On Page 28 of the February 24-March 3 edition of the Syracuse New Times is a photo of local bon vivant Tim Green, accompanying an announcement of another Green book signing. It is the picture that I have been stewing over since 1986. It shows Green, at his college graduation, physically carrying another student out of the Dome.
The New Times whimsically captions the picture : “Green is shown during his SU commencement making his last collegiate sack, as he escorted a mischievous student protester to the nearest Carrier Dome exit.”
What he is doing is manhandling another student (also at his graduation) for having the temerity to hold up a sign urging the University to divest its holdings in companies doing business in apartheid-era South Africa.
Green, by virtue of his stellar grades and campus celebrity, had been appointed a student Marshal at the event–one of the big honors for students. Despite all his obvious smarts, he apparently didn’t understand that this position was honorary and did not require him to police the student body for any transgressions.
Putting aside the historical vindication of the protesting student’s views, what right did Green have to squash this student’s right to free speech in a public venue? Of course, this is the same guy who, justified his crossing of the NFL Players’ Association picket line during the 1987 season by citing his consultation on the state of labor relations in America with Bob Congel!