U of A Smashes Through Global Brutality Rankings

Andy Grabia
2 min readMay 16, 2024

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A recent attack on student protestors has vaulted the university onto the list for the first time.

View of the University of Alberta’s north campus in Fall.

For the first time in its history, the University of Alberta has made the list of the Global Higher Ed Campus Police Brutality Rankings.

The rankings, published annually by the Institute of Reeducation in Beijing, highlights universities around the world who are working hard at suppressing free speech on their campuses. This year, schools in the United States and Canada dominated the rankings.

Coming in 12th, ahead of traditional powerhouses Kent State, U.C. Berkeley, and Fisk University, many see president and vice-chancellor Bill Flanagan’s three years of destroying collegiality and morale on campus, as well as his commitment to violating the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, as a major factor in the U of A’s addition to the list.

“I can’t take all the credit,” says Flanagan. “I have a great group of staff who refuse to quit or speak out against me. I also have wonderful partners in the Board of Governors, Edmonton Police Services, and the Government of Alberta. Without their assistance, we’d just be some school adhering to the rule of law, like McGill.”

Remaining steadfast in its refusal to admit it’s a public university accountable to Albertans, the U of A has instead focused on students and staff, targeting them for sleeping in an open field with Gatorade and camping equipment.

“As an administration, we really wanted to go after those who are paying $10-$15k a year to recieve an education, as well as what remaining staff and faculty we have left. We didn’t feel like five years in a row of tuition increases were enough, and laying off hundreds of people is kind of boring for us at this point, so we thought we’d escalate matters and ask the police to attack them in a pre-dawn raid,” says Flanagan.

That raid, along with the performance from Edmonton Police Services — dazzling the small crowd of innocents with their infamous riot gear, choreographed baton lines, and teary finale — may have bumped the U of A ahead of rival school the University of Calgary, who came in 13th on the list.

“To be mentioned in the same company as Columbia, U.C.L.A, Dartmouth and other schools that have attacked their own students and staff…I’m speechless,” says a winking Flanagan, currently working on his tan in Italy.

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