UPR Chancellor Ana Guadalupe spoke for the first time today reacting to last week’s disturbance during which she was accosted by a group of student demonstrators. She said that there were times she felt her life was in danger, and she struggled with the idea of resigning. But she remains resolute in her position and insists that the University will fight to keep in place the prohibition of large demonstrations on campus grounds.
Lieutenant Governor Kenneth McClintock published an “editorial” on Fox News and Fox Latino’s websites (I will not take responsibility for contaminating you, dear reader, by linking to them) that parroted current talking points. The demonstrators, says McClintock are a “small group [that] is creating an environment where members of the university community are afraid to speak out and fulfill their responsibilities as students and professors.” He claimed that this was “not an isolated incident,” while failing to mention once the repeated violent assault on students and bystanders conducted by the riot police installed by the monopoly government and the university administration. He asserts that the UPR is the “the most affordable public institution of higher education anywhere under the American flag,” which may be correct, but we haven’t checked the Virgin Islands, Marianas or Guam yet. He also fails to mention that Puerto Rico, if considered part of the U.S., would be by far the poorest state of the union, and its median income, $18,381, would be less than half of that of the poorest state Mississippi ($37,749).
Then McClintock calls on the demonstrators, “many of whom claim to be members of socialist youth organizations,” to “renounce Cold War-type violent tactics.” The logic-mangling here of course begins with the nonsensical use of “Cold War-type violent tactics,” since the whole idea behind the use of the phrase Cold War was to describe conflict less violent than conventional wars. The other illusion here is the idea that organized civil disobedience is something that ended 40 years ago, when it has only increased in use and has become more sophisticated on an international scale over the years. The use of “Cold War” and “socialist” is just another stale repetition of the grade-school fear and ignorance breeding that Fox News has been endlessly reiterating since the election of Obama.
Meanwhile, the intrepid Jesús Dávila reports that he is in a possession of a memo that alleges that “two intelligence agents of the National Police attacked guards” at the incident involving Chancellor Guadalupe. He says that the undercover agents were disguised as demonstrators and implemented this nefarious plan “weeks after it was revealed that a high level meeting in which to start a tragedy which could be blamed on the students was discussed, as a means of turning public opinion against the uprising.”
We report. You decide.
One thought on “She Said, He Said, We Said”
Is Guadaloupe a Heideggerian at heart? Her spiel sounds like it was borrowed from Heidegger’s Being and Time (1927)! Resoluteness (Entschlossenheit) even in the face of fear for one’s life (Furcht die Todesangst) is a distinctive mode of Heideggerian “Being-towards-death” (Sein zum Tode). Existential struggle (Kampf) against the lure of “resignation” (Niederlegung) is another such motif. Guadaloupe’s unwavering insistence that she will fight (kampfen) to prohibit (verbieten) public demonstrations against her destructive educational policies sounds like Heidegger as Rector of the University of Freiberg in 1933-34 during the period of National Socialism. Is Guadaloupe aware that her presentation reminds us of the mythic world of the disgraced thinker Martin Heidegger?
What is concealed by Guadeloupe? What is hidden behind her fantastic existential posturing? What is not called into being by her hand-waving theatricality? What is buried by her self-centered “politics of angst and resoluteness?”
What remains conveniently unanswered is the single, fundamental question before us. The question involves access to education at the University of Puerto Rico for those with the ability and desire to learn. Provision of access to education is a fundamental feature of any civilized society. Period. To the extent that Guadaloupe sidesteps this, she misunderstands the proper role of the University. Ideally speaking, Socrates taught without expectation of payment. Jesus never asked for a penny for his sermons. Martin Heidegger & Co., however, have no use for either Socrates or Jesus and occupy the opposite end of the spectrum of human values. What motivated Heidegger was the delusional desire to destroy 2,500 years of Western thought – logic, epistemology, metaphysics, philosophy, poetics, etc – as part of a more general plan to dismantle the structures of modernity. In addition, Heidegger believed in `re-agrarianization’ of German society. Re-agrarianized peasants have no need of education, after all. Existential indoctrination will do for the Volk. The peasants’ fate is mind-benumbing toil and work.