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Professor Ron Sullivan and Stephanie Robinson Speak Out Over Their Removal as Harvard Deans

Professor Ron Sullivan and Stephanie Robinson Speak Out Over Their Removal as Harvard Deans

“Regrettably, Harvard’s administrators acted in ways grossly antagonistic to the very norms that make Harvard the epitome of higher education.”

Harvard Law School professor Ron Sullivan Jr. and his wife Stephanie Robinson, who also teaches at the school, were removed from their positions as residential deans for Harvard’s Winthrop House this spring.

They were targeted by social justice warriors on campus who claimed they felt “unsafe” due to Sullivan’s decision to join the defense team of Harvey Weinstein, even though he dropped Weinstein when he learned the trial would conflict with his teaching schedule.

The school caved to the mob and removed Sullivan and Robinson from Winthrop House. Both still have their teaching positions and are now speaking out about this situation for the first time.

Joey Garrison reports at USA Today:

Former Harvard dean, removed after defending Weinstein, speaks out for first time since ouster, condemns school

A Harvard Law School professor who was ousted as a faculty dean amid a campus uproar for working on the legal defense of Harvey Weinstein is speaking out publicly for the first time, saying the university abandoned the academic values that make it special.

Sullivan, in a new sharply worded YouTube video co-narrated with his wife, law professor Stephanie Robinson, says they are setting out to “help restore academic freedom, reason, discourse and honor at Harvard College.”

“When Harvard University, to which the entire world looks for leadership, abandons its commitments to academic freedom and open and unfettered debate, it undermines its responsibilities and its opportunities,” Sullivan says in the video posted Friday. “Regrettably, Harvard’s administrators acted in ways grossly antagonistic to the very norms that make Harvard the epitome of higher education.”…

“A university, it’s a place where bright young minds are supposed to learn the disciplines of framing and grappling with arguments and quite frankly, respecting and understanding the views of others,” Robinson says in the video.

“So when a place like Harvard pays insufficient attention to that vital work, it not only betrays the ambitions of the university and its students, but it quite frankly betrays our academic traditions.”

Watch the video below:

Harvard has been widely criticized for this decision, and for placating a campus mob. Last week, the ACLU joined the chorus of critics on their official blog:

Harvard Was Wrong to Dismiss Its Dean for Representing Harvey Weinstein

Last month, Harvard College Dean Rakesh Khurana announced that Ronald Sullivan, a professor in the law school, would no longer serve as faculty dean of Winthrop House, a residential dorm at Harvard. Sullivan was the first African American to serve as a faculty dean and had served in that role at Winthrop House for a decade. But when he chose to join the legal team defending Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein in his upcoming criminal trial on allegations of sexual assault, his decision sparked protests and sit-ins, as students demanded his ouster as dean. In the end, Harvard caved to the pressure.

The decision sacrificed principles central to our legal system.

Featured image via YouTube.


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Harvard is Oberlin with a bigger endowment.

4th armored div | June 19, 2019 at 9:26 am

where is BLM –
after all the profs are ‘people of color’.

At War With HOA | June 19, 2019 at 9:48 am

Guess they aren’t the ‘right type’ of black people, in the eyes of Harvard…

JusticeDelivered | June 19, 2019 at 9:56 am

What causes for legal action are available in this case? While Harvard has deep pockets, a very public battle would further tarnish their reputation.

johnnycab23513 | June 19, 2019 at 9:58 am

The butthurt snowflakes forget that one of the cornerstones of our legal system is the right of even the most despicable defendant to a vigorous defence against their charges. Lawyers are required to do this.

    Albigensian in reply to johnnycab23513. | June 19, 2019 at 11:05 am

    It’s been said that a socialist is a Liberal in a hurry.

    There’s no evidence that these “butthurt snowflakes” have forgotten anything, and far more plausible that they’re just SJWs “in a hurry” to see courts reach the “correct” decision: just convict the perv already. When everyone knows he’s guilty (and that’s enough), legal defense becomes indefensible.

    Due process is just so dang sloowww when one’s in a hurry! Off with his head already, why should we wait (said the Jacobins).

    (But that didn’t turn out so well, did it?)

An excellent statement by two talented law professors.

    Jackie in reply to AmandaFitz. | June 19, 2019 at 1:27 pm

    If students don’t feel safe in the presence, why are they allowed to continue teaching? What happens if a student has a panic attack by their mere presence? Doesn’t anybody care about the students?

      BobM in reply to Jackie. | June 20, 2019 at 5:28 am

      “I don’t feel safe” is only a pretext, nor is it the first time it’s been used as a tactic by SJWs. Rather than attack targets based on logic and reason – never the strong suite of the SJW crowd – they bypass and go directly to the “feels”.

      They know people might not buy into “I disagree with them, therefore they MUST be punished” – even though that IS what’s driving these cases. But how do you argue with feelings, real or pretend? Since college admins refuse to treat students as adults who are responsible for their own actions and are required to ACT as adults, instead they treated as the spoiled kid who throws a tantrum with parents who will acquiesce not wanting the stress and drama enforcing adulting behavior requires.

‘Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.”

Social justice anywhere is injustice everywhere.

The only reason the ACLU support the Professors is because they are black. Put a white couple in there and they are toast

healthguyfsu | June 19, 2019 at 12:24 pm

Color me skeptical.

Were they so adamant in speaking out against student mob rule before it happened to them?

It’s not like this is the first time this is happened at Harvard, other Ivies, and across the country and world.

    Barry in reply to healthguyfsu. | June 19, 2019 at 5:55 pm

    Ditto. That was the point I was going to make.

    The professors are right, but this is only the tip of the iceberg and they speak out now that it effects them.

Orwellington | June 19, 2019 at 12:48 pm

It is true however, that the students are unsafe. I suspect they are not smart enough to live outside the walls.

When I was in law school we would get very excited if one of our professors had a big case, regardless of the side. We would corner him (all male in my day) and the students (many females) and ask about strategy, facts, etc.

The students are terrified of Dean Sullivan. Just the sight of him made them tremble and his wife is even worse. How could students feel safe with these terrible people acting as deans. Imagine having to see them on a daily basis. It makes me shiver.

The left would sacrifice the legal principles of innocent until found guilty and every criminal defendant deserves a defense. What next? Jury trials for people the left doesn’t like? No “preventive detention”? There are centuries of Anglo-American jurisprudence leftists can upend and will, if they get the chance.

Harvard is no longer fit to teach law.

    Barry in reply to Valerie. | June 19, 2019 at 5:58 pm

    Oh, they stopped teaching law about 30 years ago. Now they teach social justice for inept deadbeats.

There are some really smart people on this site. Can someone explain why we don’t see them make out a claim of tortious interference with contractual relations?

In MA:

To make out a claim of tortious interference with contractual relations, a plaintiff must demonstrate that “(1) he had a contract with a third party; (2) the defendant knowingly induced the third party to break that contract; (3) the defendant’s interference, in addition to being intentional, was improper in motive or means; and (4) the plaintiff was harmed by the defendant’s actions.” Draghetti v. Chmielewski, 416 Mass. 808, 816 (1994) “[I]mproper conduct, beyond the interference itself, is ‘an element both in the proof of intentional interference with the performance of a contract . . . and in the proof of intentional interference with a prospective contractual relationship.’ ” Hunneman Real Estate Corp. v. Norwood Realty, Inc., 54 Mass. App. Ct. 416, 427 (2002), quoting from United Truck Leasing Corp. v. Geltman, 406 Mass. 811, 816 (1990)

The principle they support is sound – we see it every day in Public Defenders offices, mostly supported by tax dollars.

My guess is that this is the first time they got excited about this issue (don’t think he volunteered to defend the guy who killed a woman in Charlottesville) until multimillionaire Democrat super donor was involved.

Inquiring minds ask – how much was his retainer/contract to join the defense team? Why hasn’t any media done some journalism on that simple question?

Snowflakes demand a right to “feel safe”, then go out and join an anti-fa riot and see no contradiction.

Dilbert Deplorable | June 22, 2019 at 3:41 pm

Harvard is a pathetic institution worthless in every way.

The only thing a diploma from Harvard is good for today is wiping your arse after a healthy bowl twister.

To all employers out there, when you have a Harvard graduate apply forba job, summarily rejected them with a letter saying specifically thsy younwiuldnt hire a Harvard Grad if Peter Strozk or Robert Mueller was holding a gun to your head.