Mizzou President Tim Wolfe Resigns After Entire State Of Missouri Turns On Him

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University of Missouri system president Tim Wolfe resigned Monday morning after pressure from all directions in the state of Missouri, including a hunger strike, forced his hand.

Wolfe, who has been a controversial figure at Mizzou, had stated that he had no plans on resigning late last week, but a protest from the University of Missouri football team was enough to get the ball rolling on his ousting. Had Mizzou not played a football game this weekend, it would have owed BYU $1,000,000. Wolfe’s annual salary was $459,000.

From The Wall Street Journal:

University of Missouri System President Tim Wolfe resigned on Monday amid accusations that he mishandled racial tensions at the flagship Columbia campus.

Calls for his ouster piled up this weekend after dozens of members of the football team threatened to boycott games and practices over accusations he is mishandling racial tensions on campus.

“Please use this resignation to heal and not to hate,” he said in a news conference Monday.

More than 30 black football players at the school, known as Mizzou, announced on social media Saturday night that they would boycott games and practices unless Mr. Wolfe resigned or was fired over accusations he mishandled racial issues on campus. On Sunday, the athletic department, which consists of university employees, issued a statement saying it supports the players’ actions.


Mizzou Athletic Department Backs Black Football Players on Boycott
Jonathan Butler, a black graduate student, underwent a week-long hunger strike to press for Mr. Wolfe’s ouster. He said Monday the strike had ended.

“Students who want to go to college and get an education can now have a fighting chance at having a fair education on a campus that is safe and inclusive,” Mr. Butler said Monday.

“It is my belief we stopped listening to each other,” Mr. Wolfe said. “We didn’t respond or react. We got frustrated with each other, and we forced individuals like Jonathan Butler to take immediate action or unusual steps to effect change.”

Mr. Butler agreed with Mr. Wolfe’s comment that this wasn’t how change should come about, but said students had been asking the administration for change for years. “They weren’t listening to us, they really weren’t listening to us,” he said. “It shouldn’t have taken for me to put my life on the line for us to get to this place.”

I’m not going to editorialize much here, but let me say that a hunger strike is not a peaceful protest, in my opinion. It is essentially equivalent to “Give me X thing or I will kill myself.” If you go read the list of demands that went along with his firing, “extortion” might come to mind. Clay Travis had a fantastic column about it last night, and that’s tough for me to say because I can’t stand Clay Travis.

Of course, it would be irresponsible to assume that Wolfe’s resignation was strictly about racial tensions, as TFM video director and Mizzou alum Rob Fox pointed out on Twitter:

In fact, it is Mizzou Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin, the former A&M president, who will likely be the next head to roll in Columbia. Loftin (along with Wolfe to an extent) was the administrator most responsible for attempting to propose insane rules on Mizzou’s Greek Life last June. Rules that would have potentially destroyed fraternities and sororities at Mizzou. Make no mistake about it, the problems at Mizzou are far from solved.

We will update this story as it progresses.

[via Wall Street Journal]

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