"I'd rather take a hot stick in the eye then deal with your bureaucratic nonsense. "
July 14, 2000 11:37 AM   Subscribe

"I'd rather take a hot stick in the eye then deal with your bureaucratic nonsense. " I'm interested in hearing from people in the MeFi community who think the University of California at Santa Barbara is correct in not publishing Chris Brown's profanity peppered 2 page disacknowledgement from his masters thesis.
posted by internook (10 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
It's certainly heartfelt, but kind of verbose-- the language is trying too hard to be scholarly, with lots of big words where simpler terms would be more powerful. And it's got a few grammatical errors.

But somehow, I doubt that's why they're suppressing it. :-)
posted by wiremommy at 2:35 PM on July 14, 2000

This strikes me like the 'elephant dung virgin mary' painting in New York City. This kind of stuff is done only to get media attention and hype. I consider this whole episode completely lame. Who cares? Not me.
posted by Mr. skullhead at 3:18 PM on July 14, 2000

Since Brown made it abundantly clear in what low esteem he holds UCSB, I don't think it's unreasonable for the faculty at UCSB to return the favor. What a complete and utter asshole. Hope he's going to enjoy teaching at Butt Scratch River Community College for the rest of his career...
posted by m.polo at 3:31 PM on July 14, 2000

Whoa, Mr. skullhead. The 'elephant dung virgin mary' painting was NOT created just to spark controversy. The artist is from Africa, where traditionally, elephant dung has been held to have magical & sacred properties. He incorporated small amounts of elephant dung into all his paintings, including a portrait of American civil rights activists. The man is Catholic himself and was completely shocked that people accused him of desecrating the Virgin Mary.

Of course, the oh-so accurate, objective, responsible news media completely ignored the artist's attempts to get the truth out. Mayor Guiliani (ignorantly) ranting about the anti-Catholic painting made a much better headline.

We now restore you to your topic already in progress.
posted by wiremommy at 3:49 PM on July 14, 2000

"What a complete and utter asshole." - m.polo

Here is why I brought this topic up for discussion. Most people who speak up (however unpleasant) are labeled this way. People, in general, can't handle the truth. They don't want to hear it. I'd hire this guy in a second...
posted by internook at 5:13 PM on July 14, 2000

1. Speaking as a professor who has to read and approve MA theses, I must say first of all that I was less interested in the rant than in the fact that he wanted to have his cake and eat it too. As the LINGUA FRANCA article makes clear, what his thesis committee approved was not the thesis that he handed in: the acknowledgments page was added after his readers had signed off on the "final version." If I had been on this commitee, I would have been bloody ticked, too. What, exactly, is courageous about writing a "childish and unprofessional diatribe" (quoting one of Mr. Brown's supporters from memory) that you don't have the guts to show your superiors? And why grant "victim" status to someone who, quite frankly, seems to have wanted to throw a temper tantrum without being honest about it? He wasn't trying to "speak up"; he was trying to sneak his "diatribe" into the library.

2. That being said, I'm hardly impressed with UCSB either. Immaturity is hardly grounds for withholding an MA. I think it's fairly evident that the administration would not have thrown such a fit over a clandestine but lovey-dovey acknowledgments page. Are we supposed to believe that the university isn't strong enough to withstand some poorly written griping from a measly graduate student? Good grief! He deserved a tongue-lashing from his committee for trying to do an end-run around them. He did not deserve to have his MA withheld.

3. We have absolutely no idea whether or not his rant is "the truth"--it is merely a list of unsubstantiated accusations. Some I'm willing to believe without further proof (university bureaucracies are nightmarish all over); others, I'm not. Some nasty academic experiences are all the fault of The Powers That Be; some, however, are not. I've had several friends who have been done in by irresponsible professors. I've also had several friends who have done themselves in. It works both ways.
posted by thomas j wise at 7:06 PM on July 14, 2000

"Most people who speak up"

This isn't true. This guy is an asshole. That's why he's being labeled an asshole. I don't see anything constructive here. He's not pulling the drapes back to show up the ugly truth. It's just juvenile name calling.

"People, in general, can't handle the truth."

What truth? Please tell me.

"Your strict adherence to self-serving draconian policy has made it a supreme displeasure to work in your vicinity. "

Well how helpful. That sure shines a bright light on the horror that is the University library! Boy, he sure has a good argument there!

"your arrogance and proclivity at being an ass can affect even those isolated from your presence"

Oh my! How have they kept these truths hidden from the public? I'm shocked at this revelation of truth.

"I'd hire this guy in a second"

For what? Customer abuse? Go for it. I dare you.
posted by y6y6y6 at 7:18 PM on July 14, 2000

"I'd hire this guy in a second"

do you have a business? If so, I think I might be right for you.
posted by chaz at 7:31 PM on July 14, 2000

One of the things that academia should teach you is how to insult your peers without appearing to do so. This guy hasn't quite grasped the way in which you can damn much more satisfyingly with faint praise.
posted by holgate at 8:10 PM on July 16, 2000

I understand the urge to do it, man...I can remember one night in particular, after working my ass off teaching my Graduate Advisor's intro poetry class, where I could have cheerfully stabbed him repeatedly in the face with a garden trowel. Instead, because this was before I learned I was sick, I just sat there and took it. So part of me wants to applaud him.

But as recent experience with my own temper and my big mouth (or in this case, my overly quick fingers) has taught me, just because you can say something doesn't mean you should. He's basically disavowed his entire graduate career; why, then, does he want to get his Masters at all? Because he paid for it? Well, then, why is he so eager to attack everyone, including the very field of study he's supposedly to be a Master of?

I don't agree with their decision, and I understand his anger (God, do I) but I feel he probably could have handled it better.
posted by Ezrael at 9:27 PM on July 16, 2000

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