The Rot in the Evergreen: A Delve into Progressive Mob Mentality

Photo credit unknown; presumed Amy Rock|Campus Safety

Photo credit unknown; presumed Amy Rock|Campus Safety

Many know the name Bret Weinstein. His resignation was one of the most high-profile events in the past two years regarding the spread of progressive values in the university scene in the United States. What many don’t know are the circumstances and events that led to him leaving. The protests and subsequent student take-over of Evergreen State were widely regarded with awe and disdain from those who saw it as a gross overstep of student authority, but there has been a surprising lack of in-depth and condensed postmortem into the situation, its agitators, and the reasons that caused Bret and other staff members to leave. I hope to provide some better context to that.

The situation started on May 23rd, 2017. Following a modified version of Evergreen’s annual “Day of absence”, a day that historically meant most students of color would choose to protest by refusing to participate in classes for the day, things had come to change in a rather strange way. Rather than hold the usual day of protest, students instead proclaimed that instead, it was all white students and faculty that should not be present on the day, and attempted to enforce this demand by virtue of student mob. This was the starting point of the mass student protest against Bret that made the news, but many seem unaware of how it started.

Rashida Love, former director of the First People’s Multicultural Advising Services Program at Evergreen, was the one to suggest the flip of traditions, and upon receiving this notification, correspondence began between her and Weinstein. Bret, believing that a demand for others to not appear, was defending his right to be on campus and to teach those who wanted to learn, as was his job. Of course, the students who didn’t agree were quick to label him a racist and chant for his resignation.

This lead to the inevitable slew of guest spots on podcasts and talk shows, including Joe Rogan’s youtube podcast. There is also a discussion with Tucker Carlson on updates from Evergreen State College at the time, about how Bret, a progressive himself, wound up in the middle of these obscene protests by refusing to leave the College due to his skin color.

This, as well as acknowledging that faculty had openly discussed if a past discussion with Carlson the Professor had, was a good enough reason to earn a punishable offense due to his appearance on Tucker’s show. These conversations only seem to aid in further explanations as to why Evergreen’s student body, as well as even the faculty, make it harder to trust them over making it easier.

I will corroborate a few more sources regarding the occurrences and details of this event, which spanned from early 2017 and still continues in some ways to this day, if for no reason other than to solidify the easy assumptions that groups such as BAMN, BLM, ANTIFA, RCP, and other Leftists* on par with them leave for us to judge them from.

I’d like to turn to another prominent figure in the protests now; Naima Lowe, former professor of art and film-making at Evergreen State.

Ms. Lowe, frankly put, is a racist, bigoted, hateful, and very aggressively verbal individual who helped build up the students protesting into what essentially was an armed mob. They were reported carrying baseball bats, mace, and turned the school campus into a hate-filled area. In the featured video, she details how “White Supremacy” and White individuals try to “talk away” from Black problems, how they try to “talk away” from “White Patriarchy”, and how it is good that if any who hear her feel offended, because it must be through the relation of her assumed facts. Naima Lowe used the Evergreen protests as a means to spread her opinions and influence, as an opportunity to build on her views and further them. Her contributions can be seen linked as instigation of more problems during the continued student protest and control of the school, as viewed here.

As mentioned, she was not the initial cause for the protests, but she took no issue contributing to them and stoking the fire.

I won't make an expansive list of issues in this case, for the record, as it is mainly the students and their behavior that are the main meat of that video. In short, Bret Weinstein is shown reaching out, trying with immense patience and much effort, to explain his reaction and refusal to leave the College. However, he is met with little but words like “Racist!” and chants of his desired resignation from the student body. The desires the students expressed have already been stated, but to reference it again in full, quoting Lisa Pemberton of the Seattle Times:

“The nearly 4,000-student college made national headlines as students protested, alleging institutional racism. Weinstein, who had criticized the college’s equity-action plan and a change to the format of the campus’s annual “Day of Absence/Day of Presence,” became a target for demonstrators at the liberal-arts school and a folk hero for conservative news outlets.

The Day of Absence/Day of Presence activity is based on a play about an imaginary Southern town in which all black people disappear for a day to demonstrate their contribution to society. Evergreen has held the event for many years, and last spring, instead of having students of color go off campus, organizers invited white students to stay off campus for the day.

Weinstein objected, saying the activity was “a show of force and an act of oppression in and of itself.”

Some faculty members have said they felt Weinstein’s actions were racist, and that his appearance on conservative-news outlets brought unwanted attention to the campus. During the protests, students called for Bridges to fire Weinstein.

But racial tension at the college had been brewing for months. Demonstrations disrupted last year’s convocation and a ceremony dedicating a re-modelled building to former President Les Purce, as well as a swearing-in ceremony for the former campus police chief.”

Thankfully, not all of the students were so happy to join in the group castigation. During the hearings before the college’s Board of Trustees, student McKenzie Kyger spoke, listing her experiences to the Board in great detail, expressing her fears of being labelled racist and white supremacist, simply for having a differing opinion to the mob. She was interviewed again later and asked to explain her opinions in more depth. I find the things she speaks of frankly disturbing, and a sad description of the state of modern Leftist progressive politics, as it becomes consumed with anti-white identitarianism.

Following the protests and subsequent student take-over of the school, the riot eventually settled, hearings were held, settlements were agreed upon and five staff members left, including Rashida, Naima, Bret and his wife, Heather Heying. Much controversy has continued, with Bret reaching somewhat of a meteoric peak in his career due to his willingness to engage with people who want to hear about his story, but we all too often forget the students who were left behind in the wake of the incident. Naima and Rashida are gone, but I don’t believe the anti-white sentiment that lead to mob intimidation and threats has likely gone anywhere following this. Of course, enrollment is down for Evergreen, but we’ll see if a hit in the pocket-book is really enough to sway radical minds away from indoctrination.

For the sake of students like McKenzie, one can only hope.

*For the record, when I say “Leftist” I do not mean a Left-leaning individual or that someone who holds Left-Wing political views are automatically to be lumped in with these groups. I seek to draw an ideological line between where the acceptable and unacceptable, reasonable, and unreasonable meet.

In doing so, I am trying to make this as easy as possible for you, the reader, to establish a clear visual aid in my forthcoming work and research, to decide whether or not the ideas that these groups and people share in both words and actions, are deserving enough to listen to or not. But most of all, I seek to make it harder for these groups to mislead and misrepresent themselves for your own interpretation.