Posted Dec 2, 2019 at 11:00. Revised Jan 10, 2021 at 14:30.
Warning: dark mode is buggy; toggle in lower right corner of screen.
A 10000 strong PR whitewash
Historically, Oberlin College’s marketing, public, and alumni relations have been clumsy and amateurish at best. The courtroom mauling the College received from the Gibsons has inspired the trustees to hire giant $ public relations consultants to cover up this vast open sore on the College. This PR justifies and obfuscates the continuing vendetta against the Gibsons. The College has not been willing to consider any reasonable settlement with the Gibsons.
The cornerstone of President Ambar’s PR war is a grand tour of the hinterlands wherein she presents her redacted version of events to the alumni. The PR people thought it would be cute for her to pretend that the Gibson matter, which is an open sore on the College, does not exist.
The Oberlin College community has been a place where serious troubles are discussed rather than suppressed, but suppression is now the order of the day. Scholarly discourse can no longer be allowed in this academic institution if it wants to talk about the Gibsons. Indeed, President Ambar has refused to invite Cornell Law Professor Jacobson of LegalInsurrection.com to come to Oberlin and tell the other side of the Gibson story! So much for her professed belief in free speech.
To be sure, each stop on the grand tour will probably allow questions from the floor, but this is a far cry from having someone on the same stage to present the other side of the story. Audience questions are unlikely to bring out the points which the PR campaign wants to suppress or discredit.
Oberlin’s new whiz-bang public relations
Peters Hall, Oberlin College
Oberlin’s PR campaign is a sorry mess due to pretending that the Gibson episode and other irritants to the College’s neighbors are not there. In all fairness to the PR firm, they may be under orders to keep the Gibson litigation’s non-existence fantasy going. The College is paying top $ and is getting “minimum wage” professionalism due to hiding the central issue. What one lawyer said of Oberlin was, “Oberlin has no adults in the room, ” and another opined “Oberlin must be a client from Hell.” It will be no surprise if the PR people say the same things about Oberlin College before their contract is up.
Oberlin’s financial hemorrhage
Let’s make the alumni aware of the Ten Thousand Strong $3,300 scholarships dissipated in a mindless vendetta against both the Gibson’s and the reputation of the College. Each dollar of this money represents one piece of 33,000,000 pieces of many dedicated benefactors’ life work. It is money that benefactors could have spent on themselves had they prioritized their personal pleasures over endowing quality education at Oberlin College.
The BOT and the administration seem unwilling to take steps to arrest the financial bleeding. Why should they? It is not their money! The dollars they are blowing are just 36,000,000 little pieces of people — or are they?
Ten thousand strong sing we a song. Oberlin, to thee; Oh, worthy art thou of fame! In lands afar shineth thy star Setting bondmen free; Belovd is thy glorious name.
Times have changed — and the powers that be in Oberlin College are clueless about what they have sullied and lost.
/s/ JD Nobody, OC ’61.
The purpose of this blog is to tell the other side of the Gibson’s Bakery, OSCA, the Kosher-Halal Co-op, and UAW stories to Oberlin Alumni lest they believe the College’s heavily redacted and whitewashed version of events. Please tell your fellow Obies how our college has damaged its reputation, the worth of our degrees, the Gibsons, the college’s union workers, K-H, and the OSCA Co-op tradition. No pandemic, sleazy PR, or conflating of libel and slander with free speech can divert attention from the BOT’s negligence in these matters. Speak up and insist that the BOT arrest its compulsive, neo-Puritan righteousness, which has already eradicated either THOUSANDS of $36,000 scholarships or 225 Steinway concert grand pianos — just to wreck a tiny bakery, a cooperating union, K-H, and the OSCA Student Co-op!