Bret Weinstein is a Theoretical Evolutionary Biologist and Former Professor at Evergreen State College.
Weinstein began his undergraduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania. He eventually transferred to the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he received his undergraduate degree.
Weinstein spent the majority of his academic career as a professor of Biology at Evergreen State College in Washington. In 2002, he published The Reserve-Capacity Hypothesis, which proposed that the telomeric differences between humans and laboratory mice have led scientists to underestimate the risks new drugs pose to humans in the form of heart disease, liver dysfunction and related organ failure. Weinstein took a brief hiatus from Evergreen to earn his PhD in Biology from the University of Michigan with a dissertation on evolutionary trade-off mechanisms.
Weinstein first experienced notoriety when he became the focus of a campus protest at Evergreen State College, where he was teaching biology. His involvement began when he wrote a letter to Evergreen faculty in March of 2017. His letter objected to a change in the College's decades-old tradition of observing a "Day of Absence" during which students and faculty of a minority race would stay home from campus to highlight their contributions to the College. The announced change would flip the traditional event, asking white students and faculty to stay home. Weinstein's letter strongly opposed and criticized the change. In late May 2017, student protests—focusing in large part on the comments made by Weinstein—disrupted the campus and called for a number of changes to the college. The College's president refused to allow law enforcement to quell protesters. Campus police told Weinstein that they could not protect him and encouraged him to stay off campus, which caused Weinstein to hold his biology class in a public park. In September of 2017, a settlement was reached in which Weinstein and his wife, professor Heather Heying, resigned and received a settlement.
Following his resignation from Evergreen, Weinstein has been described as being part of the "Intellectual Dark Web", a term which his brother Eric coined to describe a group of academics and media personalities who publish outside of mainstream media.
Weinstein describes himself as a political progressive and "left-libertarian".
Weinstein appeared before the U.S. House Oversight Committee on May 22, 2018, to discuss free speech on college campuses.
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