Pennsylvania College Greedily Snatches Up Alumnus' Multimillion-Dollar Bequest but Turns Away His Cat, Princess
"Legacy: A gift from one who is legging it out of this vale of tears."
-- Ambrose Bierce
We will gladly take the money but the hell with the cat!
That was the predictable reaction from administrators at Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, when they learned that an alumnus had died and bequeathed to the school a $6.5 million estate that also included a cat named Princess. (See photo above of the school's science building.)
The cat was quickly fobbed off on an unidentified neighbor of the deceased and no additional information about its fate has been made public. Her new caretaker could either provide her with a good home or dump her at the nearest shelter in order to be killed.
Larry Johnson, a 1961 graduate of Juniata, was a practicing radiologist in the San Francisco area when he died last July from an apparent myocardial infarction at the age of sixty-eight. Although he grew up and attended school in Somerset County, he had no desire to return there, especially in a pine box; instead, he elected to have his remains cremated and his ashes scattered over San Francisco Bay.
His estate included a two-bedroom condominium on Monterey Bay valued at $1.3 million, a Lexus, a .38 caliber Harrington and Richardson pistol, fifteen-hundred CDs, a television, pottery, paintings, imitation Navajo blankets, and a purse made from the scrotum of a buffalo.
"We knew Larry, but he didn't open up his personal side," the university's Kim Kitchen told the Philadelphia Inquirer on May 26th. (See "$6.5 Million, Including the Cat.") "It felt a bit like I was walking into the most personal aspects of his life. Everything had been left as it was the moment he died." (See photo below of her sorting through his possessions.)
In his Devil's Dictionary, Ambrose Bierce defined legacy as "a gift from one who is legging it out of this vale of tears" and Johnson surely must either have been in a big hurry or was caught off guard by events in order not to have made better provisions for his cat's continued care.
As with Princess, Kitchen and her staff could not figure out any way of converting Johnson's leftover food and wearing apparel into folding green so those items were donated to a homeless shelter in the bay area. The poverty pimps who run those detestable institutions will sans doute claim the valuable items for themselves and parcel out the dregs (i.e., spoiled food and moth-eaten clothing) to those who are truly needy and deserving.
Specifically, Johnson's will stipulated that a $1.3 million scholarship be established for students from Somerset County to attend Juniata. Another $1.5 million was designated for assisting Juniata graduates in the furtherance of their education at the University of Rochester's School of Medicine and Dentistry, which is where Johnson completed his graduate work.
A scholarship from Juniata enabled Johnson to attend college and, to his credit, he never forgot the school's generosity. The fact that he was a lifelong bachelor and therefore did not leave behind any immediate heirs no doubt factored into the equation as well.
"This was an important place to Larry," school president Thomas Kepple Jr. told the Inquirer in the article cited supra. "This was a guy who I think valued the education he got and wanted others to have the same experience." (See photo below of Kepple.)
Librarian Lynn Jones was ecstatic to get her hands on Johnson's extensive music collection. "There's more than just classical music here," she told the Inquirer. "There's John Denver, music from TV shows, K.C. and the Sunshine Band... The man was quite a collector."
Admittedly, no one has the right to turn up his or her snozzle at someone else's taste in music. If the toffs and students at Juniata desire to while away their free time listing to Denver's caterwauling and Harry Wayne Casey shaking his booty, that is their affair. Jones' comments nevertheless call into question what is being taught in the school's music appreciation classes.
The important thing to bear in mind is that Juniata's cavalier treatment of Princess is one more example of how antagonistic some universities are toward cats. Eastern University in St. Davids, Pennsylvania and Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant are just two of many colleges that make a habit of killing feral cats. (See Cat Defender posts of February 12, 2007 and September 11, 2006 entitled, respectively, "God-Fearing Baptists at Eastern University Kill Off Their Feral Cats on the Sly while Students Are Away on Christmas Break" and "Selfish and Brutal Eggheads at Central Michigan University Target Colony of Feral Cats for Defamation and Eradication.")
Ailurophobia is so virulent at Cornell that it even canned an employee for feeding feral cats. (See Cat Defender post of June 14, 2006 entitled "Kindhearted Dairyman, Sacked for Feeding Feral Cats, Files $20 Million Lawsuit Against Cornell University.")
It is not known how Juniata treats its own feral cats.
As horrendous as some universities treat their feral cats, that pales in comparison with the tens of thousands of them that are crippled, blinded, carved up, and eventually killed each year by their vivisectors in the pursuit of glory, money, and the thrill of inflicting pain. (See Cat Defender posts of February 1, 2008 and December 5, 2007 entitled, respectively, "Cats Are Destined to Be Treated as Horribly as Lab Mice Now That Vivisectors Are Able to Clone Them with Altered Genes" and "Decoding the Feline Genome Provides Vivisectors with Thousands of New Excuses to Continue Torturing Cats in the Course of Their Bogus Research.")
Ornithologists such as Les Underhill of the University of Cape Town and veterinarians such as Pat Conrad of the University of California's Davis campus use their academic positions and the welfare money that they are able to con out of the taxpayers in order to defame and kill cats with impunity. (See Cat Defender posts of April 27, 2006 and March 3, 2006 entitled, respectively, "Cat-Hating Monster Les Underhill and Moneygrubbing Robben Island Museum Resume Slaughtering Cats in South Africa" and "Cat-Hating Professor at UC-Davis and the BBC Call for the Extermination of 78 Million Feral Felines.")
Moreover, the antipathy shown the feline species by Underhill and Conrad is pretty much universally shared by all wildlife and biology professors. Not a single day passes without several of their anti-cat diatribes appearing in newspapers around the world.
The flagrant crimes of the educated elite are, moreover, not confined to a deep-seated hatred of cats. Many of them spend their entire careers pimping and whoring for the capitalists as well as aiding and abetting the militarists in their gross crimes against humanity, the animals, and Mother Earth.
There is also the perennial problem of the universities' naked exploitation and abuse of gullible students. Not only are jobs for college graduates scarce, but the inexorable creep of totalitarianism has undermined much of the value of a traditional liberal arts education.
The schoolmen's insatiable greed also has led to spiraling grade inflation, a watering down of traditional academic standards and, in some cases, the awarding of unearned degrees as recently occurred at West Virginia University. (See Washington Post, June 7, 2008, "Scandal Prompts WVU President to Resign.")
The situation for adjuncts is just as depressing. According to a November 20th article in the International Herald Tribune, seventy per cent of all college teachers hold part-time appointments. (See "Adjuncts Outnumber Tenured Professors on U.S. Campuses.")
It is even more outrageous that this is occurring at a time when colleges are growing more affluent by the day. For instance, seventy-six universities within the United States boast endowments in excess of a billion dollars. (See USA Today, January 24, 2008, "College Wealth Soaring.")
At the other end of the economic spectrum, many tenured professors pad their wallets by hiring themselves out as adjuncts which not only lends credibility to a thoroughly corrupt system but enables them to shortchange students at two or more institutions. Consequently, these scholars do not always come to class prepared, seldom met with students outside of class, and often only give term papers a cursory once-over.
Intellectual dishonesty is another huge problem. In recent memory, mad dog Zionist Alan M. "Dish of Wits," Laurence H. Tribe, and Charles J. Ogletree, all of the Harvard Law School, have been exposed as plagiarists. (See The Harvard Crimson, September 27, 2004, "Prof Admits to Misusing Source.") Meanwhile, professors from other institutions have accepted bounties from the American Enterprise Institute in order to discredit the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Degrees, awards, publications, and a bulging bank account are worthless if one is lacking in integrity. Moreover, an illiterate country bumpkin who is honest is a cut above the myriad of charlatans that have taken up residence at the world's universities.
It is therefore not surprising that most universities have become every bit as predatory and right-wing as the moneyed interests that they serve. Or perhaps that is how they have always operated. After all, it was Bierce who once defined a lecturer as "someone who has his tongue in your ear, his hand in your pocket, and his faith in your patience."
Photos: Juniata (science building and Kepple) and Gary M. Baranec of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Kitchen).