There is a lot to be lauded and applauded over the protests leading to the resignation of University of Missouri president Tim Wolfe and Chancellor R. Bown Loftin yesterday. In particular, the stance of more than 30 African-American football players, refusing to play in an upcoming game unless these gentlemen resigned, and being backed by their coaches and teammates, really put the racial intolerance prevalent on the campus in the national spotlight. It also challenged the behemoth of college football and used the power of the purse to force change.
If the fish rots from the head down, then getting rid of these two should lead to new leadership and new goals/plans to address the allegations of overt racism and discrimination.
But like all revolutions, you also get the gullible and easily misled, who generally have no clue what's going on, but who want to grab part of the national spotlight (Festival) and thus be a part of history.
And so, in what is sad footnote on an otherwise successful day, we have this:
A video that showed University of Missouri protesters restricting a student photographer’s access to a public area of campus on Monday ignited discussions about press freedom.
Tim Tai, a student photographer on freelance assignment for ESPN, was trying to take photos of a small tent city that protesters had created on a campus quad. Concerned Student 1950, an activist group that formed to push for increased awareness and action around racial issues on campus, did not want reporters near the encampment.Protesters blocked Mr. Tai’s view and argued with him, eventually pushing him away. At one point, they chanted, “Hey hey, ho ho, reporters have got to go.”“I am documenting this for a national news organization,” Mr. Tai told the protesters, adding that “the First Amendment protects your right to be here and mine.”The protesters accused him of acting unethically and disregarding their requests for privacy.
“What is so hard about respecting our wishes?” one protester asked.“Because I have a job to do,” Mr. Tai answered. That elicited a retort: “We don’t care about your job.”