We’d be lying if we said we were surprised at the public outrage to Yale’s admission of former deputy foreign secretary of the Taliban, Sayeed Rahmatullah Hashemi. It was an outrageous and indefensible decision, and America knows it. We hoped to crystallize a national response with our campaign to send fake red fingernails to Yale. From the reactions we’ve received, we’ve really nailed them.
Among the scores of blistering e-mails we’ve received, three stand out. Let’s call them: the good, the great, and the ugly.
The Good was from a serviceman in Fallujah, who couldn’t believe how "how spineless, spiteful, spiritless and unpatriotic some people can be," and whose fingernails are en route to Yale:
I wish [Yale’s President] Richard C. Levin could explain to the American families who've lost loved ones here why Yale has one of those Taliban morons in attendance.The Great was from one of the charities that we recommended in our column as an alternative to building Yale’s $15 billion-and-change endowment: ProjectValour-IT, which provides voice-activated laptops for hospitalized soldiers:
Directly inspired by your endorsement, a company in North Carolina would now like to donate some rebuilt laptops to us. Money has been rather tight recently, so the laptops are particularly welcome and valuable to our efforts at this time.And the Ugly was from a Yale Development Office Assistant Director, Alexis Surovov (Yale ’02), who sent us a love note entitled "Y Do You Hate Yale?":
What is wrong with you? Are you retarded? This is the most disgraceful alumni article that I have ever read in my life. You failed to mention that you've never contributed to the Yale Alumni Fund in your life. But to suggest that others follow your negative example is disgusting.
Mr. Surovov didn’t sign his e-mail, and he sent it through a Columbia account. After Debbie’s husband, a Yale Computer Science graduate, traced it back to him, Clint called him at his Yale office on Thursday to ask if he really thought we were retarded.
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