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Officials of Trump’s govt kick as students ask Harvard to blacklist them

Officials of Trump’s govt kick as students ask Harvard to blacklist them
November 19
19:14 2020

Students from Harvard’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences have asked the university not to allow officials of the President Donald Trump administration engage in activities at the school.

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In a petition, the students tackled the Trump administration for not making the transition process smooth for Joe Biden.

Trump has rejected Biden’s victory in the election, filing multiple lawsuits to challenge his rival’s win.

According to Fox news, the petition had initially proposed an outright ban on Trump’s administration officials from speaking, teaching or attending the university but was reworded to “demanding accountability for Trump administration alumni invitations to campus” after it was severely criticised.

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However, despite opposition from some schools within the university, the revised petition has reportedly been approved by students at the Harvard’s Medical School and Divinity School.

“After every presidential election, Harvard becomes a temporary home for officials from the outgoing administration. These bipartisan connections allow the school to serve student community better and to maintain ties, influence, and status with any administration”, the petition read.

“We write to you now, in advance of the conclusion of the Trump administration, extremely concerned about the impact of the actions of this administration on fundamental democratic institutions. Most notably, in actively undermining faith in the electoral process and in refusing to concede the 2020 election, the Trump administration has trampled norms of free and fair elections and peaceful transfer of power that have defined our republic for over two centuries.

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“These norms are crucial to the global well-being of democratic institutions. A complete disregard for truth is a defining feature of many decisions made by this administration. That alone should be enough to draw the line.

“We remain fully committed to free speech and debate of difficult subjects — especially the damage being done to democratic governance around the world. We do not believe, however, that individuals who engage in this behavior should be legitimized or rewarded by the university. An institution dedicated to the fostering of good democratic government should remain apart from those who were willing to bring it down for their own benefit.”

For the petition to be enacted, student councils from each school need to vote on the measure and would then be sent to school administrators who would make the final decision on whether to make it school policy.

Kayleigh McEnany, White House press secretary and a Harvard law graduate, kicked against the petition and asked the school administrators to quash it.

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“Academic communities should be bastions of free speech. I will happily walk back on campus and challenge this,” she was quoted to have said.

Nebraska Ben Sasse, Republican senator, who also attacked the petition, described the students behind the document as “ideological extremists”.

“Universities not only shouldn’t be afraid of free and open debate – they should welcome it. The whole point of education is to engage ideas you didn’t already hold,” he said.

“Many principled liberal professors are adults who know that healthy institutions don’t give in to temper tantrums.”

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