There will be various ethics matters to consider in coming days regarding the acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse, but for now I am occupied with a hypothetical ethical dilemma.. Ready to board the Kyle Rittenhouse Ethics Train Wreck?
I heard a member of Rittenhouse’s family speaking about how Kyle could now get on with his life. He’s going to college, or intends to. Hmmmmm….
If you were involved in the admissions process of a relatively competitive college with a national reputation, would you favor admitting Kyle Rittenhouse? Let’s assume that he has good enough grades and test scores to be admitted to your school, but neither such outstanding credentials that he is a lock, nor a dearth of qualifications that would normally justify rejecting him even if he wasn’t a divisive and controversial figure.
Also assume that the school is not Hillsdale or another ostentatiously “conservative” institution, but one that has, like the vast majority of institutions, a left-leaning faculty. Finally, I posit that the young man only wants to attend a school where he can have the same options as any other student. He wants to live on campus, and in a dorm.
I’ll make your test even more specific: It’s come down to a choice among ten young men from the mid-west, all with equivalent demographic characteristics. You have room for three of them.
Do you vote for Kyle to make the cut?
- The reaction of donors and alumni.
- The message, if any, his admission sends.
- Do you rate him as having good character, or questionable character?
- Do you rate him as having good judgment, or otherwise?
- Do you feel any obligation to “give him a break”?
- Are you concerned about the effect of his presence on the educational and social experience of other students?
- Should it matter if his acceptance means that it will be more difficult to recruit prestigious faculty?
- If there is an identical candidate in all other respects except that he did not shoot three people and get branded a white supremacist by the President of the United States, would you choose Kyle, the other lad, or flip a coin?