I attended BU from 1976-1980. During that time there was a big professor's strike that literally shut down classes for weeks. So here are 10s of thousands of students who had parents that had sacrificed to get thier kids an education or people who were working hard to pay for their own educations who were shut out of classrooms and sometimes manipulated into standing on picket lines with these professors who in the end cared only about their own wallets. It was shameful. Silber had the guts to stand up to these professors so the students could get back in the classroom.
I met him personally a lot of times and yes he was tough but he kept things running and I got a great education inspite of the radical professor element.