Wednesday, March 12, 2014

More Blarney: From UMass President Caret

Police clad in riot gear make an arrest on Fearing Street near Frat

UPDATE:  UMass announces "comprehensive review" of police/town/university response to Blarney Blowout.  No BIG surprise (sarcasm).

Bowing to pressure brought to bear by 100 kids holding a good old fashioned "protest march" and snippets of video posted on the web, UMass President Caret is calling for a full investigation of the Blarney Blowout including how heavily outnumbered police handled the sordid situation.

 Objects were throw from 3rd floor roof of Frat

He also complained to a Springfield Republican reporter about the Amherst bars being allowed to open early that day, and that those businesses bear some responsibility.  Except of course the bars were NOT open early that day, as the Select Board stopped allowing that a few years back because of the problems it caused. 

Perhaps the President just wants to look like he's doing something -- since the Blarney Blowout is receiving such blowout national media attention -- but he picked the wrong people to cast aspersions upon.

Interestingly President Caret hyped a "performance review" issued today that gave the highest rating ("Excellent)" for the goal:  "Admit high-quality students, striving to increase the academic profiles across all campuses."  Not the greatest timing in light of Blarney Blowout BS.

Amherst Firefighters just released a statement strongly supporting the actions of the Amherst, UMass and State police who had to rein in the largest out-of-control crowds this town has ever seen.  Firefighters reportedly faced "repeated aggressive and assaultive behavior."

Crowds THAT large, under the influence of copious amounts of alcohol, are a danger to themselves as well as innocent bystanders.  By many, many accounts (mine included) bottles and cans were hurled at police officers before the pepper balls started flying.

If President Caret wants to call for a full investigation, how about looking at discipline meted out these past few years for the hundreds of students arrested for rowdy off campus behavior?  Or why UMass doesn't provide on campus social events to preoccupy kids?

55 APD arrests vs only 3 UMPD arrests underscores the battles were all fought off campus. 

Amherst police will now be seconding guessing their use of any force over the next few months, just when the weather turns warm and partying escalates exponentially.

It's going to be a l-o-n-g spring.

Police on North Pleasant Street, town jurisdiction, 12:10 p.m.


Anonymous said...

Caret better get his ass out here and help Subbaswamy fix this problem. I 'd like to know why UMPD only made 3 arrests. I would also like to know why Subb wasnt out on N Pleasant street on Sat with the police chief to observe for himself wtf his students were up to. Subbaswamy should have been right there handing out expulsions since nobody was listening to his earlier letter.

The very fine people at APD and AFD deserve better than this nonsense. So does the community. Caret should shut his mouth and bring Deval along to both apologize and fire Subbaswamy. LACK OF LEADERSHIP AT UMASS!!

As a proud alum I am completely disgusted.

Anonymous said...

Ridiculous -- Caret should be fired. How dare he question our public safety personnel? It would be nice if he had at least checked on the bar openings to get it right. I am another alum (and local) who is disgustd.

Dr. Ed said...

I can seen that the battle lines are being drawn -- but Caret's not stupid and the people who are upset with the cops are a lot more powerful than the Amherst Clique -- Stan Rosenberg has told you that (in a different context) more than once.

And I have the pleasure of both saying "I told you so" and "you'll never guess why I'm up so late or what it is that I just got done doing."

I knew I would eventually enjoy shasanfraud -- I just didn't know it would be this soon or that I'd enjoy it so much. I've got a mile-wide smile on my face right now -- I'm too happy to be tired.


Anonymous said...

Do you mean "schadenfreude"?

Anonymous said...

Ed, considering how you get so excited over all things Umass, we really, really dont want to know what you just got done doing. Ew.

Anonymous said...

Half the people at the bars were probably NOT part of the rowdy crowd so don't even blame the bars. The crowd mostly consisted of underage kids. Have a good day.

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah, I believe I did just defend the bars. Although I had to hold my nose.

Anonymous said...

Shasanfraud? They gave you a diploma? make sure your name isn't written in crayon.

Zike Tarzian said...

These are my unorganized ramblings about this issue. Pardon the disorganization:
Caret is trying to please all parties. Three parties are upset; the students, the town residents, and the police (AMPD and UMPD). As for your immature name calling of the UMASS chancellor, GROW UP! He has done everything YOU PEOPLE have asked him to do. When the town wanted the administration to send emails to students and their parents, he did.
As a student, I'm upset with the police brutality that I witnessed. I saw one officer throw a kid's I.D across the street after wrongfully detaining him. I also witnessed an officer throw a beer can at mini van and then proceed to punch the windows as it drove away. Please explain how either of those acts were professional? You can't all believe that every police officer on the force can do no wrong. Just like there are crappy teachers, attorneys, cooks, etc., there are crappy police officers. Just like you want the destructive students to be held accountable, I want the AMPD to be held accountable. Some people with power will abuse it; they must be held accountable.
I 150% agree that the students who threw bottles and assaulted police officers should have the book thrown at them. Violence doesn't solve anything.
If we all sit down like adults and with open minds, we can solve this issue. Me and everyone else commenting on your blog (which I have a personal issue with)and pointing fingers isn't the solution.

Larry Kelley said...

Actually it 's just APD, not AMPD.

And I did "name call" either the Chancellor or UMass President in the least.

If heavily outnumbered cops were not in the middle of a riot situation I'm sure one or two of the anecdotal incidents you cite would maybe have been handled a tad differently.

Larry Kelley said...

Did NOT call any names.

Anonymous said...

Where was Caret, Subb and Umass chief? Certainly not on campus

Anonymous said...

These administrators make hundreds of thousands of dollars and wield a lot of power. Yet they can't do anything about this problem? The way it has been dealt with is to let it blow over and forget about it until next year. Maybe we should buy them the Guiness countdown clock for their office.

Anonymous said...

As a local police officer from a surrounding jurisdiction I can say that if I worked in Amherst I would say to hell with it. Let them party and tear the shit out of the place. Unbelievable that a police department of that miniscule size is expected to handle that shit. APD let them have had it then maybe people will sing a different tune.

Larry Kelley said...

Unfortunately they are gonna think twice about ANY use of force over the next couple months, just when weekend party activity peaks.

Anonymous said...

I hope they do, they need to send a message. Not nearly enough cops and firefighters for the town, no support, and a university that refuses to look at the real issues such as a dry campus.

Anonymous said...

FYI UMass is NOT a dry campus. Alcohol is allowed in dorms and there is a pub in the Campus Center.

Anonymous said...

Caret should be making a huge statement in support of the police departments. This is ridiculous, I don't see the need to cater to EVERY request made, things are shot down in politics all the time.

The whole "sit down and talk about this like adults" act by students is stupid as well. The adult thing is thrown out when you DONT ACT LIKE ADULTS. The police are there for everyone's safety and need to act accordingly. I'll point out again to the tailgates which seem like more people and have NO riot type acts.

Signed, recent umass ugrad (less than a year) and attendee of past ~four blowouts. Also a HUGE supporter of the release by the AFD. The most important statement of this whole blowout in my opinion

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else besides myself NOT fnd the 55 to 3 arrest ratio discerning? I feel they were working cooperatively, had a plan, and executed it to the best of their ability. Arrests were made and they went from there. Saying umass PD was trying to pawn off arrests on APD seems ludicrous. They were all working towards the same goal

Anonymous said...

If you are angry about Caret's comments try to understand that nobody in Boston really cares what happens in Amherst anyway. I called the Governor's office in Springfield (413-784-1200) and the person answering the phone there had not even heard about this past weekend's activities here. He literally didn't have a clue.

So, like an idiot, I called the Boston office of the Governor (617-725-4005), which tried repeatedly to push me off to the Dept of Higher Education. He really didn't want to talk Blarney either!

If it weren't so damn offensive, it would be almost funny!

Anonymous said...

a pub in the Campus Center.

With six seats at the bar and maybe a couple dozen more at adjacent tables. Lets round that WAY up to 30 -- for how many thousands of students? Are you insane?

And do you know that all three of the UMPD arrests were of NONSTUDENTS? Interesting -- no?

And if you don't like it when the students are trying to act like adults, JUST WAIT UNTIL THEY START ACTING LIKE COPS!!!

Yeats put it best -- the middle ceases to hold and all of Amherst becomes a true war zone. Burn baby burn -- lots of wooden buildings, lots of empty glass (beer) bottles, lots of gasoline -- burn,....

Anonymous said...

Zike - Sorry, but police brutality is not the same as an officer being rude or unprofessional (what you claim you observed). And I don't think the police were there to say please and thank you. And definitely not after the rocks and bottles started flying.

Try to remember that these are regular people doing their job and trust me they don't really want to be chasing around shithead drunks all day and into the night. It's not anybody's idea of a good time.

But suppose you had a medical emergency and needed to be evacuated from the "fun party crowd" - those same officers would have your back and get AFD in so you can get the help you need. Remember that.

These large drunken crowds are a lot more dangerous than you or your friends realize. If the crowd is not dispersed, bad things happen. When a fight breaks out (and it will) fists turn into knives or bats or whatever real quick, especially if the police are not there to intervene. People start running away and all of a sudden somebody falls down and gets trampled/suffocated. It happens and that is what APD was there trying to pre-empt on Saturday.

Just be thankful nobody got seriously hurt.

Anonymous said...

dude @348, no need to go all batshit crazy, just pointing out the UMass isn't dry. Very few public University's have bars/pubs that could accommodate the numbers of students/public that were involved in the BB. Do you have many examples to share? I can only think of the terrace (outside) at UW-Madison but its capacity wouldn't accommodate the numbers of folks 'participating' in the BB...

Anonymous said...

That's just Ed. You can always tell his posts because they are completely loony.

Anonymous said...

Well we now know how the high paid administrators plan on dealing with the BB,just hire another high paid administrator. Of course.

Anonymous said...

no need to go all batshit crazy

Too late. Way, way too late.

Dr. Ed said...

Well we now know how the high paid administrators plan on dealing with the BB,just hire another high paid administrator. Of course

No, I don't think that is what they are doing here -- nor do I really think that the town is much going to like what they say -- essentially what I have been saying since 2003 -- but I do suggest you listen to it.

You can discredit-so-as-to-ignore me, but these are folks with credentials and they have a lot more people behind this than you might think of.

I think the last paragraph in Patrick Johnson's article tells it all -- 225 Franklin Street now knows that "the whole world IS watching" and that they now have to stick up for their students.

Dr. Ed said...

Oh, and there used to be FOUR pubs in the Student Union/Campus Center complex alone. Hatch, Bluewall, TOC and another whose name I forget. Now replaced by one.

Even the Newman Center used to serve beer back in the day -- or at least the people who worked there claim they did.

And the tradition of "mudslides" behind Baker and in the "bowl" -- those used to be "beer-slides" -- they would tap the kegs at the top of the hill (where a vehicle could drop them off) and there would be so much beer spilled that by the end of the day, it was all muddy and people went sliding down the hill.

I personally remember seeing pickup trucks *full* of kegs -- the entire bed of the truck full -- going into the residences along Sunset Avenue and cars parked three abrest on Sunset with drunken people drinking in the midst of them.

I remember when the UMPD only had 3 officers on a (weekday) night shift -- and no, that wasn't good, but I digress.

But to compare that to now -- the campus is essentially dry now...