Democratic professor caught in student protest: 'I feared for my life'

Democratic college professor Allison Stanger, who was injured last week as she tried to leave a speaking event at Middlebury College in Vermont, has written a first-hand account of the incident and published it on Facebook. Stanger writes that she agreed to host the discussion with Charles Murray as, “a chance to demonstrate publicly my commitment to a free and fair exchange of views in my classroom.” But when the event finally took place, it was disrupted by a mob of students yelling and refusing to look her in the eye:

I want you to know what it feels like to look out at a sea of students yelling obscenities at other members of my beloved community. There were students and faculty who wanted to hear the exchange, but were unable to do so, either because of the screaming and chanting and chair-pounding in the room, or because their seats were occupied by those who refused to listen, and they were stranded outside the doors. I saw some of my faculty colleagues who had publicly acknowledged that they had not read anything Dr. Murray had written join the effort to shut down the lecture. All of this was deeply unsettling to me. What alarmed me most, however, was what I saw in student eyes from up on that stage. Those who wanted the event to take place made eye contact with me. Those intent on disrupting it steadfastly refused to do so. It was clear to me that they had effectively dehumanized me. They couldn’t look me in the eye, because if they had, they would have seen another human being.

Rather than call off the talk, Stanger had it moved to a private area from which it could be live streamed. But even then she says she and Murray could still hear the protesters “banging on the windows.” She was worried they would break them and unsure what would follow if they did. When the talk finally ended, Stanger assumed she could relax. She was looking forward to going out to dinner with friends and was completely unprepared for what happened next:

What transpired instead felt like a scene from Homeland rather than an evening at an institution of higher learning. We confronted an angry mob as we tried to exit the building. Most of the hatred was focused on Dr. Murray, but when I took his right arm both to shield him from attack and to make sure we stayed together so I could reach the car too, that’s when the hatred turned on me. One thug grabbed me by the hair and another shoved me in a different direction. I noticed signs with expletives and my name on them. There was also an angry human on crutches, and I remember thinking to myself, “What are you doing? That’s so dangerous!” For those of you who marched in Washington the day after the inauguration, imagine being in a crowd like that, only being surrounded by hatred rather than love. I feared for my life.

Stanger writes that later that night, after her martini wore off, she felt something was wrong with her neck. Her husband took her to the ER where she was given a soft brace. She closes her letter saying it was “the saddest day of my life.” But she adds, “We have got to do better by those who feel and are marginalized. Our 230-year constitutional democracy depends on it, especially when our current President is blind to the evils he has unleashed.”

So if you had any doubts Stanger really is a Democrat, she’s blaming this unhinged behavior by progressives at a $65,000 a year private college on marginalization and, of course, on President Trump. They say a conservative is just a liberal who has been mugged, but in this case, it doesn’t seem to have gotten through. The problem of violence is always on the people who commit it and, to a lesser extent, on those who justify it. Stanger, unfortunately, seems to have fallen into that latter camp.

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David Strom 9:21 PM on March 24, 2023