BY WATCHING ADAMS STAFF – 11/17/15
In anticipation of screening Playing Columbine at Adams State University, President McClure again repeated her assertions that Watching Adams publisher Danny Ledonne is a threat to campus safety and had to be banned from campus:
From: Office of the President <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Tuesday, November 17, 2015 Subject: Message from President McClure... To: [ALL STUDENTS] Dear Students: We are committed to ensuring a safe learning environment. We were forced, after much deliberation and discussion, to bar Mr. Danny Ledonne from campus. This persona non grata order puts the safety and security of the entire Adams State community first. Mr. Ledonne is not an employee of the University. After an unsuccessful application for employment with the University, his behavior went from disappointment to levels that raised significant concern among individual faculty members and other members of the Adams State community. This behavior includes direct and indirect threats against individuals and the campus as a whole. Sadly, in this day and age when mass violence on campuses and elsewhere is becoming an all too frequent occurrence we must act with the greatest degree of caution to safeguard this entire community. Mr. Ledonne's repeated specific actions and statements left us no choice but to prevent his access to this campus. Safety and security is not an academic exercise. I will not waver in my determination to safeguard every single person who is part of our Adams State community--students, faculty, staff and guests. While some may say that Mr. Ledonne doesn't "mean his threats," this does not relieve him of the responsibility for his actions. Just as when you are going through security at the airport, you cannot make a joke or imply a threat and still be allowed to get on a plane, the same is true with a campus. You cannot make faculty, staff, or students feel threatened by actions or words and still be allowed access. In fact, we had an external, independent review verify that administration took the appropriate action as a response to the pattern of behavior exhibited by Mr. Ledonne. I will be appearing before the Faculty Senate and AS&F to discuss this matter. The administration is being as open and transparent as we can under the law. It is unfortunate that misinformation has led some to believe this is about "free speech" versus safety. I thank you for your understanding of this very serious situation. Sincerely, President McClure
In response, one of the students organizing the event replied to President McClure:
Date: Tue, 17 Nov 2015 16:55:32 -0700 From: Drew Lamprecht To: Office of the President Dr. McClure, My name is Drew Lamprecht. I am a creative writing major at Adams State, and I did very poorly my first year here as a transfer student. My first semester back was this past spring, and I have since drastically improved my schoolwork ethic. I met you once at the back to school barbecue in August, but it was very brief, and I'm sure you met hundreds of other students so you probably don't remember. I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself again, and I would like you to know that I am one of the students in support of Danny Ledonne. I don't know if you have seen our facebook event page yet, but if you have, I'm sure you've seen my posts. I originally intended to draft a letter that would be hand-signed by other concerned students, but I decided instead to e-mail you my personal statement. I wouldn't want other students signing this because this may not represent their individual views on the matter. I know very little about the state of adjunct faculty, which is not necessarily my primary concern, but I have been reading "Reclaiming the Ivory Tower" and I understand enough to know that the way Adams State currently operates is harming retention rates. I think that the focus should shift from enrollment to retention. I first attended Adams in 2012, and of the freshman students that I met my first year, less than half of them still attend. The school can renovate dorms and promote sports programs, but none of that can improve the academics of our school. I am an aspiring law student, and I want to be proud to say that I went to Adams State University. I like the school because of the San Luis Valley's natural beauty, the amazing green chili, and the welcoming community. I want students to want to attend, and I want students to want to stay. I don't want people to refer to Alamosa as "The Dirty 'Mo". I have not once met a teacher that I didn't like at Adams State, and I have not yet met a teacher who doesn't care about my success (just like the freshman students, very few of the professors I knew in 2012 are still here). I have, however, met scores of students who think that Adams State is a joke, and that is a terrible, terrible thing. If Adams State University wants to start being taken seriously as an academic institution, I think it would also help if it weren't violating constitutional rights. Danny Ledonne made Super Columbine Massacre RPG! in 2005 before he was hired on campus. If the creation of that video game was a threat to students, he should have never been hired in the first place. Furthermore, it is absurd to me that a game made ten years ago would be evidence enough to argue that he is a threat to campus. If anyone made a direct threat to the campus or individuals on campus, then I hardly think that a persona non grata status would keep them away. Persona non grata is weak in regards to preventing violence towards the school. If Danny has made direct threats of violence like you claim, why is he not in jail? If you were truly interested in protecting our safety, you would use all of the legal tools available to prevent it. If Danny had made a direct threat against anyone, then he would have been arrested. Why is there no legal case against him? Why have you not been able to procure evidence of these "threats" that he has made? Furthermore, I am not sure how one can "imply" a threat. Tell us all exactly what threats were made and why a hastily implemented institutional policy was used to address it. Danny was never a threat to anyone. The school was, however, a threat to individual rights and I will not stand by as a tuition paying student and let you stomp on the constitution. If the school ever had to defend Danny's ban in court, they would determine that Danny was not afforded due process of law. I believe that Danny Ledonne's rights have been violated. Your emails to the campus referring to the "threats" he has made are vague at best. I know for a fact that Danny poses no threat to me or other students. Having known Danny since the 2012 school year, I can safely say that he was a lively addition to campus and that I miss seeing him in the Haynie Center everyday. I will not support a school that has no regard for Danny's and, by extension, everyone's rights.
UPDATED 11/22/15: Lamprecht has not yet received a response to this email.