, 25 tweets, 6 min read Read on Twitter
ICYMI: Here's the latest episode of That Thing You Saw on Social Media Wasn't What You Thought It Was. (Thread)
(2/25) It began on a Florida political news site. Hugh Culverhouse Jr., one of the University of Alabama's largest donors, called on prospective students to boycott the school over Alabama's new abortion law. (But there was so much more to this story.) floridapolitics.com/archives/29753…
(3/25) The same day Culverhouse called for the boycott, UA released an internal memo showing the chancellor had already asked trustees to return Culverhouse's $21.5 million donations and take his name off the law school, before his call for a boycott. al.com/news/2019/05/h…
(4/25) Here is that memo, which was sent to trustees a day before Culverhouse called for the boycott.
(5/25) And here is the university's statement saying Culverhouse's call for a boycott had nothing to do with the chancellor's decision to cut ties and return the money. They also said Culverhouse had already demanded at least $10m of his pledge back leading up to the split.
(6/25) Culverhouse responded with more invective, telling the Florida politics site, “I’m sorry for the university, but f— you, and have a nice day.” floridapolitics.com/archives/29764…
(7/25) On Friday, UA trustees approved the chancellor's recommendation. And then ... al.com/news/2019/06/u…
(8/25) The Washington Post published an op-ed by Culverhouse which framed the trustee's decision as retaliation for his stance on the abortion issue, even though the university had already released one memo showing its decision happening first. washingtonpost.com/opinions/i-gav…
(9/25) That Washington Post op-ed took off, spreading far and wide by folks on social media primed to believe the worst about Alabama. The only problem was, its premise was provably false. So then ...
(10/25) UA went DEFCON 1, releasing emails Culverhouse had sent to UA and internal emails concerning Culverhouse's demands. al.com/news/2019/06/u…
(11/25) Those emails showed the rift with Culverhouse had nothing to do with Alabama's new abortion law, but instead, that he had attempted to micromanage the law school.
(12/25) In those emails, Culverhouse appears to have a particularly personal beef with the law school dean, Mark Brandon, whom he calls "a small town, insecure dean. The outside world frightens him." scribd.com/document/41286…
(13/25) Culverhouse made it clear that his money came with strings attached. "You seem to think the quid pro quo is I give you the largest sum and commitment in the school's history and you have no return consideration as your end of the transaction."
(14/25) Culverhouse also argues that the law school should fire as many as 10 faculty members and/or change class sizes at the school, which he says is too fixated on national rankings, "a simple mathematical manipulation."
(15/25) Culverhouse also wanted to sit in on classes as he wanted to monitor. This bothered the law school dean because Culverhouse had already said some professors should be fired.
(16/25) Culverhouse grew especially angry after finalists for his endowed chair didn't meet his liking.
(17/25) On May 24, he wrote Brandon, "[Y]our actions have resulted in my not giving any further gifts to Alabama and yesterday, I removed Alabama as a beneficiary from my will/trust. That amount makes a mockery of the sums I have given. It is gone."
(18/25) Emails released by the university show the dean, Brandon, responding politely to Culverhouse. "I am sorry that I've made you angry."
(19/25) But other UA officials had had enough of him. In a May 25 email, trustee Joe Espy asks the UA general counsel to draw up plans for severing the university's relationship with Culverhouse and giving his money back.
(20/25) "What he has said to our president and about our president and Dean are absolutely unacceptable," Espy wrote.
(21/25) Chancellor Finis St. John IV replied to Espy, "I agree as well. We need to do this immediately because it will only get worse." This was four days BEFORE Culverhouse called for a boycott over Alabama's abortion law.
(22/25) The emails have shown that Culverhouse hijacked the abortion debate and Alabama's ugly moment in the national spotlight to use as a preemptive strike against UA and a way to save face. al.com/news/2019/06/c…
(23/25) In a bizarre twist of logic, Culverhouse said he was glad UA released the emails and that the documents had proved he was right.
(24/25) "The emails further prove that UA returned my $21.5 million donation as retaliation for calling on students to reconsider attending a university that advocates a state law that discriminates against women and is unconstitutional," Culverhouse said. (They don't.)
(25/25) The Culverhouse feud has been another case study in social media pile-ons. Misinformation spread because it's easy to believe the worst about Alabama. (I get it.) But the truth finally has its shoes on and it's quickly catching up. al.com/news/2019/06/c…
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Kyle Whitmire
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!