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Tags: princeton | constitution | rights | Rittenhouse

Princeton University Appears to Oppose Legal and Constitutional Rights … Again

a copy of the constitution ripped down the middle

Paul du Quenoy By Monday, 22 November 2021 10:33 AM EST Current | Bio | Archive

“Yesterday’s ruling sets a dangerous precedent,” ventured Amaney Jamal, the recently appointed dean of Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs, last Friday in an internal mass e-mail provided to me by a source who wishes to remain anonymous.

Claiming to suffer from a heavy heart, she wrote “I fail to comprehend” that Kyle Rittenhouse, whom she called a “vigilante,” could be “declared innocent by the U.S. justice system.”

“I believe people have a right to assembly,” she continued. “I also believe that … it is the job of formal law enforcement bodies — not individual citizens —to ensure public safety.” She further falsely stated that Rittenhouse carried his gun across state lines.

Following the progressive script, Jamal inevitably played the race card, even though Rittenhouse, all three violent assailants whom he was found to have shot in self-defense, the judge, the prosecution team and his defense counsel were all white.

“What we do know without a doubt,” Jamal preached, “is [that] there are racial inequities in nearly every strand of the American fabric.” “Today’s [sic] verdict employs me [sic] to ask you — our current and future public servants — to investigate our policies and practices within the justice system and beyond … We must always act with our feet, evoke change [sic] with action.”

Jamal announced counseling for public affairs students who require professional help to “process” the results of one of our foundational public affairs processes, but along with her atrocious English we can only wonder what her odd message was meant to convey.

Does she believe that Rittenhouse was “declared innocent by the U.S. justice system,” or did she “fail to comprehend” what really happened – that he was found “not guilty” in a trial by a jury of his peers?

As dean of a public affairs school, has she read the U.S. Constitution, including its Second Amendment?

Is she aware that U.S. citizens do, in fact, have the right to keep and bear arms, and to defend themselves and others with deadly force in a plethora of circumstances, particularly when they are violently attacked?

Does she know that our “right of assembly” does not grant anyone a right to destroy property, threaten bodily harm, hit people with skateboards, or hold pistols to their heads – all of which happened to Rittenhouse in the minutes before he pulled the trigger of his AR-15?

Does she realize that calling Rittenhouse a “vigilante,” especially after he was found not guilty on all counts, and falsely claiming that he carried his gun across state lines, exposes her and her university to potential defamation claims?

Do we know “without a doubt” that “racial inequities” figure “in nearly every strand of the American fabric?”

Many disagree, even if, as Jamal is undoubtedly aware, disagreeing on Princeton’s campus can result in baleful consequences, against which the traditional hallmarks of academic freedom are no shield.

Which “policies and practices” does she want her students to “investigate?” Open jury trials? Constitutional liberties? Rights of self-defense? Due process? Presumption of innocence?

It sounds like all of the above, and it is frighteningly consistent with investigative practices in dictatorships, and in most American colleges and universities (including Princeton), where administrators have enthusiastically embraced the opportunity to dispense with basic rights for respondents, who are overwhelmingly white and male.

And what “action” should her students take to, as she bizarrely puts it, “evoke change?”

Will hordes of eager young Princeton graduates sally forth to abolish our judicial system, repeal constitutional amendments, and annul my legally obtained license to carry a concealed weapon?

Is she inciting them to violent actions like those of Princeton alumnus Colinford Mattis, who was arrested in May 2020 for firebombing a New York City police car and recently pleaded guilty to possession of a destructive device? Let’s hope not.

Isn’t it enough that Princeton already dropped Woodrow Wilson’s name from Jamal’s School because opinions he held over a century ago are unfashionable among the progressive left today?

In an academic culture where commenting on judicial matters is considered highly unprofessional and legally inadvisable, are her misinformed private opinions even relevant?

Some of her colleagues don’t think so. Sergiu Klainerman, the Eugene Higgins Professor of Mathematics at Princeton and a past MacArthur genius fellow, finds that “such heavy-handed interventions by high-level administrators contribute to the phenomenon of self-censorship on U.S. campuses, in flagrant contradiction of the basic mission of the University.”

That sounds unpromising, but it could be that Jamal is simply ignorant. Born in 1970, she is part of the first generation of students not to receive comprehensive instruction in civics, a deficiency which we have long been warned would lead to a dystopia where our freedoms vanish simply because we are no longer taught what they are.

Perhaps in fulfillment of that dire prophecy, our top-rated university now boasts a public affairs dean who appears unable accurately to discuss basic legal concepts and constitutional rights, or to convey pertinent facts about public legal proceedings.

A less charitable read is that Jamal may be more familiar with our basic rights than her awkward message suggests, and that she, and possibly her institution, object to those rights because they are obstacles to imposing their vision of “social justice.”

She may well believe that your rights to defend yourself and to be judged by a jury of your peers prevent the imposition of wokeism, and that they must therefore be disparaged and discarded.

It is perhaps no irony that Jamal is also director of a joint research program with my former university, the American University of Beirut, where late last year students protesting a de facto 160% tuition increase were confronted by militarized internal security forces who beat and teargassed them when they sought to resist the whims of another disreputable administrator.

“Democracy is not a guarantee,” Jamal warns her students. Here, too, she is wrong. As the Rittenhouse jury bravely showed, democracy, when properly applied, can protect us from people like her.

Paul du Quenoy is president of the Palm Beach Freedom Institute. He holds a Ph.D. in history from Georgetown University. Read more — Here.

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"Yesterday's ruling sets a dangerous precedent," ventured Amaney Jamal, the recently appointed dean of Princeton University's School of Public and International Affairs, last Friday in an internal mass e-mail provided to me by a source.
princeton, constitution, rights, Rittenhouse
Monday, 22 November 2021 10:33 AM
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