I must commend the right-wing speakers for their courage. Despite living under the constant threat of violence, they still feel the need to try to spread their message, try to explain their point of view. I’ve written a few times of how these speakers are consistently removed from campus, because administration fears that their presence will provoke the ever more violent subgroup of the Left.
The situation on campus today is so strange to me. When I was an undergraduate, there was a religious speaker who would come to campus. I have nothing against preaching, even trying to get converts (seems like a true believer should do this, after all), but this guy was horrible. He would rant and rave of fire and brimstone, death and sin, and endlessly preach against the evils of…lezzzbianizzzum (I can still mentally hear his strange inflection of the word even though it’s been decades). He’d set up right in the heart of campus and “preach” for hours; there was no avoiding the guy if you wanted to get from one class to the next.
Nobody liked the guy, but he would come right to the center of campus and speak, every year. He’d be surrounded by students, and laughed at, mocked even…but nobody threatened him with violence. There were no riots, not even discussion of riots…nobody pelted the buffoon with eggs, or even threatened to do so (and there were places where you could purchase food mere yards away, some of which would have made fine projectiles).
And now, when a right wing speaker, even a top selling author, comes to campus, things are very different:
Black-clad protesters wearing masks threw commercial-grade fireworks and rocks at police. Some even hurled Molotov cocktails that ignited fires. They also smashed windows of the student union center on the Berkeley campus where the Yiannopoulos event was to be held.
–sorry to link to a fake news site, but I want to show that Leftist violence is so well known that even fake news knows better than try to deny it.
What’s changed? At the risk of sounding like a fanatic, I again point to the student loan scam. It doesn’t explain everything, mind you, but I’ll connect the dots quickly here.
The student loan scam meant everyone could have the money for college, easy. The administrators that run higher ed quickly soaked up the extra money, and quite a bit also went to the trustees (sic) of our institutions.
The first chug of money only created a greater desire for money. Because anyone could get the money, admin realized the only barrier remaining was entrance requirements. Schools quickly became “open admission,” and even schools that claim to have restricted admissions adopted loopholes so there was a way for even the completely uninterested student (or loan receiver) to get on campus.
A flood of people came onto campus, with only a minority of them there for the education. The rest needed to be entertained, and kept on campus as long as possible until the loan money ran out. A plethora of bizarre, non-academic courses sprang up, with, I daresay, an indoctrinating theme to them.
Maybe it was random, or maybe it was some conspiracy that led to Marx being the most assigned author on campus; I’ll leave others to argue over how it happened. What is unarguable is we flooded our campuses with people trained in an ideology notorious for its propensity for violence, for its strong belief that opposition must be silenced, at all costs.
Speakers that represent the Left’s (current, alleged) beliefs don’t face threats of violence, are welcome to speak on campus…they already do, every day in their classes. But speakers representing a different point of view aren’t welcome on campus (at the risk of making an early candidate for “Understatement of the Year 2017”) and professors holding such views have learned not to dare mention them in their classes.
I’m told that the way to describe what has happened to our institutions of higher education (many of them) is they are “SJW Converged,” meaning they are now controlled by the Social Justice Warriors. I suspect this grim view is inaccurate—administration does seem to be bent this way, but that doesn’t explain the hundreds of extremely violent protestors, tacitly supported by thousands of protestors willing to look the other way while the subgroup commits hate crimes (queer how that word doesn’t seem to apply in this direction, for some reason).
I want to emphasis admin’s role in all this, because it is funny listening to them speak out of both sides of their mouth:
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms the violence and unlawful behavior that was on display and deeply regret that those tactics will now overshadow the efforts to engage in legitimate and lawful protest against the performer’s presence and perspectives,” UC Berkeley said in a statement.
“While Yiannopoulos’ views, tactics and rhetoric are profoundly contrary to our own, …”
Let that last sentence sink in: Yiannopoulos’ tactics are contrary to the administration. Let’s see here, Yiannopoulos “tactics” involve giving speeches and writing books, spreading knowledge of his point of view.
Admin doesn’t want that. Do these guys even know what a university is supposed to be?
Now, Yiannopoulos’ opponents are, of course, using diametrically opposed tactics, which include setting fires and violently attacking their “enemies.”
I’m sorry, but if you’re in any way agreeing with what these violent thugs are doing, you are not, as admin claims, condemning in the strongest possible terms their behavior.
Yiannopoulos has responded to the violence with class:
“I’m just stunned that hundreds of people … were so threatened by the idea that a conservative speaker might be persuasive, interesting, funny and might take some people with him, they have to shut it down at all costs.”
–I concede, this is the first thing I’ve ever read by Milo.
This is exactly the point: if his ideas are so terrible, then there’s no reason to protest them, he is certain to get just as many converts to his cause as the campus preacher I watched, many years ago.
But, obviously, if there is a real risk that his words have merit, that he speaks a truth so powerful that it can, with but an hour of him talking, overcome the years of daily indoctrination our kids have received in schools, then I see the protesters’ point: they can’t afford to let him speak.
And, indeed, they don’t dare let him speak, for they know, or at least fear, that their ideology is so vulnerable that it could all fall apart with a handful of words.
Would it? I have my doubts.
Trump’s response to the violence is to threaten to defund Berkeley.
No, Mr. Trump, defunding just one school won’t do it, for this violence, while perhaps the worst at Berkeley, is occurring on other campuses as well.
I again simply ask: defund the student loan scam.