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  • UC Berkeley Places Blame for AZ Shooting on Immigration Reform

    1/10/2011 3:59:18 PM Posted by Evan Gassman

    UC Berkeley GateThe Chancellor of UC Berkeley has taken a national tragedy and turned it into an opportunity to project his personal beliefs.

    A mere two and a half hours after the national moment of silence, Robert J. Birgeneau sent every UC Berkeley student an email disguised as prayers and well wishes for those killed and wounded in the Tucson, Arizona shooting. The email, however, was actually dripping with social commentary and charged rhetoric. (You can read the entire email here.)

    Birgeneau wrote:

        “… I believe that it is not a coincidence that this tragedy has occurred in a state which has legislated discrimination against     undocumented persons. This same mean-spirited xenophobia played a major role in the defeat of the Dream Act by our     legislators in Washington, leaving many exceptionally talented and deserving young people, including our own undocumented     students, painfully in limbo with regard to their futures in this country.”

    So in a sense, Birgeneau is blaming immigration reform on the tragedy that took place in Arizona. While many pundits have jumped in the mud, and were quick to blame rhetoric or policies for the murders that took place Saturday, it is incomprehensible to think that a school administrator’s job is a forum for this type of debate, especially so soon after the event. This administrator has no right to use the University’s listserv to spew his own opinions about public policy, period.

    This type of bias is not new on our nation’s campuses, but given the context, this specific example is overtly disgusting.

    Is your school using this tragedy as a method to project their social beliefs? Be sure to share your stories with us.

    • Readers' Comments

    • Write a email to Robert J. Birgeneau and let him know we the tax payers don't like the garbage he spewed out after the tragic event in Arizona.
      Posted by Robert on 01/11/2011
    • Hey, Bob, "undocumented students" are illegal aliens which used to mean something in this country and will again, by the grace of God. As President Reagan said, "You are part of the problem."
      Posted by Hugh Little on 01/14/2011
    • I'm also a libertarian Berkeley stnudet, but I disagree with Casey. The stnudets here are trying to use force to get what they want, which I agree is immoral, but it is still *mostly* speech. More importantly, I don't think that their cause is noble. They are fighting against the notion of having to pay for their own education (via jobs, scholarships, parents' money, or loans). Instead they insist that others should be forced to pay for their education- an investment the stnudets themselves are not willing to take. They protest with signs that claim that education is a fundamental human right, should be free, and should be paid for by others. Apparently, freedom is not a fundamental human right.
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