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Cornell Students Petition for Expulsion of Freshman TikTok Star for Flouting Coronavirus Rules

Cornell Students Petition for Expulsion of Freshman TikTok Star for Flouting Coronavirus Rules

“The people who you wouldn’t expect to snitch will snitch”

The Coronavirus pandemic is creating a snitch culture on some college campuses. It’s sad.

The Washington Post reports:

Cornell students petition to have freshman TikTok star expelled for flouting coronavirus rules

Colleges have been threatening students with stiff penalties for failing to practice social distancing and wear masks, blasting “selfish and reckless” behavior and issuing hundreds of suspensions.

At Cornell University, however, it’s the students who are becoming the most vocal enforcers of coronavirus-era rules.

“Jessica Zhang has shown that she does not care to comply to public safety measures and wants to put other citizens at risk for the sake of her own entertainment,” reads an online petition from a “Concerned Student Coalition” that had gathered nearly 2,000 signatures by Wednesday night. It says Zhang — a freshman who happens to be a TikTok star with more than half a million followers — should be expelled for flouting coronavirus precautions while partying.

“Some students don’t have the luxury of going home to a quiet and healthy environment to focus on academics,” the petition warns. “Do not ruin it for everyone else.”

Students are returning this month to campuses where they are expected to help police their peers and where a few people’s misbehavior could get everyone sent home. Skeptics doubt young people’s willingness to keep each other in line, given college’s social pressures: “the people who slide up saying ‘you’re not social distancing’ are the ones that wouldn’t have been invited anyway,” read the Snapchat post that kicked off a backlash against Zhang.

The fallout at Cornell made it clear, though, that some students have embraced their role as the first line of defense against the novel coronavirus, even as other community members wonder how much a freshman navigating an unprecedented college experience can really be held culpable.

“The people who you wouldn’t expect to snitch will snitch,” said Milan Broughton, a freshman at Cornell who signed the petition. “It’s kind of the culture that we need to have around. You need to hold everyone accountable.”


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Easier way to keep students from partying if they are truly worried is enforce a minimum gradepoint to stay in college, say 3.5 or higher. The library might have to get creative to have the room to social distance but hey, it would do them good. 🙂

    healthguyfsu in reply to kyrrat. | August 28, 2020 at 6:08 pm

    Dumb idea.

    Do you realize how many students might not make that cut while breaking zero rules, especially in the real majors?

    At the same time, joke major students can get a 3.5 just for showing up.

      I worked my butt off keeping a 3.5 to maintain a multi yr scholarship for bachelor science in business, specializing in marketing and finance at an engineering school. I am not a brain trust, it took very hard work. If I can do it I see no reason others cannot.

There’s actually nothing wrong with this.

Either you have rules or you don’t….when you refuse to enforce rules, you don’t have them in practice even if in theory.

“Snitching” is something that would help minority communities with their crime problems if they did the right thing more often. “Snitching” in this particular case provides information to enforce common sense rules at universities, just like reporting a cheater does.

At my university, our punishment is pretty simple. Break the safety rules and you are suspended for at least 14 days while in isolation from other persons on campus. If you check out okay, you are out after that time. If you test positive, you enter the quarantine program where you can have your classes livestreamed until you recover (once the suspension is over) and test negative.

While you are suspended, your professors have the option of livestreaming for you or not…I will choose not to livestream for any suspended students. They can make up their work on their own selfish time.

    randian in reply to healthguyfsu. | August 28, 2020 at 6:36 pm

    What common sense rules? 20-somethings aren’t at risk for covid-19 and don’t spread it. Making them wear masks and social distance is stupid. As a general proposition, making the rest of us do it is stupid too.

      healthguyfsu in reply to randian. | August 28, 2020 at 7:17 pm

      You can’t be this dense. They aren’t at risk for serious complications, but they are definite spreaders and can be infected. Look at the positive cases across universities returning to campus right now…NC universities got hit hard and there are plenty of others. They are spreading it to one another and that spreads it to the non-adolescent adults of varying ages and risk tiers working at these universities.

      If you choose the OPTION to come back to campus, you choose to follow the rules or face the consequences. You don’t get to pick and choose which rules you follow for convenience.