Last weekend marked an outrageous and ignoble milestone of disillusionment for more than a hundred Yale students: New Haven police rudely broke up their party as if they were regular townies. Needless to say, academe is aflame.
The scene: "In the upscale nightclub Elevate, not far from campus, more than 100 students in semiformal attire were on the dance floor as Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" pulsed over the sound system." All of a sudden, the lights come on! The music stops! (Journey!) A dozen cops rush in, some with assault rifles! They make the kids sit quietly on the floor and surrender their IDs (grainy video here)! They cuss at them! One sophomore is tasered—witnesses say for no reason! Four students are arrested! The whole party is ruined! (During Journey!)
Clearly, someone did not get the message that these were America's best and brightest. Mental health counselors were deployed to the victims. Students delivered a formal protest. Yale's dean met with the mayor, who was moved to say that the SWAT team guys were "excessive and inappropriate." "We reserve those guys for kicking down the doors of New Haven parties not thrown by Yale students," he added, in our imagination. One Yale junior described his terror:
"He was cursing wildly, and I was completely tongue-tied," said Mr. Schenkel, who still had a welt on his chin on Tuesday. "I made sure to throw in ‘sirs' and was very deferential, but maybe he thought I was being facetious. He never gave his title or the nature of the mission or what I should do to cooperate."
Indeed. Sounds like the cops were assholes. They should not have done that. The only funny thing about this story is the official backtracking. And the fact that it made the fucking New York Times. Yale student party disruptions: national news. This other shit in New Haven: old news.