by James A. Bacon

Two-and-a-half years ago, Kieran Ravi Bhattacharya, a medical school student at the University of Virginia, attended a session on “microaggressions” in which psychology professor Beverly Colwell Adams gave a presentation about her research. In what he thought to be a collegial manner, Bhattacharya challenged her analysis.

The challenge was not well received. Indeed, other participants in the session deemed his questions disrespectful. There followed a sequence of events in which Bhattacharya was investigated by the Academic Standards and Achievement Committee for unprofessional behavior, was told to submit to psychological evaluation, was suspended, was branded as a threat to the university community, was banned from the university grounds, and ultimately was expelled.

Bhattacharya has detailed his side of the story in a lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court in Charlottesville against the University of Virginia and various university officials. The defendants filed for a motion to dismiss, but Judge Norman K. Moon ruled that the case should proceed. I base the account that follows upon the details contained in Moon’s ruling.

That ruling presents only one side of the story, Bhattacharya’s, and has to be considered in that light. But Bhattacharya version is well documented with emails and audio recordings. If substantially correct, the implications for freedom of thought and expression at the University of Virginia are extremely troubling. The lawsuit opens a window into the internal workings of Virginia’s flagship university. Free thought and expression are stifled not only by the widely recognized phenomena of doctrinaire faculty and Twitter Outrage Mobs, but by administrators acting through the university’s clunky bureaucratic machinery.

The microaggression panel discussion. On Oct. 25, 2018, Bhattacharya attended a panel discussion about microaggressions. One of the presenters was Beverly Colwell Adams, who has described her research interest as “the examination of microaggressions as one of the contributing variables to the decline of physical and mental health in strong black women.” After Adams gave a presentation of some 17 minutes in length, Bhattacharya asked some questions.

Bhattacharya: Hello. Thank you for your presentation. I had a few questions just to clarify your definition of microaggressions. Is it a requirement, to be a victim of a microaggression, that you are a member of a marginalized group?

Adams: Very good question. And no. And no–

Bhattacharya: But in the definition, it just said you have to be a member of a marginalized group — in the definition you just provided in the last slide. So that’s contradictory.

Adams: What I had there is kind of the generalized definition. In fact, I extend it beyond that. As you see, I extend it to any marginalized group, and sometimes it’s not a marginalized group. There are examples that you would think may not fit, such as body size, height, [or] weight. And if that is how you would like to see me expand it, yes, indeed, that’s how I do.

Bhattacharya: Yeah, follow-up question. Exactly how do you define marginalized and who is a marginalized group? Where does that go? I mean, it seems extremely nonspecific.

Adams: And — that’s intentional That’s intentional to make it more nonspecific…..

Bhattacharya went on to challenge Adams’ definition of microaggression. He argued against the assumption that “the person who is receiving the microaggressions somehow knows the intention of the person who made it.” He suggested that “a microaggression is entirely dependent on how the person who’s receiving it is reacting.”

He continued: “the evidence that you provided — and you said you’ve studied this for years — which is just one anecdotal case — I mean do you have, did you study anything else about microaggressions that you know in the last few years?” And later in the exchange, he said, “So, again, what is the basis for which you’re going to tell someone that they’ve committed a microaggression? … Where are you getting this basis from? How are you studying this, and collecting evidence on this, and making presentations on it?”

At that point, Assistant Professor Sara Rasmussen, a fellow panelist, cut off the exchange. “I think that we should make sure to open up the floor to lots of people for questions.” Bhattacharya agreed. After Rasmussen began speaking, however, Bhattacharya engaged with her. At one point he began to speak over her. That dialogue lasted about five minutes.

The reaction. Nora Kern, assistant professor of urology and an event co-organizer, filed a Professionalism Concern Card against Bhattacharya the same day. The Card, which record student violations of the medical school’s professionalism standards, identified “respect for others” and “respect for differences” as areas of concern.

This student asked a series of questions that were quite antagonistic toward the panel. He pressed on and stated one faculty member was being contradictory. His level of frustration/anger seemed to escalate until another faculty member defused the situation by calling on another student for questions. I am shocked that a med student would show so little respect toward faculty members. It worries me how he will do on wards.

Christine Peterson, assistant dean for medical education, sent Bhattacharya an email that made note of his “discomfort” with the speaker’s perspective. “Would you like to come share your thoughts with me? I think I can provide some perspective that will reassure you about what you are and are not responsible for in interactions that could be uncomfortable even when that’s not intended. … I simply want to help you understand and be able to cope with unintended consequences of conversations.”

Bhattacharya responded by email that he was not uncomfortable at all. To the contrary, he was happy for the opportunity to engage with the microaggression panel.

The two agreed to meet. But rather than address the microaggression session, it seemed to Bhattacharya that Peterson was more interested in determining his “views on various social and political issues — including sexual assault, affirmative action, and the election of President Trump.”

The ASAC meetings. The Academic Standards and Achievement Committee is tasked with examining “patterns of unprofessional behavior and egregious violations of professionalism.” On Nov. 14, the committee took up the issue of Kern’s “Card” against Bhattacharya.

According to minutes of the meeting, which Kern attended as a voting member, “the committee voted unanimously to send Kieran Bhattacharya … a letter reminding him of the importance in medicine to show respect to all: colleagues, other staff, and patients and their families.”

Eleven days later, Associate Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs John J. Densmore sent Bhattacharya a letter stating that he needed to be seen by CAPS [Counseling and Psychological Services] before he could return to classes. Bhattacharya responded by email objecting to the medical school’s ability to “mandate psychiatric evaluations.”

ASAC scheduled another meeting to discuss Bhattacharya’s enrollment status, and invited him to attend. With only three hours notification, however, he had little time to prepare and was unable to obtain legal advice.

Jim B. Rucker, committee chair, explained that ASAC was concerned by Bhattachary’s interactions with others since the microaggression panel discussion. “What we’re concerned about is some of the behaviors you’ve shown since then. … There’s concern about your interactions and behaviors most recently.”

Another ASAC member, Bart Nathan, reiterated the reservations about Bhattachary’s behavior. He described Bhattacharya as “extremely defensive” and noted that Bhattacharya’s “recording” of the hearing was “unusual behavior” not typical of a medical student. He said that ASAC was requiring him to change his “aggressive, threatening behavior.” Moreoever, he said, “Any patient that walked into the room with [Bhattacharya] would be scared.”

Suspension and trespass. The committee voted to suspend Bhattacharya, and sent him a letter to that effect. “The Academic Standards and Achievement Committtee has determined that your aggressive and inappropriate interactions in multiple situations, including in public settings, during a speaker’s lecture,  with your Dean, and during the committee meeting yesterday, constitute a violation of the School of Medicine’s Technical Standards. … Those Standards … state that each student is responsible for demonstrating self-awareness and self-analysis of one’s emotional state and reactions.”

Bhattacharya filed an appeal of ASAC’s decision and sent information about his ordeal to SecureDrop, a website through which individuals can anonymously transmit documents to dozens of news organizations.

On Dec. 30, Melissa Fielding, deputy chief of the university police, called Bhattacharya to inform him that the UVA Police Department would be issuing a No Trespass Order against him. He would be forbidden to enter any property or facility on the grounds for four years — except as a patient. When he asked the justification, she provided no additional information at that time. Later, she would reveal the order had been issued after “concerns were raised” about chat room comments “that were perceived as threats.” Those comments “raised safety concerns for the community.”

The next day, Associate Dean John J. Densmore informed Bhattacharya that, due to the No Trespass Order, the Medical School would “not be able to proceed with an appeal of [his] suspension.”

On Aug. 7, UVA upheld the No Trespass Order on the grounds that Bhattacharya had “engag[ed] in conduct that threatened the well-being of members of the community through various social media platforms.” His conduct “directed at members of the university community compromised safety and security and caused fear.”

Bacon’s bottom line. There is a bizarre symmetry here. The controversy began when Bhattacharya contested the notion of “microaggressions” on the grounds that “the person who is receiving the microaggressions somehow knows the intention of the person who made it.” Ultimately, his words and actions led to people perceiving him as aggressive, threatening, and fearful — reactions that he almost certainly did not intend. In an irony of ironies, by expressing skepticism of “microaggressions,” Bhattacharya committed a microaggression. And then by defending himself, he committed even more.

The case, I expect, will revolve around the validity of the perceptions of Bhattacharya’s aggressiveness. If Bhattacharya displayed a pattern of being loud, belligerent, and threatening, the actions taken against him conceivably might be justified. Conversely, if it turns out that he inadvertently offended a group of emotional snowflakes, this could be a case in which passive-aggressive individuals used their hyper-delicacy to silence and expel an individual whose ideas they found alien.

Before judging the case, it is necessary to see what evidence the defendants present. My hunch, based upon reactions to my own behavior at times, is that Bhattacharya might be passionate about his beliefs. He might speak with intensity, and he might raise his voice without meaning to be belligerent or threatening. Those with exquisite sensibilities might misinterpret his manner as aggressive. That’s pure speculation but it’s a possible explanation of the widely divergent views.

Two other points stand out more definitively.

First, Bhattacharya’s critique of “microaggressions” was devastating. He challenged the reining orthodoxy of the UVa administration, and various professors, and deans, and associate deans, and factotums took offense. Rather than rebut him on the substance — which, I suspect, they could not do effectively — they attacked him for his tone.

Second, the administrative process is highly subjective and lacks due process. It is extraordinary that the Academic Standards and Achievement Committee could compel Bhattacharya to obtain psychological (or psychiatric) counseling before resuming his studies. This is reminiscent the Soviet-style tactic of labeling social and political critics as psychological deviants. Rather than institutionalize Bhattacharya, the UVa medical school bureaucracy suspended him.

More importantly, Bhattacharya was given virtually no time to prepare a defense or hire legal counsel. Any normal person would be outraged by such treatment. Any normal person would be forgiven for venting his frustrations on social media. Whether some of those statements were personally threatening toward his persecutors, we don’t know. We’ll have to await the evidence the defendants present. Here’s what we do know: someone used the administrative process to execute a No Trespass Order, which appeared to come as a total surprise to Bhattacharya. He was given no venue to contest the order, even though it effectively resulted in his expulsion from the university.

This is how free speech and free expression are squelched at UVa. The Left often says, “words are violence.” Bhattacharya challenged the orthodoxy, then refused to back down. Offended faculty and administrators never attacked him directly for his views. Rather, they portrayed his words as aggressive, threatening, and potentially violent, and used the machinery of academic bureaucracy to banish him.


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Comments

48 responses to “The Bureaucratic Banality of Academic Oppression”

  1. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    I’m concerned here that we’re presenting one side of this dispute AND we’re conflating it in a culture war way.

    This post really does illustrate why VPAP did not consider BR to be a legitimate “news” source.

    We need to hear both sides of this and we need to drop the idea that it’s a leftist thing.

    1. dick dyas Avatar
      dick dyas

      Who is a legitimate “news” source?

      1. tmtfairfax Avatar
        tmtfairfax

        The Washington Post, of course. Err, isn’t that the so-called “elite media company” that missed Ralph Northam’s blackface appearance in two election cycles? And they support a vice presidential candidate who believes in religious tests for public office.

      2. LarrytheG Avatar
        LarrytheG

        Purpose: VaNews is an aggregation of original news reporting about Virginia politics and government.

        VaNews will consider “original news reporting” that is published online by print newspapers, broadcast radio and TV stations and outlets that meet our standards as “online news providers.”

        VPAP defines qualified “online news providers” as those publications that:

        Have been published daily least one month or weekly for at least two consecutive months
        Has in place an editor review process that includes assigning stories, fact checking and verification of sources
        Is not produced by a political organization or any entity that lobbies the General Assembly or Congress
        May not accept news articles placed for payment, unless clearly indicated
        In determining whether specific articles represent “original news reporting” VPAP will take into account the following:

        Evidence that the reporter attended an event or conducted his/her own interviews.
        The article presents multiple sides of a debate or, at the very least, indicates the reporter has made an effort to get comment from the other side. This standard will be particularly high when considering an article that calls into question the honesty or impugns the integrity of any individual, company or institution.
        The article contains a narrative structure that consists of more than (1) a string of social media postings, (2) excerpts from other media sources, or (3) video and audio clips without additional context provided.
        When opinion is expressed, it is attributed to individuals other than the author.

    2. First, I warned readers explicitly twice in the post that we’re hearing only one side of the story.

      Second, hearing only one side of the story is always what happens when a journalist reports about a lawsuit that has been filed. You never get the other side of the story until the other side files its arguments.

      Third, as any sentient person can see, I made a point of presenting information in my rendering that could be read favorably to the defense, and also hedged my conclusions.

      Instead of insulting my reporting, why don’t you show me where I have been inaccurate or unfair. Here’s the document: https://www.baconsrebellion.com/app/uploads/2021/04/Bhattacharya-v.-Murray.pdf Read it and tell me what I have omitted or mis-stated. That would add to the discussion. If you can’t be bothered, then stop flapping your jaws and detracting from the discussion.

      1. Stephen Haner Avatar
        Stephen Haner

        Do you have the notification list so we can see which lawyers are getting paid to ruin this student’s life over nothing?

      2. John Harvie Avatar
        John Harvie

        I was wondering when you’d get your fill…

      3. LarrytheG Avatar
        LarrytheG

        Nope.

        The first part was treading on one-sided perspective and you admitted it, but then you went further:

        ” This is how free speech and free expression are squelched at UVa. The Left often says, “words are violence.” Bhattacharya challenged the orthodoxy, then refused to back down. Offended faculty and administrators never attacked him directly for his views. Rather, they portrayed his words as aggressive, threatening, and potentially violent, and used the machinery of academic bureaucracy to banish him.”

        How did you get to this? What evidence?

        Actions were taken but do you know what actually went into those actions? Were the police involved? Does this guy have a prior history of such behaviors?

        What I see – even by your own biased reporting is that some people actually felt personally threatened and apparently others agreed.

        You see this as a leftist cabal out to get the guy.

        In these days of mass shootings….these kinds of interactions unsettle people. Did that happen here?

        I think we need to know more about this before we get to “UVA leftist cabal once again squelching free speech”.

      4. caroline Avatar
        caroline

        Hello Mr. Bacon,
        Do you have any idea who is representing Mr. Bhattacharya, or did you get all of your info from the opinion?

        1. No idea. Your surmise is correct — I pulled all my info from Judge Moon’s opinion.

    3. Stephen Haner Avatar
      Stephen Haner

      Everybody knows that VPAP was cancelling us the same way social media cancels other conservative voices. Poole remains a friend, we talked again the other day, but no doubt in my mind. Bacon and I could be back in straight news mode anytime.

      And you monitor us 24-7-365 just to whine like that.

      1. LarrytheG Avatar
        LarrytheG

        ” Wall between commentary and news

        VaNews believes publications should differentiate the roles of commentators and news reporters. VaNews will not include original news reporting from anyone who regularly writes editorials, news analysis or commentary.”

        https://www.vpap.org/vanews/content-policy/

    4. WayneS Avatar

      Conflating it with what? You need more than one noun if you want to start conflating.

      Do you see what you started, N_N, now I’m “that guy”…

  2. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
    James Wyatt Whitehead

    Kieran Ravi Bhattacharya could emerge as a modern day hero like Joseph Welch from the Army vs. McCarthy hearings.

    1. Charlie Potatoe Avatar
      Charlie Potatoe

      Welch was a great showman, but the facts show that his high dungeon in the TV Clip was disingenuous.

      Welch had been attacking Roy Cohn for not being fast enough in calling out subversives in the Army. McCarthy responded that Welch had no standing to make such charges since he included in his team, Fred Fisher, a member of the National Lawyers Guild, which was known as the Mouthpiece of the Communist Party and was cited by the DOJ as a Communist Front Organization.

      This rejoinder by McCarthy prompted Welch’s famous “Have you no Shame” attack on McCarthy for discussing Fisher’s affliction with the NLG.

      The evidence that Welch was being disingenuous in his out -rage is that weeks earlier in the New York Times(4/16/1954), Welch himself had outed Fisher, when he disclosed that he had relieved Fisher from duty as his Second Assistant because of his membership in the NLG.

      Welch was a great actor and a skilled Lawyer.

      McCarthy was an Irish street fighter with a rough and tumble style, which, combined with some mistakes, allowed the Washington Establishment to paint him as an irresponsible demagogue and bring him down.

      It was all a great show, and I and most of the Nation were
      glued to our TVs for the duration.

      NOTE:The publishing of the Venona Papers, intercepts of communications between USSR Intelligence Agencies and their Agents in the U.S., confirmed that many of those identified by McCarthy, including many in the US Government, were Communist Party Members or fellow travelers.

      Most of the Venona intercepts were decrypted at Arlington Hall, a former Girls School in Arlington, Virginia, by a crew mostly made up of young Women, many with just a High School Education.

      1. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
        James Wyatt Whitehead

        No wonder McCarthy drank himself to death. Great backstory on Arlington Hall. I had never heard of this and after looking it up, what a great story. We had such a place in Fauquier at Vint Hill Farm Station. Which variety of Potatoe are you? Russet, Adirondack Blue, Fingerling, or maybe Yukon Gold? I love my taters!

        1. Charlie Potatoe Avatar
          Charlie Potatoe

          A Dan Quayle Potatoe.

          What was going on at Vint Hill Farm Station?

          The Group at Arlington Hall also broke
          Japanese Naval Codes and was directly responsible for U.S. Naval Operations in the Pacific that effectively destroyed the Japanese Navy.

          So much for the much hyped Swells at Bletchley Park.

          1. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
            James Wyatt Whitehead

            Hee Haw! Dan Quayle. When I worked for the Park Service at Manassas Battlefield one of my jobs was to be the welcome wagon for Mrs. Dan Quayle. She came out to go horseback riding all the time at the 7,000 acre battlefield. My old friend and NPS policeman Dennis Ayers would have to saddle up and ride with her since nobody in the Secret Service could mount a horse. Dennis provided protective services on horseback rides for President Reagan and First Lady Jackie O. He was also the only government figure at the podium with MLK for the I Have A Dream speech. Dennis could spin a hundred tales.

  3. Another example of a bigoted white supremacist organization keeping marginalized people [in this case those with way too long of a name which sounds funny] down!!!!!!

    Can’t wait for the mayor’s poem……

  4. WayneS Avatar

    The recording of both microaggression lecture, and the student’s ASAC hearing are at this link:

    https://bigleaguepolitics.com/college-student-suspended-for-antagonizing-sjw-microaggression-lecture/?utm_source=srp002

    I found the proceedings of the hearing interesting because none of the inquisitors, I mean committee members, would tell the young man exactly what he had done wrong, especially regarding his “interactions with others since the microaggression panel discussion”.

    It reminded me of listening to a book-on-tape reading of The Trial or Catch-22.

    1. LarrytheG Avatar
      LarrytheG

      yep, this explains a lot, thank you:

      ” Big League Politics is a far-right[1] American media website which traffics in conspiracy theories.[6] It was founded by former Breitbart News employees.[7][8] .
      The website has promoted conspiracy theories, on subjects such as QAnon and the murder of Seth Rich.[13][14][15] The New York Times described Big League Politics as “an obscure right-wing news site […] which has promoted conspiracy theories and written favorably about white nationalist candidates.”[16] Huffington Post said it is intended for “people who find Breitbart too reasonable.”

      ah.. it become clear now…..BR is playing wannabe…

      1. CJBova Avatar

        What has any of that got to do with the link to the video of the presentation and the student’s interactions as they actually happened?

        Did you read what the judge said? https://www.courthousenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/microagressions.pdf

        Sometimes I can’t believe how tolerant Jim Bacon is of your rants and excursions into never-neverland.

        1. LarrytheG Avatar
          LarrytheG

          Are we talking about “tolerance” and free speech here? 😉

          .

        2. Nancy Naive Avatar
          Nancy Naive

          “Sometimes I can’t believe how tolerant Jim Bacon is of your rants and excursions into never-neverland.”

          Uh,… never mind.

          As to the memorandum opinion, the judge dismisses with prejudice counts 2, 3, and 4, letting stand only count 1. I assume they are going forward on that.

          1. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            Is he representing himself or does he have a firm representing him?

      2. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
        James Wyatt Whitehead

        Oh pleeze Mr. Larry. BLP broke the story on Northam and Fairfax’s scandals. Where was your beloved WaPo and NYT?

        1. LarrytheG Avatar
          LarrytheG

          WaPo and NYT are not “beloved” and yes, both can be biased (as well as WSJ) but when NONE of them are covering something AND a bunch of right-leaning media are, what does that mean?

          I still don’t think we know what really happened after the higher ups got involved in it.

          And look, I don’t think UVA is pure innocence and light either. Anytime an institution or a corporation gets involved in something at the higher levels – they may well be defending something wrongly.

          I just would like to see something other than the usual grievance suspects reporting on it.

          Heckfire, even JIM B and others here will QUOTE WaPo/NYT on other issues as fact-based reporting. No?

          1. WayneS Avatar

            The ACAS committee are the “higher ups”.

          2. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            There were some Deans, no? And what I saw was that after they interacted with him personally, they became concerned about the behavior he exhibited in those personal interactions.

            If you skip down to ” F. The November 28 ASAC Suspension Hearing” where there is discussion of other interactions and behaviors subsequent to the “micro-aggression” dustup.

            https://casetext.com/case/bhattacharya-v-murray

            The question is were their subsequent interactions and behaviors after the micro-aggression incident that led to further actions against him?

            It does not sound like that only the original dust-up led to the other actions against him in my reading.

      3. WayneS Avatar

        You are absolutely unbelievable. I posted the link because the site has links to the complete recordings of two of the incidents mentioned in the story.

        I am sorry the site where the recordings reside does not pass your political a muster (although, apparently Huffington Post does).

        As far as your lame “BR is playing wannabe” comment goes, I am a USER of Bacon’s Republic, not as one of its managers or moderators. The posting of the link was my doing and my doing alone. I have nothing to do with running this site, nor do I have influence over its content. So stop trying to drag Jim Bacon into this.

        Again the ONLY reason I posted the link to the “offensive” site is because it is the only place I could find the complete recordings of the incidents in question. I wanted to hear them for myself and I thought others might want to as well. I knew nothing about the history or politics of that web site until you posted your pathetic diatribe.

        PS –

        11-111
        00-010
        01-011
        10-110
        10-101
        00-010

        Seriously, sir,

        11-111
        00-010
        01-011
        10-110
        10-101
        00-010

        1. LarrytheG Avatar
          LarrytheG

          Seem like I saw several sites with the recordings but also seems like not every interaction was recorded and it was the personal interactions with the higher up Administrators that I saw that they saw concerned them and led to further actions based on his behavior with them.

          diatribe? geeze…. sorry you were “offended”…. settle down now.

          1. WayneS Avatar

            At least you can still craft a run-on sentence…

            PS –

            11-111
            00-010
            01-011
            10-110
            10-101
            00-010

          2. LarrytheG Avatar
            LarrytheG

            and proud of it if it annoys certain folks….. 😉

  5. Nancy Naive Avatar
    Nancy Naive

    Bhattacharya should have kept his distance.

  6. Stephen Haner Avatar
    Stephen Haner

    We taxpayers are probably handling all the university’s legal bills. Perhaps student money, just as disgusting. I smell $500 an hour outside counsel contracts along with the Assistant AG assigned as university counsel. Need to get Herring’s fingerprints on this exposed. They are there. You know, it is possible for an AG to say to a state agency, your case is crap and you must drop it.

    1. CJBova Avatar

      Herring’s connection is in the footnote on page 2 of Judge Moon’s Memorandum Opinion: “Defendants are all represented by the Attorney General of Virginia and have filed a joint motion to dismiss.” https://www.courthousenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/microagressions.pdf

      Of course that doesn’t mean UVA didn’t consult with other lawyers and pay them.

  7. Publius Avatar

    Comrade….I see your Professionalism Concern Card is not clean…
    You do want a clean Card, don’t you?
    Can I file a Professionalism Concern Card that the “professors” filed a Professionalism Concern Card for a STUDENT expressing skepticism?
    Seems like our illustrious Congress…mostly peaceful protests for you, but an unruly mob trespassing on our sacred ground is an insurrection!
    I have wondered why NO ONE at UVVa objected to Covidiocy… (I am not a denier! Covid exists and is deadly to some people. I am a huge skeptic to lockdowns and masks) I think you can see why now…
    This is not just UVa – Leftist professors tried to use the arcane academic review policies to go after Scott Atlas, and two other prominent Stanford doctors (Greek and Indian names…I can’t remember exactly enough to try to spell). You must not dissent from the Hive’s Orthodoxy or you will be made to pay…

    1. Publius Avatar

      Replying to my own comment – not trying to be tacky!
      The Stanford doctors were Ionnadis (sp?) and Jay Bhattacharya… Are they related? This occurred prior to Covidiocy, but Dr. Jay B is one of the authors of the Great Barrington Declaration… If related, the acorn fell close to the tree…

      1. Interesting speculation. How many Bhattacharyas are there in the country? How many Bhattacharyas practice medicine in the country? How many Bhattacharyas practicing medicine in the country are skeptics of political orthodoxy?

  8. Dick Hall-Sizemore Avatar
    Dick Hall-Sizemore

    I have to agree with Larry. Jim tried to hedge by pointing out that we are hearing just one side of the story and all the evidence is not in. But, he then made a judgment: “This is how free speech and free expression are squelched at UVa.” It sounds to me that Bhattacharya was trying to dominate the discussion at the lecture and was being somewhat of a jerk about it. However, kicking him out of medical school seems like too harsh a reaction. There must have been other incidents that he did not reference in his brief.

  9. Nancy Naive Avatar
    Nancy Naive

    Sometimes I feel like we should stop leading with our face…
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=HATgd_g48tg

  10. Disqus allows readers to block the display of commenters they don’t want to see. It’s quite simple Click on the commenter’s name, click on the three blue dots at the top, and click on “Block User.”

  11. LarrytheG Avatar
    LarrytheG

    As it is with these kinds of issues, this case in all over right-leaning media, a lot of it almost word-for-word and very little of it in mainstream media.

    And they are all doing what Jim B has done in that we really don’t know much about the details of the interactions with the leadership/administrators at UVA after it escalated to that level.

    One report says the police did have to escort him off the premises.

    But a question. If this same thing had happened at a place of employment, it escalated from an interaction in a company-mandated course/seminar and went up the management ladder and he was subsequently dismissed – would it be the same free speech issue with him able to sue on the same basis?

    1. Keydet Avatar

      So if the MSM is not covering it, it must not be a story, and if the police escorted him, he must be guilty of something?

      As for your hypo, it depends. Is the workplace a gov’t workplace? Or is it private? Either way, the extent to which people are happy to have human resources departments run their lives is alarming.

      At any rate, in reality it’s a public university that has allegedly committed these actions against thought crimes and that is why there is a federal case.

      1. LarrytheG Avatar
        LarrytheG

        No. when almost none of the MSM to include media like the WSJ – AND a bunch of the non-MSM media is covering it , just noticing.

        I still don’t know exactly what happened AFTER he stated talking with the higher echelons…and what those interactions were.

  12. Wahoo Q. Delirious Avatar
    Wahoo Q. Delirious

    There’s more to this story than we know. This kid was demonstrating red-flag behaviors [read: “school shooter” vibe] to get drummed out that fast. Restraining orders aren’t easy to get. He scared people – not with *what” he said – UVA Med is hardly a hotbed of liberalism – but in his demeanor and body language. This isn’t a story about somebody’s first-amendment rights, this is a story about a mentally unfit person getting weeded out of med school.

    1. Do you have any inside knowledge, or are you just speculating based on the evidence presented in the lawsuit? I’m not discounting what you say, just curious if you know more than is public knowledge.

      1. LarrytheG Avatar
        LarrytheG

        He’s saying the same thing I had and I based my view on the reported personal interactions with others beyond those in the “micro-aggression” incident that BR just ignored and bought the “free speech” grievances.

        People who dealt with him personally later on reported they were alarmed and concerned with his threatening behavior that had little to do with the seminar itself, yet it became a cause célèbre with right wing sites that traffic in culture war grievances and BR joined that train as it does sometimes.

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