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Old March 13, 2009, 01:19 PM   #57
Evan Thomas
Join Date: July 7, 2008
Location: Upper midwest
Posts: 5,581
Originally Posted by gretske
...dragging (I know this is an emotionally loaded word) someone in to explain themselves for a point of view is intimidation, pure and simple. ... What if the student had said he was a Republican, or a Mormon, or a vegetarian, and the campus police questioned him on it?
Gretske, if you read the story linked in the first post, you know that they weren't questioning him on his views. They were questioning him on where he kept his guns, as he was prohibited from keeping them on campus. I assume that their first step was finding out that he did indeed own guns, which would have raised its own "red flag;" see Glenn Meyer's post about predictive factors. Now think about the position the campus police, in particular, would have been in, if they had not acted on the professor's concerns, and Mr. Wahlberg had turned out to be another Cho.

Please note that I DO think that Professor Anderson overreacted, especially given that academic freedom is something I take very seriously. The campus police? Not so much. Once they were notified -- rightly or wrongly -- of a concern that a student might pose a risk to public safety, they had an obligation to check him out, I think.

And, yes, "dragging" is an emotionally loaded word. So are "Nazi Germany..." etc. See fomalley's point above about emotional reactivity and stereotyping.

Last edited by Evan Thomas; March 13, 2009 at 01:25 PM.
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