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Oberlin College warfare on Gibson’s Bakery shows “this can happen to anybody, it’s not just a campus phenomenon”

Oberlin College warfare on Gibson’s Bakery shows “this can happen to anybody, it’s not just a campus phenomenon”

My appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight discussing the massive jury verdict: “These are the people who get up at 3 or 4 in the morning [to go to work] when Oberlin students are just getting home”

I appeared tonight on Tucker Carlson Tonight to talk about the massive jury verdict against Oberlin College in the Gibson’s Bakery lawsuit.

I had talked about the case previously on Tucker’s show, on May 13, 2019, after the trial had started, but long before the verdict.

Tonight we knew the result, and it was a victory for the Gibsons.

This was an unusually long segment, demonstrating the importance of the case to Tucker. He spoke for about 3 minutes then I got 3 minutes. In case you were wondering, 3 minutes for a guest in primetime on the most popular cable news network is a long time. I appreciate the opportunity.

[partial transcription]

Tucker: What do you think, having watched this from the first day to the last, what do you think the message the jury was sending was?

WAJ: I think that the message the jury was sending is that all lives matter, frankly. That the lives of the Bakery, the lives of people who get up at 3 in the morning to cook the baked goods that the students eat in the dining halls matter just as much as anybody else. And the truth matters. Because these are people, as you’ve pointed out, who did nothing wrong. They literally were just minding their business that morning [sic – it was late afternoon] when they called the police on some shoplifters.

And because of the crazed social justice, so-called social justice movement on our campuses, they were immediately designated an oppressor, in part because of their skin color, in part because they’re the owner of a business, and they were put into a pigeonhole of someone who must be racist, who must have engaged in racial profiling. And nobody seemed to actually care about the facts, that these are students actually did shoplift. And I think that’s what’s so outrageous about it.

I think you noted it in your opening, that these are just ordinary people. These are not people who are engaged in the political process. They didn’t put themselves  out into the arena. This is not like the other social media mobs we’ve heard about, where someone sends out a tweet, or post something on Facebook, and all of the sudden there’s a mob against them. That’s bad enough. These are literally people who got up probably at 3 in that morning, and did absolutely nothing wrong. But that campus fervor, and that campus zeal to express some sort of outrage at the system, visited them. And I think that’s the thing that’s so chilling here.

* * *

… The important thing here is that, I don’t think Oberlin College got the message. In their closing statement to the jury as to why the shouldn’t get punitive damages, the Oberlin College attorney said, we’ve gotten the message, you sent a message loud and clear. I don’t think for a second Oberlin College has gotten the message. Just today, the president sent out an all-campus email saying they’re going to continue to fight this, and they believe they did nothing wrong. So I think this is really an outrageous circumstance.

Let’s remember, this is a 5th-generation bakery. These are the people who get up at 3 and 4 in the morning [to go to work] when Oberlin students are just getting home.

And I think that’s the outrageous think about this. This can happen to anybody, it’s not just a campus phenomenon.

UPDATE 6-16-2019

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No wasted words in that segment. Effective.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to dfp21. | June 15, 2019 at 8:57 am

    I think that if not for fundraising, that Zimmerman would have been toast. The same applies in this case. Thee college is going to fight, unless Gibsons have a draw available, there is a real possibility that they could be bankrupted before appeals are settled, or they might be in a position that the college could blackmail them into taking a punny settlement.

    I would like to see a funding site setup, preferably one that does not hand a large chunk of the funding to a commercial interest. Such a site, taking in significant revenue, would send oberlin College a clear message and help ensure justice served.

    Is there any chance that LI Foundation could handle this?

      Tom Servo in reply to JusticeDelivered. | June 15, 2019 at 4:25 pm

      I disagree, this isn’t a federal case, and even if they push it to the Ohio Supreme Court, it shouldn’t take more then 2 years – and it will be an open seeping wound for Oberlin the entire time.

      Appeals are not like regular trials, especially not in State Courts – the entire case doesn’t get reheard. Generally, Oberlin is going to have to show how the Judge made an Error of Law in order to overturn the finding, and he ran such a tight case that I don’t think they can do that.

      As to damages being reduced – the one big weakness I see in the damage awards is the reliance on “Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress” – that is a very hazy number, hard to quantify. I’m not saying that for sure it will be reduced, but if they are going to reduce it, that will be the weak point.

      andrewp111 in reply to JusticeDelivered. | June 15, 2019 at 7:05 pm

      Question about appeals – Which political party appointed the judges on the first tier Ohio appeals court that will hear this case? If the answer is the Democratic Party, it is likely they will find some grounds to order a new trial or to greatly reduce the verdict.

smalltownoklahoman | June 14, 2019 at 10:24 pm

Good interview! Man Tucker was trying to stay calm but you could tell he was STEAMED by what Oberlin tried to do, ‘specially with that closing statement of his!

I’m still trying to get over that opinion piece posted in some academic journal saying that the Judge made a huge error of law and biased the whole trial by not allowing Oberlin to try to prove that the Gibson family really were all racists.

    The Packetman in reply to Tom Servo. | June 15, 2019 at 7:14 am

    Tom, it’s my opinion that the judge did Oberlin a favor by not allowing that, because it’s seems to me that if Oberlin thought the jury’s decision is bad now, imagine what it would have been had they actually tried to drag Gibsons through the mud and the rebuttal witnesses the Gibsons could surely produce!

    I guess I don’t really understand this. Don’t get me wrong, I agree wholeheartedly with the verdict, but why shouldn’t the defendant be able to argue that what they said about the Gibsons was true? If the Gibsons are racists, it’s not defamation, right?

ReddeCaesari | June 14, 2019 at 10:29 pm

Legal Insurrection was the only source for accurate reporting on Gibson v Oberlin.
Period. Paragraph.

This website and its’ daily features on the Gibson lawsuit should be presented in all journalism schools on “How to Report 101”.

Such reports were first hand, gave personal opinions by stating so, and the features included legal analysis and impressions moving forward….

Stellar job to all at this website.

After the punitive verdict came down, Legal Insurrection was the first to report.

Amazing Work!

    Silvertree in reply to ReddeCaesari. | June 14, 2019 at 11:38 pm

    There has been a real sense of caring in the reporting from Legal Insurrection, a very precious quality that is not easy to find these days. Also there is so much humor, with quite droll phrasing at times, or something funny in the way a scene is described. Lovely understated irony too…… So often I find myself actually laughing out loud.

Wow. Unbelievable case. Hope the damages hold through appeal.

Nice tie Prof J is sporting. Not the bland same-old, same-old of the solids and reps (i.e., like all of my boring ties). But not so different it’s weird.

No technical problem here, though generally clothing patterns can require caution. I recall a particularly staid TV newsreader who usually wore herringbone tweeds. In person, an excellent choice for him, giving an appearance of being no ephemeral lightweight, but also a man not quite ready to be nailed into his coffin. But on TV, the moire patterns made by his jacket and the horizontal TV raster scans made him look like a flashy used-car salesman every time he moved or the camera panned. It was obvious; I can’t imagine why the camera guys didn’t notice it on the studio monitors.

[OK, that’s all for TechnoGeek Friday. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.]

However this case is settled or disposed of, the Gibson family cannot continue to run its store. The college will continue to oppose them, the students will continue to boycott them and even those students who continue to buy there will scorn the ownership. I think that any settlement of these issues should include a purchase of Gibson’s by the college. The college could take over running the operation. Perhaps it could change the place into a SJW health food emporium. Maybe even a vegan outpost and they could rename it Raunchy Raimondo’s Roughage Ranch. Not to be left behind Oberlin could rename itself “Only Black Lives Matter U”. They’re really up to their necks in shit aren’t they. Interest on this judgment is running at over $3616 a day, $1,320,000 a year. Hungary termites devouring the endowment. Until this is resolved, the alumni will hold back on its donations. Who but a Soros wants to watch hard earned donations pissed away to stupidity?

    Silvertree in reply to faboutlaws. | June 14, 2019 at 11:27 pm

    They will not be run out, I suspect. They are deeply a part of the town of Oberlin, and their integrity and wisdom is much-needed there. I think they know this, and will continue to run this bakery with love. It is a gift that will be there, waiting for the students to receive it. Even if the students remain caught in their delusions, and their hearts remain hard, this gift will have an unseen value. Perhaps the Gibsons could even use some of their new wealth to hire more help in the store and bakery, make the place exceedingly beautiful, and occasionally take time away to visit fine bakeries all around the world! Or perhaps they would love to explore this beautiful country of ours. Maybe they will start a whole new venture, but if so, I am certain that would be a choice they would make from a place of strength and love and integrity, out of a sense for where they can best be of service. Just keeping their doors open in Oberlin everyday right now is an incredible service with far-reaching moral power.

      artichoke in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 7:52 am

      If I were somehow an Oberlin student (hard to imagine myself applying there, but it’s a hypothetical) I would be afraid to go to Gibson’s. I would not want to piss off a large part of the other students and the faculty and admin. Gibson’s took a big chunk out of Oberlin and so they are forever to some extent the enemy now — it’s just natural. And the culture at the school won’t change for a long time because the admins like it as it is, see President Ambar’s statement yesterday.

      So then putting myself in the shoes of Gibson’s, I’d get out. It’s way way too hard trying to do business in a circumstance like that. There are 100 other places in Ohio alone that would love to have them, without the legacy of hard feelings.

        Tom Servo in reply to artichoke. | June 15, 2019 at 8:07 am

        If I were the Gibson’s, I would change the store’s name to “Gibson’s $33 Million Bakery and Snack Shop” and I would put up a big billboard that said “Free Coffee and Snacks for anyone who visits our $33 Million Bakery!” since they can afford to do that for a long time now. And I would make sure that the free snacks were the BEST!

          Another Ed in reply to Tom Servo. | June 15, 2019 at 10:50 pm

          Students that insisted that certain items be free without the consent of the Gibsons are at the heart of this story.

        herm2416 in reply to artichoke. | June 15, 2019 at 8:52 am

        Students are not the only people who frequent the bakery.

Congrats on the recognition of your reporting Professor. I’ve always admired your blog.

Thank you, Professor Jacobson, for expressing the real truth about this case with such moral fervor, yet at the same time maintaining a calm clarity. You struck the perfect tone of outraged yet rational discourse, sounding the alarm, telling the incredible story of what happened to these innocent bakers. The visual image of them rising early to work while the students slept was very effective, and you repeated that several times in different ways and so that will stick in people’s minds. Hats off to Tucker Carlson for giving this story so much time. He seems to have an excellent sense for those stories that are crucial for our nation.

Excellent interview. Thanks again for all your great reporting on this story.

Great job, professor! It is such a treat to see brilliant people like yourself boil down a complex issue into a few minutes as well as deliver a cautionary message ‘it could happen to any of us’. Robespierre smiled at that, I think.

Would also like to see Tucker interview Oberlin alum Michelle Malkin on this matter.

I do feel compassion for the young black woman in this segment, the one who is speaking through the bullhorn. It seems to me she honestly believes what she is saying; I hear only a kind of sadness and dismay in her tone, not malice, though what she is saying is incorrect. Please remember, many of the black students at Oberlin come from very tough backgrounds in the inner city. They are not all children of privilege. And please remember that many of the students at Oberlin are still very young, in a strange place, and relatively inexperienced being alone out in the wider world, That is why I am so appalled at the way the adults at Oberlin College handled this situation. Yes, the students must bear their share of the responsibility, but where were the adults in the room? Where ARE the adults in the room?

    healthguyfsu in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 12:21 am

    And they are being fed lies that they willingly accept because it is easier to blame someone else than face your own challenges in life.

    I have a modicum of sympathy but little more than that.

    Barry in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 12:29 am

    “Please remember, many of the black students at Oberlin come from very tough backgrounds in the inner city. They are not all children of privilege.”

    Do you know the actual data? Or are you guessing?

    I suggest you look up the bio on the shoplifter…

      Silvertree in reply to Barry. | June 15, 2019 at 9:46 am

      My information comes mainly from this article in The New Yorker, published in the spring of 2016. Several students are interviewed, as well as multiple professors and the College president at that time. Not hard data, but it’s clear from the many interviews that there are lots of students there who come from poor economic circumstances, including the inner city. A couple of the black students mentioned in the article are kids from the inner city who managed to get scholarships into elite private high schools and do well. This might be the case with the shoplifter Mr. Aladin (see comment below), or perhaps not.

      Anyway it’s a beautifully written article, and for me it’s been quite fascinating (even astonishing) to learn a little more about what was happening on campus in the time leading up to the Gibson’s event. You get to meet some of the people at Oberlin College, just catch a glimpse of course but it helps provide context for the debacle with the bakery. The author gives a very even-handed treatment, it seems to me, of some of the issues surrounding classical liberalism vs. the kind of PC extremism that has gained traction in recent years on campuses. I highly recommend it.

      Silvertree in reply to Barry. | June 15, 2019 at 1:16 pm

      OK, I looked at some hard data. Very wise idea. Perhaps someone has something more recent, but according to the NYT’s tables for the Oberlin College Class of 2013:

      2% came from the bottom fifth of society
      household income $20,000 or less

      70% came from the top fifth of society
      household income $110,000/yr or more

      including 9.3 % from the top 1% of society
      household income $630,000/yr or more

      28% came from the middle of society
      household income $20,000 – $110,000

      Source: Economic diversity and student outcomes at Oberlin – The New York Times

      Clearly the college students are overwhelmingly from fairly well-to-do backgrounds, and there are proportionally very few from backgrounds of abject poverty.

      Depending how you look at it, there may be a significant number of students there who do not have a very easy time of it, considering the costs to attend and depending how much aid is available at different levels. For instance: if you only took the poorest 5% of all students, after aid packages, scholarships, etc., there might be about 150 students at any one time on campus who are just scraping by. (Oberlin has about 3000 students). That would be a small percentage, but still quite a few kids.

    Gerald86 in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 3:57 am

    The thief, Jonathan Aladin, went to Phillips Exeter Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, an elite boarding school.

    artichoke in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 8:04 am

    I listened, and I didn’t hear the sadness you describe. Just reading from a paper in a normal tone of voice.

    And then she goes into the litany about the history of racism and oppression etc. etc.

      Tom Servo in reply to artichoke. | June 15, 2019 at 8:11 am

      Leni Riefenstahl honestly believed what she was saying.

      it’s fairly common for people to “honestly believe” some very wicked things. And that’s why we have courts.

        Silvertree in reply to Tom Servo. | June 15, 2019 at 9:57 am

        Yes, absolutely. Thank goodness we have courts of law. I’d like to hear her own evidence for her statement. Thus far there seems to be precious little. I just see her as a very young, tragic figure in a larger drama that the mature adults at Oberlin could have influenced for a far better outcome. What we have now is a kind of relationships/communications disaster.

        tom_swift in reply to Tom Servo. | June 15, 2019 at 11:00 am

        Indeed. For that matter, so did Heinrich Himmler. And Mussolini and Tomás de Torquemada.

        “Belief” is overrated as an excuse.

          MajorWood in reply to tom_swift. | June 15, 2019 at 11:44 am

          I would love to hear Bob Neil’s take on these events. His “Germany since 1914” history class was riveting. It was like a college course taught by Lewis Black.

    gonzotx in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 10:24 am

    Where were the adults in the room? The average age of the men who died on “D” day was 20.

    Stop make my excuses for these spoiled brats.

      Silvertree in reply to gonzotx. | June 15, 2019 at 11:14 am

      I was speaking only of the girl with the bullhorn in Tucker’s segment. What if she is not a spoiled brat? We do not know her. Maybe she is one of the poorer students at Oberlin who works evenings and weekends and cannot buy anything but the bare necessities while all around her other kids are living the high life. Maybe she cleans up the dirty trays of uneaten food in the dining hall early in the mornings, while the other kids leisurely chat and laugh their way through breakfast. Maybe she has never stolen a thing in her life, and is grateful for her education.

      What if she comes from the South Side of Chicago and knows brutality and violence first hand, and that has deeply scarred her? Maybe she is scared to think that perhaps the Gibsons hate her for color, even in this college town she thought was a better place. Maybe she has experienced actual racism in her life, even police brutality. What if she was told by others that the Gibsons were racist, and naively believed them?

      And now she is hated by thousands who saw her on Tucker’s show last night and think they know exactly who she is?

      Appearances are not always what they seem, that’s for sure. Maybe she is not a tragic figure at all, that is just my impression from watching her and hearing her voice. I do think young people have much less experience and so tend to make mistakes that older people would (ideally) not make; and I don’t see a nineteen or twenty year-old as being a mature adult.

      But I am not excusing her defamatory statements. I would just like to understand what brought her to these false conclusions about the Gibsons.

        tom_swift in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 12:14 pm

        What if she comes from the South Side of Chicago and knows brutality and violence first hand, and that has deeply scarred her?

        “Maturity” is the ability to outgrow one’s childhood. One of the disasters of modern liberalism is that it’s made neotony—the retention of juvenile traits into adulthood—into a lifestyle. Today’s non-adults are in a trap—they cannot escape the past. And if their own isn’t all that bad, they can shackle themselves to an imaginary one. The trap is almost entirely self-imposed (although too many of their peers and America’s professional race-baiters are happy to help with the construction). And the notion that the rest of society is obligated to tolerate this just serves as positive reinforcement.

        Maybe she is scared to think that perhaps the Gibsons hate her for color

        And maybe she still insists that there are monsters under her bed.

        What if she was told by others that the Gibsons were racist, and naively believed them?

        Life’s hard. It’s even harder when you’re stupid.

          Silvertree in reply to tom_swift. | June 15, 2019 at 12:40 pm

          My point is, we really know nothing about her, except that she is a black, female Oberlin College student who looks fairly young, and she is standing there reading a false, defamatory statement about some people we respect—people we know to be of great integrity.

          Please let’s not rush to judgement on her character, or the character of any of the younger students. We can rightfully judge and condemn the egregious behavior, and seek punishment, and that is one way a young person learns to do better. We can try to guess about their characters, whether they are spoiled brats, naive innocents or whatever—and maybe some people will hazard very accurate guesses. But we can never know for sure whether we might not have turned out the same, or even much worse, had we walked in their shoes.

        elliesmom in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 12:17 pm

        I’m really sorry, but my giveadamn got busted, my insurance on it got cancelled, and I’m too broke to pay to have it fixed myself.

        Tiki in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 2:01 pm


        No one is rushing into anything here. In fact, it was the young black woman who rushed headlong into an affair she was wholly ignorant of. What we do know is the woman took a leadership position in a protest predicated on distortions and lies. She, with no facts whatsoever, made a choice to lead a lynch mob against white people she neither knows nor respects – this lack of respect is borne of blatant ethnic/racial chauvinism and radical Maoist ideology. Where did she learn to behave in such an egregious manner?

        Because she’s a young black woman excuses nothing. She’s an adult. She’s responsible for her actions. I’ve no need to walk in her shoes. How about she walk in my shoes for a year? Walking in my shoes might just teach her how to respect people outside of her racial and ideological tribe.

        This was classic mau-mauing. I refuse to be intimidated via cultural blackmail and extortion and will never bend a knee to ignorant radicals of any political or religious bent.

        Hell. No.

          Silvertree in reply to Tiki. | June 15, 2019 at 3:17 pm

          I’m not excusing her, and I think she is definitely responsible for her actions. I just know that many people of that age seem to be easily swayed by ideology and/or emotions, as you describe so well, and that they often make choices that they later realize were ill-informed, i.e. downright stupid. And I think these “kids” need a whole lot of wise guidance, and I wonder why the College was not providing this. That is my big question.

          I think these students could be rescued from their confused thinking, their dangerous ideological totalitarianism, but that’s going to take some very wise, much more mature adults. People like Dr. Jordan Peterson, for instance—who has a thorough understanding of their predicament and compassion enough to want to help them…. Otherwise, it appears that many of these students have now gone so far down this dangerous road into darkness that no matter how tough life comes at them, they will remain stuck in these ideological patterns. They need some serious intervention that somehow meets them where they are. Reading that New Yorker article and others, I was amazed at the disintegration that has happened on the Oberlin campus, the rampant PC tribalism….there is a huge generational crisis and we will reap the whirlwind.

          Perhaps too we are seeing a particular phenomenon in our era: it would seem that most people are not maturing as quickly as in the past? I definitely agree with you that at that age there should be much more awareness and maturity than we have seen.

        Silvertree in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 3:53 pm

        For anyone interested, these articles are well worth reading.

        Opinion | Inside Student Radicalism – The New York Times
        (includes much information about Oberlin)

        Oberlin College case shows how universities are losing their way
        The Hill

          Silvertree in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 4:13 pm

          Sorry, the NYT article is not the one I meant to link to. But it does have some interesting perspectives and food for thought about this “elite” college generation and their apparent crisis.

          Silvertree in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 4:41 pm

          This is the one! Discusses Oberlin in the years directly leading up to the Gibson’s events. Some crucial information here perhaps.

          Here’s the opening:


          Last fall at Oberlin College, a talk held as part of Latino Heritage Month was scheduled on the same evening that intramural soccer games were held. As a result, soccer players communicated by email about their respective plans. “Hey, that talk looks pretty great,” a white student wrote to a Hispanic student, “but on the off chance you aren’t going or would rather play futbol instead the club team wants to go!!”.

          Unbeknownst to the white student, the Hispanic student was offended by the email. And her response signals the rise of a new moral culture America.


          Microagressions and the Rise of Victimhood Culture
          The Atlantic

          Tiki in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 5:06 pm

          How do we reform these brainwashed kids? Eh. We don’t. It’s a cultural wildfire. These young adults are true believers. Zealots.

          How did the Mao stop the worst of the Red Guard actions? How did Mao’s culture war end? Because we’re in the middle of a variant of that process right now.

          MajorWood in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 7:24 pm

          This never gets old.

          Look at the time stamps. 😉

          Silvertree in reply to Silvertree. | June 16, 2019 at 1:18 am

          All is not lost…. just found this marvelous parody video of Oberlin students spoofing Oberlin students. Think I will take my ball and go home now, happy.❤️

          Watch while you can! I have been waiting for this all day.

          Oberlin choir responds to the Christina Sommers controversy
          “If I ever meet the real world”

          Silvertree in reply to Silvertree. | June 16, 2019 at 11:01 am

          No, looks like it isn’t Oberlin students singing. How I wish it were. Yes, I knew it wasn’t the college choir as posted, but thought maybe it was some little bunch of students getting together. Looks like no, not at all, it’s only others parodying them.

      walls in reply to gonzotx. | June 15, 2019 at 5:27 pm

      Our warriors in WWII truly were the “greatest generation”. Today’s 20-yo snowflakes are the “lost generation”.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 11:09 pm

    There are far too many false claims of racism, and from what I have seen I think that blacks are the most rabid racists in America at this time. I am not saying that every black is racist. I think that many of these cases are driven by a quest for unearned income, ghetto lottery shakedowns.

Didn’t get to see the segment, but let me add my applause for the way LI covered this case. I’ve stayed current with every post from the beginning. Terrific work. The sort of work worthy of financial support from regular readers. Hope my modest contributions help sustain & grow the wonderful enterprise Professor J has built. It’s been great to watch how it’s influence and reach have increased with each passing year.

Correction: ‘its, not it’s. Sure would like an edit function. Oh, well. A small price to pay for commenting here.

Blaise MacLean | June 15, 2019 at 12:58 am

Legal Insurrection provided an invaluable service when it undertook to cover this case. The media would have suppressed it…even now they attempt to mischaracterize the issues. But LI was onsite. It’s reports are like “contemporaneous notes”. You have created the record. And have now forced the issue onto the national stage.

Well done

Prof, I think you underestimate how big this site is in conservative circles of the sharpest minds.

The students, faculty and administration of Oberlin have the right to free speech; they do not have the right to hate speech. And if what Oberlin did is not hate speech, then hate speech does not exist.

Now let’s see if progressives really believe their “hate speech is not free speech” trope when it is applied to Oberlin.

    I beg to disagree. Hate speech is free speech … hate speech is allowed. What they don’t have the right to is defamatory speech, which is quite different from hate speech.

      My post was a response to Oberlin’s hapless claim that the jury’s verdict represented a blow to free speech. “Hate speech is not protected by the First Amendment” is arguably THE fundamental principle of Progressives, and if a Democrat wins the White House in 2020 it will swiftly become the law of the land, superseding the Bill of Rights.

      Yet pretty much all of the “hate speech” (as well as antisemitism, racism, sexual violence, and religious bigotry) comes from Progressives. The actions of some of Oberlin’s administration and students are textbook examples of this. It was a deliberate effort to wreck the Gibson’s business and endanger their lives, hardly different from what the KKK did in the Deep South.

      What happened with Gibson’s Bakery is “hate speech” – by Progressives’ very own definition. Make Oberlin’s defenders explain why “hate speech” is ok in this case.

    Hate speech means very different things to different people. It cannot be easily defined, which makes it is a dangerous fluid term that is perfect for shutting down unwanted voices. Especially today the term is often used to justify silencing conservatives. But as far as I know, so-called “hate speech” is allowed in our country as long as it steers clear of actual physical threats of violence.

    However, one could make the argument that Oberlin College just lost a huge case because of their malicious hate speech towards the Gibsons, Can someone enlighten me as to what is the legal difference between actual “defamation”, and just speaking one’s opinion and/or “hating on” someone? We have the First Amendment for very good reason. Where does one cross over from the land of “protected speech” into actual defamation and slander? It would be nice to hear more about these issues, especially as they pertain to this case.

    Apparently there is one standard for proving defamatory remarks towards private citizens such as the Gibson’s; and another, more difficult standard to meet for public figures.

      tom_swift in reply to Silvertree. | June 15, 2019 at 12:07 pm

      Where does one cross over from the land of “protected speech” into actual defamation and slander?

      When you start lying, and your lies can be shown to lead to quantifiable damage.

    I’d put it this way.

    “A party does not have the right to ruin a business by leveling untrue accusations.

LI just entered the target zone. We will be here for you.

The Dems/Progs will never figure out that when you stop the producers there is no one left to furnish them the free stuff. Parasites are not too smart. Power without perks can’t be very satisfying. Let them wither on the SJW vine.

    artichoke in reply to Romey. | June 15, 2019 at 8:12 am

    Their idea is that they’ll put you in a position where you must work. That you’re there to serve them and that’s the order of things.

    And there’s some truth to it because those workers and businesses have to live and eat too and may have debts they owe. But as for the students, for most of them daddy’s money (or the financial aid from the school) won’t last forever.

    This is why Bernie Sanders and other Dems want their student debts wiped away. I think that would be a bad idea.

I watched the entire body-cam video of the arrest of Jonathan (“Elijah” cuz it’s cooler-sounding) Aladin and the other two thieves in this case. Aladin wails and cries like a child. He literally cries out, “I want my mother!” and “I’m so scared, I’m a black man and you are cops!” This is a very spoiled kid. Somebody told him all his life that he can have whatever he likes and White People Are Scary. The idea that he was racially profiled is an insult to anyone who can formulate a coherent thought. Gibson’s Bakery has been in business for over 100 years, apparently, and has served black and Hispanic and other students for as long as Oberlin has been operating. And Aladin thinks they picked HIM to start profiling? Did he think stuffing two bottles of wine up his sweatshirt would go unnoticed in this age of cameras and alarms? That the college supported him tells you all you need to know about Oberlin and college campus mentality in general. Parents, pay attention.

I got a nice email from Gibson’s, thanking for my congratulatory email to them.

The Red Guard threatens us all. The Gibsons were lucky that there was someone to sue and evidence on which to build a case. Good for them and kudos to the jury for socking Oberlin hard. But I am afraid the message to the many Raimondos in academia is to be discreet.

    artichoke in reply to cwillia1. | June 15, 2019 at 8:14 am

    And the message to them from President Ambar is “we’ve got your back”.

      Her letter re: the recent verdict is unbelievable! She didn’t learn a thing.
      I want another $22M for Gibson’s just for that.

        MajorWood in reply to lc. | June 15, 2019 at 11:24 am

        I think Oberlin is about to learn that the next $22M will not be a pay-out, but rather in the form of money that never arrives. People don’t have to donate money. They choose to donate money. And there are plenty of other worthwhile charities that need assistance. The alumni here will attest that Gibsons is one of the first stops that one makes after arriving in Oberlin. Ambar is right in that this is not over for the college. I guarantee another 20-30 years of “they did WHAT?” exclamations from alumni, even more so if Gibsons is not there anymore. Food is a human need, and our memories around food are more permanent than a feeling that we experienced in a classroom. The one thing you never hear in Oberlin is “wasn’t that a great dinner in Dascomb last night?” But everyone remembers their first whole wheat glazed donut. And we go to get one as soon as we arrive.

        I find it interesting that the one group which has been most silent here and everywhere else on the planet are the actual protesters in front of Gibsons. THIS was to be their 15 minutes of fame, and yet, 2-1/2 years later it seems to mark their 15 minutes of shame. I look forward to many articles in the Alumni magazine depicting their heroics as they chomped on catered food mysteriously provided (?) and yelled feverishly about things that did not happen. That nothing was reported by the college on this incident and this faux heroism tells me that some at the college knew that what they were doing was wrong. I wonder what pressure was applied to keep them from speaking up. Seems like a good topic for an episode of “Whistleblower.” And it is this core value of completely lacking humility that continues to plague Oberlin. So as long as they place themselves above the rest of us, I see them as a target for constant mockery. Were they isolating the damage to themselves, then I’d just let them implode quietly. But when they took their crazy to the streets, we had to say something to counter it.

        When Ambar came to the PacNW a year ago, I declined my invitation to the reception citing an inability to control a compulsion to ask potentially embarrassing questions about the Gibsons incident. I wanted them to know that the story had both made it 2500 miles west and that people were still thinking about it. I think the college is about to learn that “lest we forget” works both ways.

        And the college has learned. That was like a full day before the knee-jerk reaction. The next step is to get word processing software that includes both a spell checker and a reality checker.

        Finally, someone commented about Dean Raimondo being on a suicide watch. I can’t assess her, even from a distance, because we have had no communications about her current state of mind. We can only speculate. But the college. I would definitely have them evaluated, since they seem to have ideation (disconnect from reality), a plan (blast emails), the means to carry out that plan (computer and connection to interwebz), and their recent reactions to bad outcomes might qualify as a history of previous attempts. Time to call 1-800-implode.

          Silvertree in reply to MajorWood. | June 15, 2019 at 2:18 pm

          Good Morning, Major Wood,

          Did you happen to see the latest article in the Review? The comments there are a sight to behold. Unfortunately we are not allowed to behold them.

          Jury Rules For Gibson’s, Assigns $44 Million in Damages – The Oberlin Review

          As you will see, unless they have edited it, their article neglects to mention the actual wine bottles that Mr. Aladin had under his coat and threw on the floor. It also neglects to mention the statements of the police officers who found multiple students assaulting Allyn Gibson when they arrived on the scene.

          And still no evidence of racism or racial profiling on the part of the Gibsons! Nothing, zip, zero!

          What most surprised me though was reading of the “Black” students vs. the “white” store owner. I do not remember learning such when I studied the rules of capitalization, way back when.

          I too have been wondering, where are all the professors? Are all these people caught in the twilight zone? I guess they must fear for their jobs, maybe their safety? Where is the moral courage?

          On a happier note, I actually do have some hazy visions of memorable dinners at ‘Scomb (pronounced scum for those of you who never had the privilege of gracing that establishment); these consisted of giant bowls of grape nuts and milk. —Trying to calm my anxiety, I guess, amongst the diversity going on all around me. Actually the food there at that time was really quite good, and I had a job rinsing the heavy giant cooking pots in the kitchen there for awhile. But I loved Gibson’s and remember my favorite sandwich, something deliciously creamy which came in a pita. Gibson’s just seemed like part of the College, in a way…. people would always be dashing over there, especially in-between classes or practices from the Con (music conservatory) and from King (one of the main classroom buildings), both right near by. I can see why they have taken a major hit in their business.

          Mr. Allyn W. Gibson, who is now ancient, was always such a kindly presence there, with wonderful twinkly eyes; he was always ready to smile and try to get you to smile back. Yes, the alumni are not going to understand this at all.

          MajorWood in reply to MajorWood. | June 15, 2019 at 5:37 pm

          Thanks for the pointer to the review article. Unlike the blast emails, this story looks like it went through a committee before being sent out. “This story will continue to develop in the coming weeks.” Is this code for “we will publish the missing 80% of what really happened when and if we choose to get around to it?” I was going to say that it was a good example of “unbalanced reporting” as opposed to “well-balanced reporting,” but again, not close enough to do an accurate assessment.

          My dissertation advisor always cautioned me to not adopt the “I’ll see it when I believe it” approach commonly ascribed to anatomists. I hope that they still teach science properly at Oberlin, or at least better than the instruction that the journalists seem to be getting. I guess that they haven’t learned that when you only tell one half of the story that you are basically insulting the reader. So amateur journalists, keep insulting the readers (alumni) and then let us know how that’s working out for you (apologies to Dr. Phil). The biology department doesn’t have a listing for “Introductory Lysenkoism,” but the day is young.

          Still hard to believe that this all began as essentially a non-event. I always try to run through a simple test before I become involved in something. 1) Does it need to be said? 2) Does it need to be said right now? 3) Does it need to be said by me? For me, it is usually three “nos.” For an SJW, it always seems to be three “yeses.” Therein seems to lie much, if not all, of the problem.

          Silvertree in reply to MajorWood. | June 15, 2019 at 11:45 pm

          Great advice, Major Wood. I will take it to heart. Three simple questions. Just remembered my father’s advice in this regard: Ask yourself: on a scale of one to ten, how important is this to your life, really? Surprising how big things suddenly become small when looked at in that light.

          The newest Atlantic article about the case provides such a slick case of deception, it could be used in a journalism textbook. Someone coming to the story for the first time would likely be utterly baffled. I wrote to the author about it and hope to hear back from him (yes, still dreaming). Sent him the entire body-cam footage. It surprises me that he would be so completely unaware of the facts on the ground, or how bad this article makes him look to people who know even just a little bit about the case. Oh what a tangled web we weave…. At least for now I’ll try to give him the benefit of the doubt, but wow. Who knows, perhaps it will get fixed.

          Verdict Against Oberlin College and Public Shaming – The Atlantic

          Glazed whole-wheat donuts…. now that would be worth returning to Oberlin for! And I always loved the beautiful winter sunsets. Strange, the things one remembers clearly after many years…. the little things, the things that didn’t cost much. There was really no need for college after all…. just the need to wake up to the world around and everyone in it.

          Silvertree in reply to MajorWood. | June 16, 2019 at 1:24 am

          All is not lost…. just found this marvelous parody video of Oberlin students spoofing Oberlin students. These are the Obies I know and love, a class act.

          Watch while you can, Major Wood, and bring the popcorn!

          Oberlin choir responds to the Christina Sommers controversy
          “If I ever meet the real world”

          Silvertree in reply to MajorWood. | June 16, 2019 at 11:07 am

          No, looks like it isn’t Oberlin students singing. How I wish it were. Yes, I knew it wasn’t the college choir as posted, but thought maybe it was some little bunch of students getting together. Looks like no, not at all, it’s only others parodying them.

bobinreverse | June 15, 2019 at 7:12 am

A new kind of reverse Animal House movie could should be be made from this Oberlin situation. Would be off charts funny and really stir things up in that msm could not ignore huge crowds and intereat. such movie would create Kinda like djt himself

Important “tipping point” contribution for forcing Americans to reconsider the current abuses of freedom of speech. “Freedom of speech is not freedom to slander and libel.” We need new arguments for defending this freedom and this is a big one. It falls under “your freedoms end where my nose begins”.

We all have rights and they should all be enforceable. And they are individual rights, not subordinate to the will of mobs even when organized by well-funded political interests.

Maybe now we can move ahead with “holding on to our republic”. It takes grown-ups to run a civilization.

BTW, off-topic but another “turning point” event happened this week. The NYT published a Ray McGovern takedown of John Brennan.

It is noteworthy that the NYT is abandoning the key player and main orchestrator of the Trump-Russia hoax. McGovern is a highest-level inside CIA guy who submitted intelligence reports on Russia directly to the POTUS for 27 years. Times are a-changin’. It’s about time.

PrincetonAl | June 15, 2019 at 9:01 am

Like the Trayvon Martin and some of your other fine continuing coverage, this will go down as one of your finest moments.

This interview wasted not a word in effectively wrapping it up.

Great story, a seemingly great ending (fingers crossed on appeal), and great coverage.

Way to go! Glad my donation to the LI foundation is paying off already.

DouglasJBender | June 15, 2019 at 9:26 am


About Professor Jacobson’s tie — It was okay, but it was polka-dots. Much better would have been to have the same color scheme, but randomly smeared and “wavy”.

{Note: I only charge $50.00/hour for fashion-consulting, if anyone us interested. And just $35.00/hour for plain old fashion-insulting.}

    Polka dots?

    I don’t think so. Very sharp tie. Nice suit too. I always picture Clinical Law professors wearing white smocks, thick black horn-rimmed glasses, smoking briar pipes, and carrying clip boards.

      MajorWood in reply to Pasadena Phil. | June 15, 2019 at 1:12 pm

      Your image of the clinical law professor now has me wanting a 6th season of “Rake (AU)” with Cleaver Greene representing the poor bakery against the college. Oberlin has already written their half of the dramedy script. Those familiar with the show, which I describe as Rumpole on crack, can already see Cleave in the courtroom muttering “wait for it” just before the defendant blows their entire case.

    MajorWood in reply to DouglasJBender. | June 15, 2019 at 11:56 am

    The receptionist at the registrars office at Oberlin had a sign on her desk which said:
    answers: $1
    answers requiring thought: $2
    correct answers: $4
    dumb looks are still free

    This poor woman probably took more flak than any other employee at the college. It was good to know that she still maintained a sense of humor.

    tom_swift in reply to DouglasJBender. | June 15, 2019 at 12:00 pm

    The image arrangement mimics that of the ultra-traditional regimental rep tie, ameliorating it with the virtues of the relatively flashy pattern style. Polkadot ties don’t have that distinct diagonal pattern.

    The more I consider this tie, the better it seems. A very effective combination; the flashy pattern confined within traditional boundaries.

      Silvertree in reply to tom_swift. | June 15, 2019 at 2:32 pm

      I absolutely agree! We agree on something! The tie was stunning!

      You could tell right away from the tie that this man knew exactly what he was talking about and that you could never faze him in a thousand years. It said, “I’m super-smart and a gentleman, but don’t even THINK about messing with me.”

      And you could tell he understands the earnestness and gravity of this case, from his entire demeanor.

      Silvertree in reply to tom_swift. | June 16, 2019 at 1:51 am

      Something to brighten your day….
      a marvelous parody video of Oberlin students spoofing Oberlin students.
      Perhaps there is hope for them after all.

      Oberlin choir responds to the Christina Sommers controversy
      “If I ever meet the real world”

      Silvertree in reply to tom_swift. | June 16, 2019 at 11:10 am

      No, looks like it isn’t Oberlin students singing. How I wish it were. Yes, I knew it wasn’t the college choir as posted, but thought maybe it was some little bunch of students getting together. Looks like no, not at all, it’s only others parodying them.

DouglasJBender | June 15, 2019 at 9:26 am


caseoftheblues | June 15, 2019 at 9:40 am

I wouldn’t blame someone who hires and fires immediately tossing an Oberlin resume in the trash…why take the risk

    barbara in reply to caseoftheblues. | June 15, 2019 at 10:20 am

    Toss them out along with any resumes from Hahvahd, Yale, etc., ad nauseum. There are plenty of real colleges to hire graduates from.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to caseoftheblues. | June 16, 2019 at 10:05 am

    Someone should do a studdy, are Oberlin graduates more likely to be involved in ghetto lottery lawsuits? Also, distribution over time, is there a clear onset time or are there clusters?

DouglasJBender | June 15, 2019 at 11:13 am

Okay, snowflake-patterned. Nice irony if intentional. But my points (and rates) still remain.

Question for anyone knowledgeable in Ohio law: Does Oberlin need to post a bond for some portion of the compensatory and/or punitive damages award in order to appeal?

Oberlin has the money – so unfortunately we cannot hope for a Gawker-like demise – but I’m just curious.

Thoams Sowell has just released an update of his book Discrimination and Disparities.
He gave an interview today at The Federalist:
Q: What changed in the 1960s?
Sowell: It is what I call the “Social Justice” vision. That is, if there are disparities, it proves that somebody was wronged by somebody else. It’s one of those things that you don’t need one speck of evidence for. It sounds so good that many people will easily buy into it.
And many people around the world have paid with their lives for that vision. Especially in communist countries where communists came to power to supposedly correct such disparities. And once the communists are in power they create problems that make the problems that came before seem like nothing.
But that’s true of the left in general. They judge their actions by the wonderful things they are trying to do and are often oblivious to the actual harm they visibly are doing to society.

    tom_swift in reply to Gerald86. | June 15, 2019 at 12:22 pm

    That is, if there are disparities, it proves that somebody was wronged by somebody else.

    A fundamental tenet of Marxism. All human interactions can be seen as one party somehow “exploiting” the other. The free market concept—that no transaction takes place until both parties are basically satisfied—is inconceivable to a Marxist.

      JusticeDelivered in reply to tom_swift. | June 16, 2019 at 10:33 am

      While ignoring that some cultures cause poor performance, and often the culture is a result of low intelligence.

DouglasJBender | June 15, 2019 at 12:07 pm

Just came to my mind: Meredith Raimondo, flim-flam inflammatory ma’am.

LukeHandCool | June 15, 2019 at 3:09 pm

Hey Fox News, hire Professor Jacobson already!

Congratulations, Professor J! You really picked the perfect case upon which to focus resources. I don’t know if that was luck or parlaying genius.

Kudos to the Gibsons for refusing to take the easy way out by accepting the university’s bribe of dropping charges. That bribe was more like extortion. That was an immensely brave decision by the Gibsons. Congratulations to them for total vindication.

    CDR D in reply to LukeHandCool. | June 15, 2019 at 5:48 pm

    Would love to see Professor Jacobson on FOX or any other outlet he would like. His appearance on Tucker was an example of cool, calm, professional reason.

    Bravo Zulu!

So many midwest colleges were founded by Christian denominations but are now second-choice schools for blue-state kids. There is naturally tension between these left-wing indoctrination camps and the many red-state residents surrounding them. Even the University of Michigan is out of place in blue-collar Michigan. The University redlines qualified Michigan kids giving preference to out-of-state and alumni kids. Michigan wants to be known as a ‘public ivy’, a national liberal school. Meanwhile the taxpayers fund UM. It should be a private school, the University of Ann Arbor. This is a bit off-topic but there’s a pattern of discrimination against Michigan kids. The University of Virginia is similar and I know you can think of others.

At War With HOA | June 16, 2019 at 1:57 am

Imagine the embarrassment of having a degree from Oberlin College! The company I work for is no longer interested in these candidates.