Faced with intense pressure and stinging criticism following the pepper-spraying of non-violent protesters on her campus, UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi should do what responsible administrators always do under the circumstances: find a scapegoat.
In these difficult times, the Chancellor's mind must certainly be considering the central question: who? who should I fire to save my own job?
One obvious candidate is UC Davis Police Chief Annette Spicuzza, whose transparent deception in relating Friday's events makes her a clear choice. She declared that her officers were surrounded by a crowd and had to resort to pepper-spraying to make their way out of the difficult situation. But she should have been aware of a saying, in the language of her forebears: le bugie hanno le gambe corte — lies have short legs — and lies certainly don't go very far these days when everybody carries a high-resolution video camera in their pockets.
In this respect, we would like to suggest that UC Davis Police Lt. John Pike, who is the primary pepper-sprayer of the whole episode, would make a much more suitable target. The look of a VoPo in a Darth Vader costume, the nonchalant attitude with which he sprays children (children!) sitting on the ground, his leisurely stroll as he inflicts chemical burns on non-violent students, not to mention his girth (well-fed by those very students' tuition money): he's the ultimate incarnation of the banality of evil. He's absolutely perfect, the perfect fall guy. Your own job is safe, Chancellor Katehi.