Dear members of the University community,
The University administration respects all student protests, just not this one. Students have fought for many important causes over the years, and their right to protest is sacrosanct. In this case, however, we must arrest and slander them.
We will not look back and regret this decision. Although we were wrong about not admitting women, abolitioning racial quotas, US involvement in Vietnam, and divesting from apartheid South Africa, we are confident that this time is different.
Rules are rules, and the rules never change.
Past protests inspired the very assets that make our school great. When students marched for wheelchair-accessible buildings, we called the cops and threatened to expel them. Today, we brag about our ADA-compliant dorms on every campus tour.
Those brave students are part of the fabric of our community. And now that they are gone, we can happily assimilate them into our PR strategy.
But this recent protest is different. These students will never inspire change. Fifty years from now, we will definitely not pretend that we agreed with them the whole time.
Walk through our admissions building, and you’ll find portraits of campus pioneers like our first Black undergraduate and first woman doctoral recipient. These students endured years of institutional abuse, and now we use their image to show how progressive we are.
But this protest is not progressive. It is a violation of the Honor Code. History will never vindicate these student activists. In the future, we totally won’t use photos of their demonstration to advertise our liberal, forward-thinking student body.
Free speech is the backbone of a vibrant academic ecosystem. Just this once, though, we must silence and punish any student who speaks out.
As our Executive Vice Dean of Community Outcomes likes to say, “The donors are really mad this time, so we better shut these brats up.”