The Pleasures of Bullying

Feigned outrage against Marshall DeRosa, a professor of political science at Florida Atlantic in Boca Raton, has now taken predictable forms.  Nietzsche observed that a successful war can be used to justify any cause.  At Florida Atlantic, even going after an implausible victim can provide sadistic satisfaction to bullying students and faculty.

Professor DeRosa’s picture has been plastered on the walls of college buildings by supposedly concerned students with demeaning messages that he’s a “white supremacist” and that his presence on campus is an outrage “demanding action.”  In my opinion, it’s ridiculous to describe those engaged in these defamatory actions, as some commentators do, as “snowflakes.”  They are dangerous thought police, who in this case have targeted a thoroughly decent teacher.

Marshall is someone I have known for decades and who has suffered unbearable personal tragedy.  Last fall, he lost a brilliant son of twenty-seven, who practiced law in Boca, when a car struck him from behind while he was loading his parked vehicle.

Fascism: The Career of... Paul E. Gottfried Best Price: $23.12 Buy New $27.58 (as of 04:55 EST - Details) Leading to these attacks was, among other factors, Marshall’s acceptance of a Koch grant to teach prison inmates in a nearby correctional institute.  We know that academic recipients of Koch funds have been targeted by the left elsewhere – for example, at the Eudaimonia Institute at Wake Forest University.  Those who are “outed” as beneficiaries of Republican foundations can now expect to see all hell break loose on their heads, once academic agitators and their groupies organize against them.

As someone on the right who never received such a grant, I too was verbally abused as a speaker at an elite academic institution.  Not taking money from a Republican foundation is no guarantee that the P.C. police won’t go after you if you’re a teacher or university speaker.  But accepting Koch money may cause the P.C. crowd, led by gender studies students and activists at Florida Atlantic, to swing into action.  And since no one is likely to push back, why not kick around and degrade one’s target?

The charge of being a “white supremacist” that’s been leveled against DeRosa is supposedly justified on several grounds, all equally specious.  One, although he’s given his time and energy sacrificially to teaching prisoners and preparing them for life after prison, he’s done this with money from a Republican source.  Never mind that there’s zero evidence that the Koch Foundation has ever advocated for a single racist position or that it’s even particularly conservative on social questions.  According to Politico, the Koch brothers have had at best an “uneasy relation” with the Trump administration, if that’s our new criterion for white racism.  But that’s not how the thought police (not snowflakes) at Florida Atlantic and Wake Forest think.  The Koch brothers generally support the GOP and therefore must be racist, as the left now defines that term.

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