This is pathetic.
When I read the Grovel of the Year—presumably you know what a banner year 2020 has been for grovels, as executives, academics and whole companies and organizations desperately try to mollify the Black Lives Matter mobs—-I instantly thought of the Monty Python skit above, as the brilliant Michael Palin portrayed a certified public accountant attempting to be bold and assertive, only to dissolve into a puddle of blubbering doubt the second he was challenged to follow through on his decision.
We are told that Matthew J. Mayhew, the William Ray and Marie Adamson Flesher Professor of Higher Education at Ohio State University, has published more than 75 peer-reviewed articles and is a co-author of How College Affects Students: Volume 3. He recently co-authored an admittedly fatuous piece for the Journal of Higher Education called, “Why America Needs College Football” that was published on September 24. The cancel/race-baiting/ progressive bully mobs attacked, and it took only four days for poor Mayhew to issue a Palin-worthy grovel, begging for forgiveness and rejecting what he had written just days before.
“Weenie” doesn’t begin to describe the deficits of integrity and character his capitulation represents.
Here are examples of what he and co-author Musbah Shaheen wrote ( Shaheen is an Ohio State Ph.D. student, and hasn’t been heard from. I assume he is on the run, has changed his name and is off the grid, and will soon be sharing an apartment in Antartica with Salman Rushdie):
Essentializing college football might help get us through these uncharacteristically difficult times of great isolation, division and uncertainty. Indeed, college football holds a special bipartisan place in the American heart.
College football reminds many Americans of the community values that underscore higher education and by extension America itself.Americans have lost the united sense of who we are as a nation.
This election season has demonstrated how stifled, polarized and dangerous our political differences have become, and college football can remind us of respect — even in the wake of deep disagreement. We can root for different teams, scream at the players, argue with the refs and question the coaches, but win or lose, at the end of the day, we leave the stadium, watch party or tailgate with a sense of respect for the game and the athletes that train so hard, leaving it all out on the field every time.
Deep difference doesn’t have to lead to disrespect.
Naturally, as exemplified by the one critical letter to the editor this article triggered, the authors were guilty of being complicit with President Trump, who advocated the return of college football while the Leftist university community continues to want America trembling in isolation from the Wuhan virus terror. Desperate not to become a pariah among his peers, Professor Mayhew wrote, in part, in a sequel to his essay,
…I was wrong. And even worse, I was uninformed, ignorant and harm inducing…. I am sorry for the hurt, sadness, frustration, fatigue, exhaustion and pain this article has caused anyone, but specifically Black students in the higher education community and beyond. I am struggling to find the words to communicate the deep ache for the damage I have done. I don’t want to write anything that further deepens the pain experienced by my ignorance related to Black male athletes and the Black community at any time, but especially in light of the national racial unrest. I also don’t want to write anything that suggests that antiracist learning is quick or easy….Rather than make excuses, I should talk about which facets of the article that I have recently learned are harmful — through my students, wider social media community and distinguished academics…
I learned that I could have titled the piece “Why America Needs Black Athletes.” I learned that Black men putting their bodies on the line for my enjoyment is inspired and maintained by my uninformed and disconnected whiteness and, as written in my previous article, positions student athletes as white property. I have learned that I placed the onus of responsibility for democratic healing on Black communities whose very lives are in danger every single day and that this notion of “democratic healing” is especially problematic since the Black community can’t benefit from ideals they can’t access….
I know it’s not anyone’s job to forgive me, but I ask for it — another burden of a white person haunted by his ignorance. To consider the possible hurt I have played a role in, the scores of others whose pain I didn’t fully see, aches inside me — a feeling different and deeper than the tears and emotions I’ve experienced being caught in an ignorant racist moment.
To all communities of color and especially the Black community, I am…
No, I’m sorry, I can’t continue. This is nauseating. It could only be saved by John Cleese turning to the audience and intoning solemnly, “This is just one of the all too many cases on our books of the debilitating social disease of woke academia.”
Mayhew is frighteningly typical of the weak, compliant, craven individuals we entrust our children to, resulting in their character and values being warped. He is no more than an easy mark for anti-American ideologues who know that such people lack the will and conviction to resist demands that they submit to opinion conformity. The Mayhews of history have enabled the rise of every oppressive and anti-democratic society, and if they are not threatened as much by their rejection by defenders of American values as they are by threats from the Left, the culture is lost.