Johns Hopkins Ignores Student Majority, Retains Ben Carson As Commencement Speaker

Last week, tea party folk hero Dr. Ben Carson found himself in the middle of his very own scandal after he went on national television to compare same-sex marriage to bestiality and pedophilia. The resulting blowback forced him back on TV to walk back his comments, deliver a weak non-apology involving fruit, and — in the only display of level-headedness all week — offer to withdraw as the commencement speaker for Johns Hopkins’ School of Medicine after a majority of the students from the 2013 graduating class signed a petition calling for the school to rescind his offer.

So it’s a bit surprising to hear today, via the Washington Blade, that Johns Hopkins intends to keep Carson as its commencement speaker over the objections of nearly everybody involved:

The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told the Washington Blade that Johns Hopkins will keep Carson as speaker despite a petition signed by a majority of the graduating class calling him an “inappropriate choice” — and said the school will formally make the announcement later this week. The university’s public affairs office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

“I would say that this is their day, and the last thing I would want to do is rain on their parade,” is what Carson told Andrea Mitchell late last week with regards to the group of students asking him to step down as speaker. At the time, he stopped just short of flatly declining the offer, but seemed to suggest that he would be approaching the administration to decline the offer.