By: Cody Boteler, Editor-in-Chief
In the hours and days following a faculty-and-student group-led, anti-Trump “walkout,” parents, alumni and other people associated with Towson University sent emails expressing their dissatisfaction with Towson University to TU officials, including the president and the provost.
“I am so embarrassed to be an alumni of Towson,” a man identified as Rob Stonesifer wrote in an email to President Kim Schatzel. “This is what happens when we raise a generation of CHILDREN, who were rewarded for everything and never taught how to Lose.”
The emails, obtained by The Towerlight through the Maryland Public Information Act, included complaints sent to local legislators, alumni saying they would no longer contribute financially to Towson and parents and students who expressed safety concerns.
A man identified as Joe DeRose, who said he was an graduate from 1975, said he had “plans to increase [financial contributions] in the near future,” but was “appalled” by the protest. He closed his email with an order to Towson University.
“Take me off the mailing list and do not ever call me again,” his email said.
Another email, apparently from a student (some information, like the identities of students and email addresses, was redacted), said the sender was “infuriated” by some emails she received from the University. One was from John McTague, an assistant political science professor, and another from Schatzel. McTague forwarded his class information from The Social Justice Collective (a faculty group at TU) about the walkout. Schatzel’s email was about a “hate/bias” incident that some speculated to be connected to the election. Towson University officials would soon determine that the incident did not actually occur in connection to the presidential election.
In her email, the student said she has “been harassed: for wearing “an American flag bow in my hair,” and “given the finger” because of political bumper sticker. She mentioned tweets from students “threatening to run Trump supporters over with their cars.” The sender of the email also expressed fear for her own safety and the safety of others at weekly College Republican meetings.
“These incidents were reported, but never received any attention from the administration or let alone a mass email,” she wrote.
Towerlight investigation found two tweets, from one user, that mentioned someone harming Towson Trump supporters with their car. Towson police records from November do include one instance of “telephone misuse,” but does not specify what the harassment was.
One emailer, identified as Adeline Corry, said her daughter, a student at TU, “feels the hate from the left.”
“College students, sadly, are treated as snowflakes,” Corry added in another email. “They think they can get whatever they want and hide in safe zones when things go wrong.”
One email, forwarded to Towson University officials from State Delegate Richard Impallaria, accuses TU faculty of breaking a Maryland law that forbids state employees from engaging in political activity “while on the job during working hours.”
While not able to speak to The Towerlight immediately for this story, Towson University General Counsel Traevena Byrd called the law a “loaded sentence as it relates to an academic setting,” at the last “Be Heard” meeting of the semester.
On an FAQ page created after the protest, Towson University officials said that the rally was scheduled during “the lunch hour.”
You can read all of the emails we received here.