An Orange Coast College professor’s in-class rant against President-elect Donald Trump went viral last week, but two students in the class say that it was what happened when the cameras were turned off that should scare administrators.
The professor, Olga Perez-Stable Cox, was filmed “lamenting” Trump’s victory, calling the President-elect a “white supremacist” and insisting that Vice President-elect Mike Pence is “one of the most anti-gay humans in this country.” She called Trump’s supporters “terrorists.”
Her comments prompted a complaint from a Republican student who says he felt threatened while in her class. OCC College Republicans spoke out against what they claimed was “harassing behavior,” and administrators at OCC insisted they would look into the incident.
There were protests both for and against punishing Cox, and Cox says she’s been forced to leave California after receiving threats.
But several students in Cox’s class have now come forward to say that her rant was just the beginning of a political witch-hunt.
They say Cox began her rant unprompted, telling the class that “the people creating the [Donald Trump] assault are among us.” She then tried to force Trump supporters in her class to defend themselves, eventually asking them to stand up so that other people in the class would know who they are.
“She was saying dehumanizing things about Trump supporters … and nobody felt like they could stand up,” one student told CBS News. “Me, in fear of my grade. And then she said, ‘I bet none of you will stand up because you’re embarrassed for yourselves. The rest of the class should look out for them and know who to protect themselves from.”
A second student corroborated the report, noting that they came forward now because the student who recorded Cox is facing a suspension for violating the professor’s privacy rights.
Cox’s representative says that she “skillfully” allowed students with dissenting opinions to represent themselves, and that the students who filmed the video were to blame for their unwillingness to engage in a “classroom discussion.”