The protests of April 10th at the New School are part of an ongoing pattern of opposition by both students and faculty to the policies and practices of the administration of Bob Kerrey.
The over-reaction of the Kerrey administration to the occupation of 65 Fifth Avenue is symptomatic of a top-down policy of intimidation and unilateral thinking that is reflected in the recent mass firings of Parsons Fine Arts faculty.
In this regard it is of note that multiple attempts by Parsons Fine Arts students to engage with the administration to initiate dialogue and solicit information about the firings have been met with obfuscation, double-speak and finally blatant attempts at intimidation.
In a recent meeting of undergraduates it was reported that an administrator threatened to “spit in the face” of any student who “leaked news to the press”.
More than inappropriate, statements like these have a chilling effect on academic discourse and set an intolerably low standard for free speech.