The suppression of expression on campus needs to stop

Suppression of expression on campus milo riot berkely

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As I have noted many times, and experienced firsthand in the last few weeks at the University at Buffalo, Truman State University, and Gettysburg College, colleges and universities today are not institutions of higher learning, but factories of hard-Left and pro-jihad indoctrination, propagandizing and brainwashing students into becoming ugly little fascist shock troops for twenty-first century totalitarians. Public universities and colleges must cease to be indoctrination centers for the hard-Left, and ensure that dissent from the Leftist line is not censored and the dissenters brutalized, or they should receive no taxpayer funding of any kind, and required to include in all promotional literature a statement to the effect that they don’t receive any public funding because of their intolerance of all intellectual dissent. If they are private universities or colleges, they should be required to include a warning label on all their promotional literature: “Warning: this institution does not tolerate views that deviate from the mainstream Leftist line. Enroll at your own risk.”

“Editorial: The suppression of expression on campus needs to stop,” Daily Commercial (Leesburg, Florida), May 5, 2017:

President Donald Trump has rattled some in our political chattering class with overtures to some of the ruthless dictators stalking our globe. We’ve lived for months with unsupported speculation about Trump’s bromance with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Trump has exacerbated the hand-wringing recently by positive references directed at the likes of North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte, Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Egypt’s Abdel ¬Fatah al-Sissi.

One chief complaint from the president’s critics is that Trump is inappropriately extending goodwill to strongmen with weak records of tolerating dissent, free expression and human rights.

Perhaps we would better served if those who questioned the president’s attitude toward the world’s worst authoritarians would stop tolerating homegrown forces who emulate their behavior.

Last week outspoken conservative pundit and author Ann Coulter was slated to shake up the hallowed halls at California’s premiere state university in Berkeley, which prides itself on uninhibited expression. Invited by a pair of conservative student groups, Coulter was expected to talk about her support for Trump and his immigrati0n views. It didn’t happen.

University administrators cancelled her April 27 appearance in mid-April, a few days after an unrelated brawl broke out in downtown Berkeley between pro- and anti-Trump forces. The college then offered to reschedule for Tuesday (when classes would be out). Coulter rejected the offer and vowed to come to Berkeley on the original date, and then watched as her sponsors bailed, leading her to ditch the idea for good.

The reason provided by the university and Coulter’s sponsors was the same: the atmosphere on campus had become so poisonous that neither side could guarantee the safety of Coulter or, presumably, her fans or the protesters.

Yet Coulter’s was the third appearance by a conservative at the supposed birthplace of the Free Speech Movement that was cancelled because of fear about the violent reaction of those who despise the president. In February UC-Berkeley dropped former Breitbart News editor Milo Yiannopoulos after an anti-Trump protest devolved into a riot.

The College Republicans at Berkeley then invited David Horowitz, a UC-Berkeley grad and one-time apologist for the Black Panthers who converted to conservatism, to his alma mater in mid-April as a substitute for Yiannopoulos. The group pulled the plug on that after campus police declared that, in order to diminish the threat of violence, Horowitz could only speak in the afternoon, not in the evening, and only to students. The event was cancelled, the College Republicans’ president wrote, because the police rules left only one venue, located some seven blocks from campus, and would have cost the group several thousand dollars for security.

Such ill-tempered, anti-Trump fretting has been occurring again and again on campuses of all sizes.

Earlier this year conservative author Charles Murray’s attempt to speak at Middlebury College in Vermont sparked a brawl that left Murray’s campus sponsor in the hospital with a concussion, and him writing afterward that he feared for his safety.

Another conservative writer, Heather Mac Donald, was not allowed to speak publicly at Claremont McKenna College in California, but instead was ushered to a private room, where she gave her talk via livestream as demonstrators pounded on the windows of the room and hurled expletives at police.

At New York University, a protest of conservative journalist Gavin McInnes turned ugly, with demonstrators fighting police, pepper-spraying McInnes himself and nearly a dozen people arrested.

At the University of Buffalo this week, Robert Spencer, a conservative speaker who discusses Islamic terrorism, was shouted down and denounced as a Nazi by critics. No violence occurred, but audience members told reporters they feared the tension created by his appearance could have prompted it….