University of Delaware “Nooses” Turn Out to Be Lantern Remnants

The incident creates an ideological backlash.


What began as trepidation about a possible hate crime on the University of Delaware campus has transformed into a debate about political correctness — and all because of a mistake.

“The University of Delaware says three items found hanging from a tree on campus were not nooses, but remnants of paper lanterns left over from an event,” AP reports. “Interim university President Nancy Targett initially announced Wednesday that the discovery of the items hanging in front of a campus building Tuesday night prompted a hate crime investigation. But in a statement posted online around daybreak, Targett says the investigation found that the items weren’t instruments of a hate crime, but left over from an event on The Green, a campus open space.”

Targett also made a video announcement of the findings, but invited the campus community to have a “dialogue” inspired by earlier concerns that a hate crime had been committed:

But there was angry reaction from conservatives, nationally, over the fact that a hate crime had been discerned from relatively innocuous evidence.

“Even a cursory glance at the alleged “nooses” shows the noose narrative to be quite a stretch. They are plainly constructed out of wire, and only one appears to even have a loop shape,” Blake Neff wrote at the Daily Caller, a conservative website. “Case closed? Not so fast. Despite conclusively determining that the entire controversy was a misunderstanding, Targett said the incident somehow still demonstrates the need for more anti-racism work on campus.”

Others called for Targett’s resignation, while some merely rebuked her:

There’s probably more to come. Targett is scheduled to host her gathering on The Green at 4:30 p.m. today.