Kyle Kashuv, an 18-year-old Parkland shooting survivor and conservative activist, took to Twitter today to announce Harvard’s decision to rescind his acceptance offer after scrutinizing the student’s use of inflammatory language and racial slurs nearly two years ago when Kashuv was 16-years-old.
As Kashuv was quick to point out, he has since apologized for the comments at issue:
Kyle Kashuv is a recent high school graduate living in Parkland, Florida. In a departure from many of his classmates who were a part of the deadly shooting in 2018 that killed 17 people, Kashuv became a vocal gun rights activist.
Kashuv posted letters he received from Harvard on Twitter — initially asking for an explanation, and then subsequently rescinding his admission, citing the admission committee’s dedication to “the qualities of maturity and moral character.”
Conservative outlets are highlighting the student’s conservative advocacy, with headlines such as FoxNews’s “Harvard rescinds offer to Kyle Kashuv, pro-Second Amendment Parkland survivor, due to past remarks, he says.”
These “past remarks” were written in a Google doc study guide shared with classmates. The document, shared with HuffPost, included the following remarks:
Jack fuck my asss now NOW BITCH WHERE ARE U GET IN THE FUCKING MOPED AND DRIVE BITAYYYTCH NIGEGR NIGGER NIGGER NIGGER NIGGER NIGGER NIGGER NNIGGER NIGGER NIGGER NIGGER like im really good at typing nigger ok like practice uhhhhhh makes perfect son??!!
Putting Kashuv’s political leanings front-and-center while reducing these words to “past remarks” is a bit disingenuous, to say the least. Most outlets defending Kashuv, however, weren’t so revisionist. National Review’s Kevin French instead focused on the fact that Kashuv wrote these comments when he was sixteen in his piece “Harvard Demonstrates Once Again That Post-Christian America Is Post-Forgiveness America.”
Dave Rubin, similarly evoking notions of ‘forgiveness,’ rose to Kashuv’s defense on Twitter:
Left-leaning outlets are more skeptical. Instead, their focus is on what they see as a broader issue, arguing that Kashuv’s reckless use of racial slurs is not an isolated incident in his political circle. From HuffPost:
Kashuv, who is now 18 and a high school senior, is only the latest person affiliated with Turning Point USA to be caught making racist remarks. (Before he stepped down, Kashuv was the group’s director of high school outreach.) Riley Grisar, who led the group’s University of Nevada Las Vegas chapter, was removed from TPUSA after a video surfaced of him declaring “white power” and saying racist slurs. And in April 2018, HuffPost discovered a swath of racist comments made by several TPUSA members.