by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) because of an editorial that was published questioning hiring practices at Juniata. There was such outrage by certain minority groups on campus over the article that the administration held an open forum so that they could vent their feelings about the editorial. They also had the paper issue an apology for offending certain students on their Facebook page. An interesting note is that the administrator who is currently in charge of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion was on the editorial board of the college paper at the time of the incident. She claimed when the controversy broke that she didn’t want the article to be published, despite giving it the approval at the time of publication.
In the spring 2013 semester, a male volleyball player was kicked out of the school after a college Judicial Board voted that he had sexually assaulted a female student. After the player was kicked out, the female student bragged to her friends about how the sex was consensual but she didn’t want him at the school anymore.
Link to Activists in Residence article:
Link to Beyond Tolerance Series:
Link to the Stewards of Diversity webpage:
Here is a link to the advertisement for students who wanted to attend the Millions March:
Here is a post from the ODI which many students found inappropriate in response to the newspaper editorial:
And here is a post which contains the controversial article. The text can be found in the comments section of the post: