Kyle Kashuv Harvard University conservative lesson white men

Opinion: Harvard University’s Decision to Rescind Kyle Kashuv’s Admission is a Lesson for ‘Conservative’ White Men

This past March, Kyle Kashuv was admitted into Harvard University. The conservative teen, born to Israeli-immigrant parents, is also one of the 2018 Parkland-shooting survivors.

Kashuv spent much of his senior year as an advocate for gun rights and school safety. It’s important to mention that he is a former leader at Turning Point USA, a right-wing organization that uses its platform to spread racist ideas under the guise of conservatism and according to the website, “the principles of fiscal responsibility, free markets, and limited government.”

What should have been a celebratory moment has been marred by Kyle Kashuv’s past acts. After stepping down from his position at Turning Point USA, a series of racist and inflammatory messages were made public exposing Kashuv as a bigot in late May of this year.

Related Story: Harvard’s First Black Faculty Deans Removed Over Professor’s Decision to Represent Harvey Weinstein in Sexual Assault Cases

One screenshot allegedly showed Kashuv writing the n-word over 10 times in a study guide shared on Google Docs. The message read:

“like im really good at typing n—er ok like practice uhhhhhh makes perfect son??!!”

Another part of the document, Kashuv allegedly wrote the same slur repeatedly, in capital letters. He also reportedly referred to Black student-athletes as “n—er jocks.”

He blamed the hurtful words on his youth.

Public outrage followed, and Harvard University was made aware of the appalling messages. The university allowed Kyle Kashuv to explain himself, and on May 22nd, he posted a non-apology regarding the matter. During that time, he also reached out to Harvard University administrators in the Diversity department to “apologize” for his actions.

Harvard University rescinded its offer of admission in lieu of the shocking messages on June 3rd.

“After careful consideration, Harvard reserves the right to withdraw an offer of admission under various conditions. Including ‘if you engage or have engaged in behavior that brings into question your honesty, maturity, or moral character,’ per the school’s admissions policy. The Committee voted to rescind your admission.”

Kyle Kashuv took to Twitter to express his disappointment.

Thirteen bullet points of whitesplaining and pleading his case happened on the social media site. The conservative teen appeared to give some bogus apology along with whining about how he turned down previous offers to accept Harvard University’s prestigious admission offer.

“We were 16-year-olds making idiotic comments, using callous and inflammatory language in an effort to be as extreme and shocking as possible.”

There were mixed emotions regarding the messages. But Kashuv’s response speaks to a more pressing concern.

This incident isn’t the first time Harvard University has taken a seemingly harsh stance when it comes to tolerating racism or racist behavior. In 2017, the school rescinded admission offers from 10 students who used racist and inflammatory language on Facebook.

While it can’t be determined if Harvard University’s stance is based on leadership (the university has at least three Black women on its board) or if the school is trying to create a reputation of being progressive, it is safe to say the Ivy-league school is intentionally trying to create a safe space for all different viewpoints and backgrounds. In short, an open environment where growth can take place.

Being conservative isn’t the problem. Anyone can lean right on any issue at any given time. The real purpose of opposition is to create an understanding between two different sides.

Kashuv isn’t trying to hear that, though. See cognitive dissonance. It is evident Kashuv felt entitled to the coveted admission spot. Merely typing the obligatory apology with a fake promise to do better should have allowed him to take his rightful place on campus in the upcoming school year. And if that wasn’t enough, the letter to the diversity department should have sealed the deal for him.

It would be dishonest to say that only conservative white men say offensive things. What I will say is that he should have taken his lumps with the very same vigor with which he wrote those words if he had indeed grown as a person. You mess up, own it, get it straight, pay the piper, and do better next time- if there’s a next time.

Kyle Kashuv’s auto-pilot response is sickening but not unusual. It’s not to say that people can’t grow or change, but the key takeaway here is honesty and intent. Nothing about his “growth” says that he learned to embrace other people. There are no records of his work with marginalized groups. There is; however, a photo and tweets of him admiring our racist, conservative commander-in-chief. He displayed those images like badges of honor.

Harvard University’s decision to rescind his admission is facilitating the advancement of forward-thinking young people who will be productive to the whole — no matter the side of the middle of which they fall.





Latest News

What Friends Tell Friends: Choose Kaiser Permanente

Originally published on Integrated, nonprofit health plan tops NICE Satmetrix customer experience benchmark study for 10th straight year. For the 10th year in a row, more people would recommend Kaiser Permanente to a friend or colleague than any other health plan in the nation, according to the recently released…

Cesar Conde

NBCUniversal Sets Ambitious 50% Diversity Goal for Women, People of Color

Cesar Conde, chairman at NBCUniversal News Group, announced a groundbreaking goal to have a 50% diverse workforce at NBCUniversal, according to Deadline. Conde, the first Latino in this role, outlined his plans in an internal video for employees on Wednesday. The ultimate goal is for NBCUniversal, No. 7 on DiversityInc’s 2020…

Mastercard Expands to the U.S. & Canada, Delivering a Search Tool That Identifies What Stores Near You Are Open for Business

Originally published on Search solution complements new Digital Acceleration for Small Business global initiative which helps small businesses advance digitally and drive online commerce As businesses seek to draw customers back both in store and online, Mastercard is introducing new tools to support them. Today, Mastercard announced the geographic…

TIAA Launches Programs to Raise Awareness of Racial Injustice and Support Communities in Need through the “Be The Change” Initiative

On June 30, TIAA announced new virtual programs designed to raise awareness of racial injustice and support communities in need as a part of the company’s recently launched “Be the Change” initiative. One is TIAA’s “Race Against Racism,” an effort in support of The Innocence Project which included more than…

Stop TB Partnership and Johnson & Johnson, with support from USAID and The Global Fund, Announce Price Reduction for SIRTURO® (bedaquiline) for Treatment of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

Originally published on Joint efforts aim to accelerate scale-up of WHO-recommended all-oral treatment regimens – a transition urgently needed to help protect the health of people with drug resistant-tuberculosis who are particularly vulnerable during COVID-19 pandemic In 2020, the initiative aims to reach at least 125,000 patients and could…

Toyota, Alabama A&M and Huntsville Hospital Collaborate to Make COVID-19 Testing Easier

Originally published on $100,000 grant provides free service to the community Alabama A & M University (AAMU), Huntsville Hospital and Toyota are developing a mobile health clinic initiative to provide free COVID-19 testing to underserved communities in Madison County. Launching later this year, the mobile medical clinic program has…

Sanofi and Regeneron Provide Update on Kevzara® (sarilumab) Phase 3 U.S. Trial in COVID-19 Patients

Originally published on Sanofi and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: REGN) today announced that the U.S. Phase 3 trial of Kevzara® (sarilumab) 400 mg in COVID-19 patients requiring mechanical ventilation did not meet its primary and key secondary endpoints when Kevzara was added to best supportive care compared to best supportive care alone (placebo)….