Tuesday, April 15, 2014

* Pushing University Presidents who hold Yale Ph.D's

Yale Ph.D in Philosophy
President of Kent State University,
Glenn A. Olds

Yale Ph. D in Literature
 President of Yale University,
A. Bartlett Giamatti

Yale Drama School graduate,
 Miss Isabel Wilder,
 with her brother,
Thornton Wilder

LINK to Yale Daily News article on Yale President, Peter Salovey, in which the following post appears.

"Moral leadership".

I worked with two university presidents as a student activist, both Yale Ph.D's.

They both exerted "moral leadership" but only after they were pushed.

Glenn A
.Olds ( Ph.D, Philosophy) , was successor to the President of Kent State University who had been just sitting down to a martini lunch at the local Brown Derby May 4, 1970 when four of his students were murdered by guns wielded by Ohio National Guardsmen who had taken over the campus after two days of demonstrations by students, May 2nd.

A full year and three months later Nixon's Attorney General announced there was "insufficient evidence" to convene a federal grand jury investigation of the murders.

Along with the President of the Kent State Republican Club I mounted a petition to Nixon to reverse Mitchell, and asked Kent President Olds to sign it. (Fat chance---he had been a Nixon appointee to the U.N.)

He never signed it but unwittingly he did us one better.

 He said he would personally take the petition and us to the White House to present it, BUT ONLY if we got a majority of the students at the University to sign it. I'm sure he doubted this would be achieved, but it made him look like a flexible university president in the press.)

In less than ten days, we got 10,380 signatures of the 19,000 student body, thousands of whom were commuters.

Olds took us to the White House in the University piper-cub (thank God he had a pilot).

Of course, there was a snow-ball's chance in hell that Nixon would over-rule his Attorney General, and after dragging his feet for a year, Nixon said "no." ironically, after two more Attorney's General had come and gone due to Watergate, the Acting Attorney General--- for a grand total of three whole days (Robert Bork, of all people) allowed a Federal Grand Jury investigation of the Kent State murders to be convened.

A. Bartlett Giamatti (Ph.D, Literature) was president of Yale in the early 1980's before AIDS had a known cause (HIV hadn't been discovered).

When I confronted him with evidence that a prostitute whose infant had been born with AIDS and was so ill he had never left the ICU at Yale-New Haven, and that the prostitute was still turning tricks on Howe Street and booting up heroin with friends using dirty needles,
he refused to meet with me to discuss the situation


After I announced that "60 Minutes" would be in town to do a piece on this---the first known American example of heterosexual transmission of what had been erroneously though to be a "gay disease" --- Giamatti could have continued to ignore me, and the situation.
Instead he provided me access to University legal counsel (later a federal judge) Jose Cabranes, who advised me through the "60 Minutes" piece on how not to fall into legal booby-traps when interviewed by "60 Minutes."

President Giamatti later agreed to over-rule his own Health Service whose director had refused my plea that they distribute the blunt-language pamphlet "Sex and AIDS" created by myself and a Yale Biology professor, and paid for by Miss Isabel Wilder, the octogenarian sister of the late author Thornton Wilder and herself a graduate of Yale Drama School.

The pamphlet was distributed to every Yale student but at our expense (Moral leadership, yes---but not a penny more!)

Hence, my lesson learned: university presidents with Yale Ph.D's exert moral leadership in moments of crisis only when cornered publicly or pushed.

Paul D. Keane

M. Div. '80
M.A., M.Ed.


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