An ugly but familiar spectacle played out at Stanford Law School last week, as a federal judge was shouted down and berated by students -- with a prominent university administrator joining the appalling pile-on. If you weren't following the controversy as it unfolded, here's a taste of how the profane, angry mob greeted their on-campus visitor. Some of America's most elite law schools have devolved into insane asylums.
This comes with a content warning for language:
Stanford Law students shouted down Fifth Circuit appellate judge Kyle Duncan while he was trying to speak.— Washington Free Beacon (@FreeBeacon) March 11, 2023
When he asked for an administrator to control the situation, Stanford’s “associate dean of diversity, equity, and inclusion” got up and lectured him for nearly 10 minutes pic.twitter.com/tjlUPOIMmQ
That’s when Steinbach, the associate diversity dean, delivered her remarks. While she reminded students of the law school’s free speech policies, which prohibit the disruption of speakers, she proceeded to stand by while students continued to heckle Duncan.— Aaron Sibarium (@aaronsibarium) March 11, 2023
The meltdown followed a week-long pressure campaign against members of the Federalist Society, who were personally named and shamed by campus activists. pic.twitter.com/tefCQG050K— Aaron Sibarium (@aaronsibarium) March 11, 2023
What an embarrassment. And rather than enforcing free speech rules, the "DEI" dean joined in the extremely shabby treatment of the judge, effectively siding with the hecklers. An initial post-event response from the school conspicuously lacked any sort of meaningful apology, as intense criticism poured in:
Absolutely appalling behavior here by Stanford Law's "DEI" dean, Tirien Steinbach, whom they will fire, if they are actually committed to being an educational institution. https://t.co/1CmBMqfsuG— Josh Barro (@jbarro) March 11, 2023
This is completely inappropriate behavior by a law school administrator at a student-sponsored event. The Stanford dean needs to step up. https://t.co/PoWxs4GNV8— Keith E. Whittington (@kewhittington) March 10, 2023
If Stanford wants to produce graduates who are ill-equipped or even unwilling to handle cases assigned to judges with divergent viewpoints, Stanford’s treatment of Judge Duncan might well assist in that effort.— Mike Lee (@BasedMikeLee) March 10, 2023
The judge himself isn't holding back either:
NEW: Fifth Circuit appellate judge Kyle Duncan, who was shouted down by Stanford Law students yesterday, says the protesters behaved like "dogshit."— Aaron Sibarium (@aaronsibarium) March 10, 2023
He is also calling on Stanford to fire the DEI dean who participated in the uproar.🧵https://t.co/mnVrJj2mFf
It's hard to argue with any of this:
It’s laughable to think of an elite law Dean telling, say, a pro-abortion federal judge that they have ‘torn the community apart,’ harmed students, etc & allowing anti-abortion students to attack, mock her sex life, silence her, & then saying free speech policy should be revised.— David Decosimo (@DavidDecosimo) March 11, 2023
At long last, after immense criticism, Stanford's president finally got around to issuing a much more proper apology and denunciation of what happened at the school he leads:
Interesting to see that apology's characterization of Steinbach's conduct differs markedly from Dean Martinez's statement yesterday ("well-intentioned" effort at "managing the room ... went awry"). Perhaps explains why Stanford *president* co-signed letter. 3/— Ed Whelan (@EdWhelanEPPC) March 11, 2023
The strong and clear stance that Stanford president Tessier-Lavigne has articulated on precisely this situation makes it all the more plausible that he was appalled by Dean Martinez's coddling of DEI dean Steinbach. pic.twitter.com/gbSlZNGfHx— Ed Whelan (@EdWhelanEPPC) March 12, 2023
I'll leave you with this wild thread on just how far Stanford has gone off the deep end, as an institution, over the last few years in particular:
If you thought the DEI law dean exploding in front of a federal appellate judge was bad, I have some news…— Maxwell Meyer (@mualphaxi) March 12, 2023
Stanford is a fallen institution. It has gone insane since 2020. Here are the most ridiculous stories from the past few years, some of which I documented.
Click through for the whole thing.