CULTURE CLASH: Republicans Threaten Cuts to University of Tennessee Knoxville Over Anti-Christmas Flap. I think this has mostly blown over, but speaking as a former lobbyist of sorts, what strikes me is how oblivious people on campus are to the correlation of forces here. It doesn’t matter if you have a couple of hundred students chanting in a meeting room on campus; these legislators are responsive to their constituents, and they have pretty much complete control over the university if they want to exercise it. Generally speaking, they don’t want to exercise it. But enough high-profile embarrassments, and that can change, and if it does there’s not much either the faculty or the administration can do about it. This is, I suspect, a lesson that a lot of universities will be learning in coming years. If only someone had warned them.