On May 1 University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point sophomore and Student Government Association senator Roderick King was caught on video vandalizing a UWSP-approved cross display commemorating aborted babies. In 1 week the video, posted on YouTube, has been viewed 38,000 times.
Since then a sidebar has developed involving fellow SGA senator Claire Smith, who wrote a juvenile and poorly crafted email blaming Pointers for Life, the group displaying the crosses, posted here first, for King's behavior. She was responding to a respectful complaint that the SGA had not reprimanded King.
Pro-lifer Milissa fowarded UWSP official Steven Ward a link to my posting of Smith's email. Smith first responded last night by shedding just a tad more light on King's SGA staus.
Later Ward forwarded Milissa an email he had just sent Smith. It is good to see at least 1 UWSP administrator appreciates the ramifications of King's actions as well as the significance of an immature little snit making matters worse. I also appreciate Ward's transparency. Here's his latest email...
The fact that UWSP is receiving "international attention" is also encouraging. Even the Huffington Post covered the King story with no defense of his actions.
[Photo courtesy of the Wausau Daily Herald]
"International Attention" is just what this situation desperately needs. Let's shine the light of day on the actors and their actions, and see how they are viewed by off-campus observers. I predict that very, very few people will view the violent actors and their supporters with favor. If we cannot expect civility and rule of law on a college campus, where can we look for it?Posted by: Doyle at May 13, 2008 10:16 AM
Eyes usually seem to avert when pro-lifers are victimized, Doyle. And there usually seems to be an excuse. So this is good, although because the whole thing was caught on video makes it very hard to ignore or excuse.Posted by: Jill Stanek at May 13, 2008 10:22 AM
Thanks for the continued updatess Jill. The words are nice but I hope that besides the words these people also get suspended so that the student body on the UWSP campus can feel peaceful protesting is protected and safe to engage in.Posted by: truthseeker at May 13, 2008 11:53 AM
OMG. Seriously guys. They both did silly things. But they are COLLEGE STUDENTS. What they did was VANDALISM. Not assault. There was nothing actually VIOLENT. They tore up crosses. They didn't go up to the students who were setting them up and punch them in the face or anything. They're stupid college kids. We eff up sometimes. It doesn't make us 'terrorists'. Goodness gracious.Posted by: Erin at May 13, 2008 12:10 PM
This Claire chick needs to learn how to use spell check! Is she a college student with such poor writing skills? Watch, she becomes the next president of Planned Parenthood!Posted by: mario at May 13, 2008 12:37 PM
Stupid college kids are considered adults who should be held responsible for tearing up a display that had every right to be there.Posted by: Carla at May 13, 2008 12:38 PM
And Rodney was disciplined, and Claire most likely will be as well. Things like calling these opinionated college kids 'evil' or 'terrorists' smacks of hysteria. They got in trouble for it. It's not like they actually hurt anyone. Demanding their suspension or expulsion is just absurd.Posted by: Erin at May 13, 2008 12:41 PM
They're stupid college kids. We eff up sometimes. It doesn't make us 'terrorists'. Goodness gracious.
Student Government members are generally considered the "cream of the crop" among the student body. These "stupid college kids" as you call them definitely went too far. They aren't terrorists in my opinion but what an unfortunate embarrassment they are to the University of Wisconsin.
Posted by: Janet
at May 13, 2008 12:53 PM
I tried to vote in the poll, but there was no option for "the poll question misrepresents the law".
Tax-exempt organizations are legally prohibited from engaging in partisan politicking, not churches. The rules apply to religious and non-religious organizations alike. If a church (or any other organization) gives up its tax exemption, it can campaign for candidates as much as it wants.Posted by: Jen R at May 13, 2008 12:55 PM
Janet- that much I agree on. I just think it's way over the top to call them 'evil' or 'violent'. It doesn't help the PL case at all.Posted by: Erin at May 13, 2008 1:01 PM
I guess what I take away the most from this incident is the fact that the Prolifers had permission for the display and set it up. Crosses were taken down. They set it up again. Rod comes along and,well..you saw him!! Can you imagine, Erin how mad you would be if someone destroyed something you had worked long and hard on?? What did the Prolifers do? They filmed him. While Rod did his thing they kept silent and filmed him.
I admire that very much.
Erin, I have a 18 year old daughter who, though she may be in college, is far from "stupid." I've raised her to respect other opinions as well as freedom of speech. Why are you minimizing this man's actions?Posted by: m at May 13, 2008 1:35 PM
m, your daughter I'm sure is very intelligent. That doesn't mean she isn't stupid. Anyone with the amount of hormones going around as an 18 year old is going to do stupid things sometimes. I'm 20. I consider myself of relative intelligence. However, I still have a good bit of growing up to do, and so does your daughter. Say your daughter messes up big time. She wrecks the car because she was going too fast. She drives drunk. She stays out late a night before a big exam and bombs a class. Every college student and young adult is going to make their share of mistakes. It's inevitable. This guy made a pretty hefty one. But it doesn't mean he's a bad person.Posted by: Erin at May 13, 2008 1:55 PM
Usually when young adults: drive drunk; wreck a car for going too fast; bomb an exam; etc., they have remorse for what they have doneó-as they realize that it was wrong for them to act irresponsibly. Sadly, it seems that this is not the case here.
Hmm..I see both sides here..I am in agreement with Erin, Carla, and Charles. While I don't think this guy is a "terrorist" or "evil" I would have been pissed if he was wrecking something I spent a ton of time on and it was something I passionately believed in. He also doesn't seem to be very remorseful for his actions, which is wrong. If I wrecked somebody else's display they spent a lot of time on, I would feel very bad. It's like wrecking someone else's school project they spent hours on just because you don't agree with what they're saying.
But abortion is a heated issue, sometimes it can bring out the worst in people.
I personally think he should apologize for losing control like that and ruining other people's hard work. That's the least he could do to help the situation.Posted by: Elizabeth at May 13, 2008 3:25 PM
Agreed, Elizabeth. I don't believe he is evil or a terrorist either. He also is not remorseful at all.
Abortion is heated as well as emotional for so many of us, for so many different reasons.
Being from Wisconsin, I am sorry that Rod lost his perspective. UWSP SGA has a lot to answer for. I don't believe that this has been handled appropriately.Posted by: Carla at May 13, 2008 3:33 PM
I know you say he is "just" a college student, and being the mother of a few of those, I know what you mean when you say it...
Today two teenage girls bombed another girls house because she was dating one of their old boyfriends. She killed her 26 year old neighbor and seriously injuring the girl they were targeting. Three homes were destroyed.
My mother has a brother and he was always "the baby"...her mother worked so my mom was often responsible for him. He was a handful. No matter what he did, the response was always..."He's only 2. He's only 6. He's only 11. He sobered up for the last years of his life, but for most of it he was a raging alcoholic. We used to joke and say "he's only 47"..."he's only 59"...
Now we have women that want all the "freedom" to have sex whenever they want, but also want the freedom to kill their children.
My point is, at what age do we say enough is enough. He's only a college student...
That is old enough to understand that what he did was wrong, and he should take responsibility for his actions...you can't abort this one away...Posted by: mk at May 13, 2008 3:49 PM
Posted by: Cranky Catholic at May 13, 2008 3:53 PM
Mr. King has been out protesting golf courses for how they unfairly treat minorities.Posted by: Cranky Catholic at May 13, 2008 4:02 PM
Every college student and young adult is going to make their share of mistakes. It's inevitable. This guy made a pretty hefty one. But it doesn't mean he's a bad person.
He was stupid, made a dumb choice, showed bad judgement. But how does one define a "bad person" in today's morally relativistic world? Is there such a thing as a bad person anymore?Posted by: Janet at May 13, 2008 4:12 PM
Posted by: Cranky Catholic
at May 13, 2008 4:26 PM
Children make a mad dash for the remaining Easter eggs knowing full well that it's hard to compete with an angry Roderick King, upset that Easter Eggs will remind women of the numerous ovums they've lost over the years.
Lol, Oh man Cranky Catholic..I might just pee my pants from laughing too hard..Posted by: Elizabeth at May 13, 2008 4:29 PM
That golf course shot .... is that O.J. out there, "looking for the real killer"?Posted by: Doug at May 13, 2008 4:39 PM
Posted by: Cranky Catholic at May 13, 2008 5:12 PM
Why does the guy have two flags?Posted by: Janet at May 13, 2008 6:13 PM
And Rodney was disciplined, and Claire most likely will be as well. Things like calling these opinionated college kids 'evil' or 'terrorists' smacks of hysteria. They got in trouble for it. It's not like they actually hurt anyone. Demanding their suspension or expulsion is just absurd.
Posted by: Erin at May 13, 2008 12:41 PM
Erin, I never called him evil or a terrorist but suspension is nowhere near "absurd". It is a very suggestion and even short of criminal charges. Just how is that absurd? Maybe if you were on that campus and they had vandalized your display you might feel differently.Posted by: truthseeker at May 13, 2008 10:42 PM
Should have read
It is a very reasonable suggestion and even short of criminal charges.
Those pictures are hilarious rotflwtime
CC, I just watched the video of Rod again and now all I can do is laugh my ass off while I am watching it... and all because of your pictures.Posted by: truthseeker at May 14, 2008 3:44 AM
If a group King was in ever put up a display and opposing activists knocked it down, King would be holding a candlelight vigil to recognize all the "intolerance" in the world.Posted by: bmmg39 at May 14, 2008 10:01 AM
There's two big candidates. One says kill as many as you want. The other says you can only kill a few. And then there's a little guy who says you can't kill any. I shouldn't vote for the little guy because he doesn't stand a chance at winning?Posted by: Cranky Catholic at May 14, 2008 11:42 AM
On the related, but opposite side of things, here is a news story from May 13:
Police Looking For Man Who Vandalized Planned Parenthood
In addition to spray painted messages, the damage included:
"Small bullet holes or BB holes in the windows," police spokesman John Francis said. "As well as some type of copper jacketed fragments."
Antis, please tell me again about how nonviolent you are, and how the bombings and shootings are all in the past.Posted by: Ray at May 14, 2008 1:54 PM
Ray, OK, hopefully they'll find the person, we don't know if it was a PL'r for sure, maybe a PC'r wanting to cause trouble with PL'rs....whoever it was, there is a moron in every bunch, ya know....A BB gun or small bullet holes??...shall we wait for the investigation to be over, and then you can say "I told you so!", if you are right?Posted by: Janet at May 14, 2008 2:56 PM
Ray, who said that the bombongs and violence are all in the past? All we are saying is that the violence is not part of the mainstream ant-abortion platform. I don't think most people whi support a woman's right to an abortion would condone violence against other people either but bthere will always be violent pro-aborts. Like the one's who swerve there cars at peaceful pro-life protesters. It has happened to me personally twice times in my appoximately six years of pro-life protesting so I would imagine it is an almost daily occurence across America.Posted by: truthseeker at May 14, 2008 3:14 PM
Erin, I find it amazing that you would claim that violence against property is not "violence". What if some of the students who had worked hard to put up the display TWICE had confronted the out of control attacker, instead of just peacefully taking photos, and a riot ensued? Would that satisfy your "technicality"?
How far will you go to make excuses for this act?Posted by: Doyle Chadwick at May 14, 2008 4:09 PM
How is counter-protesting a violation of anyone's rights. In the marketplace of ideas so long as it does not hurt anyone, threaten anyone or cause alarm all is fair.
In most major cities protest fliers are posted and an opposing group will counterpost over those fliers if they disagree with the first opinion. Thats all this was. Not a news story, just a fact of life. Sometimes ads for concerts or bars are posted over protest signs. Big Deal.
If supposed christians want to communicate their message they have to be free and willing participants in the marketplace of ideas and everyone plays by the same rules.
PPnebO my best site http://horror.comPosted by: matiu at May 30, 2009 8:42 AM