The Volokh Conspiracy

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Mysterious Swastika Incident at Yale Law School

A hate crime that wasn't?


On October 8th, the Yale Daily News reported:

Late Saturday night - between the Jewish High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur - anti-Semitic graffiti appeared on the steps of the side entrance to Yale Law School.

The graffiti depicted a white, spray-painted swastika above the word "Trump." By noon on Sunday, the graffiti was covered with black paint and a doormat. It has since been removed entirely. On Monday, Yale Law School Dean Heather Gerken issued a statement to the YLS community reaffirming the school's values, offering support and notifying the community of an upcoming investigation.

"We are saddened by this act of hate against our community at any time but understand that this is particularly difficult occurring between the High Holy Days," said Ellen Cosgrove, associate dean of students at Yale Law School. "Diversity and inclusion are core values of our institution [and] attacks against individual students or communities of students will not be tolerated."

Gerken emphasized that there is no evidence that a member of the Yale community painted the swastika, and stressed that the act of anti-Semitism is "utterly antithetical" to the values of the Law School.

"Yale Law School has zero tolerance for discrimination or harassment of any kind, and symbols of hate have no place on our campus or in our society," Gerken said. "We take an incident like this extremely seriously and are currently investigating."

Gerken encouraged anyone with information to reach out to her office.

Organizations in the Yale community, such as the Law School's Office of Student Affairs and the Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life, responded to the incident on Monday, condemning the action and offering support to students.

Rabbi Jason Rubenstein, Jewish chaplain at Yale, wrote in an email to the Slifka community Monday evening that the investigation into the perpetrator's identity is ongoing and is "relying on video footage from late Saturday night and early Sunday morning.

Anyone who has been following such "Trump plus swastika in very liberal environments" incidents would immediately suspect one of two things: (1) a hoax; or, perhaps more likely (2) the vandal(s) in question weren't trying to say "I support Trump and he's a Nazi," but rather "I hate Trump because he's a Nazi." Nevertheless, everyone at Yale treated this immediately as a presumptive hate crime.

Having seen the initial reports, I checked google for any followup. There was none that I could find. I wrote to Dean Gerken:

Dear Heather,

I just checked Google, and there appears to be no news about the swastika incident in the last several days. Early reports said that video surveillance existed to help identify the perpetrators. Has this video been released to the public yet to help the identification? If not, why not? Writing in my capacity as a blogger for Instapundit and the Volokh Conspiracy.
I received the following reply:

Hi, Professor Bernstein. Dean Gerken said that you had inquired about the graffiti incident last week. Any updates on the status of the investigation would have to come from the Yale Police Department.


Jan Conroy Chief Communications Officer Yale Law School

I responded:

Ms. Conroy, with all due respect, the law school sent out a release about this and would be the owner of the relevant surveillance video. Is there some reason the law school hasn't released the surveillance footage? Surely that would help identify the guilty parties.

That was Monday. I have not received a reply. I tried reaching out to the Yale police department, but was unable to reach a spokesperson.

Having informed law school and broader communities that a hate crime took place at the law school, I find it mysterious that the school has neither released the surveillance footage nor provided any updates as to the progress of the investigation.

NEXT: Today in Supreme Court History: October 16, 1898

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  1. Whether by the right or a hoax by the left, the statement just describes what happened and that it, and hate, are bad and will be investigated.

    I don’t see how that means Yale is on the hook to do its own investigation and can’t refer things to the police.

    1. They said the college was reviewing video, you'd think that in the interests of justice that they'd release the footage of such a horrible hate crime being committed.
      Golly, what reasons could the college have for suppressing the video?

      1. The cops asked them not to?

        1. 1: Why would the cops ask them NOT to release the video? Don't they want help identifying the responsible people?

          2: If the cops DID ask them not to release the video, why don't they simply say so?

          Honest people don't need to hide what they're doing, in this kind of case.

            1. Reminds me of the incident at Harvard a few years back. Someone used black tape to cover up the names of minority and/or black professors. Seems likely there was video of peeps as it was in a building, yet it somehow disappeared from coverage after the initial outcry

            2. "Greg J
              October.16.2019 at 2:20 pm
              1: Why would the cops ask them NOT to release the video? Don’t they want help identifying the responsible people?
              2: If the cops DID ask them not to release the video, why don’t they simply say so?
              Honest people don’t need to hide what they’re doing, in this kind of case.

              David Bernstein
              October.16.2019 at 2:59 pm

              Not exactly exactly. Police periodically ask television news departments not to broadcast video recordings related to investigations. Less frequently, in my experience, they request a recording and/or ask the journalists not to disclose that a recording exists. Broadcasters often request and receive a 'most favored reporter' arrangement in return for cooperation in this context.

              1. They ask that when it would harm the investigation, which it would not, here. They also don't ask them to not disclose that a recording exists after the disclosure that such a recording exists, ya bimbo.

          1. "1: Why would the cops ask them NOT to release the video? Don’t they want help identifying the responsible people?"

            You're making an assumption about what's on the tape. You should avoid doing that.

            But, some actual answers:
            1) the cops think the person in the video is someone who lives outside their jurisdiction, and they're hoping to avoid letting the suspect know they're on to them, and waiting for them to get caught inside the jurisdiction.

            2) The cops might be worried about people taking action extrajudicially.

            3) The cops aren't actually taking the incident seriously, and don't want to be pushed.

            4) the video doesn't actually show anyone doing anything wrong, just people who might have been in the area. (IOW, the video isn't pointed at where the vandalism happened, but it's nearby... so anyone in the video MIGHT be a suspect, but not without corroboration.)

            "2: If the cops DID ask them not to release the video, why don’t they simply say so?"

            They said to contact the police. That's the place questions about the surveillance should be directed. Spending extra time explaining this is a waste of their time. "Go talk to the cops" is a one-sentence answer that covers everything.

            1. you cannot be serious with most of these.

        2. You mean the campus cops who actually work for the College? Because they're the only cops involved.
          You don't even seem to understand what's going on, but you're going to shill for your teammates regardless.

          1. "You don’t even seem to understand what’s going on, but you’re going to shill for your teammates regardless."

            You seem to have a problem with psychological projection.

            1. How the hell is that projection?

              You seem to have a problem with using buzzwords you don't understand, in an effort to try and come off as intelligent.

    2. I’m no Trump supporter.

      But if I had to guess whether anti- Trump people wanted to associate Trump with a swastika or pro-Trump people wanted to associate Trump with a swastika, especially on the Yale campus... am I really nuts to think anti-Trumpers have more (any?) incentive to do such a thing?

      I’m really not wishing for a particular outcome or narrative. I’m just trying to work out the scenario where actual Trump supporters would come to Yale to commit a crime that puts Trump in, not only a negative light, but a negative light that fits the narrative of anti-Trumpers.

      Even if we make no assumptions about what might incentivize Yale (or Yale police) to not want the contents of the tape shown, I think it’s reasonable to try and figure out the possible incentives of the perpetrators.

      Do Nazis sit around thinking, “you know what we really need to do to further the cause of white pride and bigotry? We need to convince the students and faculty of Yale that Trump is a Nazi! It’s the perfect crime because it furthers our enemy’s narrative and not ours. It will confuse them into submission!”

      Sorry, but I’m having a hard time picturing this being on even the most irony-loving Nazi’s to do list.

  2. I no longer by default believe a given statement comes from whichever political faction it seems to. But Slyly intimating that the default assumption is a hoax is also not a healthy position to take.

    Antisemitism is a problem on both sides of the aisle. Giving this kind presumption to one side and not the other is not going to solve the growing problem.

    1. How many "Nazis for Trump" do you think live near Yale Law School, compared to how many of the "I think Trump is Nazi-like" persuasion? There's a Bayesian aspect to this.

      1. That reasoning seems questionable. Often it's the zealots of one side that are immersed in a sea of 'non-believers' that are the most agitated to 'act out.'

        1. I don't think that's an empirically sound assertion.

          1. I don't think there's much empirical evidence to support either way, but would be happy to be corrected. My point is that while 'there's more X radicals than Y radicals in place Z, so therefore any radical act is likely done by X radicals' is reasonable it's also reasonable that 'Y radicals living in a climate of so many X radicals produces greater agitation for Y radicals to act radically', or that 'place Z, known by Y radicals to be a climate of so many X radicals, is prime grounds for a radical act' (this is how 'trolling' works, no?).

            1. Even if a "Nazi for Trump" were 100 times more likely to vandalize than a "I think Trump is a Nazi", there are way more than 100 times the latter than the former in the Yale environs.

              1. But we're talking about the probability of someone doing a radical, illegal act, which implies things like motivation and strategic choice of target. For example, a person surrounded by those they disagree with on fundamental issues could reasonably be posited to be much more likely to be agitated to 'act out' in a radical (illegal) way than those who are in a largely supportive environment. Again, this isn't strange, it's exactly how 'trolling' often works (trolls are attracted to act out more in venues where most people don't support their positions).

                1. Except that if you do the illegal act and you are a racist, you are going to jail. If you do the illegal act and you were "well-meaning" or "disturbed because of Trump," the matter will be quietly dropped.

                  1. It will? Is there general evidence of that?

                    1. Justin Smollett. QED

                      Can you provide any evidence of an individual who pulled a hoax and was prosecuted to the "full extent of the law"? That is, was prosecuted on every possible charge, and received the maximum sentence for every count on which there was a conviction?

                  2. Also, are you know changing your argument from 'well, since there's many more X radicals than Y radicals it's safe to assume the radical act was done by X radicals' to 'well, since the political/legal environment is more likely to look askance at radical acts done by X radicals it's safe to assume the radical act was done by X radicals?'

                    That's not unreasonable. But do you find radicals are often dissuaded by that (think of the Quakers who kept coming back to Massachusetts until they got hanged)? Human nature is funny.

                    1. I guess it is up to Queen to please give us some real examples of these "hate crimes," etc. that turn out to be real, rather than fake. There have been many fake ones, and off the top of my head, I can't think of any real ones.

                    2. These sorts of incidents are almost (>90%) always hoaxes. It is almost impossible to find an incident where it was a real threat by a "racist", on the other hand "hoaxes" are too numerous to count.

                      There is a more fundamental reason to disbelieve this incident: True Nazis don't commit vandalism, they kill people.

                    3. "There is a more fundamental reason to disbelieve this incident: True Nazis don’t commit vandalism, they kill people."

                      would-be Nazis don't kill people, they commit vandalism. Nice try, though.

                    4. would-be Nazis don’t kill people, they commit vandalism

                      See, e.g., Antifa

                2. What's the probability of a random unconnected troll doing a s*** disturbing prank for lulz of watching everyone point fingers and try to stake the high ground for their side?

              2. BTW-Trump got 42% of the vote in New Haven.

                1. Which isn't really relevant because a very high proportion of the New Haven community are students registered to vote somewhere else. The vote by long-term residents (that is, those eligible to actually vote in New Haven) is a poor predictor of the opinions of the student+townie population and not at all useful in measuring the opinions of just the students (that is, those most likely to be on the Yale Law School property).

                2. Actually, Clinton got about 36K votes in New Haven to Trump's 4,500.

                  1. yeah -- per wiki the 42% is for New Haven COUNTY. The city is majority minority by quite a bit, and, excluding the Universities, extremely poor. Not a bastion of Trumpism.

                3. Hey Queen Amalthea.
                  Remind me again how supporters of a President with Jewish offspring, who is accused of being a Zionist in Netanyahu's pocket by the left and who made history as first sitting President ever to say Jewish prayers at the ‘Wailing Wall’, are Nazis.

                  1. well, a lot of them aren't too bright.
                    They claim "family values" are critical, but support the porn-star-hush-moneying Trump to the still-married-to-his-first-wife Obama.

                    1. That's pure (BS, in my opinion) opinion, but it doesn't address the question Fancy asked. Whether he screwed some porno star or not, how does that make his Jewish offspring Nazis?

                    2. Who claimed his Jewish offspring are Nazis?

                      And, while you're working that out, how does having Jewish offspring prevent someone from being like a Nazi?

                    3. "Antisemites will support a vociferous philosemite because they're dumb"
                      Do you come from Bizarro World? Only there would an absolutely fucking retarded argument like that make sense.

                      "support the porn-star-hush-moneying Trump"
                      They support Trump because they don't think he hates them and actively wishes them harm. Not because he's a moral icon.
                      If you lefties toned down your sociopathic, anti-xtian eliminationist rhetoric for a bit, you might have a better chance at the polls.

                    4. You’re confusing the president, an administrator, with a role model.

                      Trump is no role model, but he is generally giving more freedom to families and individuals.

                      Obama may be a great role model, but he was a lousy administrator, and his policies hurt many families.

                    5. " Only there would an absolutely fucking retarded argument like that make sense."

                      Well, you wrote that argument, so we agree that your arguments are dumb.

                    6. "If you lefties toned down your sociopathic, anti-xtian eliminationist rhetoric for a bit, you might have a better chance at the polls."

                      If you idiots did a better job identifying non-partisans, you'd have a better chance at the polls. Buh-bye!

                    7. Who the hell would vote for a non-partisan, Pollock? I want leaders to stand for something and believe in something aside from their own greed.
                      Your attitude is what let the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot, run for President.
                      Gibbering halfwit.

                  2. If you want examples of Nazis or white nationalists/supremacists supporting the President, David Duke, Andrew Anglin, and Richard Spencer to name a few from a quick google search.

                    1. The same David Duke that endorsed Obama and Gabbard?

                      Oh, and you can fuck off with Richard Spencer. You know as well as anyone he's entirely a media creation. May as well say Lex Luther.

                    2. Re: David Duke, he didn't endorse President Obama. He once joked that he "should" because Duke was a self-proclaimed "white-rights activist" and that President Obama had "a long career advancing what he sees as the black community interests or the black perceived interests as a group, collective interest", and so they had that in common, or something. (Are you perhaps thinking of a hoax where another KKK group is alleged to have endorsed President Obama?)

                      He did endorse Gabbard because he was confident she would "put Israel in its place" or some shit. But that's neither here nor there. The question was whether there are white supremacists who support President Trump, and the answer is, yes. You said the answer was no. But you're wrong.

    2. "default assumption is a hoax is also not a healthy position"

      Why not? There are many examples of hoaxes, ranging from Smollet to the "nappy hair" incident where Mrs. Pence works.

      When it happens in left wing environments, its a safe bet.

      1. Any evidence there are more hate crime hoaxes than actual hate crimes?

        1. The overall rate is not the question, though. Trump supporters are very thin on the ground at Yale while Trump antagonists are numerous. And then the fact that the surveillance video isn't being released suggests that it is embarrassing to Yale. If it actually showed some MAGA-hat rednecks sneaking up to the Yale library, you can be pretty sure the video would be everywhere. So I'm betting hoax just like I did with this case not far from where I live in Ann Arbor (which has also seen at least a couple of other hate crime hoaxes since Trump was elected).

          1. "The overall rate is not the question, though. Trump supporters are very thin on the ground at Yale"

            There's this thing called an "automobile" that allows people to move from place to place, using public roadways. As you note, Trump antagonists are not shy about their antagonism. So that's a vandalism target worth travelling to visit.

            Maybe it's real, maybe it's fake. Either way, the perp is to be pitied.

            1. There’s this thing called an “automobile”...

              Yes, it's possible some Trump supporters drove into New Haven to do the deed. But this strikes me as just about as likely as Trump supporters driving to Chicago to lie in wait for Jussie Smollet in Streeterville. Do we have any examples ANYWHERE of actual Trump supporters wearing MAGA hats and waving swastikas? You don't have to merely believe it's likely that some Trump supporters drove to New Haven, but that Trump supporters did this AND wrote 'Trump' with a swastika and somehow thought that was a good message for their side.

              1. " this strikes me as just about as likely"

                Must be true then!

        2. Queen Amalthea asked "Any evidence there are more hate crime hoaxes than actual hate crimes?"


          Please give us links to the ten worst actual right wing hate crimes you know of, in the US, since Trump's election.

          For every one you come up with, we'll come up with two fakes that pretended the same, or worse, crimes.

          1. Ignoring the left/right divide, the ability to find evidence of real crimes vs hoaxes in incidences boosted by the media actually isn't evidence of more hate crime hoaxes than hate crimes. It's evidence that of hate crimes pushed for attention by the victims and/or media that the majority of that subset are hoaxes. As a general rule, people's first instinct upon being the victim of an actual crime is not to blare that fact to all and sundry, and if media is repeating a fact over and over it's because they find doing so advantageous to their agenda. This means they will be less inclined to scrutinize the claim in question.

          2. "Please give us links to the ten worst actual right wing hate crimes you know of, in the US, since Trump’s election."

            The FBI reported 7,175 hate crime incidents in 2017. Are you going to link to 14,000+ fakes?

      2. Many examples’ ruling the day is the essence of confirmation bias.

        I can think of many actual examples of racist expression. But I recognize the urge to generalize based on those examples as not one grounded in truth.

        1. Sure, but as of yet, I haven't seen anybody providing evidence of actual hate crimes. Certainly not of the type alleged.

          For example, here in Minnesota, I can think of three different colleges that have had similar incidents reported. All were hoaxes. I can also think of one hate crime (some guys through an explosive device through the window of a mosque). The real attack involved violence, and there were no symbols attached. The hoaxes occurred on liberal campuses and, in at least two instances, were done by people with an agenda to push. Each of those also involved graffiti or postings similar to what's reported here.

          Given that, you can understand the skepticism.

          1. as of yet, I haven’t seen anybody providing evidence of actual hate crimes

            You think there are no hate crimes, only hoaxes?

            Your second paragraph is again confirmation bias exemplified. You wouldn't remember or credit actual hate crimes. Or maybe given your circles you wouldn't hear of them. Regardless, you pay more attention to the examples that prove your narrative. That's how the human mind works.

            1. "You think there are no hate crimes, only hoaxes?"

              He didn't say that -- he said that this particular type of incident (racist messages/symbols posted anonymously on liberal university campuses) have routinely turned out to be hoaxes. In fact, I'm having a hard time thinking of a single incident of this type that turned out to be genuine. Do you have any examples?

              1. I quoted what he said. It’s not what you say he said.

                1. But you didn't read it, because the second part of the paragraph identifies a hate crime, yet you respond to the part you quoted by asking "You think there are no hate crimes, only hoaxes?"

                  Obviously, I don't, since I talked about one in the very paragraph you quoted. But the actual hate crimes have generally involved actual violence and have not used hate symbols. The ones that occur at college campuses and consist of graffiti have all been hoaxes.

                  1. Yes, I agree. Once you exclude all the non-hoax hate crimes, all the ones that are left are hoaxes.

                  2. The ones that occur at college campuses and consist of graffiti have all been hoaxes.

                    Forgive me if I don't believe your bare assertion unless you bring statistics.

            2. You think there are hate crimes, but can't even come up with an example of a real one?

              Which argument is more based on evidence - David's who came up with actual hoax examples, or yours, where you assume real racial incidents happen but don't bother to point to any?

              Nowhere in this thread, as of yet, has anyone come up with a real life example of an honest to goodness racial incident that WASN'T a hoax.

              1. I don’t feel like Googling, but I’ve done so before on threads like this. No lack of examples. Go check for yourself!

                1. No, Google is a big tech company, and we don't trust them. OBVIOUSLY they're in on the hoaxes, and they just don't report them as hoaxes when you search for actual vandalism.

                  But, here's a non-hoax hate crime. On the Portland, OR transit system, a man started ranting against Muslims, focusing on two women wearing hijabs. Several bystanders tried to intervene; so the man killed two and seriously injured another, right there on the train.


                2. And here's another. But you'll notice that (a) it didn't occur at a college campus; (b) there were no symbols involved; and (c) there was actual violence.


    3. Maybe you're right.

      We should say the default assumption, given that it's YLS and "swastika + Trump" is a hoax, openly and outright, not slyly.

    4. Given how most trump supporters are more likely to shoot someone for bearing a swastika than to bear one themselves, nzai trump supporters are very rare. On the other hand, a huge number of anti-Trumpers belive that all Trump supporters are nazis. This is the most likely solution by far.

  3. I know Prof Volokh is a descriptivist on grammar, but I was hoping you were not. Unless you informed the community about a hate crime, that last sentence should be revised -- maybe the nominative absolute route: "The dean having informed ..." On the merits, I agree the dean should provide an update.

    1. Why would you hope anyone would hold anything but the correct (descriptivist) position on grammar?

      It would be especially ironic to give grammar prescriptivists, otherwise known as "ignorant authoritarians who try to force their incorrect views of English on the more intelligent remainder of the population", the floor in a post about Naziism.

      1. I believe that Nazism is spelled with one "i".

        1. You win a bright shiny Internet today. Where would you like it delivered?

      2. Regardless, the construction quoted by NYLawyer is incorrect, not because it violates some ancient rule, but because it is somewhere between unclear and plainly inaccurate.

        Having informed law school and broader communities that a hate crime took place at the law school, I find it....

        That sounds like it was Bernstein who informed the communities.

        1. For someone who took that last sentence out of context, ignored the rest of the article and was down to her last two brain cells, maybe. I'm betting that pretty much everyone else could easily see the implied noun, "the dean".

  4. For many people, telling a story is what matters. Finding out what actually happened isn't a priority unless it advances the story. If the actual facts are less emotionally satisfying than the story, the facts will be denied, minimized, disregarded, and/or hidden from view.

    1. This.
      It's the narrative, not the truth that matters to these people. Once they no longer have a use for a tool, they drop it.

      1. This is why there are so many people insisting "this must be a hoax" without knowing anything about the incident. This fits their narrative. If this turns out to be real, they'll suddenly get really quiet about it.

  5. One thing that crime victims have in common is that they think their case should have the highest priority for law enforcement.

    While that's a normal response from a victim, it does not mean it actually is the highest priority for the investigation agency.

    One can assume the Yale police are prioritizing their cases to ensure the efficient use of limited assets (lab technicians, evidence custodians, etc.), and also keep track of and (hopefully) solve cases.

    Maybe non-violent (albeit disgusting), graffiti isn't their highest priority.

    1. Obviously they're tied up with all the murders and stick-ups at Yale this semester?? FYI, Yale is a midsize college in a town near NYC called New Haven. The town crime rate is quite high, but New Haven has its own police. The college part of town has far less crime.

    2. And that's why ... Yale hasn't released the video surveillance?

      1. It's quite possible the Yale police are following up on leads they developed from a review of the tape and don't want to release it yet to prevent compromise.

        Or maybe (since they're a small department), they've sent the tape to a county/state crime lab to enhance the quality.

        Or maybe they really are working on other things.

        The tape is really a minor issue - unless you believe (without any facts), there's some cover-up.

        1. "Or maybe they really are working on other things."

          Its a glorified security company ["campus police"] on a safe campus.

          They aren't investigating murders.

          1. Well what's your theory why they haven't released the tape?

            Since I'm a retired federal agent (who conducted all kinds of investigations), I based my possibilities on the training and experiences I've had.

            Go ahead and enlighten us.

            1. Appeal to authority is a logical fallacy.

              The Yale police department is what we used to call campus security, now with police powers as is the trend. They are not some elite crime fighting agency or even the FBI.

              Why can't Yale law school get an answer from another college department? Hiding behind "its up to the police" is a red flag they are covering something embarrasing.

            2. Since I’m a retired federal agent (who conducted all kinds of investigations)"
              Yeah, and I'm a Navy Seal. Semper Fo-something!

              Just kidding, the way you're insinuating that there's nothing here because it no longer advances the narrative, means you're either James Comey or John Brennan, amirite?

              1. You have the crime of vandalism. A crime, yes. But... not a very serious one, absent details that would indicate something more serious, which approximately no one has suggested.

          2. Bob, I'll bet they are all trained and officially recognized as New Haven police officers.

            How do you know the campus is safe? If it weren't, who would say so?

            Can you imagine any edgy town/gown interactions?

        2. "The tape is really a minor issue"
          What a bullshit, handwaving statement.

          1. "What a bullshit, handwaving statement."

            But also true.

            If it's real, then Yale has (gasp) a vandal with a paint can! And if it's not real, then Yale has (gasp again!) a vandal with a paint can.

            There just isn't an interpretation of the known facts that makes this important.

            1. That's your counterargument? Another bullshit, handwaving statement, and (oh dear) minor vandalism allegation?

              You really are a shill. Is Media Matters paying you to play fifty-center here?

        3. Look how far you have to twist yourself to believe a real racial incident occurred.

      2. And that’s why … Yale hasn’t released the video surveillance?

        They haven't released the tape because it undermines the 'hate crime' narrative.

        They're not talking because they want this all to go away before it blows up in the faces of the people pushing the 'hate crime' narrative.

      3. Now Prof. Bernstein is implying a hoax that Yale covered up, based entirely on assumption and police being tight-fisted with info?

        That may be correct, but this seems less like Sherlock Holmes here and more like someone with a narrative.

    3. The Yale police is part of the college.

      They prioritize what the college tells them to prioritize.

      The law school could find out the status with one phone call.

      1. "The law school could find out the status with one phone call."

        Perhaps. And the reason they'd make that call is... because some busybody outsider called and asked them to?

    4. Which is the bigger crime -- a trivial physical crime of spray painting a sidewalk, but with "Trump is a Nazi, yay!" Or "Trump is a Nazi, boo!"?

      1. We should probably amend the constitution to take government out of the business of criminalizing opinions amd speech.

  6. In contrast to Bernstein's suggestions, I suspect it was one or two brainless teenagers with little in the way of an agenda.

    1. Could be. But no need to start spinning yarns right yet.

      1. But it's to late for that now, given the press release form the Law School in the first place. That Prof B's point.

        1. I read the release and saw nothing about who did it.

          And I get the temptation but no need to fill that in. No matter your narrative or statistical algorithm or or gut feeling.

          1. Regardless of your blindness to the implicit assumptions in the press release (please never think you'll make it in a second career in literary criticism) a big deal was still made by having a press release in the first place. Why do you think they put out this press release for a bit of graffiti, even if they didn't know who did it or why?

            Still, at bottom, the law school got into the car, started the engine, rev'd it, and now doesn't want to put into park or drive....Bernstein is asking pointedly why.

            1. "Why do you think they put out this press release for a bit of graffiti"

              because A) it happened, and B) people started asking questions about it, and C) they got tired of answering people's questions.

          2. That you feel no need to fill in the blanks is of no concern.
            The narrative is set. Knuckle dragging Nazis, anti semite, bigots, are intimidating Jews. Thats the way the college wants it.

            The historical findings of most all of these incidents are phony will not be allowed.

            1. I saw no narrative in the press release. Only in your own persecution complex.

          3. Well, the part of the press release describing the graffiti as "anti-Semitic" might cause people to form an opinion.

            1. Yeah, they really went out on a limb, suggesting that a swastika is considered an "anti-semitic" symbol.

      2. I'm not spinning yarns, just guessing.

        1. I would point you to the exemplar of the righties narritivism below our comments as to the dangers of allowing yourself to guess.

          Not that you or I will become the paranoid losers they are, of course. That takes a lifetime of talk radio.

  7. I don’t really understand why it matters whether it was a “hoax” or not. Even if it was sincere, it’s graffiti. Someone scribbled something on the ground. Why would anybody get worked up about this? Nobody rationally thinks there are hordes of Nazis rampaging through New Haven.

    Anyone who would be a target of theoretical Nazis in New Haven is a trillion times¹ more likely to be mugged for his/her wallet than attacked by Nazis.

    ¹ Approximately.

    1. We have two nutty narratives going on in the US right now. One is on the right, that liberals (and or)/Jews/members of minority groups/Democrats are plotting to "import" millions of non-whites to "replace" the white population and guarantee a progressive majority. The other is on the left, that there is a large white nationalist/racist/antisemitic minority that largely kept its for the last several decades, but now has been unleashed by Trumpism (never mind the academic study showing that intolerance has actually decreased since 2016). Going hysterical every time one sees a swastika, without considering context or undertaking investigation, is part of the latter.

      1. there is a large white nationalist/racist/antisemitic minority that largely kept its for the last several decades, but now has been unleashed by Trumpism (never mind the academic study showing that intolerance has actually decreased since 2016).

        I don't know how large it is, but it exists and is both active and violent. Whether Trump "unleashed" them or not he seems to like them well enough.

        I remember your post on the study which, IIRC, was kind of a shaky basis for your claim.

        1. Whether Trump “unleashed” [a large white nationalist/racist/antisemitic minority] or not he seems to like them well enough.

          Why do you keep perpetrating hoaxes?

          The "Fine People" Hoax Funnel

          The press created the hoax by consistently and intentionally omitting the second half of President Trump's comments about Charlottesville. If you only see or hear the first half of what the president said, it looks exactly like the president is calling neo-Nazis "fine people." But in the second part of Trump's comments, he clarified, "You had people in that group who were there to protest the taking down, of to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of the park from Robert E. Lee to another name."

          In other words, the president believed there were non-racists in attendance who support keeping historical monuments. To remove all doubt, the President continued with "I'm not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists, because they should be condemned totally – but you had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists, okay?"

          1. Fine people don't show up for rallies organized by the likes of Jason Kessler, and neo-Confederates aren't fine people in any case.

            1. Fine people DO show up for rallies when the town fathers decide to erase history because of political correctness. So your view here is flat-out incorrect.

              1. Erase history? Are you insane?

                I'll tell you who wants to erase history. It's the neo-Confederates who want to see Lee and the other traitors as some sort of great heroes fighting in defense of ??? By their own words it's clear that they were fighting to maintain slavery, though many, like you, want to erase that.

                We've had 150 years of erasing the history of what the Confederacy, Lee, and others actually stood for. It's time to fix that, and quit honoring them.

                1. They want to pretend the Confederates won the war. But don't you try "erasing history"!!!

              2. Why continue to fight for the bigots. Bigots have rights, too, but decent people -- let alone fine people -- are not devoted to advancing the bigots' interests.

                Carry on, clingers. Until replacement.

            2. More important, an organized rally that got a great deal of prior publicity managed to attract a few hundred people. This is not a mass movement. Compare, e.g., the Nation of Islam, where Farrakhan can get 20K people to listen to him denounce whites, gays, and Jews, with minor celebrities in the audience and powerful politicians willing to chat him up. I agree that the far right has become more active and organized, but I think that's primarily because social media makes it much easier to do so than in the days when you had to surreptitiously meet in a seedy motel conference room. It's also increasingly engaged in violence, but it's not clear what that means. There was a spasm of far left violence in the early 70s, but that marked the end of things, not the beginning.

              1. "This is not a mass movement."

                They're quite willing to use violence, so it doesn't take very many of them to cause disturbance. Then there's a larger circle which consists of people who won't use violence themselves, but are only too happy to serve as apologists for the ones who do. So the Portland Max killer had no choice but to kill the people who were trying to protect a couple of teenage girls from his ranting at them. Because you have to stand up to people who try to infringe your free speech, or whatever reason was offered on AM radio this morning.

                Yes, there are some leftists willing to use violence, too. I'm not claiming otherwise. But the last mass killing by would-be leftists happened A) outside the US, and B) was largely confined to the cult members who went to Jonestown. Whereas, in Oklahoma City, they tried to start the race war going by blowing up a daycare full of kids. These are both evil acts by evil people, but they aren't equal and opposite.

              2. an organized rally that got a great deal of prior publicity managed to attract a few hundred people. This is not a mass movement.

                Whether it's a mass movement or not, it managed to include at least one murderer. And the fact that it was "well-publicized" suggests that those who chose who attend were far from being fine people.

                As I said above, whatever the size of the movement, it is clearly both active and violent.

      2. One is on the right, that liberals (and or)/Jews/members of minority groups/Democrats are plotting to “import” millions of non-whites to “replace” the white population and guarantee a progressive majority.

        Is this supposed to to a controversial claim? Why?

        We know it happened in the UK:

        We hear leftists all the time gloating about how demographic change will give the Left a "Permanent Majority". We see the Left actively encouraging more people to come here illegally, while fighting to keep the US from blocking them from coming in, or deporting them once they do get in.

        Is there also a "right wing plot" to claim that 1 + 1 = 2?

        1. Replacement of whites and the Bell Curve. That's the intellectual right these days.

    2. "Nobody rationally thinks there are hordes of Nazis rampaging through New Haven"

      Oh wow, you mustn't have been in the US for the last four years. Never watch CNN or read the NYT? Do you live in the Antarctic or something?

      1. That's why he said "rationally", not "nobody thinks ..."

        People do seem to think that, but they're doing so irrationally.

      2. Your lack of cites is telling.

        1. Cite: Turn on CNN, pick any page in the New York Times or read Elizabeth Warren's Twitter.

  8. Who actually has the videotape now? The cops or Yale? Does anyone here know?

    1. Yale is the cops.

      Its a university police department.

  9. I can think of at least one legitimate reason not to release the surveillance footage – perhaps it doesn’t clearly identity the perpetrators (maybe there was a malfunction in the recording or their faces were somehow obscured) but they don’t want the perpetrators to realize that. Right now, the people who did this are probably worried about getting caught and if they see that the footage doesn’t show who they are, they’re more likely to think they got away with it. That doesn’t meant that there isn’t other evidence or an investigation but it’s a lot harder to catch them with the surveillance footage. If the perpetrators think there is a surveillance video that identifies them, one of them might feel pressure to come forward in the hopes of making a deal for a lighter punishment.

    1. Don't go spoiling everyone's fun like that.

    2. People who are worried they're going to get caught tend to be a lot more cautious than people who think they got away cleanly

      People who are less cautious, are more likely to get caught

      So you have that exactly backwards

      1. You could be right – I only offered this as a possible reason why they may not be releasing the surveillance tape and it was of course purely speculation on my part. OTOH without knowing anything about the actual perpetrators, it’s difficult to say how concerned they were about getting caught and whether they even knew that they were being filmed at the time. I’m seen teenager look around to see if anyone is watching them and take off running as soon as they spot someone in view and I assume it was because they were probably doing or about to do something that they knew they shouldn’t and didn’t want to risk getting caught. It could be the vandals didn’t even know or forgot about the security cameras (never been to that campus so I have no idea how noticeable they are) and just looked around, didn’t see anyone and spray-painted and took off thinking that they were in the clear. Now that they know they might have been recorded in the act, it could make them nervous and thinking about whether it’s better to take their lumps now in the hopes of getting off lighter than if they make the police work harder for it. But again, this is just pure speculation at this point.

        1. It's one thing to spin out theories based on the known facts. You can get some interesting stories that way.

          It's another thing to pretend the stories are real. This is true for people concerned about the Nazi-vandals, and people concerned about the Nazi-hoax-vandals. You (unless you are the vandal) don't know which one it is, and there's a real possibility that it's neither one.

  10. I suspect this is little more than “Trump is a Nazi,” probably not such a rare opinion at a place like Yale.

    I don’t think we are all absolutely obligated to all collectively shit in our collective pants every time a symbol like this appears.

    1. I understand it’s graffiti, it was spray-painted, not chalked, it’s damage to property. It’s an offense. Yale has every right to protect its property. And the message is in extremely poor taste. But I nonetheless don’t think we are obligated to treat the person the same as if he or she had planned a mass shooting.

      1. Hell, we're not obligated to treat them like that even if they were actually a neo-Nazi.

        Because being a shitbag graffiti-er is still a minor property crime, not, uh, mass murder.

        (And contra assertions widely made, "being a POS neo-Nazi asswipe" does not magically, automatically, or even probabilistically connect one to being a mass murderer.

        This can be proven by ... well, counting the number of them that are mass murderers, compared to the claims about how many there are [and, hell, the undeniable existence of "white power" prison gangs, members of which regularly ... leave prison].

        They're wastes of carbon, but they're just ... not ravening murderers, demonstrably.)

        1. "They’re wastes of carbon, but they’re just … not ravening murderers, demonstrably"

          Get enough of them together in one place, though, and things can change. Yes, sometimes "one" is enough of them in once place, sometimes it takes way, way more. Trying to make sure their gathering place is, uh, somewhere else is still a good idea.

  11. Hmmm. Can't you think of any reason the video would not have been splashed all over the place?

    1. Because anyone who watches the video gets stalked by a creepy ghost with hair over her face?

      1. I mean, her hair pulled over her face, not facial hair, that would be silly, she's a ghost, not a werewolf.

  12. "Organizations in the Yale community, such as the Law School's Office of Student Affairs and the Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life, responded to the incident on Monday, condemning the action and offering support to students."

    Offering support? To students who I suppose have learned for the first time that there are people capable of scribbling swastikas in public places?

    Yale Law is what the Rev calls one of our great liberal-libertarian institutions of higher learning. When these students graduate, the public will expect them to be able to handle cases, if necessary, involving very triggering facts - maybe disfigurement and death. I don't know how many of them will deign to do criminal cases, but they should at least be prepared to look at and analyze graphic crime-scene pictures and so forth.

    You're saying that the brightest students, at one of our finest institutions, will freak out so much over graffiti that they need counseling?

    1. Or am I misunderstanding the word "support"?

      1. It's not about coddled students so much as university PR. The corporate nature of modern universities means that students are now treated as clients (internal documents will even call them that). So whenever something unpleasant occurs, serious or not, universities go out of their way to demonstrate that they're supporting client needs. The vast majority of students won't seek out any kind support, but the school is covering its PR butt.

        1. There's another PR consideration, and that's whether they want to portray their students as easily "triggered," which would feed into what the administrators probably see as a malicious right-wing narrative about coddled snowflakes.

          1. On the plus side, it shows actual nazis that if they want attention, all they need to do is commit petty vandalism, they don't have to go off and commit some awful hate crime.

          2. When choosing whether to be anti-hate or pro-hate, most people don't have to think about how they're going to answer

            The tradeoff is simple to calculate:

            1) we can say we take it seriously, and offer "support" to people who don't need it. This costs us nothing, and makes us look like decent people who just want to help.

            2) we can lead off by saying it's probably a hoax, thereby incurring at least irritation, if not more, from the target demographic. This earns us the respect and support of Eddy, which YLS desires because... uh... we'll fill this part out later.

            1. Would you mind quoting the part where I said it was "probably a hoax", as opposed to not knowing? Thanks in advance.

              1. You know what "decent people" do? When they make a misstatement, the issue a retraction and an apology.

                Therefore, I do not expect a retraction and apology from you for your misstatement.

                1. " I do not expect a retraction and apology from you for your misstatement."

                  I'll keep that in mind if I ever make a misstatement.

                  1. Yale Law school would earn your respect and support by endorsing communism.

                    But I'm not saying you support communism!

                    1. I notice below that, for someone who resents people drawing logical inferences from their actual words, you sure are willing to draw broad and irrational inferences from other people's words.

                    2. Broad, irrational, and accurate.

                    3. Yes, I agree you're irrational.

              2. "Would you mind quoting the part where I said it was “probably a hoax”"

                Before I get to that, would you mind pointing out where I said you said it was "probably a hoax"?

                1. Other than claiming Yale Law School would earn my respect by calling it a hoax?

                  "we can lead off by saying it’s probably a hoax, thereby incurring at least irritation, if not more, from the target demographic. This earns us the respect and support of Eddy"

                  You're an unreliable source about what you yourself said, how can you be trusted on any other subject?

                  1. So, you can't quote me saying what you claim I said, and that's somehow my fault? That's the sum total of your capacity for argument?

                    1. You are a drooling idiot.

                    2. You talk about what I "implied" without quoting a single word I said, yet you pretend that someone can "respect and support" an accusation without believing it.

                      You have to work really hard to be this stupid.

                    3. Anyway, it's good to know that, under your worldview, it's possible to earn your respect and support by making what you believe to be a false or unproven allegation.

                    4. "You are a drooling idiot."

                      Then you lost an argument to a drooling idiot. Bummer for you.

                  2. "Other than claiming Yale Law School would earn my respect by calling it a hoax?"

                    You kind of suggested that you lacked respect for them (more correctly for their student body) because they didn't call it a hoax, but rather rushed to offer support to the "victims". If that's not the message you intended to convey, you need to work on your delivery.

                    1. I'm not calling you a mendacious little twit, but anyone who called you a mendacious little twit would have my respect and support.

                    2. Because you ARE a mendacious twit.

                    3. "You kind of suggested that you lacked respect for them (more correctly for their student body) because they didn’t call it a hoax, but rather rushed to offer support to the “victims”. "

                      You misrepresented what I said, and I correctly represented what you said.

                    4. I repeat, I didn't call you a mendacious twit, I merely said that anyone who called you a mendacious twit would have my respect and support.

                      Can't you see the difference?

                      I can't either.

                    5. "I repeat, I didn’t call you a mendacious twit"

                      I repeat: You ARE a mendacious twit, so I don't have any reason to care what you do (or do not) call me.

                    6. The point soared over your head, of course.

                      In any event, yo momma is ugly.

                    7. "yo momma is ugly."

                      And yours raised a mendacious twit.

                    8. I still made yo momma come after I dug her up - I gave her the loving your daddy never gave her.

  13. "Anyone who has been following such 'Trump plus swastika in very liberal environments' incidents would immediately suspect one of two things: (1) a hoax; or, perhaps more likely (2) the vandal(s) in question weren't trying to say 'I support Trump and he's a Nazi,' but rather 'I hate Trump because he's a Nazi.'"

    Of course, there's also the possibility that you have not one, but two (competing) vandals at work. So, you might have someone who put "Trump" on, and then somebody added a swastika, or vice versa.
    Mr. Trump is NOT a Nazi. Nazis were effective and efficient. Mr. Trump lacks these qualities. He wishes he could be a dictator, but has no idea how to make this into reality.

    1. Or you could have just voted hoax without all of the other spurious BS

    2. Trump is not a Nazi for the simple reason that Nazis were anti-capitalist collectivists, pretty much the complete opposite of Trump.

  14. We all know these so-called "hate crimes" are all fake. I don't think a single one reported has ever been confirmed since 2016. Not one.

    1. From the folks who knew Obama was (is) a Muslim Kenyan communist.

      Replacement of the birthers can’t occur too soon.

      1. When the mob comes for Cuckland and no one says anything is anyone, but Cuck going to be surprised?

        1. The mob that came for Artie Ray? A bunch of hypocritical losers?

      2. Obama was simply incompetent; his actual beliefs hardly mattered.

        1. The lies, gullibility, and bigotry of his right-wing critics mattered enough to cost them the culture war

          1. Well, not being a "right wing critic", I wouldn't know.

            I just know that, after I voted for Obama, he turned out to be an incompetent blowhard, racist, and borderline fascist.

  15. Where in that story was there any claim that a "hate crime" occurred? I see a claim about an act of hate and a symbol of hate, but no statement by the law school that a hate crime had been committed. Connecticut Public Act 17-111, which modified the state's hate crime laws, may cover the act in question, but that would entail further analysis. I see no reference by the law school that the incident constitutes a violation of that law.

    If only there was a blog where persons learned in the law and interested in educating the public, could take the known facts and analyze them in reference to potentially applicable laws. A headline: "did a hate crime occur?" Would then be followed by legal analysis of the CT hate crime laws.

  16. Hoax
    Or you can go with the dozen actual Nazis in the country sure do get around a lot.
    But maybe just maybe it’s not the end of the world
    Sensationalizing every one of these things of which most maybe all are hoaxes is getting comical

  17. Prof. Bernstein's thinking that this is a hoax and that Yale is hiding that fact seems to have a lot of company in the comentariat.

    The Venn Diagram of that set and the set of those who have decided that hate crimes are all hoaxes seems to have a lot of overlap.

    A preview of a bit further down the road which you tread.

    1. But the truth is almost every single supposed so-called "hate crime" has been a hoax. It would seem to me that people who think these things actually happen are the ones who are crazy.

      1. "But the truth is almost every single supposed so-called “hate crime” has been a hoax."

        Yes, the "so-called" hate crimes are often hoaxes. Once you exclude all the non-hoaxes, hoaxes are pretty much all that's left.

    2. Nazis were staunchly anti-capitalist collectivists with a political program that had a large overlap with Sanders and Warren. The idea that any Nazi would support a nasty capitalist like Trump is absurd.

      Anti-capitalist collectivism is the predominant ideology at Yale, but people holding those beliefs have long ago gotten rid of the swastika symbol.

      So, if we put that all together, it’s not a hoax: this was likely carried out by an actual fascist, and like actual fascists, the person hates Trump; the only thing that is mildly incongruent about it is that they likely didn’t understand that the swastika represents their own ideology, but that is a common confusion among the kind of people attending Yale as well.

      1. That's pretty clever ideology you've got there NOYB2. Saves you the work of learning anything. You have that in common with 20th century Fascism—at least insofar as ordinary Fascist supporters believed anything. Mostly, they just believed in their tribe and their leader.

        Have you noticed Bernstein's assertions about how small and impotent are right wing hate groups in America today? Either Bernstein doesn't get that tribe-and-leader bit, or he hasn't heard about Trump's rallies. That old-time style? Trump has it, right down to the snarling vituperation of the guy at the microphone.

        Contrary to your fantasies, there really wasn't any ideology in Nazism. Scholars have been trying to figure it out ever since, and they all come up dry. Except that everyone understands what made it go: "Follow me, and we'll get the people you hate."

        1. Contrary to your fantasies, there really wasn’t any ideology in Nazism.

          In fact, fascism is a fairly well-defined ideology, closely related to socialism. Mussolini and Gentile wrote extensively about it, as did many American academics. The "it's not really well-defined" or "it's any movement that follows a strong leader" is a post-WWII propaganda attempt by socialists to hide the obvious, close ideological connections between socialism and fascism.

          That’s pretty clever ideology you’ve got there NOYB2.

          My parents were almost killed first by fascists, then by socialists. I experienced socialism first hand, as well as persecution and government discrimination as a homosexual.

          Saves you the work of learning anything.

          I have done plenty of work learning about the history of fascism. The real question is whether you know the history and meaning of fascism and are just trying to deny it, or whether you are really just the usual entitled, mono-lingual, ignorant, privileged American prick who can't tell propaganda from fact. My guess is that it's the latter.

          1. NOYB2, given Hitler's affinity for socialists, what accounts for his maniacal anti-Bolshevism?

            Just as a general thing, history and ideology don't work alike. If you are reading ideology, and using it to predict history, then you are doing it backward. Conversely, if you read history, and find little in it to prove any operations of ideology, no amount of avowed ideology should be taken too seriously. It's the same principle that historians use when they read antique laws. No matter what the laws say, historians withhold judgment about what the laws mean until they read the court cases.

      2. Nazis were targeting a subgroup first and foremost. Turns out, that's all ya need - your economics and rigid categorization bows before tribalism.

        1. The ideologies of fascism and socialism aren't defined by what they did once in power, it's defined by what they promised and how they see the world.

          Both are staunchly anti-capitalist and both are collectivist. The major area where they differed is in the groups they demonize. Socialists demonize the upper and middle classes and call for collective action by the working class. Fascists demonize racial minorities and foreigners and call for collective action by the "average man". For Nazis, the two came together because Nazis demonized Jews both based on race and based on supposed class.

          Once in power, their ideology falls by the wayside and both socialism and fascism become simply brutal totalitarian regimes; that's because neither ideology can work, so violence is the only way for socialists and fascists to stay in power.

          1. Plenty of interviews with Nazis who love Trump. If you want to play 'no true Nazi' that's on you.

            The ideologies of fascism and socialism aren’t defined by what they did once in power, it’s defined by what they promised and how they see the world.
            What?! How they see the world is pretty well illustrated by what they did in power. Otherwise the USSR and all Communist states would be noble endeavors.

          2. NOYB2: Anti-capitalist collectivism is the predominant ideology at Yale,

            Is that what you learned when you were at Yale?

    3. These are Bernstein's people. He writes commentary hinting that a hate crime was a hoax (even though no claim of a hate crime was made) and his readers, who already think hate crimes are hoaxes, rush to agreement that this instance is another hoax.

      In another post Bernstein will complain about how he and others like him are being excluded from academia because of their conservative views. He's clearly a scholar devoted to rational debate and critical analysis!

      1. I find this kind of proud knee-jerking to be below Prof. Bernstein's usual postings.

        I usually very much disagree with his political takes, especially on Israel, but they usually have some substance to their opinion, not just dog that doesn't bark supposition.

      2. Any scholar devoted to rational debate wouldn't believe in man-made global warming. Meaning most of academia isn't rational.

  18. Given the similarities between modern progressivism, the prevailing ideology at Yale, and 1930’s fascism, I think it’s a good bet that the vandalism was, in fact, perpetrated by a fascist, albeit a Trump-hating fascist.

    1. So you don't know what fascism is either. Whatever it takes to own the libs.

      Do Dems are the real racists next!

      1. So you don’t know what fascism is either.

        As a European immigrant whose parents were nearly killed by fascists and socialists and who can actually read the source documents in the original languages, I have an excellent idea of what fascism is. Obviously, most pampered, publicly-educated, privileged Americans are ignorant about it, falling for socialist propaganda on the subject.

        Do Dems are the real racists next!

        "Real" as opposed to what? Democrats categorize people by race, attribute characteristics based on race, and demand that government treat people differently based on race. I call that "racism". What do you call it?

        1. Yeah, my grandparents had to deal with both the Commies and the fascist anti-Commies.

          Doesn't mean I'm going to adopt a simplistic philosophy where they are the same, and use populism to dismiss anyone who says differently.

          Nice to see you hitting all the reductive right-wing talking points. Saves brain power, I suppose.

        2. NOYB2, take a check on that sense of grievance. It could be your parents were like you. If so, threats from fascists and socialists might have been the least of their problems. They could have got all that and more from mere centrists. People have limits.

  19. To all those insisting all hate crimes are hoaxes. The DoJ disagrees.

    1. The same DOJ that aggressively pursues "violations of federal law" like telling a mentally ill boy he can't use the girls' bathroom?

      Or the same DOJ that "aggressively enforces the Fair Housing Act" by telling a landlord he has to rent to Shaniqua and her seven illegitimate, 85 IQ children?

      1. "Or the same DOJ that “aggressively enforces the Fair Housing Act” by telling a landlord he has to rent to Shaniqua and her seven illegitimate, 85 IQ children?"

        The proprietor warns against use of the term "sl*ck-j*w" (in the context of conservatives), but I have a hunch this comment will be deemed unworthy of note by the Volokh Conspiracy Board of Censorship.

        This is part of an attempt to develop a reliable sense of the censorship standards applied by that Board of Censorship.

      2. "The same DOJ that..."

        is led by the President. That one.

  20. Every single one of these ends up being hoaxes. Every. One.

  21. A few weeks ago, I made the mistake on another blog of getting involved in a deranged comment thread over how Jeffrey Epstein's death was a murder rather than a suicide. The reasoning was eerily similar to the reasoning supporting the "hoax" theory here, and one of the linchpins was: "Why don't they release the videotape?" Several people wasted time pointing out that tapes are not routinely released in a pending investigation unless there is reason to believe that someone among the general public will be able to make more of it than the investigators can -- for example, a clear face shot of a perpetrator previously unknown to the criminal justice system but possibly recognizable to some currently unidentifiable person.

    1. If the videotape did catch the act, the police would routinely not want the tape released to the public. There would be specific aspects of the crime that they would want withheld, so that they could judge the reliability of the testimony of witnesses and/or suspects. That is far more likely than "Yale is covering up evidence that this was a liberal hoax."

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