For those of you who spent Spring Break enjoying your time off and avoiding the news of the day, you might have missed this gem from Emory University: a group of students protested outside the Emory administration building after “Donald Trump for President” chalk graffiti appeared around campus.
The protesters carried signs with various slogans, including “Stop hate!” and chanted “We are in pain!” to all who would listen. One student said she felt afraid because the Emory administration “support it as well” (meaning, presumably, Donald Trump) and that she doesn’t “deserve to feel afraid at [her] school.”
I tried mightily to put myself in the mindset of these students, figure out what, exactly, their grievances were. I confess, I failed spectacularly, as this level of crazy requires a certain level of mental origami that your humble columnist is ill-equipped to perform.
Do they feel that Donald Trump should not be allowed to run for president? That can’t be it, as every middle school student in this country knows there is no constitutional prohibition on letting dangerous demagogues run for office.
Perhaps they feel the school administration should only allow speech they find pleasant and agreeable? That might be the case, but I doubt it. Anyone with two brain cells to rub together knows such an idea is ridiculous and unworkable, even at a private university like Emory.
So what’s the problem? They’re sidewalk chalkings in a public place. On top of that, they were only in support of Trump, not something deliberately hurtful or degrading (and yes, I can see the fine line between the two). This is hardly a KKK rally. Do high school students not read 1984 anymore?
The scary part of this is that there are people on a college campus—adult, presumably intelligent people—who are freaking out that there other people in the world that don’t share the same ideological bent they do. As a result they are having coronaries, and garnering angry mobs to yell and scream and generally be a pain in the rear to everyone else on campus who is not clinically nuts. They are acting a lot like the very person they decry.
Being uncomfortable is part of the learning process, the very point of the college experience. These protesters appear to be little more than emotional and intellectual babies, unable to handle the rigors of college life. Do they think, somehow, that when they enter the real world they will be able to protest like this to their boss? That Corporate America will somehow be sympathetic to such shenanigans?
If some scary sidewalk chalk is enough to give them a case of the vapors, what will happen when a client is screaming in their face, a patient is threatening to sue, a judge is giving them an admonishment in front a packed courtroom, or Human Resources is investigating them for breach of contract? Will they deserve not to feel uncomfortable then? Perhaps they believe the rigors of the adult world simply won’t apply to them. If so, pass the popcorn, please.
Maybe one the benefits of Global Warming is that all these special snowflakes will melt.