It’s June in Berkeley. The weather is amazing and all we want to do is lay around outside and get a tan.
But instead, our news cycle is filled with yet another far-right agitator trying to ruin the summer sun.
Kiara Robles, a Trump supporter and an Oakland resident, filed a lawsuit last Monday against a whole slew of officials and institutions — the UC Board of Regents, Nicholas Dirks, Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín, UCPD, BPD, Monica Lozano, By Any Means Necessary, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and even billionaire investor George Soros, among others.
George Soros? He doesn’t even go here.
The sheer scope of this group of defendants is laughable. She’s represented by an attorney from right-wing watchdog group Freedom Watch. They’re attention seekers; they peddle petty conspiracy theories.
She’s alleging that campus and university officials violated federal law and campus policies during the handling of the Feb. 1 Milo Yiannopoulos campus protest, where Robles was attacked with pepper spray and bear mace by masked assailants.
Black Lives Matters protesters are tear gassed and beaten up plenty and they don’t get a penny. In fact, people often even tell them it’s their own fault for protesting.
Robles and her lawyers want to make Berkeley a spectacle of liberal hypocrisy, but the suit is just wasting what little energy students and faculty have after another insurmountable school year. The UC is already broke as it is, and these litigation fees are probably a bit taxing on students’ rights to their educations. Robles isn’t even a UC student, what gall does she have to tell us what to do on our campus?
Robles and her lawyer, Larry Klayman, claim she was discriminated against because of her sexual orientation. They seem to be trying to make fun of liberals, using a politicization of Robles’ identity and playing liberals at their own game, so to speak. But plenty of marginalized groups face actual systemic discrimination and prejudice (happy Pride month, by the way, to those still marginalized within the queer community by people such as Yiannopoulos and Robles).
The video of Robles being pepper-sprayed speaks volumes to her character and to the nature of this entire situation. Tensely, with her Make Bitcoin Great Again hat perched atop her head, she spews generic right-wing nonsense at the interviewer until she’s pepper-sprayed.
Students are honestly exhausted from all these national conservative organizations coming in and trying to turn our home and our lives into some inaccurate national spectacle. We’re not even doing anything newsworthy anymore. Just let us be. Sheesh!
And while we’re at it, move out of Oakland, too, Ms. Robles. Trump supporters definitely don’t fit in in this historically progressive city.
Editorials represent the majority opinion of the Editorial Board as written by the opinion editor.
A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that Kiara Robles’ hat said “Make America Bitcoin Again.” In fact, the hat says “Make Bitcoin Great Again.”