Well, would you look at that — a straight white man has fallen subject to the unthinkable injustice of being held accountable for his actions.
It’s a sad day in America.
And true to form, he’s stepping up to claim his victimhood.
Bronson Harmon is an 18-year-old wrestler who landed an impressive scholarship to attend California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly).
Harmon decided to counterprotest (with his dad, obviously) at a recent demonstration against the separation of migrant children from their parents at the Mexican border. And sure, he’s entitled to hold and decry his beliefs, however unsavory they may be.
Related: Frat boys caught on tape engaging in homophobic and racist behavior claim they’re the real victims
But it wasn’t Harmon’s presence at the rally or his pro-Trump sign that caused him to lose his coveted scholarship — he was recorded at the protest shouting “fuck off, fa**ot!”
“I heard a group of men shouting and trying to scare us by saying #sendthemback and even yelled at someone ‘n****r’,” recounted Abdul Lansing, who filmed and posted the video.
Lansing added: “I was so choked so I automatically pulled out my phone to record and see who was being so disrespectful.”
The clip quickly made the rounds on social media, garnering tens of thousands of views. Eventually, Harmon’s new Cal Poly wrestling coach, Jon Sioredas, saw it. That was the end of his scholarship.
Related: Woman caught on tape launching homophobic attack against two soldiers, carted off to jail sobbing
Harmon, for his part, has taken some degree of responsibility for his behavior, while still clinging to the idea that he’s been treated unfairly. Where could he have picked that up?
“Saying what I said is definitely not the right thing,” he said. “I am supposed to be there to help the community and be the best person I can be and represent the college the best way I can.”
He should have stopped there, but he didn’t, adding:
“I still feel like my freedom of speech was taken away, and I don’t think my scholarship should have been revoked over something like that.”
You have total freedom of speech in America, but you’re now learning the consequences of exercising that freedom. But it’s pretty clear that you have learned not a damn thing
His freedom of speech was not taken away. His scholarship WAS. An 18 year old going to Cal Poly should be able recognize something that subtle.
You don’t represent your institution by screaming the F-bomb and fa**ot. It’s so suprprising now that when dicks get exposed they are getting their due.
The anti-gay f-word or the racist n-word, or did you miss that part of the story?
When you are not at your job, your school, your affiliated organizations, clubs,….whatever……you do not represent any of those things and what you say or do has nothing to do with any of those institutions. You have the right to be a jackass in your private life. Your actions when you are in uniform or on the clock is when your words and actions are someone else’s business.
The SJW morons are cultivating a society in which a person doesn’t get to decide the intentions of their own actions or words…….other people….complete strangers….get to proclaim what your words meant and what you actions were intended to represent.
Based on that….everyone said something and did something today that makes them guilty of committing some SJWed infraction and we should all be fired from our jobs……including you.
Are you saying that the school has no right to react to his racism and bigotry by withdrawing their support of the scholarship given?
@ShowMeGuy – If you get caught being a jackass on camera in public, then it isn’t being a jackass in private. Everything politically controversial gets caught on camera and uploaded to the internet nowadays. Why should any business or institution have to deal with the possible internal and external fallout of their employee’s, member’s, student’s not-so-private jackassery?
The only reason why Harmon is showing any regret for his actions is because he was called out on them. He doesn’t deserve a scholarship.
Cal Poly will be a better place without him there. He deserved to loose the chance to go to Cal Poly!
Wow, the anti-LGBT account dusted off THIS screename?! They are burning through them fast.
No shock though that these same accounts will ALWAYS defend attacks against LGTB’s
Guess what, when you aren’t at a job or at school you can still be held responsible. Just ask any BYU student kicked out for being gay because some ex outted them to the school even though nothing they did was in public.
How desperate are you to try to make your claim? By your logic, a grammar school wouldn’t be able to fire somebody convicted of child molesting if it didn’t happen during work hours.
Are YOU really the best the anti-LGBT bigot accounts have?!
Free speech baby! Not freedom from consequences. I agree the college shouldn’t have taken his scholarship. Instead, he should have been required to do some type of community fellowship or out reach program to keep it. The sad reality is, people like Mr. Harmon will continue to be a stain on the values and traditions we uphold in this country.
“The sad reality is, people like Mr. Harmon will continue to be a stain on the values and traditions we uphold in this country.” No. The sad reality is that we live in a country where community service is considered a punishment.
How very Caucasian of you. They have pulled scholarships for less. Athletes receive many incentives and bonuses over non athlete students. All that costs a premium to the school. You want to be a part of that you fall in line in order to reap the benefits. So being part of a crowd yelling racist slurs and getting caught yelling homophobic slurs puts a person out on the curve. I am sure he can still get some scholarships at a Div 3 school that needs a good scrapper.
Freedom of Speech prevents government restrictions on speech. Seems he needs to focus more on his education.
He looks so old for an 18 year old.
Right!? He, Sarah Huckabee and Ted Cruz should form a club called ‘the wingnuts who look 20 years older than they really are and are aging like shit’. I just about did a spit-take when I found out Ted Cruz was born in 1970. He looks like he’s close to 65 years old. Same with Sarah Huckabee who looks like total shit, and usually super fat bitches look younger – she is like 30-something and looks to be in her mid-50’s.
Scholarships are a privilege…not a right. The difference?
You still have the right to say most anything you like…But Cal Poly has the privilege to not pay you to go to their school.
See the difference?
I am gravely uncomfortable with a public university sanctioning a student for their viewpoint. While I disagree strongly with Mr. Harmon, I more strongly defend his right to speak his beliefs unfettered by government penalty. This was not a school-related event, nor did Harmon promote his attachment to the school.
California, where Cal Poly is located, has a very strong free speech clause in its constitution, far stronger than the US one. Harmon should talk to a good lawyer.
For his right to free speech. yes, he shouldn’t lose his scholarship. For HATE speech, Yes he should lose his scholarship! Don’t forget that his speech and behaviour is a reflection on the university and its alum!
Point well taken. Free speech protects you from the government’s infringement on expression. And, you can’t yell “Fire!” in a crowded theater. The question becomes, is yelling “fck you [email protected]@@@t” like yelling fire. [email protected] are likely a protected class in CA, and what the gentlemen did is likely illegal. If so, I think the university is on solid ground.
Sanctioning? He wasn’t sanctioned, because last I checked, getting your scholarship taken away does not mean you cannot go that college, it just means that said college isn’t paying for it, which they had every right to do. And “F*ck off, F*ggot” is not a “viewpoint.” “Gay men shouldn’t be allowed to marry” is a viewpoint.
And nobody at the school stopped him from saying what he said, and he was not arrested for it.
There is no “Right to Scholarships” in the Constitution, and the discussion of Freedom of Speech not meaning Freedom from consequences has been had multiple times. For you to pretend you are not aware of it isn’t just disingenuous, it makes me doubt your assertion that you don’t agree with the wrestler. You seem WAY to invested in a defense that has never been accepted by courts.
I have to reply to some of the comments here;
I want to summarize the discussion because we seem to be repeating things.
Hate speech is not protected speech.
It is. We have the right to use hate speech in a public forum. See: Brandenburg v. Ohio, 395 U.S. 444 (1969) for when the state can punish speech. Even more to the point is Snyder v. Phelps, 562 U.S. 443 (2011), where the Westboro Baptist Church picketed the memorial service of a US soldier killed in action using the exact same slur Harmon used and the Court held the Church had a right to protest and use its provocative language.
There was a contract.
Yes, but contracts need to be clear and legal, among other things. The standard of “not embarrass” is simply too vague to be reasonably enforceable. Moreover, the Cal. Ed. Code. Section 66301 specifically forbids punishing students for free speech off campus. One could argue the famous “Bong Hits for Jesus” case might apply (Morse v. Frederick, 551 U.S. 393 (2007)), but that was at a school-sponsored event and applied to high school students, who have more restricted first amendment rights than do adult college students.
It wasn’t the speech, but an altercation.
For the school to punish a student for an alleged altercation, there would need to be a hearing protecting the students due process rights. A scholarship cannot be rescinded due to an unsubstantiated accusation. That didn’t happen.
He represents the school
No, he doesn’t. He was not at a school sponsored event. He was not wearing a school uniform or clothing. He did not identify himself as a student at Cal Poly. There isn’t anything in the video suggesting he is associated with Cal Poly, nor is he employed as a spokesperson for them. He is a private person attending a political rally.
He is free to speak, but not be free of the consequences.
Absolutely, he should be shunned, refused rush by the fraternities, ignored by the cheerleaders. However, he cannot be punished by the school for his speech. Punishment by the school is a consequence he should not face. Taking away the scholarship is a punishment. The school is a state school and the government cannot punish speech or the free speech rights mean nothing. If one is free to speak one’s mind and then the government is free to lock you up or otherwise punish you for speaking, that isn’t free speech. The government can’t sanction his speech; there isn’t any “right” sanction. One person below sites the “Roseanne Situation.” The government didn’t take any action against her as it did here against Mr. Harmon.
The school is a private school.
Nope. Cal Poly is owned and operated by the State of California through the California State University system. It is has much a state agency as is the CHP or, my new favorite, the Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC).
I am a rightwing Republican racist homophobe, Trump loving, et cetera.
Nope. I am a sixty-year old CIS-gender gay male. I am an socialist, liberal Democrat, and gay rights activist. I have been fired for being gay, beaten up for it, raped twice by white supremacists, and a staunch liberal. Because I am a liberal, I stand with Patrick Henry who was alleged to have said, “I disapprove of what you say, but will fight to the death for your right to say it.” (It is also attributed to Voltaire) I believe free speech is the very basis of democratic freedom. This very forum would not even be here if the Trump administration had its way, but the First Amendment protects it. Defending speech one likes is easy. I don’t approve of what Harmon said. I don’t even like the counter protest he supported (I am with Families Belong Together). While I am gay male enough to think he is a cute young thing, I also think he is an ignorant, ill-educated yahoo. I don’t defend him because I like what he said, but because he has the right to say it. He should get his scholarship back, not because what he said is wonderful, but because the school punishing him for saying it is wrong. I care much, much more about government silencing free speech than what some 18-year old wrestler from Modesto says.
Fire in a Crowded Movie Theater
One is actually allowed to yell “fire!” in a crowded movie theater, as long as there is a fire. The actual quote from Schenck v. United States, 249 U.S. 47 (1919) is against “falsely yelling ‘fire!’ in a crowded theater.” Schenck has been superseded by Brandenburg cited above.
Yes, gays are a protected class and had Harmon refused to transport gays in his Uber car or not served them in a restaurant, there’d be an issue. However, we are not protect from insults. Bigots still have free speech and can say nasty things about us. Of course, we can say nasty things back and we’re better at insults than some silly 18-year old kid from Modesto.
What is at stake here is free speech. Our movement was able to thrive because we could say impolite things in public. The love that dare not speak its name became the love that would NOT shut up. Defending someone who says something you like is easy, but we need to defend the unpopular speech. The free speech right violations today will become our muzzle in the future.
I agree with lakeviewer. His right to free speech should not have an effect on his scholarship, but his use of HATE speech should!
The linked article says that all offers of financial aid signed by student athletes specifically says that their aid can be revoked if they embarrass the school.
Being recorded in public while spewing hate speech would be quite the embarrassment for the school since he would have a higher profile than most students because he is an athlete.
Mac, this would hold true, if it weren’t addressed in 5 Cal. Code Regs. § 41301. Specifically the part that reads, “Sanctions for the conduct listed above can be imposed on applicants, enrolled students,
students between academic terms, graduates awaiting degrees, and students who
withdraw from school while a disciplinary matter is pending. Conduct that threatens the
safety or security of the campus community, or substantially disrupts the functions or
operation of the University is within the jurisdiction of this Article regardless of whether it
occurs on or off campus. Nothing in this Code may conflict with Education Code Section
66301 that prohibits disciplinary action against students based on behavior protected by
the First Amendment.”
So, yeah, advise him to lawyer up and waste his time and money. He got what he deserved, and the school was well within their rights to rescind his athletic scholarship.
Mikeyisatarheel, did you read the citation you posted, “Nothing in this Code may conflict with Education Code Section 66301 that prohibits disciplinary action against students based on behavior protected by the First Amendment.” His speech was protected by the First Amendment, thus, excepted from the code section you cite.”
Lakeviewer, hate speech is free speech. The Westboro case I cited makes that very clear.
KenDC, if there is a fire, one may, in fact, yell, “fire” in a crowded movie theater. The quote from Schenck v. United States, 249 U.S. 47 (1919), prohibits FALSELY yelling fire.
Paco, did you bother to even read my analysis on the validity of the contract?
From the article, I gathered that all they did was take away his scholarship, which I feel is the right sanction here. They did not say he couldn’t attend. Bottom line, learn to be respectful. You have a long life ahead of you. Take a moment and try to hide you homophobia for awhile until you complete more education which hopefully will teach you diversity and reapect.
There shouldn’t be ANY governmental sanction for protect First Amendment speech. The school is a governmental entity and should not take the scholarship away.
I he didn’t learn basic decency by elementary school, he probably won’t be fixed now. It doesn’t take an advanced education to avoid using the n-word.
Aod his should suffer the consequences for calling Ivanka Trump a “feckless c*nt”. Oops, that was Samantha Bee. #awkward
We have the contest:
The random generalized hateful remark bellowed by a testosterone driven, riled up counter-protester to those protesting the most despicable policy enforcement in this country since the japanese internment camps. I see a plain demonstration in one completely thoughtless three word bellow from this cracker that he cares about absolutely no one but his ilk. Far, far beyond “awkward”.
The tasteless, perhaps could have been more PC phrased, but poignant remark from Bee regarding the tone-deafness of Ivanka’s child embracing Tweet at the same time this horrific child snatching policy was enacted, demonstrating the depth of unconditional caring on her part, even for those unlike her and her situation.
Yes, Sam, watch your words, especially at a time when RW’ers are looking for every possible angle.
Bronson, for doubling down on hateful epithets at a hateful “rally” lacking any redemptive quality whatsoever then calling yourself a victim?… I don’t want to support anyone like this on campus… bye, bye scholarship.
Another of the stable of anti-LGBT accounts always coming on to defend any bigotry.
He’s clearly a jerk who deserved to get his scholarship taken away and I get that feels good from a revenge standpoint.
However, by damaging his ability to get an education who are we really serving? An effect of higher ed is often a much better understanding of the human condition which this kid can certainly benefit from. College might be his first time he can be away from his toxic father who undoubtedly passed his bigotry on. Of course, he may not change at all after college but I’ve personally seen many who have.
And why would I put his education over the student who would be replacing him who HASN’T done anything wrong? Nobody is taking away his ability to get an education…he just won’t get it for free now.
Well it doesn’t matter that he’s a Trump lover as there are good and bad people in every group that exists. What does matter is that he’s 18 an anti-gay when most younger generations are in support. It’s unfortunate as he’s also a little hottie. Probably had one too many guys coming onto him and he snapped.
Bronson Harmon’s father has taken full responsibility for taking his son to the protest, and for teaching him to be hateful. He admitted if it wasn’t for him, his son wouldn’t have lost the scholarship.
Like that’s every going to happen. I bet they both have regrets though. Wah Wahhhhhhh.
This is how all these Trump lovers react. I can say or do whatever I want, and if there are repercussions then I’m a victim!
There can be financial consequences to openly expressing your bigotry. This guy summed it up perfectly. https://youtu.be/wPnce_whiXo
No, he summed up private sanctions against bigotry. This is a governmental sanction. The government did nothing to punish Roseanne, the government is punishing Harmon.
PLAYS WELL WITH OTHERS
I wrestled in HS cause it was the only way could get my hands on other boys ;-p
To call someone “faggot” out of blue with no context to situation shows a bit of self identification and loathing…
The government has given me a death sentence.
I think another telling thing here is…..
Do you notice how the bigotry and racism aren’t an offshoot of them being Trump supporters. It’s an embedded part of it. There is no separation.
A new college student should have a better grasp on the Bill of Rights. This guy isn’t just racist. He’s too stupid for college.
I’m amused by the irony of a homophobe being a college wrestler. This particular sport is inherently homoerotic and has, in fact, been fetishized. The intimacy involved, faces wallowing in groins, hands and fingers in the dales of bubble bottoms, don’t exactly celebrate heterosexuality.
Poor white grown man, blaming everyone for him being stupid.
You do have the right to say what ever you want at anytime, but not on someone else’s dime.
What you would have learned at university is that every action has an equal reaction.
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