My father-in-law, a retired college chancellor who lives in Iowa, viewed a story on the national news about the Hathway Avenue “mass casualty party.” His spot-on analysis was: “Either your city doesn’t have much law enforcement, or the Cal Poly administration can’t control its students.”
I don’t think there’s much point in criticizing law enforcement, when we can address the problem at its source. The president of Cal Poly needs to answer for this behavior. Why? First, because drunken partying near campus has been status quo for years. Second, because deterrence is not an unsolvable problem. If the university expelled every student who was present at the party, that would send a powerful message and change behavior fast.
No doubt the president will object, there are risks that “innocents” will be expelled and the administration will be subject to lawsuits. Well, we’ve witnessed the downside risk of current policy. Our city was embarrassed, the university was disgraced and people were hurt. Serious students will share the shame associated with having a degree from Cal Party when they graduate and look for jobs.
This disgrace was completely foreseeable. The university should find itself a president with clearer vision.