Every Friday, we choose an alum who has been making headlines—for better or for worse.
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Van Jones ’93JD

He was hired to promote green jobs, but Van Jones ’93JD turned out to have too many red flags for the White House. The environmental activist and author of The Green-Collar Economy—named an Obama administration special adviser for green jobs, enterprise, and innovation in March—came under fire in recent weeks from Fox News’s Glenn Beck. Beck raised alarms over Jones’s call to “change the whole system” in America, including overconsumption of energy and mistreatment of Native Americans. (Beck didn’t mention that Jones gave the keynote speech at the Yale Law School’s annual Rebellious Lawyering Conference—a gathering of left-leaning legal activists—in February.) But the piece of Jones’s past that drove him from office was his signature on a 9/11 “Truther” Petition in 2004—especially the petition’s claim that “people within the current administration may indeed have deliberately allowed 9/11 to happen.” While the political right celebrated Jones’s resignation, many on the left painted him as a victim. But not blogger Arianna Huffington, who rejoiced that Jones is “no longer tied to his desk with a sock in his mouth.” Instapundit’s Glenn Reynolds ’85JH had a different take: “Unlike me,” he wrote, “Van Jones has never been Yalie of the Week. Hence, he’s oppressed and miserable.”

Filed under environment, activism, Law School, milestones, stepped down, resigned
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