Professor Brandon Smith of the Political Science Department at UCSB has reportedly quit the teaching and study of politics following an encounter with third-year political science student Brett Harvey. Smith and Harvey have yet to comment on the confrontation, but onlookers from the PS 153 class have pieced together the exchange.
According to students, it all started when Smith involved the class this past Tuesday in an engaging discussion of different countries’ political systems and the values their citizens hold. Known for his seminal work analyzing the intersection of pop culture and political awareness, You’re Not in My App: How the Kardashians Ruined Western Democracy, Smith is said to have always enjoyed having such discussions with his generally quite politically aware students at UCSB. However, these interactions were rumored to have been based in reality TV shows about housewives and infamous families, two things he believes are destroying the American political system.
He decided that America had failed him and that the American political system was so overrun by E! News and Bravo that there was no chance for it to ever be resurrected.
Questioning his professor on the merits of this belief, Harvey also revealed his vast knowledge of the Kardashian family. Harvey, a supposed scholar in the undergraduate Department of Political Science, noted to the professor that while he has never watched the show, nor is he a follower of the family, he was able to name the matriarch of the clan and all four Kardashian siblings as well as make the familial connection between the Kardashian name and Kylie and Kendall Jenner.
Shocked at his comment, Professor Smith fired back with an insightful question.
“Brett, I appreciate your contribution. So, please, enlighten us on the importance of another famous family: the Supreme Court.”
Stunned, Harvey tried to muster up a response, looking deep within himself to find any piece of information on the current Supreme Court or its justices.
“Brett,” Smith continued, “just name one. That’s all I’m asking. Name one Supreme Court justice.”
Harvey looked up at his professor, and with tears streaming down his face, he replied, “I can’t.”
Realizing that a student he believed to have so much potential could name every member of the Kardashian family but not a single Supreme Court justice left Smith astonished and dismayed. He decided that America had failed him and that the American political system was so overrun by E! News and Bravo that there was no chance for it to ever be resurrected. Following a short existential crisis at his home in Goleta, Smith decided to relocate to Finland to try his luck at a socialist regime and a country with a 100 percent literacy rate. He has not been seen or heard from since.
Erin Lubitz is a second-year political science and communication double major at UCSB. Her favorite Supreme Court justice is Ruth Bader Ginsberg and her favorite Kardashian is probably Khloe, but fluctuates depending on the season.