Saturday, February 11, 2017

Yale Univ. President Peter Salovey's rationalizations and a puff piece in the "New York Review of Books" are for naught

The New York Review of Books published this interview with Yale Univ. President Peter Salovey. It is a sort of nonsense that university presidents might like to spout.

The whole thing is rubbish, and the New York Review of Books was the enabler. I think they thought this article would get everyone in academics to buy into it. It is most interesting in how it shows that the New York Review of Books is really out of touch. I got my last issue last week and I am not renewing my subscription. Basically, it seemed to me that Salovey thought that he could bribe opinion by offering all sorts of goodies to minorities on campus. Read the article and make your own judgment.

One thing Peter Salovey wasn't planning on was an African American janitor at Calhoun College suddenly deciding that he had had enough and smashed a stain glass of African Americans picking cotton.

How disagreeable this must have been to Salovey, he had gotten a puff piece (my opinion) in the New York Review of Books, and yet there was still going to be controversy. I discuss the article in my book, "Pernicious."

Now it seems the name is going to be changed after all.

It seems that a petition signed by half the arts and science faculty helped clarify Salovey's thinking.

I think this would be a good group of people to contact to ask if they want to sign a petition I am sending to Trump about the Arlington Confederate monument.

Salovey's arguments to keep the name Calhoun was widely criticized as being without sense. In my view he in the end had to change the name, but degraded his reputation on the way.

This one name change in itself has a modest impact on the credibility of neo-Confederacy. But each name change, each Confederate monument removal leaves the remaining ones more anomalous seeming and less tolerable.

This also sets an important precedent. Salovey wasn't the only university president putting out rationalizations. It might be that the nonsensical decision of the University of Texas at Austin to only get ride of one Confederate statue might be reviewed. Perhaps Princeton University will get its act together and review how they should remember Woodrow Wilson.

The example is also set to other university president that giving into pressure by reactionary alumni might not work out in the end. You will eventually have to get ride of the statue or name, the reactionary alumni will then be upset with you anyways and your excuses and rationalizations will seem foolish and stick to your reputation. Besides the cranky threats of the reactionary alumni are not that real, where might they donate their money instead?  Might as well as do it and get rid of the Confederate statue, the pro-slavery name and be done with it.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular Posts Last 30 days

Popular Posts All Time