Triggered Students Want a Building Renamed Because It's Called Lynch Memorial Hall

Lebanon Valley College building is named after Dr. Clyde Lynch.

|

Student
Dreamstime

Activist students at Lebanon Valley College are making many of the same demands as protesters around the country, but they have also raised a novel concern: they want an academic building, the Lynch Memorial Hall, renamed.

The facility is named after Dr. Clyde Lynch, who was president of the Pennsylvania college from 1932 to 1950. But students say the word "lynch" has negative racial connotations and is upsetting to black students.

In a sense, they are right. But the building isn't named after "lynch" the verb, but rather "Lynch" the man. It seems fairly ridiculous to expect that a great many people—or even a few people—can't tell the difference. Nevertheless, according to pennlive.com:

At Friday's forum they acknowledged no known links between Dr. Clyde A. Lynch and the practice of "Lynching" but said as is, the building and last name harken back to a period in American history when Blacks were widely and arbitrarily killed by public hangings and "Lynch Mobs." …

And while student organizers at LVC indicate a willingness to compromise, many critics remained unappeased and wondering, sarcastically, whether public officials like U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, places like the White House or Lynchburg, Va. might be targeted for alteration next.

"I will not longer watch NFL football when John Lynch announces. Or watch Jane Lynch on TV. Too upsetting," a commenter named "gmaven" quipped. 

Renaming this building, obviously, is a silly thing to do—far sillier than the proposed renaming of buildings dedicated to slave owners and racists. (RELATED: U.S. Preparing for War in Syria, Students Care Deeply About Offensive Statues of Woodrow Wilson.) To the extent college students are fixated on trivially offense statues and building names, they are squandering an opportunity to grapple with serious issues, such as the out-of-control cost of higher education, the athletic-industrial complex, and mistreatment of black students of color by the police.

NEXT: Rep. Steve Cohen Calls for Confidential Informant Reform, Citing Story First Covered by Reason TV

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. …sarcastically, whether public officials like U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, places like the White House or Lynchburg, Va. might be targeted for alteration next.

    I would like to use this excuse to demand a new attorney general.

    1. Dammit. That is three times today I was going to say some snarky shit and you not only beat me to it but managed to do it with the first comment.

      I bow to you.

  2. And don’t even get us started on *David* Lynch. . .

    1. Don’t forget the misogyny of “Twin Peaks”.

      1. Or of the Grand Tetons

        1. fun fact: It actually does mean big tits.

      2. Duchovny in drag still haunts me two decades later.

        1. *shiver*

  3. And can we get a ban on linchpins over here? You never can be too safe.

    1. I object.

  4. Ha ha, oh man. It’s gotta be rough being a writer for the Onion. Real life is quickly going beyond parody.

  5. I can’t wait until the Washington and Jefferson memorials are demolished. Dirty slavers.

    1. Plus, that Washington monument is too phallic and rapey.

      1. Not to mention the appropriation of ancient Egyption culture!

        1. And Greek too!

          1. Don’t forget it’s Super Secret Stonemason Shit. – tin foil hat

            1. Jacques DeMolay, thou art avenged!

    2. Without snark, if

      Renaming this building, obviously, is a silly thing to do?far sillier than the proposed renaming of buildings dedicated to slave owners and racists.

      is true, then would not renaming Jefferson and Washington be far, far less silly?

      1. That does seem to be the implication, yes.

      2. Rename the Washington Monument?

        What about the city it sits in? I really don’t see how a name that is totally inapt for a building, is totally halal for a city.

        1. One step at a time, comrade. Today, it’s buildings, tomorrow…

        2. How many blacks in this country have the last name Washington?

          1. Can’t we just rename everything after Booker T. Washington?

            1. No way. “Booker” sounds like “book her”, and could be racially motivated if you look at the arrest statistics.

          2. Come to think of it, many blacks have the last names of their families former slave owners.

            Snark aside, I can see how that might be a bit of a sore spot for many of them. It would be for me, but then knowing my family was formerly someone else’s property and freedom was won only by the bloodiest war in our history would make me an even more rabid advocate of liberty. That doesn’t seem to be the case for most of them, something that I find quite puzzling.

        3. Bulldoze it and create the world’s largest parking lot.

          1. Woodchipper the whole city. Woodchipper it from space,… it’s the only way to be sure.

    3. Yeah, and let’s get rid of all the places in Chicago named after Harold Washington, because they’re (indirectly) named after that slaveowner guy.

  6. According to Oxford Dictionary, the term “Lynching” has origins in the War of American Independence (1775?83) or more specifically with a Captain William Lynch of Pittsville, Virginia, who headed a self-constituted court with no legal authority that persecuted suspected British loyalists.

    Sounds like it’s the Limeys who should be fake outraged and demanding embarrassingly pointless changes. But we probably should have some sympathy for the plight of Lebanon Valley College activists. They really had to struggle to find relevance in the grievansphere.

    1. Shouldn’t they also be demanding the college itself change its name since it is obviously appropriating Lebanese culture?

    2. Uh…they still are struggling. This is just a shot and a miss in the dark.

    3. It’s like they’re jealous that their school isn’t genuinely racist. “Those lucky fellow travelers at MSU and Harvard! Look at them, with their grievances! Polishing their SJM credentials and getting all that publicity! I wish we had something to protest!”
      And then, the lazy bastards glom unto this non-issue, instead of doing the American thing: manufacturing fake racist cat-calls and maybe a swashitzka.
      Lazy, lazy, spoiled brat protargs.

  7. They’re just trolling now, right?

    1. I hope so because otherwise they should have their high school diplomas revoked as fraud. They are proving themselves too stupid for higher education.

      1. otherwise they should have their high school diplomas revoked as fraud

        Hell, they should have to re-do their entire K-12 education, Billy Madison style. Only this time if they’re still this stupid they go straight to the woodchippers.

    2. You know how fundie Christians are always trying to one-up one another on their idiocy (“You think all protestants but us are going to hell? Well, I think people who drink from the water fountain in the foyer are going to hell!”).

      That’s what they’re going for. Just seeing how far they can push it while making themselves a laughingstock to everyone not embroiled in campus politics.

      1. No, they have to become more and more extreme to show how much more better they are.

        Once a position becomes the accepted norm, holding it no longer distinguishes you as social justice nobility so you have to take a new, more radical position to signal your place in the social hierarchy.

        It’s just like hipsters and their bands you’ve never heard of.

        See “The economics of political correctness”.

    3. I would love to talk to some of these people face-to-face. I would ask, “OK, so you acknowledge that the building is named after a person, and neither that person nor the building have anything to do with the practice of lynching. So you’re just pretending to be ignorant morons for tactical reasons?”

      Because that’s really what’s going on, IMO. If they act reasonable, they can’t crank up the outrage machine, and if they can’t crank up the outrage machine, they can’t make other people jump when they say frog.

      1. There are people who get tied up in the romantic notion of the 60’s,..Changing the World. Cultural revolution. That their own cultural revolution is contrived and pointless is irrelevant because the cause, any cause is romantic.

  8. As James Taranto suggested in the WSJ today, they out to have theUnited States Attorney General open up an investigation.

  9. And these, mind you, are college students. The Great Leaders of Tomorrow.

    And doubtless they don’t understand why I have no respect for them.

    1. doubtless they don’t understand why I have no respect for them

      You’re just a jealous townie! You mad bro?! /collegetard

  10. Great guys. Thanks for providing ammo to the racists claiming that Blacks are stupider than Whites.

    1. That may be true, it will be ammo, but the stupid has nothing to do with the blackness and everything to do with their being useful idiots for the hard left. That really does destroy one’s ability to think rationally.

    2. Are the people doing this actually black, or are they white “limousine liberals” trying to socially signal how tolerant and non-racist they are? (Not like those “gun-fellating redneck hillbillies in flyover country.”)

      Used to be they’d just have lots of gay friends and/ or black friends (who probably all secretly hated them and only hung around them to make fun of them with fellow gays/ blacks later).

  11. Back when I was a lad, ASONE tried to ban the use of the racist Mercator Projection map at the university. Plus la change, plus la meme.

    1. Actually, I could understand not usilng the Mercator map in elementary schools because of the misunderstanding of world geography it causes in very young minds who don’t understand it. At university, not so much.

      1. ^ This.

        As a child I could not understand why Australia is a continent and Greenland is not.

        1. And if Greenland was so big and green, why did the Vikings have to move to Minnesota?

          1. Stadium subsidies.

  12. To the extent college students are fixated on trivially offense statues and building names, they are squandering an opportunity to grapple with serious issues

    No they’re not. They are very specifically and purposefully avoiding any serious issues. Serious issues are hard and scary and require making real choices. Getting administrations to knuckle under to your mob is easy and makes you feel powerful. Looks like the ones whining about this stuff like feeling the latter.

    1. The good news is that the U.S. and Europe are approaching a time when First World problems won’t be their problems anymore.

  13. Ok, but what percentage of the student body is Jewish? Is it like around 20 percent?

    1. 0.1% but they run the whole university behind the scenes.

      1. I thought they conspired against the university behind the scenes.

        1. They can do both, they are so crafty they have plots countering their other plots! That’s what makes them such a threat.

          1. I thought it created stasis — so long as the groups are all conspiring against each other, I can have my bread and circus and live my sheeple life.

      2. Jews in control of Lebanon? Hezbollah was right!

        1. So, Sharon’s invasion in ’82 was just a cover for the true target! Crafty!

      3. What is wrong with you people? Jews? It is the damned lizard people. Hell, one even posts here and y’all still don’t get it.

        1. We speak not of our Reptilian Overlords. All glory to the Hypnotoad Mr. Lizard!

          1. Bullshit! I have it on good authority that Mr “Lizard” is actually just a wannabe salamander!

    2. Activist students at Lebanon Valley College are making many of the same demands as protesters around the country, but they have also raised a novel concern: they want an academic building, the Lynch Memorial Hall, renamed.

      Awesome: the name Lebanon originates from the Semitic root lbn (???), meaning “white”.

      It’s like a gift-wrapped racist Jewish conspiracy. Somebody’s gonna make a lot of money writing a microaggression-griever version of The Da Vinci Code.

  14. If they ever grow up, these people are going to be VERY embarrassed.

    1. First they’d have to develop the capacity to feel shame. #CompletelyShamelessAmerica

    2. Not to worry, then.

  15. I’ve had it with this niggardly behavior.

    1. “What did he say?”

      “The PM links are near!”

  16. I henceforth rechristen thee Sir Robby Fishinabarrel.

  17. In a sense, they are right

    And, in a sense, it’s irrelevant, and I don’t care.

    I truly did not used to see this…”need” to play reporter and devil’s advocate at the same time, but did see the criticism hurled at Robby. I get it, now.

  18. But students say the word “lynch” has negative racial connotations and is upsetting to black students.

    In a sense, they are right.

    No, Robby, they aren’t. To accept that they are “right” is to accept that “black students” are a monolith of hysterical ignorant whiners who constantly seek an opportunity to intellectually mau-mau others. Unless someone is actually holding a length of hemp rope, the word “lynch” is neither negative nor upsetting to me.

    1. Here’s where they are wrong:

      “Lynch” does not have negative racial connotations. It is the name of a crime committed against (predominantly) black people. Its not a racial epithet, or an insult.

      I wonder: how can you teach about the Jim Crow era without calling out the crimes committed? Is it now a hate crime to teach about hate crimes?

      1. Is it now a hate crime to teach about hate crimes?

        They would consider it a hate crime to teach about hate crimes.

      2. Germany bans the Swastika symbol. That’s not a country trying to learn from its past, it’s a country trying to forget its past.

        1. It’s a rather illiberal thing to do, but I don’t think you can accuse the generation of Germans who banned swastikas and Nazis of trying to forget their past. More of a misguided attempt to make sure the past doesn’t repeat itself.

          1. When you block the major symbols of your past, that’s an explicit refusal to confront what those symbols mean. Censoring ANY part of your own history is exactly counter productive.

        2. And the US mandates racial discrimination (aka affirmative action). Western countries try to atone for their sins in different – sometimes objectionable – ways.

      3. I wonder: how can you teach about the Jim Crow era without calling out the crimes committed? Is it now a hate crime to teach about hate crimes?

        How to know the difference? From well before the American Civil War, lynching and hanging was the quasi-legal m.o. for any number of actual crimes and was perpetuated whimsically on any number of races/minorities.

    2. Unless someone is actually holding a length of hemp rope, the word “lynch” is neither negative nor upsetting to me.

      That’s you’re white half talking, HM.

    3. Spot on.

  19. “Any time you talk to a person you try to find something wrong with what he or she says.”

    “He or she is an agenderphobic expression. You’re a bigot”

    The ever-prescient South Park.

  20. Oh man this has just gotten gloriously out of control. Having ceded all premises and moral authority to the protestors, I don’t see how it can slow down.

    I eagerly await each new, progressively insane story. It’s like getting a new episode of a great tv series each week.

    1. Also, it is a bit like how no one could stop clapping for Stalin. Each professor who pushes back and says ‘enough is enough’, will be tossed overboard, causing the remainder to act even more craven and foolish, and the movement to march on.

      1. +1 Man of the Year

  21. I think we’re just being trolled now.

  22. In a sense, they are right.

    I just wanted to complain as well.

    These students should all receive contemptuous ridicule.

      1. Juice boxes? ANTISEMITE!

  23. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE WHITE HOUSE?!?!?!?

    You know what I mean, people, right?

      1. Yeah, old news. Like 1980s old news.

  24. I like the girl at 3:17. She sounds four years old

  25. You know, Robbie, you need to start naming the “activists” involved in this bullshit. Put their names up on the internet, both because its better journalism, and as a service to future potential employers.

    1. especially in this case. we need to know their names to know what crimes they are guilty of.

  26. In a sense, they are right.

    either the trolling never stops or this is just dumb.

  27. “I will not longer watch NFL football when John Lynch announces. Or watch Jane Lynch on TV.

    Seek help as soon as possible. That is a sign of serious mental illness.

    1. I think that was sarcasm?

    2. Your sarcasm detector is in desperate need of calibration. Especially since the rest of the sentence you quoted is “a commenter named “gmaven” quipped.”

  28. “But students say the word “lynch” has negative racial connotations and is upsetting to black students.

    In a sense, they are right.”

    In what sense, exactly? In the same sense that my black step-mother’s black co-workers were right when they excoriated her for having white plastic coat hangers?

    1. Seriously? What did the inert plastic coat hangers do to offend anyone of any colour? Do you ever wear a white shirt, or skirt, or carry a white handbag (or purse, as you call it in the US)?

  29. And nobody’s yet mentioned Mary Lynch Aimbers?

  30. The only way to stop this is to start mocking the policies that allow such nonsense to even be considered in an educational venue. Time for the conservative and libertarian students to start complaining how talking about “the 1%” or raising minimum wages or discussing the New Deal is extremely disturbing and hurtful to all students who
    believe in individual liberty or the Constitution. Tie up the college administration ceaselessly with complaints that
    make the point that little snowflakes and whiners should not be exposed to higher education.

    1. They should just talk about the studies that show people are much more likely to discriminate on the basis of politics than race, and demand that all progressives be moved to the bottom of the progressive stack. Then the movement can literally disappear up its own asshole and vanish in a puff of logic.

  31. “I will not longer watch NFL football when John Lynch announces… Too upsetting,” a comenter named “gmaven” quipped.

    If you think his commenting is tough, you should have played against him. I heard one of his tackles once. The whole stadium heard it. It was like a car crash. 80,000 people went silent for a few seconds. I’m surprised the receiver was able to walk afterward.

    1. One of the greats. If he and Ronnie Lott ever collide, it might result in a nuclear explosion.

  32. At this point there’s nothing these stupid spoiled crybabies could do that would surprise me.

    Except maybe think critically, use sound logic, argue in good faith, and NOT fall back on ad-homs & baseless accusations of racism/ sexism/ homophobia/ islamophobia/ etc. when they start to lose an argument (IOW2 seconds in). That would surprise me.

  33. I should note that the residents of the Chicago-area village of Hodgkins, IL have several times resisted proposals to change the name. I should also note that one of the major amusement parks (a business primarily catering to families with children) in the US is located in Sandusky, OH. It seems that most people are pretty good at avoiding guilt by klang association.

    I should also reiterate that research has definitively shown that when people make efforts to avoid anxiety-inducing stimuli, they invariably become more anxious. This sort of thing can spiral out of control with benefit to nobody.

  34. The protesters have shown a “willingness to compromise”?

    Let’s see what the pennlive article says:

    “In response, student activists who made the demand said they’d be willing to settle for adding Lynch’s first name and middle initial to the building instead of removing it altogether.”

    Right, because otherwise people would assume the hall honors lynching.

    Here’s a compromise for you – the name stays, and the protesters agree to fuck themselves.

    1. Here’s a compromise for you – the name stays, and the protesters agree to fuck themselves.

      The name stays and, to complete the recent remodel, we’re running black drapes all the way to the exposed-beam ceilings and using 1″ thick jute tiebacks. If the style still offends your sensibilities, theater-style gangways will be established using matching jute cordage and wrought-iron jockey stanchions to ease your passage through the hall.

  35. What do the good citizens of Intercourse, Pennsylvania have to say about this?

    1. “Phuket”

    2. They moved to Nantucket…

  36. “U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch”

    Loretta? That’s a transphobic name!

  37. In college I played on an intramural flag football team named “The Lynch Mob.” We were a player short, and a black student who had signed up without being on a team was placed on our team.

    Black guy: “What’s your team name?”

    White guy 1: “The Lynch Mod.”

    Black guy: “Uhm… OK…”

    White guy 2: “Oh… we’ll change it if you want…”

    Black guy: “No, that’s OK, I’m sure you guys didn’t mean it like that. Besides, it’ll be kind of ironic this way having a black dude on a team called The Lynch Mob.”

    Now we’d all be expelled, including the black guy for clearly being some kind of Uncle Tom.

  38. I object.

  39. Administrators cave in 3…2…1…
    The correct way to address this demand is to laugh in their faces and tell them to grow up and/or fuck off.

  40. Have they considered changing the name to Hung Hall?

  41. I interview a lot of these little turds after they get out of college. If they are hired, most of the time it is over my objections.

    I had one of these Millennial douchekids text me at 0200 to tell me he had a migraine and wouldn’t be in that morning. To say I made him my bitch doesn’t come close.

    1. In South Africa a university lecturer or prospective or actual employer wouldn’t get the ‘benefit’ of a text, but rather a molotov cocktail. That is, to emphasise ‘fees must fall’ — ‘we won’t pay fees to study’. Burn the universities down. And so on and so forth.

  42. If it upsets them so much tell them to pack their bags and find some place they won’t feel offended. If they disrupt classes expell their butts. God I wish we had retroactive abortions.

  43. Its perfect. The building is named after a person with that name.

    Check out this great resource : http://lifesaveressays.com/research-paper/

  44. It’s all part of a bigger and sinister plan, motivated by separatism — divide and rule. My surname is Lynch, thanks to my patriarchal lineage — grandfather a big-wig in American Tobacco Co. who then did a fairly long stint in Africa to market the ‘good stuff’. (My great grandfather was a big-wig at Univ of VA). I was born in Scotland, then moved with my family to Zimbabwe in Africa, then I moved to the UK to study and work in TV, and then to South Africa, where I presently am, still working in the media… Anyway, the point, at least from my perspective, is that there is a massive and sinister force at play which was choreographed decades ago and which is now reaching a fever-pitch. It’s part of the ‘big plan’ in terms of governments worldwide (mostly so-called 1st World Govts). The escalating cacophony of race-related issues is orchestrated to the nth degree and is reaching a crescendo. For the sake of brevity, refer to Agenda 21 and Agenda 2030.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.