Editor’s note: American Greatness contributing writer Mytheos Holt penned an “open letter” to his alma mater’s campus newspaper in response to the astounding reaction from students to Donald Trump’s electoral victory. The newspaper’s editors turned it down for reasons . . . well, you will just have to read them for yourself. Herewith, Holt’s article, followed by the Wesleyan Argus‘s reply.
(In case anyone is wondering, tuition and fees at Wesleyan University are $48,272 without financial aid. With room, board, and other fees combined, total cost of attendance is $64,163 per year.)
As one of the nearly 60 million people who watched the victory of Donald Trump with exhilaration and almost visceral pleasure, I just want to say . . . thank you for doing your part in making this possible.
And really, you can pat yourselves on the back because it was a big part. When I graduated, the mainstream Left in America was still mostly focused on issues of economic inequality. While I thought President Obama a disingenuous and dangerous radical at the time of his first victory, there’s no doubt that his campaign came prepared with a hopeful message and a series of problems it desperately wanted to solve.
Healthcare was obviously the big one, but there was also a sophisticated (albeit deeply naïve) critique of U.S. foreign policy wrapped up in the Obama campaign. But something happened midway through Obama’s second term: something which I can only describe as the Wesleyanization of the Left.
Indeed, it felt like every sniveling, contemptible, childish idea I’d encountered—and relished in eviscerating—while at Wes had followed me into the real world. Trigger warnings. Safe spaces. The equation of speech and reason with violent force. Even though I live in Washington, D.C., I almost felt like I should be making a trek to a dorm room in Hewitt, so thoroughly did the national political conversation remind me of my sophomore year. Where else would you expect to encounter such—pardon the phrase—sophomoric ideas?
The richest irony about it was that I’d often used my much-reviled conservative column in the Argus to point out how dangerous these kinds of ideas would be not to America, but to the Left itself. Against what even I will admit was token resistance on campus, it still couldn’t actually effect change, as best exemplified by the failure of the campaign to divest Wesleyan from weapons contractors during the 2008 school year. Against a professional, ruthless political Right with more constituents, it was obvious that this kind of politics would be like bringing smelling salts to a gunfight.
Such a politics might even enable parts of the Right previously thought unpalatable to rise, if only as a middle finger to the sort of emotionally fragile cultural Puritanism it represented. The only response to these warnings was to claim it was racist, sexist, classist, etc, to even mention political realism, and anyway I was a conservative so I had no right to opine on this anyway. I wonder if Cassandra got told to check her privilege when she pointed out that pretty horse at the gates of Troy might have soldiers in it? If so, I know how she felt.
Well, you guys brought it into the mainstream. And while it was by no means exclusive to Wesleyan grads, the fact that this school holds such a sway over one of America’s major cultural centers (Hollywood) means that Wesleyan almost certainly had an outsized role in the reduction of the Democrats from a party defined by hardheaded socialist class politics into a party defined solely by hurt feelings, and the infantile desire to punish anyone who might be even indirectly responsible for them.
Well, surprise! America is not a nation that has time for cosseted emotional children. Really, what made you think a country defined by its sense of rugged individualism and self-determination would permit itself to be domesticated by a pack of histrionic secular Fideists? (Google it.) They would sooner do anything, including hand the Presidency over to a man who took an almost reflexive glee in flouting the norms of politeness, than submit to the dictatorship of people who resemble more an escaped pack of bipolar patients than a political movement. And from what I understand, y’all are gonna double down on the bipolarity in 2020! The things people will refuse to learn…
So thank you, Wesleyan. Thank you for creating the most pathetic, petulant, weak, and whiningwhinging excuse for a far Left we’ve seen in the history of the West at the precise moment when the most vital, forceful, uncompromising form of the far Right is on the rise. On behalf of the Trump movement, and on behalf of everyone who now has a clean shot at putting your brand of politics back in the booby hatch, where it belongs, thank you. We truly couldn’t have done it without you.
Love and kisses,
Mytheos “The Republican Voldemort” Holt ’10
And the editors’ reply:
Hi Mr. Holt,
Thank you for submitting your Letter to the Editor. After much deliberation, we have decided to withhold its publication on the grounds that it constitutes intentionally hateful speech meant to demean members of the Wesleyan community. In the wake of the election, students and faculty feel real fear about how their futures may be affected by a Trump presidency. We believe that it would be irresponsible and unacceptable to add to this anxiety.
The Argus Editorial Staff