There is really no gentle way to discuss the current state of discourse on American college campuses. It’s shit. College students appear to have a concept of university life that is devoid of any kind of open dialogue, where students are protected from rather than exposed to divergent views. I really feel for university administrators who have to feign respect for student viewpoints based on a double standard that either misunderstands or just ignores Free Speech. It’s a sense of entitlement that I wouldn’t have expected even from college kids.
David Williamson’s piece in the National Review, “Yale’s Idiot Children,” gets it pretty much right:
It wasn’t really for little ol’ me, in fact. On Friday, I was honored to be a guest of the William F. Buckley Jr. Program at Yale, where I participated in a panel on freedom of speech with the wonderful writer Harry Stein and Professor Bradley A. Smith, a noted law scholar. The Yale kids did their screaming best to prevent us from having a conversation about free speech — the Yale kids are utterly immune to irony — but the event went much as planned. Coming and going, we were chanted at by idiot children screaming, “Genocide is not a joke!” Of course it isn’t. Yale kids, on the other hand . . .
That’s right — Yale Students held a protest against Free Speech, and as far as anyone can tell they were not being ironic. And if you think the protesters are Yale set a new low for speech on campus, you haven’t been paying attention to University of Missouri. The student protesters in the video above essentially want to ban media coverage of their protests, and this just one day after protests resulted in the resignation of the University’s president (who, as far as anyone can tell, hadn’t really done anything in particular). It’s a bit frightening when you think about it.
Big props to Tim Tai, the photographer in the above video who goes head to head with the protesters who are trying to intimidate him. That dreadful woman at the end of the video is Melissa Click, a University professor who has apologized and should probably also be fired (unless she has tenure, of course…).
It’s bad, and it might get worse.