Saturday, January 31, 2015

We're Looking At You Southwest!

Southwest:  Five residential high-rise towers built in the early 1960s, housing 5,500

If UMass students do riot after the Super Bowl tomorrow night the fault will be theirs and theirs alone.

UMass administrators have gone above and beyond the routine call of duty to mitigate rowdy behavior including stern messaging, alternative viewing activities, and -- the smartest thing -- strangling the supply of potential "outside agitators" without a vested interest in the school.

Click to enlarge/read

Unlike the Blarney Blowout -- a BIG reason we see all these precautions -- should rowdy behavior occur it will almost certainly be contained to the UMass campus, most notably the Southwest Residential area.

Although I'm sure Amherst police will see their share of Party House noise and nuisance complaints town wide.

Since the $160,000 Davis Report is the playbook UMass is using, it will be interesting to see how UMass PD responds should the crowds grow too large, and the noise levels becomes almost deafening and then the solid objects start to fly.

When do they don their Darth Vader riot suits?  You know, the ones that incite the crowds to further violence (sarcasm).  At what point do overwhelmingly outnumbered police use chemical munitions to disperse the unruly mob?

 Davis Report

Since anonymity brings out the worst in people UMass should install throughout Southwest plaza areas portable lighting to turn darkness into day.  And call in Massachusetts State Police air wing to hover a big old helicopter directly overhead with a spotlight pointing down.

Complemented by a half-dozen HD camera drones, just to let them know it's all being recorded.

The breathless arrival of TV news cameras always incites the crowd.   Therefore UMass should also request television journalists not use a large commercial shoulder mounted camera, and stick to a more unobtrusive iPhone. 

After all, as Marshall McLuhan pointed out a long time ago, "The medium is the message."


Anonymous said...

Police should be able to deflate this fast sort of like the Patriots come to think of it.

Anonymous said...

How sad that anyone would ever promote punishing a group of people and restricting their rights within their own homes based on what you suspect they may do based on the groups they associate with or the places they live.

Literally sick.

Our traditional methods are to trust citizens and punish them AFTER they commit a crime. Gasp.

This sets a very bad precedent if some in a community can suspect something may happen and literally restrict others to avoid what they think may happen.

I am starting to wonder if Larry may do something illegal in the future and if we can get enough Amherst residents to reach the "critical mass" required by law (because apparently in Amherst there is such a thing) to punish him before he commits the crime I think he may commit. We could group Larry with other parents that are bad, even if he has not done anything bad, like the students that are being punished for the stuff people think they may do.

I don't think anyone that supports this policy would accept it if it was thrust upon them. I challenge anyone who supports such a perverse policy to watch the game at home with only those that live there, no friends, no family, unless they live with you.

Everyone feels they can break the rules if it benefits them. They are called hypocrites. Those that enforce this ban are breaking America's rules. I would rather see riots, even with injury and people arrested after than anyone restricted before. That is just the way things are supposed to happen, in order.

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah, the old "fight for your right to p-a-r-t-y."

But you do need to throw in the obligatory Nazi comparison.

Anonymous said...

"I would rather see riots, even with injury and people arrested after than anyone restricted before."

You've stated your preference clearly. Thank you for that.

But I don't agree with your priorities (although it sounds like your attempt at stating a principled libertarianism--nice try) or your feeble attempt to call the restriction "a punishment".

And your notion that this is "their own homes" is also not correct. A dorm room at UMass, or even Smith, Hampshire, Amherst and Mt. Holyoke, is not "your own home". You are a guest, and we welcome you to the area, we enjoy your youthful energy and creativity....until, of course, you (or your guests) engage in patterns of behavior, like vandalism of the property of others and throwing debris at police officers, that cause us to lose confidence in your good judgment. Then only a fool would fail to take corrective action to attempt to curb the behavior.

This will all make sense to you, oh, a few decades from now. Do write us back when you're a Massachusetts property owner and taxpayer.

Anonymous said...

Hey anon 2:20 why don't you show up there after the game and help them quell it with your rational thinking. I am sure they will quietly return to the dorms.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:20 pm:

So go ahead and sue the University.

See what kind of a legal leg you have to stand on.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for my laugh of the day 2:20. I guess you don't realize that many schools don't permit overnight guests EVER (Gasp! as you might say). Unfortunately when you attend a school you are a guest, no different than a hotel. And like a hotel, the pool may be closed at 11pm.

As for your weak analogy to Larry, he didn't commit crimes so we would not need to monitor him nor prevent him for moving freely. I'm sure if Larry was a repeat offender the police might even watch him to make sure he doesn't do it again. That must really get your hair on edge. HA!

Anonymous said...

It is time to start looking at what's happening at other schools.

Look at Virginia, Dartmouth, Vanderbilt. The tide may be going out on drinking yourself into a stupor, treating women like meat, losing your sense of yourself in a crowd, and then breaking everything in sight.

It may be that your right to party is going to give way to something else: simple human decency and respect for others. Eventually these giant group barbarism fests, using a sporting event as an excuse to be a jerk, may be seen as being so last decade.

Anonymous said...

"It may be that your right to party is going to give way to something else: simple human decency and respect for others"

I guess you haven't seen the generation of kids liberals are bringing up. Wait till you see the trouble.

Dr. Ed said...

"Unfortunately when you attend a school you are a guest, no different than a hotel."

Ummmm.... You can use a hotel room as a legal residence for voting?

And the hotel is run by a subdivision of the Commonwealth?

But I like the analogy that was sorta raised above: There are fathers who do unspeakable things to their daughters, we definitely want to put and end to such things, so why not require *all* girls to undergo humiliating medical examinations so as to identify those (few) who are being victimized by their fathers???

Heaven forbid we presume innocence until there is something specific regarding spe3cific individuals -- you know, like the concept of "probable cause"....

Dr. said...

"...hover a big old helicopter directly overhead..."

Larry, even if you haven't crashed your drone (yet), you clearly are not a pilot.

Do you have any idea of the extent of the downdrafts and other funky wind conditions that exist around tall buildings that are in the middle of what was already a wind tunnel?

I'll never forget the night that the MSP helicopter drifted a little bit too far East -- maybe 500' -- and the quick-thinking pilot "red-lined" the engine in a desperate but successful attempt to avoid crashing into Lincoln Apartments. (He didn't clear by much...)

The problems become far worse when you try to stay stationary -- and remember that there is something like 185 gallons of jet fuel aboard....

Besides, I suspect that the UM kids will do what Jason Vassell did: put on a ski mask as a disguise3.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Ed, but according to Mass law a dorm room and a hotel may or may not be considered a place of residence, depending on the circumstance. In most cases a dorm room, or University apartment can not be considered a permanent residence.

A permanent place of abode generally will not include the following:

A university owned studio apartment available only to a university affiliated student, faculty and staff ;

A hotel or motel room, but a determination will be made based on the facts and circumstances of each individual's situation.

Permanent Place of Abode Examples

Example 1: Donna is an out-of-state student attending a university in Massachusetts. She lives in a room in one of the dormitories on the university campus. She shares her room with another student. Donna lives at the dormitory for the entire school year, which runs from late August 2012 through May 2013. When the school year ends, Donna moves out of the dormitory and resides out-of-state. Donna returns to the university in August 2013 to begin her junior year and again resides in a dormitory room on campus. Although Donna is present in Massachusetts for more than 183 days in 2013, her dormitory room is not considered a permanent place of abode. Therefore, Donna is not considered a resident of Massachusetts for 2013.

Example 2: Frank is a student at a university in Massachusetts. He lives in an off-campus apartment near the university with three other individuals. All four roommates share living expenses. Frank moves into the apartment in September, 2012 and lives there for all of 2013. Since Frank is present in Massachusetts for more than 183 days and is maintaining a permanent place of abode since he has been living at this apartment for more than one year (September, 2012 – December, 2013), Frank is considered a resident of Massachusetts for 2013, even if his domicile is elsewhere and he intends to leave Massachusetts upon his future graduation.

Example 3: Serge is currently renting a university-owned studio apartment, consisting of one room plus bathroom and kitchen. He pays rent for this apartment on a one-year lease through his term bill. This studio apartment is available only to university affiliated student/faculty/staff and is not open for rent to the general public. Even though Serge is present in Massachusetts for more than 183 days in the taxable year, he is not considered a Resident of Massachusetts because the apartment is not a "permanent place of abode" as the accommodations in the building are limited to university students, faculty and staff, and the rent for the studio is paid directly to the university as part of the term bill for classes. The studio apartment is closer in type to a dormitory room or suite than to an off-campus apartment without university affiliation and open to the general public.

Dr. Ed said...

"As for your weak analogy to Larry, he didn't commit crimes so we would not need to monitor him nor prevent him for moving freely. I'm sure if Larry was a repeat offender the police might even watch him to make sure he doesn't do it again."

Wasn't "racial profiling" justified in a similar manner?

"Racial profiling" started with the very real fact that young Black men, driving relatively expensive cars, were going down to Florida and bringing back large amounts of Cocaine. This was factual, this was the profile of whom the cops in the Carolinas were arresting.

Much like the profile of those expected to engage in a tumultuous post-superbowl celebration -- again based on past arrests (etc.).

The problem with "racial profiling" was when the cops presumed that all young Black men driving nice automobiles were drug dealers. Many weren't -- memory is that there were incidents involving professional athletes being mistakenly accused of being drug dealers.

The term "DWB" -- "Driving While Black" comes to mind -- and it's a legitimate grievance -- young men who themselves haven't done anything wrong being presumed guilty because they bear a resemblance to other young men who are guilty.

Likewise, about half of the UM students living in the dorms were in high school last year -- they were in Third Grade when the "riots" started a decade ago.

There really is no difference between "profiling" them and "profiling" the Black male motorist -- even if both are statistically more likely to do something than others, that doesn't mean that the individual will, particularly when he hasn't done it in the past.

By your own logic, as they "didn't commit crimes", you have no more justification for restricting their liberty than you do Larry's.

Anonymous said...

what is this soup or bowl you americans care so much about? is it a restaurant?

Dr. Ed said...

"...In most cases a dorm room, or University apartment can not be considered a permanent residence."

There is a difference between "residence" and "permanent place of abode" -- and what you presented looks very much like the criteria for determining in-state versus out-of-state tuition status.

You also appear to be confusing "residence" with both "residency" and "duration residency" -- although I suggest you take a look at the jury duty rules -- dorm rooms ARE considered a residence for residency purposes....

And as to this gem, I'd dearly love to know what legal basis a denial of residency could be based upon. The SCOTUS decision was that one has to be in the state for other than just academic purposes -- if one spent the summer working at WalMart while residing in said university-owned studio apartment, I don't think the denial of in-state status would be upheld....

A university owned studio apartment available only to a university affiliated student, faculty and staff

Anonymous said...

I am anon 2:20.

I did not mention Nazis. I do own lots of land locally and my local taxes exceed the medium income. I am not fighting for the right to party specifically. But thanks for putting words in my mouth, when I had already chosen a other words and described my perspective. Perhaps it was too complicated for folks, so they simplified it, but still got it wrong.

A better parallel would be the modern version of a mob with torches and forks. The respectable citizens of Amherst just send uniformed people out to do their mob work.

BTW. 30+ years out of umass, more than a couple of decades. I had every weapon you could think of in my dorm, and ever tool, spore and seed. 100's of acres,including buildings and houses owned locally, numerous business the posters here shop at (I have sold directly to Larry) AND local taxes paid every year in excess of most posters take home pay. I am financing most of the stuff debated here more than most. But is this what it takes to have an opinion locally. I am the guy arguing that the students have the same rights I do as a major landowner and business owner locally. Those of you in the middle, actually usually advocate against both of us (students and businesses).

My properties and my businesses locally would be nothing without the students. I have not found that the parties or student activities have hurt my businesses or cost me money or grief. I HAVE FOUND that the excessive desires of affluent citizens living in over priced homes (some of which I rent to them) has cost the community jobs, opportunity and resources to no end.

But you know the students will keep coming no matter how much you take advantage of them. I am not even going to watch the super bowl. I could care less about the game, there are civil rights issues at play.

Again, how about implementing this rule over the entire community and see how it goes. The only reason you do it to the students is they are powerless, even if they give you all your power.

Anonymous said...

The principle at issue is simple:

The University, or Amherst College, or any of the other schools in the area is not obligated to receive tens or hundreds or thousands of "guests" onto their campuses for today's game.

I just don't see the refusal to allow that as an infringement on the personal liberty of students attending here.

Obviously, students that live in rental housing (or their own homes) in Amherst is a different story. And students living on campus could always go off-campus to party with non-student friends.

We've had a history of large disturbances after these big games going back years, if not decades, in which property has been damaged and people have gotten injured. Are the colleges obligated to ignore that?

What am I missing here, Anon 10:42 am?

Anonymous said...

If the students wont disperse. Try a little fire hose action. I bet they will get a little cold and go inside. lol.
I think the storm will start around midnight. A little late to upset the after party.

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah I was hoping for sub freezing weather but it's pretty comfortable out there now.

Although I did notice the Mass State Police helicopter slowly ambling over UMass.