if a public university won't allow conservatives to speak then I refuse to
give my tax dollars to that university. Let's put it on the ballot.
When a person of religion makes a statement like " Yet this mob exists to
enforce conformity of thought and to delegitimize any dissent from its
sanctioned worldview. Intolerance is its calling card”, I am temped to
remind them that religions are probably the most intolerant organizations in the
world. When my posts or letters are rejected by the news paper, it
is mostly because I have stepped over the line of toleration of decent as set by
the owners and editors of the news paper. I don't know if the
right to express an opinion in someone else's venue, a news paper, is
Constitutional or not as freedom of speech or freedom of the press but it seems
like it should be. Freedom of speech doesn't mean much in our current
world situation if your voice is free as the sound of your voice. Other than all that, I prefer to listen to my enemies rather than my friends.
Condoleeza Rice spoke at BYU a few years ago and did a marvelous job. She was
witty and insightful. It is a shame that students at Rutgers are denied the
opportunity to hear her speak. I attended Dick Cheney's commencement
speech at BYU which was loudly protested by a few. Thankfully, BYU did not cave
to pressure and let him come. His speech was very bland and filled with
graduation cliches. He went out of his way to keep politics out of what he had
to say. Finally, I attended the speech given by Harry Reid at BYU. Of the
three I mention here, his was the most political but also the most personal. I
appreciated hearing from all three, even though I may not agree with what they
do or have done.
It has been impossible to schedule conservative speakers in most universities
because of leftist demonstrations and interruptions. This is not a new
phenomenon and highlights the tyranny of those on the left who champion free
speech, but refuse to practice it.
Why is this even a topic of discussion? Back in the 70's the ALCU went to
court in support of Neo Nazi and KKK right to march and spew their hate in
Jewish communities and down south! We've come full circle now? It's
sad that those who preach tolarence are now the intolerant! We haven't
learned from our past history as those who led the Civil Rights movement are
quoted and worshipped as patriots are the excuse for intlolerence today!
There was once a time when liberal universities claimed a high tolerance and
even a liking for various ways of thinking and opinions. Those times are long
gone. The only diversity left on these left-wing liberal universities is skin
color. They make it more than obvious that any ideas, values or even
opinions that reflect anything conservative is totally unwelcome and even
abhorred. Sadly, they have become the epitome of intolerance, and consequently
graduate students who are narrow and single minded. They are the last places I
would send any of my children for a quality education.It's sad
and even frightening to realize some of our future leaders and judges are being
taught in these institutions of intolerance. That doesn't bode well for the
future of America.
patriot makes a good point. We say we have a representative democracy, but it
does not amount to much. We get taxed a good amount, but have no direct control
of how the money gets spent. I think we would benefit from a system where for at
least a portion of your taxes you get to decide where they go. In the past this
was not feasible, but today we have the technology to do this as a low cost.
Unfortunately, what we lack the gumption to move forward and make it happen. Or
perhaps there is resistance from special interest groups that do nothing for the
people while getting generously funded by the government.
Judging by the difficulty of getting comments onto Deseret News articles,
I'd say this paper is a strong supporter of censorship.
Speaking as a liberal, I'm uncomfortable about the "dis-inviting"
of these speakers. It reminds me of the blacklists of McCarthy's day or the
reaction to von Papen's Marburg speech. We liberals need to back off and
let people talk. It's the best of our tradition.
First of all, these issues are in no way a form on censorship. Protests of
speakers happens all the time, it just seems that the threshold for which
individuals will withdraw from speaking seems to be dramatically lower than in
years past. Most importantly, lets keep things in perspective. this is not
censorship since all of the nominated speakers personally withdrew.
How awful that a university of all places would cave to such pressure and
insulate itself from speakers that might espouse unpopular beliefs. More
universities should be like BYU was in its treatment of professor Jeffrey
Nielsen. In 2006, he penned on op-ed in the Salt Lake Tribune that urged
acceptance of same-sex marriage. Instead of firing him, BYU . . . oh wait, BYU
did fire him for it.
McDugall makes a great point. If Condoleeza Rice went ahead and did
the commencement speech at Rutgers, nobody would have cared, but because she
decided to withdraw, it scores her huge political points with conservatives and
reinforces that everyone should stay in their respective political echo
chambers.Rice is a professor at Stanford. She encounters liberals
all day, every day. But backing out of the speech at Rutgers scores points for
her side, without having to do anything.
The "loud protests" at BYU against Dick Cheney mentioned by Eliot were
in fact tightly controlled, limited to times and places where Cheney would not
be near. The VEEP by then had pretty much stopped giving speeches to public
This is not the right way to think about it, in my view.What in the
world is the point of telling students that they must listen to a graduation
speaker they do not respect?To have to sit through a speech by Dick
Cheney or Condoleza Rice, who represent the terrible, unnecessary, and
disastrous Iraq war to many Americans, should not be required of students,
except at BYU and other schools which follow a right wing agenda.If
the DN wants liberal students to listen to someone who represents the Bush
Administration in their minds, it would be only fair for you to suggest that Dan
Savage should speak at BYU.Do you see my point?
Ironyguy,What a great example. Thank you for calling out the
extremists in your party that are responsible for the majority of the recent
calls. Republicans need to do the same. Here in Nebraska, we resisted some guy
who had old ties with a radical liberal group (some professor from Univ. of
Chicago a few years back). Anyway, he also didn't come. It was a shame.
Free speech is vital to our way of life. You learn so much from those you do
not agree with. Listen to them. Then they might listen to you!
I'll remember some of these comments when repubs complain about Uvu
inviting Michael Moore to speak. Interesting how censorship is suddenly bad when
a few years ago it was good!Students didn't want her to speak
because she's a conservative.Students didn't want her to
speak because she's a war criminal.Schools have a right to
invite and disinvite whoever they want. Or do repubs want compulsion?
Cancelling due to student opposition doesn't quite sound the same as
censorship. But it does get articles like this written, and gives traction to
those claiming victimhood.
I've always been bothered when people will object to someone else because
of their "intolerance". Particularly when they simultaneously shout the
other person down, thus demonstrating their own intolerance AND hypocrisy.Everyone is both tolerant and intolerant.To condemn someone
for their intolerance is meaningless since all one is truly saying is that the
other person has tolerances that are different than one's own. To make
objections to the things tolerated by the other person meaningful one must
actually argue for the reasons tolerating something, or not, is the way thing
should be. To merely state that the other person tolerates or does not tolerate
something that you think they should't or should is like insisting that
someone should like a certain kind of art, or not. Pointless.Ironically, the political correctness that has been growing in the last few
decades was, in many ways, a reaction to what the PC crowd regarded as
puritanical obsessions to which they took exception. The result is that
we've simply traded on puritanism for another.My hope is the
**freedom** of thought and expression will someday, once again, become
puritanically and politically correct.
Young (or un-young) people shouldn't object to other opinions being
expressed. That doesn't, however, mean that there is a "right" to
speak to large audiences - and be paid for it.
Who has been censored? If it's censorship to not be invited to talk
anywhere I want, then I have been irrevocably censored everywhere.The students have the right to speak up and the people inviting guests have
the right to uninvite if they want to. I think we have lost touch with the
dictionary to tell the truth.