Relax: It Was a Hoax, Not a “Hate Crime,” at Harvard Law School

Harvard Law School recently made national news, with reports of a supposed “hate crime” involving small strips of black electrical tape placed on glass-covered photographs of tenured black law professors, positioned over the professors’ faces.

The site of this “hate crime“? The main classroom building (Wasserstein Hall), where photos of all tenured professors line the first-floor hallway.

This is the same hallway in which last year, as part of the “Black Lives Matter” protests, black law students covered up the portraits of all the white law professors, with photos of black victims of police violence. (Apparently that wasn’t a “hate crime.” That was free speech.)

Relax. There was no “hate crime.” Not as that term is generally understood — a serious criminal offense, such as murder or battery, committed at least in part based on hatred toward the victim based on race, gender, sexual preference, etc. Here, no one was the victim of any physical attack or other serious crime motivated by hate.

Contrary to news reports, there was not even any “vandalism.” The tape was easily removed, and with a little Windex the glass covering the portraits of the black professors was as good as new.

Thus, contrary to news reports, the portraits were not “defaced” (pun, apparently, intended). The faces of the black professors on the portraits are fine. The black professors are fine.

In fact, they’re better than fine. After the black tape was removed, all sorts of admiring comments were written on multi-colored pieces of paper and stuck on to the portraits of the black professors. (Apparently that’s not “vandalism.” That’s free speech.) So now all the black professors know they’re loved.

And most of all, everyone can relax because there is not a shred of evidence that there is even one white racist at Harvard Law School who would do such a thing, or did this thing — which, as Heather Mac Donald has suggested, is inherently improbable. Steve Sailer, applying Occam’s Razor, wasn’t easily fooled, either. The New York Times mostly pretended to believe this tall tale.

Not everyone at Harvard Law School takes an event like this at face value. Not everyone assumes that just because some anonymous speech activity could be inferred to have been perpetrated by a white racist that it is likely, or even plausible, that a white racist must have done it.

For example, when he learned of this incident Professor Charles Ogletree, whose portrait was among those impacted, did not pronounce it a “hate crime.” Instead he said he was “waiting to learn more about the incident before making too strong of a judgement.” [sic]

Professor Ogletree was wise to be cautious. It turns out that there is overwhelming evidence, as campus security concluded shortly after the alterations to the photos were discovered, that the black tape was placed over the faces of the black professors by black law students protesting against black professors who view them as “traitors” for failing to support their protest objectives.

In other words, this is a hoax, obvious immediately to the law school administrators. Yet they dare not reference even the possibility that black protesters did this, for fear of igniting indignant protests from the hoaxers, and further turmoil at the law school over racial issues.

This blog has been put together by several law students in an attempt to pierce the atmosphere of fear and denial that envelopes speech on the Harvard Law School campus concerning race.

We are not blogging under our own names, for fear of being called racists simply for calmly summarizing the facts surrounding this incident which make obvious that it’s a hoax perpetrated by black protesters. (In this connection we confess to being, like many others on campus, “nakedly ambitious, focused, and future-oriented.”).

We will try to update this blog as circumstances warrant, but we have four initial posts.

First, so readers can fully internalize that there are black protesters at this school unhinged enough to actually stage a”hate crime” hoax, we introduce the students who served as the inspiration for the title of this blog. They are obsessed with forcing the law school to change its crest to remove any trace of the family crest of Isaac Royall, who endowed one of its professorships, and who more than two centuries ago owned blacks who had been sold into slavery by other blacks (as did George Washington and Thomas Jefferson), which of course now is anathema under the enlightened moral standards of 2015.

These students, comprising at most 1% of the student body, are buffoons. Before November 19, no one paid them attention. But now that they’ve staged a race hoax, people are interviewing them and reading their op-eds. Congratulations! For selfishly plunging the law school into panic mode just to serve their narrow, silly partisan objectives, we brand them the “Royall Asses.”

Second, we describe in chronological order exactly what we believe the Royall Asses did, and why, in carrying out this hoax.

Third, we then describe how the evidence implicating the Royall Asses was discovered. In particular we show how Facebook postings by the Royall Asses and others, plus statements by witnesses on the scene, all point the finger of blame at the Royall Asses.

Fourth and finally, while we admit that we cannot be 100% certain that the Royall Asses carried out this evil deed, we compare and contrast the plausibility of the two competing accounts of the incident, which for simplicity we will refer to as “Tape-Gate”:

(1) the possibility that the Royal Asses, who had 100% of the motive, means, and opportunity, conceived and executed Tape-Gate, without any involvement by any white racist;

versus

(2) the possibility that the Royal Asses are completely innocent, because there’s a racist white student at Harvard Law School who just happened along during a narrow, late-night window of opportunity to commit Tape-Gate and decided, on the spur of the moment, to risk ruining his or her entire life by doing something that would predictably create a publicity windfall for the Royal Asses at the exact moment it would be of maximum benefit to their cause.

In this fourth post, using some of what we’ve learned about statistics at the law school, we conclude that it’s at least 99.99% certain that the black tape was put up by the Royall Asses, as a hoax. Yet nearly all media attention is directed solely at the “white racist” scenario even though it makes almost no sense. We hope this blog is a useful corrective for that misplaced focus.

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43 thoughts on “Relax: It Was a Hoax, Not a “Hate Crime,” at Harvard Law School

  1. Thank you so much for publishing this perspective. As a Harvard graduate school student, it’s been appalling to watch everyone jump to conclusions and fail to approach this incident with any shred of reason.

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  2. How cowardly this hit job is…you’re too afraid as Harvard Law students to put your name to your opinions? Even when they are character assassinations of others?

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  3. Outstanding!

    I had read that the timeline of events made it rather implausible that it was not a hoax, and I was thinking that maybe a 90% probability of it being a hoax was a reasonable opinion.

    The many details you provide prove beyond reasonable doubt that it was a hoax. The SJW “hate crime” narrative requires a long cascade of extremely unlikely things to happen, while you provide plenty of evidence that the Royall Asses are just the sort of people who would pull this sort of stunt. My favorite bit of evidence is that SJW Derecka Purnell just “happened” to be there 90 minutes before her first class, immediately jumped into action to make sure the tape wasn’t just pulled off before people had a chance to get hysterical about it, and was primed to take pictures and to have them up on her Facebook page within a couple of minutes.

    So what are the HLS authorities going to do? Minnow totally bought into the idiotic “hate crime” story. If HLS announces that, sure enough, the Royall Asses did all the taping, she’ll look like a complete buffoon if she has to pull an Emily Litella and say “never mind”.

    https://screen.yahoo.com/weekend-emily-litella-violins-tv-000000080.html

    Will HLS find a way to hush this up and let the “investigation” trail off into nothing? That would be my bet.

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  4. This blog argues that the tape on the pictures was put there by the same people (probably the Royall Asses, certainly some SJWs) as the people who created the SJW Educational Art Exhibit on the HLS seals. I agree that this scenario is many orders of magnitude more likely than the scenario that a racist hate criminal just happened to be around late at night (with a pair of scissors, no less) and thought to commit the tape-on-the pictures “hate crime” with tape from the SJW Educational Art Exhibit.

    But there’s something that gives me pause about pinning the “hate crime” on the Royall Ass three stooges. Even for them, it seems awfully stupid to try to stage a “hate crime” hoax at the same time and with the same materials as their Educational Art Exhibit. You’d think even they would realize that the situation screams PROBABLE HOAX!, via Occam’s razor. Why wouldn’t they just try to do their “hate crime” hoax at a different time (and with a different roll of tape) than their Educational Art Exhibit?

    So here’s my theory. I think maybe the three stooges just put the tape on the HLS seals and then left. So who put the tape on the pictures? Derecka Purnell. My theory is that she knew about the tape on the seals and maybe even helped put it there. But then, after the three stooges leave, she comes (with a pair of scissors) and puts some tape from the mat onto the pictures. It’s still pretty stupid, but it only requires one person to be that stupid, rather than three.

    The fact that Ms. Purnell was there before 8:30 am to make sure the cops got called before the tape was removed from the pictures and to (within minutes!) post photos on Facebook convinces me that she was involved with putting the tape on the pictures. Maybe she did it with someone else, but I think it’s a bit more likely she did it herself.

    So later that day our three stooges get called in to talk to Martha Minnow or to one of her minions, and they swear up and down that they put the tape on the seals but not on the pictures. At some point they realize that it was their friend Derecka who probably put the tape on the pictures, but the last thing they would do is to rat her out.

    I think my theory (or some variation thereof) is at least as probable as the theory of this blog. I hope we eventually find out what really happened.

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    1. Here is more speculation about how this might have gone down.

      Like I said above, from the point of view of the three stooges, a combined Educational Art Exhibit + Hoax operation would seem to them to amount to writing PRIME HOAX SUSPECT onto their foreheads. I don’t think they would do that.

      My guess is that Derecka knew beforehand about the Art Exhibit plan but was not part of carrying it out. She also thought that the Art Exhibit was going to be completely ineffectual in promoting their campaign. What the campaign really needed to get people stirred up was a “hate crime”, and in her imagination there are plenty of racists lurking around corners at HLS who would jump at the chance (if they happened to be lurking at just the right time) to respond racistly to the Art Exhibit by taking some of the Art Exhibit tape and using it to desecrate pictures of black HLS faculty. But since it was unlikely that any of those racists would be lurking at just the right time, she took it upon herself to do their work for them. She did not plan on being a suspect, and so knowing that the racists would racistly say that it was probably a SJW hoax did not bother her nearly as much as it would our three stooges “prime suspects”.

      So all night after getting back from her brilliant excursion, she lays awake, all aquiver with anticipation at the wild hysteria that the desecration of the pictures is sure to provoke. She can’t resist seeing it for herself, so she happens to be there at HLS at 8:20-something, planning on just lurking invisibly in the background and enjoying the show. But then she sees that a professor is about to ruin everything by removing the tape before people can get indignant about the “hate crime”. She rushes up to prevent that and starts taking pictures with her phone to make sure there is permanent photographic evidence of the hate that the evil racists at HLS have for their black faculty and for black people in general. Now she has recklessly exposed herself as someone who was almost certainly involved in the hoax.

      So again, that’s my guess as to what happened here. I’ll admit that it’s very speculative, but it’s a scenario that makes sense to me.

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      1. Do keep in mind that the hoax worked. It doesn’t really matter that it’s an obvious hoax, because the administration doesn’t want to to know who did it and doesn’t want to punish them. Also, the idea is to get coverage by favorable media outlets that also don’t want to know that it’s a hoax. It doesn’t matter if a few blogs point out the obvious.
        In fact, making it so obvious is almost a good thing, because it helps humiliate the administration, which feels it has to respond favorably anyway, but knows it is being manipulated. This must be a delicious feeling for the hoaxers.

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  5. As an HLS alum who is uneasy about the way that these incidents get immediately amplified in rhetoric and who fears the chilling effect of mandated political correctness, I would like to invite the writers of this blog to go fuck themselves. This is a debate that should be taken very seriously, and instead several cowards have anointed themselves lead crusaders, with their preferred tactics being watery, stretched ad hominems or unwarranted assumptions strung together to churn out statistics and conclusions that would never hold up in court, much less a law school classroom or any debate forum less one-sided than a blog post. But don’t take my word for it, because their newest tactic employed in their “attempt to pierce the atmosphere of fear and denial that envelopes speech on the Harvard Law School campus concerning race” has been to round up all of the praise they’ve reaped from the rest of the tinfoil commentariat.

    To the authors: you all did a fumbling job of attempting to show the rest of the HLS community that the three “Royall Asses” don’t belong at Harvard, but this blog makes me more embarrassed to be associated with people of your low aims and mental aptitude than anything else associated with this scandal. If you’re genuinely concerned about a stifling PC climate at HLS and not just embittered, resentful little cowards intent on stirring shit up because no one has paid attention to you since you got booted from Ames first round, then abandon this silly little tirade and let the adults try to have a conversation about these important issues.

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    1. JM, your comment has no content except “I don’t like you”, but it does please me because you sound like someone who would like to do their best to refute the blog post’s theory. Please do— what are the unwarranted assumptions they’ve made?

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      1. Eric – while it’s probably true that I wouldn’t like these people, you lose credibility by saying my comment has no other content than that. Tsk tsk!

        And as for the unwarranted assumptions: you can take your pick from really any in the 99.99% post. It is a glimmering example of why lawyers should take caution with numbers, probabilities, and syllogistic reasoning. Here is one of many completely baseless postulations:

        “Suppose 5 percent of the roughly 2000 students at Harvard Law school (including graduate [sic] students) are white racists who might conceivably have been tempted to do this (0 to 1 percent is a more likely figure).

        Suppose 5 percent of all students — 100 in all — walked through the lobby during the window of opportunity (1 or 2 percent is a more likely figure).

        So of the 100 students who would have had the opportunity, only five of them are white racists.

        What are the odds that one of these students, walking through the lobby, would even notice that there the door mat had black tape on it? Studying door mats is just not something normal people do. We submit that there’s at most a 1 in 10 chance that any of the five white racist students who conceivably could have walked through during this narrow window of vulnerability would even notice the black tape.”

        Neither the “suppositions” nor the more self-serving parentheticals are based on… really anything at all. No, we’re just told that they’re “ridiculously conservative assumptions.” There is nothing at all, short of the authors’ piss-poor attempt at persuasion, that remotely suggests any of these assumptions. Far from couching any conclusion in caveats about this all being conjecture (which it most certainly is), which may have lent the authors a tiny smidgen of objectivity or authority, the piece instead uses authoritative, conclusory language like “That means the odds are only 1 in 10,000” and “we’ve demonstrated that there’s at least a 99.99% chance.” The only time the article even mentions assumptions is to talk about how conservative they are! This argument would get excoriated in a high school class, and rightfully so.

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      2. Thank you for replying, JM. I’m an economics, so I understand the style the bloggers are using. What they’re doing is proposing a set of probabilities which they hope readers will think are conservative. If they’ve failed in that with you, they invite you to insert your own numbers instead and see if the results change much. They won’t, if you change the 5% probabilities to 10%, for example. What they’re arguing is that for any remotely plausible probability for each event, so many things have to coincide that the ultimate probability of the protester’s theory will be low. So your challenge is to show that the 5% probabilities are more like 80% probabilities.

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      3. Eric – I understand that this is persuasive in the economics context, but I assure you that it is not at all accepted in legal argumentation. Economics is much more interested in probability and syllogism than the legal world is, for reasons that are probably intuitive — for efficiency’s sake, economists do not try to entertain every possible (or most) motives; they do not try to account for every single factor that could influence a statistic. Why? Because that would be equal to (or would roughly approximate) a proof. Proof is what legal minds are interested in. And certainly proof is not possible in even most legal contexts, but the bar to establish probability is much, much higher. An economist is interested in predicting future phenomena, so probabilities — even unknown ones — are helpful. Legal analysis is about characterizing past phenomena. Even if the probability of this situation happening could be modeled (I doubt that many legal scholars would agree that it could be), it’s not very helpful to look back in a explicitly biased way (after all, these authors began with the presumption that this was a hoax) to conclude the truth of anything. The probability of unknown unknowns is too high, and bias is surely fueling these statistics, which are not even applied in a remotely accurate way: though I’m no statistician, I know that assessing probability is not as simple as merely multiplying ratios together to arrive at a figure.

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    2. JM,

      It seems pretty obvious that any “adults” who “try to have a conversation about these important issues” are going to have different issues and different points to make depending on whether what occurred was a “hate crime” or a hoax.

      If it was a hoax — and the authors make a very convincing case that it was — then the conversation we all need to have does NOT involve the claim that racism is rampant at HLS.

      One of the most perversely stupid things about how hate crime hoaxes are handled is that they are defended after the fact as being important nnetheless because they open up conversation about racism. In fact, the hoax is testament, instead, to the proposition that claims of racism must be trumped up to gain any plausible importance.

      If, as seems very likely indeed by the analysis of these authors, this was a hate crime hoax, then we do need to have a conversation. But that conversation should involve questions as to how the hoaxers should be punished for their pernicious fraud; it should involve as well why it is in our society such miscreants seem to be encouraged to commit those frauds; it should involve why university administrators (and our media) seem to want to cover up for the fraudsters; and it should involve why hucksterism among practitioners of identity politics seems both pervasive and permissible among our elites.

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    3. Let’s not forget about the positive contributions of this blog.

      I think our bloggers here have shown beyond any reasonable doubt that the the tape-on-the-pictures “hate crime” was a hoax. Don’t you think that’s highly relevant to this “conversation about important issues” that “adults” are going to be having about this case?”

      Many people at HLS (I don’t know whether they qualify as “adults”, but they include HLS Dean Martha Minnow) have been talking as though it’s reasonable to (1) assume that the tape on the pictures was not a hoax, (2) call this act of micro-vandalism a racist “crime”, and (3) say that the tape shows that Harvard Law has a “serious racism problem”.

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2015/11/19/defacing-of-black-harvard-professor-portraits-investigated-as-hate-crime/

      The blog has shown that (1), (2), and (3) are just stupid bullshit.

      Having established that, in what direction should our “conversation about important issues” (by “adults”) proceed?

      Maybe to the question of why “hate crimes” that look like hoaxes are assumed to not be hoaxes until proven otherwise? Or to the question of why so many “hate crimes” are hoaxes? Or to the question of why the “racism” of “microaggressions” is now treated as a serious and pervasive problem that universities have an obligation to fight, rather than as a ridiculous joke? Or to the more general question of why there is so much PC bullshit on the issue of race?

      Whaddaya think, JM? Where should this conversation go now?

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      1. I think you should educate yourself about the reasonable doubt standard. I also know that history shows that Americans have routinely vastly underestimated the prevalence of racism in this country (for one egregious example, see 1962 views on educational opportunities http://www.gallup.com/poll/8731/equalopportunity-education-there.aspx)

        But frankly, I’m not really interested in having the rest of this conversation with you. I don’t deny that racism exists at places like HLS, and if you want to argue that it does, then go have it with someone else. As I said originally, I am interested in the tenor and tone of the debate, not engaging in tired conversations about whether people dismiss minorities’ concerns as “a ridiculous joke”

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      2. JM,

        I assume that you’re saying that you really do believe that racism in some significant form exists at places like HLS and other elite institutions.

        I have no idea why you or anyone else would believe such a thing. Virtually nowhere else in our society are there institutions that more disproportionately favor liberal views, or have voted in more overwhelming numbers for Obama than these elite educational institutions.

        Yet racism is a major factor at these institutions? How can any reasonable argument be made to that effect?

        Frankly, if you find it plausible that there would be racial hate crimes at HLS, and that this an example of one, and you won’t seriously entertain otherwise, you seem to be beyond the reach of rational argument.

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  6. I think Eric gets at the important overarching point that the authors make in exposing this fraud: the many, many independent events that would have to be true for this to be a genuine hate crime. When one multiplies out all the probabilities, it’s virtually impossible that this was a genuine hate crime. It rather little matters what each probability might be;any remotely plausible probability will, after the multiplication, render the likelihood of a hate hoax to be extremely small (and this is especially so because of the nearly miraculous appearance of the black activist in the very narrow window available to record the “hate crime” — almost unto itself this appears to be so improbable that one can dismiss the “hate crime” hypothesis.)

    Like

    1. Maybe this is a nonsequitur, but I feel like you can use these types of arguments to prove or disprove almost anything. The existence of God, for example.

      This is also the type of attitude that leads to convictions of innocent people. Everyone being totally sure of something, couldn’t have been any other way… until DNA testing says otherwise!

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    2. “I think Eric gets at the important overarching point that the authors make in exposing this fraud: the many, many independent events that would have to be true for this to be a genuine hate crime.”

      I’m convinced that the scenario in which a willing “hate criminal” just happens to be there at HLS late at night and happens to notice the tape on the seals and happens to think of taking some of that tape and putting it on the pictures and happens to have scissors handy to cut the tape is wildly implausible. And of course our “hate criminal” would also have to be willing to risk career destruction in the event of exposure.

      But I think it’s not so implausible that someone other than the people who put the tape on the seals put the tape on the pictures. If it was someone else, then it was almost certainly someone who had somehow heard about the plan to put tape on the seals before deciding to carry out a hoax with the same tape. And it’s far more likely that another SJW would get wind of the tape-on-the-seals plan than that a willing “hate criminal” would get wind of the plan.

      I think it’s _very_ unlikely that SJW Derecka Purnell was not somehow involved with putting the tape on the pictures. I think there’s a very good chance that the tape on the pictures was entirely her handiwork.

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  7. Certainly I’d expect that lawyers might understand — if others don’t — that the difference between a hoax and the real thing is everything.

    If this is a hoax, then continuing to act as if HLS as an institution needs to discuss its racism because of it is perverse. It’s like insisting that a man who was framed for murder, but ultimately exculpated, should be obliged to go through rehabilitation so that he can mend his murderous ways.

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  8. ” but I feel like you can use these types of arguments to prove or disprove almost anything. ”

    Yeah, probabilities work that way…. thank god. So glad humanity stumbled upon them at some point.

    Oh, and JM also self-identified as a lawyer, but not much else, when (s)he suggested that it was the use of probability theories that would lead to convictions of the innocent. Amusing, because it is often the stripping away of such concepts that leads to the sort of witch trial atmosphere of….well, Harvard Law School at the moment.

    BTW, if HLS did actually produce JM, that says it all, eh folks?

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    1. I think it’s far more amusing that conservatives such as yourself are so accustomed to imagining themselves as victims that they manufacture bogeymen like the “witch trial atmosphere” of HLS. Sorry to rain on your persecution fantasy, but no one is on trial at HLS, and this blog is the closest thing to a witch hunt that has targeted any student.

      Used to be that liberals were considered the big whiners. At least conservatives have kept their monopoly on using ad hominems when they can’t formulate a substantive argument…

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  9. if there was a possibility that conservatives put up the tape, consider the excruciating forensic evidence that woul be dreged up to prove they were the perps. why no fingerprints, or other forensics or interrogations of the possible hoaxes to get to bottom. Why? Harvard uses these incidents to show that they are one with the idea that has the world in its grip and as grist for fund raises n th fturue. alos, as an aside how can the dean of a law school be so naïve as to accept this improbably story as indicative of hate without even mentioning the possibility in her actions and writings thereafter. Hats off the Harvard students who examined the probabilities. one would wish to hire them to represent me after they graduate

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  10. I’m not impressed by these hopeless cowards. What would impress me if this were written by courageous Harvard Law students under their own name. When the honest hide in fear of retribution something is seriously wrong. As future lawyers I assume that these students will continue to hide vital information for fear that they will be made victims. The time to start your law career is NOW.

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  11. Statistically, what is extremely rare, almost (but not quite) to the extent that it can be argued to have become extinct? –White student racists engaged in threats or harassment of minorities.

    Statistically, what behavior is actually quite prevalent, although instances tend to be denied and covered up by various stakeholders? –Social justice warriors on campuses engaged in fake rape claims, staging fake racial harassment, and reporting fake threats.

    And with around 95% of corporate legacy journalists and management being progressive Democratic ticket voters, what is the topic that absolutely zero mainstream journalism students will dare write about, for fear of destroying any chance of their being hired? –A story chronicling the widespread fake nature of these SWJ movements.

    The Daily Caller compiled a few: http://dailycaller.com/2015/12/31/the-daily-caller-presents-the-biggest-dumbest-race-hoaxes-and-fake-hate-crimes-on-campus-in-2015/

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  12. JM said: “I think you should educate yourself about the reasonable doubt standard.”

    OK, JM, tell me what’s incorrect in the following summary of my understanding of the reasonable-doubt standard:

    The burden of proof is on the prosecution to present evidence sufficient to form the basis for a reasonable person to decide that the probability of innocence is less than some critical value that is something on the order of 1% (although maybe in practice something closer to 5%). It is most definitely not a standard of *zero* doubt, as your comments seem to suggest you believe.

    The “presumption of innocence” establishes “not guilty” as the default verdict when the evidence is insufficient to conclude that the accused is guilty. In this particular case, who is the accused? JM views the subjects of this blog post as the accused, but in fact it is the unspecified (but apparently well-known to JM) white racists at HLS who (still) stand accused of the “taping.” What this blog is doing is establishing a reasonable doubt that the default verdict of “not guilty” should be rejected. It is insisting on taking seriously the presumption of innocence. JM, however much (s)he claims expertise in the issues of this case, has quite clearly established a “presumption of guilt” standard on the unknown racists. The only way it seems that JM would be wiling to absolve those unknown racists would be for the SJWs discussed on this blog to shown to be guilty *with certainty*. This is an untenable position.

    Do the arbitrarily-chosen “probabilities” used in this blog post “prove” anything? Of course not, and the authors were foolish to claim otherwise. They are, however, as Eric Rasmussen observes, a potentially useful expository device to help us clarify our thinking. In fact, a truly useful contribution to this discussion by someone with a working knowledge of HLS would be to offer reasonable ranges of values for the relevant probabilities. For example, How many students typically roam the halls of Wasserstein Hall at night? What reasons would they have for being there? What kind of access do non-students have to the building at night? How likely is it that the tape did in fact come from the floor mat?

    Then there are the meta-questions. Any competent investigation by university police would shed much light on who the likely perps were. Did the university not consider this a serious-enough event to warrant an investigation? If not, why not? If such an investigation was done, why have the results not been made public? Specifically, if the university has evidence that would counter the speculation presented on this blog, why hold it back? Why allow these particular students to fall under the shadow of suspicion if there is no evidence to support that suspicion/

    I think the meta-questions are self-answering.

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    1. My comment was in response to Calvin Hobbes’ post. In that post, Calvin says the following:

      “I think our bloggers here have shown beyond any reasonable doubt that the the tape-on-the-pictures “hate crime” was a hoax.”

      Given your understanding of the reasonable doubt standard, I’m guessing you would find some issue with this statement. It’s telling that you let it stand uninterrogated, and tried to misconstrue my position instead.

      Instead of conjecturing about my thoughts or understanding of the reasonable doubt standard, you might have invested a minute or two in trying to appreciate the context of my post before composing a straw man.

      Like

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