The pro-Trump chalk messages keep occurring on campuses across the country because students keep flipping out with overreactions. And yet many of them can’t seem to realize that. USA Today College claims that “the highly controversial” “‘Chalking’ officially a problem as pro-Trump messages set off new storms.”
Unlike other schools, the identity of the pro-Trump chalker at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga is known. Hailey Puckett was just elected to be a member of the student government’s Empower UTC, but has been asked to resign for writing “Trump 2016.”
As noted on their Twitter account, Empower UTC won’t even represent those who may support Trump or even write such messages, because they “support the oppression of others.”
— EMPOWER UTC (@EMPOWER_UTC) April 6, 2016
Puckett told Megyn Kelly during her Friday night appearance on The Kelly File that it only took 26 minutes for people to criticize her over Twitter, and she took her post down.
Kelly and Puckett both wondered why students who don’t support Trump can have their view, but those like Puckett can’t. Puckett noted “I don’t really question their opinions, I don’t feel like they should have to question mine.” On her pro-wall messages, Puckett also expressed “it’s just kinda hard to say that I’m wrong and then also say you want unity…”
Puckett assured Kelly she will not resign.
Fortunately, the UTC administration had a different reaction than students. A statement in part noted:
Diversity—including diversity of thought—is a core value of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. This idea was put to the test when a question of free speech developed between several groups of students.
The heated dialogue that resulted was unfortunate but serves as a teachable moment for our students and the incoming student government leadership. The UTC administration has not played a role in this debate. No student has been disciplined or chastised by the administration for his/her personal political beliefs.
The university’s reaction is refreshing. It’s hard not to regard other students asking her to resign as having “been disciplined or chastised” though.
Puckett did get some positive attention out of the pro-chalk message, however. Donald Trump himself retweeted out a message of support.
Her segment with Megyn Kelly can be watched below.