The 10th President of Cornell University, Hunter Rawlings, was recently named interim president of Cornell University due to the recent death of Cornell president, Elizabeth Garrett. Rawlings had previously been politely canned by Cornell after serving eight years as president (1995-2003). Donations did not come as expected, due in part, to his emphasis on leftist political correctness.
While Rawlings was president of Cornell, my children were students at Cornell. I occasionally wrote for the Campus conservative newspaper, the Cornell Review, as did author Ann Coulter when she was an undergraduate at Cornell in the 1980’s. I was also President of Accuracy in Academia and wrote articles about the crazy left wing shenanigans of Liberals on campus. For example, a group of ‘Liberal’ students made a public display of burning all the copies of the Cornell Review because of a perceived racist article in the Review. Administration officials attended the newspaper burning and looked on approvingly and did not stop this announced unlawful act.
I wrote an article about it and pointed out that the Rawlings administration knew about and facilitated breaking the law and violated the first amendment rights of people that they did not agree with politically. In my article I pointed out that the author of the purported racist article was an African American minister himself. Had any of these intellectuals actually read the article, they would have known that.
Rawlings knew me as I was also president of a Cornell Alumni Club during his tenure. He always appeared to studiously avoid me at receptions. But I did have one satisfying moment with him.
In June 1997 I was at my 30th Cornell Class reunion and Rawlings threw out the first pitch at a Cornell Baseball Team alumni game that I was a player in. Rawlings is 6’7’’” tall and was a baseball pitcher at Haverford College as an undergraduate.
I believe the main reason Rawlings was doing this was that he planned to solicit a donation from a very wealthy Venezuelan bank president, Gustavo Vollmer, who was being honored at the game. Gustavo had once talked to me about working for him when I was working for the Chase Manhattan Bank in Venezuela in 1976. Gustavo was also a Cornell baseball alumnus (class of 1944) and had come up from Venezuela to attend the game in Ithaca with his grandson. His grandson met and had a very animated conversation with my bilingual biracial daughter at the game.
After Rawlings threw out the first pitch, he made a bee line to the wealthy Venezuelan. As Rawlings approached him, Gustavo turned his back on him and went over to me and gave me a big hug, and effusively spoke to me in Spanish like old friends reunited in the twilight of life. The look I gave to Rawlings over Gustavo’s shoulder left no doubt to the horrified Rawlings that he was not getting any money from my Venezuelan friend.
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