Last November, Keith Sampson, a college student, was found guilty of â€œracial harassment.â€ Heâ€™d been caught reading a book while on break from a part-time job with the school. Uh-oh.
The book is titled Notre Dame vs. the Klan: How the Fighting Irish Defeated the Ku Klux Klan. It recounts a conflict between Irish Catholics and the Klan back in the 1920s. The book is clearly anti-Klan.
Reading such history cannot amount to â€œracial harassment,â€ even if somebody complains that it does. But such a complaint was all it took to get Sampson in hot water with the hall monitors at his school, Indiana University/Purdue University (Indianapolis).
According to Sampson, the â€œaffirmative action officerâ€ found him guilty without ever talking to him or inspecting the book. The official accusatory letter states that â€œrepeatedly reading the book . . . constitutes racial harassment in that you demonstrated disdain and insensitivity to your co-workers.â€
Iâ€™m sure Keith Sampson felt the university was being insensitive to his need to have the bogus accusation properly investigated.
Months later, the university is finally reversing itself, thanks to a lot of bad publicity and the involvement of outfits like the ACLU and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE). But the school admits no wrongdoing.
If you ask me, the affirmative action officer has way too much time on his hands. Maybe he could spend it reading a book?
This is Common Sense. Iâ€™m Paul Jacob.