An adjunct professor at Cypress College in Cypress, California, was placed on leave last week following a viral video in which she berated a student for calling police officers “heroes” and claimed that she would not call the police if she was in danger.
Braden Ellis, the student in the video, agreed that there were bad apples in any profession but that police were, by and large, decent people and good at their jobs.
“I think they are heroes, in a sense, because they come to your need and they come and help you,” Ellis said. “Who do we call when we’re in trouble and someone has a knife or a gun? We call the police.”
“I wouldn’t call the police,” the professor responded. “I don’t trust them. My life is in more danger in their presence.”
When asked who she would call if she were in danger, the adjunct responded simply, “I wouldn’t call anybody.”
The adjunct was place on leave after the encounter, but the confrontation serves as a potent reminder of just how entrenched anti-police beliefs are within the academy.
To his everlasting credit, Ellis reaffirmed in an interview with Fox News that Americans everywhere need to do their best to conduct themselves with courtesy, even when faced with such vitriol.
“Don’t be afraid to speak out against what they teach at college. We, as Republicans, need to remember that we have the policies,” Ellis said. “We have strong policies and we need to remain strong and tough, but do it with gentleness and respect.”
The ordeal highlights two immense problems that universities, and American culture more broadly, face today. The first is the widespread belief in patent falsehoods about police violence in America. The second is an endemic intellectual corruption among institutional powers at universities throughout the nation.
Concerning the peddling of fictitious narratives by both universities and establishment media, it is useful to look at two of the adjunct’s arguments in the video.
Firstly, the idea that one’s life is in more danger with police around is a widely believed myth among the left. In fact, a recent study by the Manhattan Institute found that 95 percents of blacks and 70 percent of whites who strongly agreed with the statement “white Republicans are racist” also believed that black men were more likely to be murdered by police than to die in a car accident. In reality, however, black men aged 25-29 are killed by police at a rate of between 2.8 and 4.1 per 100,000 people, while they die in car accidents at a rate of around 22.8 per 100,000 people.
The Cypress adjunct also argued that American police originated with slave catchers in the South. This is, of course, a patent falsehood. According to Britannica, the first public police initiative in America, the formation of a group known as the “watchmen,” was created in Boston in 1631, and was followed by New York City (then New Amsterdam) in 1647.
In truth, the idea that police have their origins in slavery is a myth perpetuated by the Black Lives Matter organization on its website as part of a broader disinformation campaign to promote racialist violence.
Concerning the endemic ideological corruption of the American university system, one need look no further than Cypress’ own faculty union representation.
In an act of courage, Cyprus College issued a statement defending Ellis and other students’ rights to free inquiry and debate and announcing the suspension of the adjunct responsible for attacking his beliefs that police are decent folk.
“Cypress College takes great pride in fostering a learning environment for students where ideas and opinions are exchanged as a vital piece of the educational journey,” the statement read. “Our community fully embraces this culture; students often defend one another’s rights to express themselves freely, even when opinions differ. Any efforts to suppress free and respectful expression on our campus will not be tolerated.”
That message, however, was soon met with a foreboding warning from United Faculty, the union that represents Cypress College faculty members and other institutions in North Orange County.
United Faculty President Christie Diep issued a letter condemning Cypress College for its defense of students’ rights, and claiming that the school had failed to be anti-racist by suspending the adjunct and allowing a student to participate in such an exchange.
“The failure to issue a clear and strong statement of support for faculty under the existing circumstances is a failure to be anti-racist,” Diep said. “It is a failure to protect our most vulnerable faculty.”
Following that statement was a grim reference to an educational code prohibiting the recording of professors in the classroom without their consent and stating that any student who records a professor unknowingly should be subject to disciplinary action.
You read that right. The faculty union believes that not condemning police officers as violent racists is itself racist, and that students who record their Zoom classes ought to be punished for documenting their experiences.
Faced with such blind vitriol and ignorance, is it any wonder that conservative students feel they need to hide their beliefs at school?
Is it any wonder that the youth of the silent majority remain silent?
Ellis’ eloquent outspoken defense of the men and women who keep our communities safe is commendable, not condemnable. And his dedication to championing courteous discourse and politely reasoned disagreement represents the one small shimmer of hope that our universities are not wholly failed institutions.
He deserves accolades, not the anger of an adjunct.
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