Much like dead squirrels, the idea of Harvard students being threatened with knives and umbrellas in the shadow of Widener Library is quite unsettling.
You know you've got to read it in its entirety.
The student author came so close here, but didn't quite make the intellectual leap:
Except for the few unlucky enough to have experienced it, most Harvard students are culturally unprepared to understand violence. The campus attempts to squelch aggression by intellectualizing it: there are entire departments effectively devoted to the study of people killing each other. But there is something fundamental about violence that Historical Study A-12, “Conflict and Cooperation in the Modern World,” doesn’t quite capture. Academia is inherently ill-equipped to deal with the realities of conflict, since it is based on the premise that disputes can be resolved through rational exchange of ideas. Yet violence, whether it happens to squirrels or Harvard undergraduates, is a strange animal. It is sudden, profound, and oblivious to logic and theory.
We emerge from our classes confident that we thoroughly understand the world. But every now and then, something happens that pops the Harvard bubble, and reminds us that book-learning is not the same as experience. It is a chilling realization—no one likes to see the ivory tower stained crimson.
Still, I have to believe there's hope for the young man. I wonder what he thinks of the Global War on Terror?