Why Do Bad Things Always Happen to Them?

Daily Best of the Web   —   Posted on November 10, 2016

Why Do Bad Things Always Happen to Them?

Cartoon by Jerry Holbert.

The following is an excerpt from OpinionJournal’s “Best of the Web” at The Wall Street Journal written by the editor, James Taranto.

Why Do Bad Things Always Happen to Them?

  • “Pollsters Suffer Huge Embarrassment”—headline, TheHill .com, Nov. 9
  • “Trump Victory Leads to Losses for British Bookies”—headline, WSJ .com, Nov. 9

Trump Ate My Homework
Students at America’s top universities were less than elated by the election results. “Teary eyes, bowed heads and cries of disbelief emerged from election-watching gatherings on [the] Yale campus,” reports the Yale Daily News:

Gabriel Groz ’19 told the News he worried about Trump’s policies towards many of his peers, particularly those who are Muslim, and called this year’s election “the rise of a fascist.” . . .

Still, not all students were disappointed with Trump’s victory. A junior in Jonathan Edwards College, who requested to remain anonymous for fear of backlash, supported Trump in his presidential run and told the News that he was optimistic about the country’s future.

So the guy who’s for Trump is afraid to be named publicly, but the guy who thinks fascism is dawning has no such hesitation. More:

An election “primal scream,” organized by the Freshman Outdoor Orientation Leaders who also participate in the minutelong tradition before midterms and finals, took place outside Sterling Memorial Library at 12:30 a.m. The event was quickly publicized and passed on to the general student body via email less than an hour in advance.

The scream offered students a chance to come together, process the shock of the moment and use that energy to move forward, said a sophomore at the event. She added that the primal scream is in no way incitement or an invitation for reckless behavior, but rather a contained period of expression that hopefully enables its participants to express their frustration productively.

We’re not sure if this part is serious, as the acronym for Freshman Outdoor Orientation Leaders is FOOL. Meanwhile at Brown, there’s this from the Daily Herald:

The externalities of such a contentious election could already be felt on campus Tuesday night. At a viewing party at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, Paula Martínez Gutierrez ’17 said that when she said she was Mexican, a Trump supporter responded, “ew.”

The student supporting Trump said that he said “oh” in the exchange, rather than “ew.”

Aha. The Herald also reports on a panel of political scientists, introduced by Edward Steinfeld:

“We haven’t exactly shown our better selves as a country in this election,” Steinfeld said, “but the kind of discourse that we’ve had on campus has been different.”

Surveying the packed audience of the Joukowsky Forum, [international relations professor Rose] McDermott rationalized the size of the gathered crowd: “Anxiety benefits by company.” . . .

“If you’re not a white male then everything should scare you,” said Lisa Schold ’19. “Just the rhetoric he uses is so offensive to everyone,” she added. “It’s embarrassing.”

The panel was sponsored by an outfit called the Watson Institute, which sounds like it should be in an elementary school.

The Columbia Spectator reports that some profs at the upper Manhattan campus “have postponed midterm examinations”:

Engineering Student Council mobilized after the election and asked that faculty in the School of Engineering and Applied Science push back midterms and homework deadlines to early next week.

ESC President Neha Jain, SEAS ’17, said that she floated the idea of asking for SEAS-wide extensions on assignments to other members of the ESC executive board, who agreed that exams should be postponed “given that the elections results have left people feeling triggered, anxious, and unwell.”

But at Harvard, the Crimson reports, “students, realizing that Clinton may not win, began to do homework.” Desperate times call for desperate measures.

For more “Best of the Web” from The Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto click here.