Oberlin: Bouncing The Rubble

On top of the $11 million in compensatory damages a few weeks back, an Ohio court has awarded Gibon’s Bakery $22 million – the statutory maxiumum – in punitive damages over the bakery’s defamation suite:

The counts were:
Defamation – Oberlin College and Raimondo were found liable
Infliction of intentional emotional distress – Oberlin College was found liable
Intentional interference of business relationships – Raimondo was found liable
Oberlin College President Carmen Twillie Ambar in a letter to the campus community on Friday expressed dissatisfaction with the jury’s decision, and signaled the college plans to appeal its findings.
“Let me be absolutely clear: This is not the final outcome. This is, in fact, just one step along the way of what may turn out to be a lengthy and complex legal process,” Twillie Ambar said. “We are disappointed in the jury’s decisions and the fragmentary and sometimes distorted public discussion of this case. But we respect the integrity of the jury, and we value our relationship with the town and region that are our home.”

Note to Social Justice warriors – outside your bubble, your curious illogic doesn’t fly. As Paul Mirengoff notes:

As I understand it, Oberlin argued at trial that it isn’t liable because its students, not the college, were to blame for harming Gibson’s. Then, at the damages phase, Oberlin argued that the college shouldn’t be slammed with a big damages assessment because that outcome would harm its students.
I suspect the jury hated Oberlin and its students and wanted to punish both.

And it turns out that outside that bubble, real-world rules apply..

…to the chagrin and, I suspect, the deep surprise of the SJWs.

It’s a wonderful day.

12 thoughts on “Oberlin: Bouncing The Rubble

  1. The problem in cases like these is the time it takes to work through the process. Unless an individual is found personally liable and has to pay out from their own funds, the administration, faculty, and students that have to deal with any financial ramifications probably won’t be the ones that did the actual damage.

  2. Normally the insurance carriers would get stuck with the tab for a dogs breakfast like this but apparently Oberlin’s insurers have informed the administration that this lawsuit isn’t covered so Oberlin will have to use their endowment funds (approximately $900 million) when they finally get around to paying in 2 or 5 years. They will do their best to make it a structured payout, hopefully the judge will quash that notion.

    No student or faculty member will be “harmed” by this, tuition will pop up from $55k to well over $60k a year and a couple administrators will be encouraged to explore other available opportunities. There’s been no pushback from the alumni so there is no reason to change.

  3. The realistic threat of punishment would be enough to turn the tide. The SJW’s are not Johnny Cash. They will fold the second that their future as good bourgeois (management class) is threatened. They are snow flakes.

  4. To determine whether Oberlin will learn from this or not, you must think like an entitled liberal.

    Since the endowment fund comes from alumni and tuition comes from parents, it is all “other people’s money”.

    Social justice is ALWAYS achieved at the expense of “other people’s money”.

    In other words, if you are an alumni of Oberlin or a parent of a child who goes there, expect a weepy “we are the VICTIMS of Trumpian fascism” email, begging for funds – and who wants to bet that the email campaign will yield less than $33 million?

  5. I can’t endorse this decision enough, and I hope it becomes a trend.

  6. So, I don’t know what was so offensive in Mac’s (first) comment that it had to stifled, but after reading it, it got me to thinking. I never hear – or don’t remember – how endowment funds are actually used. I mean, sweet deal, nobody has to learn anything; worst case, the judgement barely makes a dent in that endowment. But otherwise? Buildings? Salaries? Bail?

  7. Swiftee Pinochet on June 18, 2019 at 8:16 am said:
    I can’t endorse this decision enough, and I hope it becomes a trend.

    There are a hell of a lot of leftist liberal arts schools that lack the financial resources of Oberlin. An 8-figure judgement against almost any of them would probably cause them to close their doors. Carleton and Mac could probably take the hit, but it would put Gustavus and even St. Olaf in serious trouble. I can think of a bunch of other liberal arts schools that would be dead for sure (Beloit, Knox, Ripon, Cornell College, any random Concordia). Safe bet — in loco parentis may start making a comeback, and soon.

  8. I don’t know that private schools are going to go all in loco parentis, but it is possible that administrators will say “if you excuse students from class or tests to riot, that will be considered in your tenure review, because it exposes the college to lawsuits.” In my mind, that might be sufficient.

  9. The median household income of an Oberlin student is $173,000.
    The median family income in Oberlin, Ohio, is $53,000.
    Don’t let them fool you into believing that this is a “gown versus town” conflict. This is a social class conflict.

  10. MP, doesn’t the term “Townies” implicitly refer to class animosity?

  11. Mr. D., if just one of those robot factories were put down, just one, we’d see a weather change on US college campuses the likes of which we haven’t seen since the 60’s.

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