Fox News did a news special on Kyle Kashuv and how Harvard pulled his scholarship because of his insensitivity to using the n-word in published private text messages. Reporter Ed Henry drove the interview but wanted to get the main question out first and foremost, “What were you thinking?”
There are too many people out there giving Kyle a pass on this, and I am not one of them. It sickens me that he used this word and reading it in the context it was written; he was having a jolly good time.
Kashuv told Henry that the private posts were from a friend group and were added there for “shock value.” Kashuv reiterated he was “extremely sorry” and he knows he can’t take it back. Kyle also told Ed that he has matured in two years, but I don’t believe that. He got caught, and he’s trying to save the career that he has forged over the last year because of the praise and public mountain that the conservative movement gave to him.
Sure we make mistakes as “kids,” but according to today’s society, he’s still a kid. That type of speech was in his heart, and I am not so forgiving. Personal responsibility is part of being a conservative, and if you can’t own up to that fact, then you have a problem. His career is not over, but just because he was called out on it doesn’t make it wrong.
Henry: “What were you thinking?”
Kashuv: “I know that forgiveness isn’t given, it’s earned. The person who wrote those things is not who I am today.”
Henry: “How do we know that? You certainly sound heartfelt, but you want to get something––you want to get into Harvard or get into another school. And how do we know that you’re not just saying ‘I didn’t mean it’?
Kashuv tried to save face claiming that being a public figure, he’s spoken out against racism and hatred and people on the alt-right have come after him because of it. I’ve been in the public eye for a while now, and I’ve seen people fall in love with the camera and say whatever they can to remain loved and praised but that doesn’t mean their heart changes in less than two years.
Henry: “You typed the n-word 11 times in a row. In one text you used it 11 times. Where does that come from?”
Kashuv: “Clearly that’s not indicative of who I am. I don’t think mistakes make you irredeemable, as Harvard showed for me,”
Henry: “You’re mentioning that they had slaveowners in the 1600s. You using the n-word was, what, a year, a year and a half ago?”
Kashuv: “Two years ago.”
Henry: “Two years ago. A little more recent. I go back to my first question. How do we know you’ve really changed?… You went through an awful tragedy in Florida and have been hailed by some––and you should be––for your poise going through a tragedy I can’t even imagine. But what specifically has changed in you in the last two years that you would no longer write the n-word or say the n-word?”
Kashuv: “I never, quite frankly, wanted to be in this position. I’m not an entertainer, I’m not an actor, I’m a kid who went through a tragedy, who saw the suffering that his community went through and doesn’t want to see it for any other community.”
Kyle Kashuv knew what he was saying and why it was terrible. He was 16, not 8. He wrote it many times on purpose, to get a reaction. And social media is not new, so the “I didn’t know it would get out!” excuse doesn’t fly. He made his choices; he gets the consequences of his public behavior.
He may have matured since then, but neither Harvard nor anyone else is obligated to give him a pass. Some people will forgive it; some won’t. And Kashuv has to accept that.
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