A veteran biology professor at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash., has never been afraid of showing his face on campus — until now. So what exactly did Bret Weinstein do to anger students, who have branded him a racist and demanded that he be terminated? He voiced his objection to a “Day of Absence” during which white people, of which Weinstein is one, would absent themselves from campus.
The event, which had the imprimatur of a black faculty member named Rashida Love, prompted Weinstein to pen a lengthy memo to all staff and faculty in which he expressed his reservations about this day of supposed “inclusiveness” and suggested alternatives, which sound wholly reasonable to the dispassionate observer. In the memo, he wrote:
When one opposes these proposals, what happens is one is stigmatized as ‘anti-equity’ and because I am light-skinned the narrative suggests I’m a person who has benefited from privilege and that I’m trying to preserve that privilege in the face of a legitimate challenge.
It appears that Weinstein didn’t know the half of it because the memo (which appears below in its entirety) was leaked to students, 200 of whom stormed the president’s office, calling for Weinstein’s “white ass” to be fired.
— William Treseder (@williamtreseder) May 24, 2017
Weinstein, who held his classes in a park off-campus last week, told NBC affiliate KINGS, “I have been told by the Chief of Police it’s not safe for me to be on campus.”
The paper quotes a black student protester, who responded to Weinstein with the advice that “if he feels unsafe or frightened for two days, he can only imagine what black and brown bodies have feared for years.”