The curious case of “hate speech” at Buena Vista University

There’s something curious going on at Buena Vista University in Iowa. I was reading an article from Rob Shimshock at the Daily Caller about how “hate speech is a hate crime” and may be punishable by law. That’s a matter which has already been cleared up by the Supreme Court on multiple occasions, so seeing the University get that detail wrong is interesting in and of itself. But there’s something more to this story which had my ears perking up.

The case in question actually deals with an incident of racist and defamatory graffiti being sprayed on the dorm room doors of several students. That’s actually different from simple “speech” since it involved criminal mischief, which can blend into the “hate speech” arena depending on the circumstances.

Buena Vista University insisted that hate speech is “potentially punishable under the law” in a Monday letter to students.

The Iowa school made the statement in response to the drawing and writing of a racist slur and symbol on a student’s dorm. The university identified three black students, three white students and one Hispanic students as targets of the defacement, reported Des Moines Register.

Student Alyssa Parker and her roommate found “n****r” written on their dorm door, as well as another black student’s door. She reported finding “illegal” on a Hispanic student’s door and a message consisting of a swastika and “KKK” on the door of a white student.

So that’s clearly unacceptable behavior and the university is right to be looking into it, along with the police. So far so good. The school is offering a reward for information leading to the culprit(s) and aside from their declaration about hate “speech” being a crime, there’s nothing too unusual so far. Or is there?

Look at the description of the graffiti which was sprayed on the dorm room doors. Some black students found the N-word sprayed on their door. Their neighbor, an Hispanic student, found “illegal” written on the door. If there’s some sort of racist on the loose and causing trouble, that all makes sense I suppose. But the third door to be tagged belonged to white students and the graffiti bandit wrote, “KKK” on it along with a swastika? Really?

What sort of white supremacist goes after the white students with accusations of being… a white supremacist? Are we to assume that the attacker just really hates everyone without bias or discrimination? Or perhaps we’re to believe that two different attackers hit the same set of rooms, one a racist who hates blacks and Hispanics, followed by a defender of tolerance who decided to join in on the spray painting action and target the white students?

Something doesn’t make sense here. We don’t have enough information to draw any firm conclusions in this specific case, but we do know that there has been something of a rash of fake hate crimes on college campuses and elsewhere lately. We’ve written about a few of them here. I’m not saying that’s the case at Buena Vista, but if this turns out to be another episode of fakery, this is one of the dumbest activists ever to pick up a spray can.

This post originally appeared on Hot Air

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