Friday 22nd June 2018

Home » Frontpage » Currently Reading:

Free Speech For Me But Not For Thee

October 30, 2017 Frontpage No Comments

By MIKE MANNO

I was intrigued by a recent article in the Daily Princetonian written by a junior philosophy major, Ryan Born. It was an argument against free speech — at least for conservatives. It was a reflection on what is wrong on university campuses today.
Now I don’t know the young man who wrote the article, and I am sure he is sincere and a good student, but it is his ideas that I have trouble with, especially in today’s current politically correct climate. A climate that says some conservative views, whether on religion or politics, have no business being heard.
“I am not arguing that conservatives do not expect intellectual opposition to their content; instead, I am arguing against their right to be heard and accepted,” wrote our student philosopher.
“Conservatives would have you believe that their insistence on free speech is related to a desire for intellectual diversity and openness or discussion. When conservatives appeal to ‘free speech,’ it is actually a calculated political move, designed to open up avenues of political discourse while shaming others from moving in active political opposition. I argue that when conservatives resort to this move, they can be safely ignored, as they are appealing to a right that does not exist. In my belief, when conservative ideas are opposed, there is no right that is being infringed,” he wrote.
Of course this shouldn’t come as a surprise to many. All too often we see conservative speakers on college campuses either being interrupted and shouted down, or their invitations to speak withdrawn by college administrators.
Fears of violent protest against conservative speakers have caused some colleges to charge unreasonably high rental fees from sponsoring organizations to cover “security costs,” others cancel speakers due to the fear that overly sensitive students will face some psychological harm if exposed to some nefarious idea from the political or religious right.
Case in point is a recent withdrawal of school sponsorship of a debate on the pros and cons of President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and President Trump’s plan to rescind it, pending congressional action.
The law school at Seattle University had agreed to sponsor the event in conjunction with the student chapter of the Federalist Society, a conservative/libertarian legal group. The program was to have been conducted as part of the school’s Social Justice Mondays series which had sponsored such programs as “Refugee Roundtable” and “Reproductive Justice.”
According to the website The College Fix, the law school’s Direct Action Committee organized an online petition to cancel the event. The petition read:
“We refuse to sit by and let hateful xenophobic and anti-immigrant rhetoric be a part of the culture/message/speech of Seattle University School of Law and Seattle University as a whole. We demand the school act on behalf of its undocumented students, and instead of cosponsoring programming which is harmful to them, they should foster an environment which is safe for them and for everyone else on campus.”
It worked. Dean Annette Clark withdrew the school’s sponsorship saying that Mr. Trump has “generated great fear within vulnerable immigrant communities and has caused real harm, making discussions of immigration policy that include a conservative viewpoint even more painful and anxiety- and anger-producing for those individuals and families who are at risk (and for their allies).”
While the program was allowed to continue under the sole sponsorship of the Federalist Society, the dean scheduled an alternative pro-DACA event. That the pro-DACA program was acceptable, but a pro/con debate — for law students, of all people — apparently was not, is only one example of how thought control and free speech are handled on many of today’s colleges.
“I fail to see the basis for the withdrawal of the sponsorship as well as the apology by [Dean] Clark for holding a balanced debate on an issue [with] great national importance,” said George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, adding: “The debate reflects precisely the mission of higher education to encourage debates on issues that divide our country,” according to The College Fix.
Another example which flew under the radar was reported at See Thru EDU, a publication of the Texas Public Policy Foundation. In September the academic journal Third World Quarterly published an essay by Professor Bruce Gilley of Portland State University, entitled “The Case for Colonialism.”
Shortly after the article was published over 16,000 college professors signed a petition demanding that the article be retracted, and it was.
According to See Thru EDU’s George Leef, “The scholars who signed the petitions were not disagreeing with Gilley. They were demanding that he be silenced. They also wanted apologies from both [Gilley] and the journal. Just as totalitarian regimes of the last century insisted that dissidents acknowledge their errors before being sent off to ‘re-education’ camps, so do our contemporary progressives insist that people who say or write ‘offensive’ things bow down before them.”
He closed by stating, “Shouting speakers down and demanding retraction of ‘incorrect’ writings are the hallmarks of authoritarianism. It is deeply disturbing to see how far it has spread into our higher education system.”
In Wisconsin the Board of Regents recently voted for a new policy that imposes punishments ranging from suspension to expulsion for students who violate free speech rights on campus. One regent who opposed the policy objected to the language that a student “alleged to have engaged in violent or other disorderly misconduct that materially and substantially disrupted the free expression of others” could face discipline.
Campus Reform reports that Regent Tony Evers claimed the new policy, which targets activities used to close debate, will chill speech on campuses. “Proponents of this anti-free speech legislation argue liberal biases have overwhelmed our college campuses, but then cannot provide one single example of a conservative speaker being unable to complete their remarks at any college or university in Wisconsin,” Evers is reported to have said.
The Economist reported last year that there is a growing belief by many that people and groups have a right not to be offended. It cites, as an example, an action taken by the University of California saying that calling “America a land of opportunity” is a “racist micro-aggression” since it could be interpreted that those who do not succeed have only themselves to blame.
Are we starting to understand now how our Princeton philosopher comes by his understanding of free speech? And what cost is it to the mission of the university?
The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) has found that a majority of students now self-censor their classroom comments, support disinviting campus speakers who hold beliefs with which they disagree, and do not know that hate speech is largely protected by the First Amendment.
“[Fifty-eight] percent of college student think it’s important to be part of a campus community where they are not exposed to intolerant or offensive ideas,” FIRE reports. “In class, 30 percent of students have self-censored because they thought their words would be offensive….Very liberal students are 14 percentage points more likely than their very conservative peers to feel comfortable expressing their opinions in the classroom.”
“There is clearly a partisan divide in how students perceive free speech on college campuses,” said FIRE Executive Director Robert Shibley. “This further solidifies the importance of FIRE’s mission. Free expression is too important to become a partisan issue in higher education.”
The well-known Harvard law professor, Alan Dershowitz, agrees. He told Fox Business News, “Classrooms have become propaganda vehicles where captive audiences of students are told not how to think but what to think, particularly about sensitive issues like the Middle East, the Arab-Israeli conflict, gay rights, Black Lives Matter, and they are graded on what they think, rather than how they think.”
The issue is so prevalent that the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) has opened a new website as a resource for students facing attacks on their speech rights. ADF Senior Counsel Casey Mattox, director of the Center for Academic Freedom, said:
“Today’s college students are tomorrow’s judges, legislators, teachers, and voters. Yet public universities are not only failing to educate the next generation about their First Amendment freedoms, they are actively violating those rights and teaching the next generation that freedom of speech is too dangerous to permit.”
We’ve come a long way from the 1965 Supreme Court decision in Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District allowing students to wear black armbands in school to protest the Vietnam War, and the 1969 Supreme Court decision in Brandenburg v. Ohio allowing the Ku Klux Klan to rally, to now where “safe spaces” are common and students at Kellogg Community College in Michigan can be arrested for handing out copies of the U.S. Constitution and To Kill a Mockingbird can be banned from classroom discussion in a Mississippi school district.
The danger, of course, is that free speech is the bedrock for all of our freedoms: Press, religion, assembly, petition; without it our democracy will wane and so will freedom of thought, for if you can control speech you can control thought. “Newspeak” taught us that, but unfortunately we are coming to the point where our institutions dedicated to training our future leaders have missed the thrust of Orwell’s message.

Share Button

2017 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Catholic bishops are quick to attack Trump but slow to advise their voters

(RNS) — President Trump had no sooner returned home from his historic photo op with Korean dictator Kim Jong Un in Singapore when he faced condemnation from a host of religious leaders, from Southern Baptists to African Methodists to Catholics,…Continue Reading

Bishop: Deny Communion to Border Agents. It’s a ‘Life Issue.’

Is enforcing U.S. immigration law a moral evil that demands excommunication? Or would a new proposal politicize the Eucharist, strengthen organized crime, and hurt even more migrant children? Roman Catholics must face these questions after Bishop Edward Weisburger of Tucson suggested “canonical…Continue Reading

Argentina steps closer to legalising abortion

Catholic Argentina’s lower house has backed a bill legalising abortion in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. After a divisive debate lasting more than 22 hours, 129 members of the Chamber of Deputies voted in favour and 125 against while…Continue Reading

Pope Francis rejects German proposal for inter-communion

Vatican City, Jun 4, 2018 / 06:37 am (CNA/EWTN News).- One month after Vatican and German delegates met in Rome to discuss a proposal put forward by German bishops to allow Protestant spouses in inter-denominational marriages to receive the Eucharist…Continue Reading

St. Paul archdiocese settlement is largest-ever in Catholic bankruptcy case

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has agreed to a $210 million settlement with 450 victims of clergy sexual abuse as part of its plan for bankruptcy reorganization, making it the second-largest U.S. payout…Continue Reading

Church’s teaching on male-only priesthood is ‘infallible’: Vatican doctrine chief

ROME, May 29, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) — The head of the Vatican office overseeing Church doctrine has insisted that the Church’s teaching on the male-only priesthood is “infallible,” and has offered a veiled rebuke of a prominent Cardinal who recently claimed the…Continue Reading

The revolt against Humanae Vitae continues to haunt us today

ROME, May 25, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) — As in 2017, 2018 is also a year that is rich with important and significant anniversaries which we need to remember, because the roots of the present are found in the past. The best known…Continue Reading

Cardinal: Communion cannot be shared with non-Catholics like beer or cake

BUCKFASTLEIGH, England, May 25, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) — Protestants who want to receive Holy Communion should become Catholics, Cardinal Francis Arinze said this week, and added that “it is rather serious” to presume marriage can be dissolved for the purpose of…Continue Reading

Speaker Ryan Proposes a Return to Catholic Social Doctrine at Prayer Breakfast

Washington, D.C. – House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) spoke at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast Thursday about how he believed the answer to many of the political problems society faces today, including “moral relativism” and “tribalism,” can be found in Catholic…Continue Reading

Judge rules ‘transgender’ high-schooler should have been allowed opposite-sex bathroom

NEWPORT NEWS, Virginia, May 24, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – A judge has ruled that a Virginia high school should have allowed a gender-confused former student to use the restrooms designated for the opposite sex. Gavin Grimm is a female Gloucester High School…Continue Reading

One of the most ‘liberal abortion regimes’ if vote passes

Ireland will have one of the most liberal abortion regimes in Europe if Friday’s referendum is passed, the No campaign warned during its final press conference on Wednesday. With the broadcasting ban set to come into force on the eve of the…Continue Reading

Pope asks for prayers for Catholics in China

Pope Francis has appealed to all Christians to be spiritually close to Catholics who live in China, and to pray they may live their faith in full communion with the Holy See. Speaking during the General Audience in St. Peter’s Square, the Pope recalled…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for 150 years in our weekly print edition.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 150 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Discriminating Mercy: Defending Christ And His Church With True Love

Cburke3

  By DON FIER (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and Founder of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., graciously took time out of his busy schedule to grant The Wanderer a wide-ranging interview during a recent visit to the Shrine. Included among the topics…Continue Reading

Developing Lives Of Peace After The Heart Of Mary

By RAYMOND LEO CARDINAL BURKE (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke delivered the address below at the 32nd Annual Church Teaches Forum, “The Message of Fatima: Peace for the World,” Galt House, Louisville, Ky., July 22, 2017. The address is reprinted here with the kind permission of Cardinal Burke. All rights reserved. This is part one of the…Continue Reading

Catechism

Today . . .

GOOD NEWS . . .Fr. Phillips Exonerated

We have confirmation that after several weeks the Congregation of the Resurrection has indeed concluded its hearings and investigation of the accusations directed against Father Phillips. An independent Review Board of three public-spirited leaders from the Chicago area, who are not members of St. John Cantius Church, was constituted. Thereafter, the Review Board interviewed the detractors and several witnesses, persons who personally know the accusers, and other individuals who

Cardinal Brandmüller Questions Francis’ Claim Not to Have Received the Dubia Before Publication

Today, on 20 June, Reuters published a new interview with Pope Francis. Although the interview is making headlines because of the Pope’s criticism of President Donald Trump’s immigration policy, it also contains another controversial assertion: the pope surprisingly now claims that he only heard about the Dubia (concerning his document Amoris Laetitia) “from the newspapers” — a claim that Dubia cardinal Walter Brandmüller has now questioned in comments to OnePeterFive. From the text of the interview: The pope also commented on internal criticism of his…Continue Reading

US Cardinal removed after ‘credible’ allegation he abused a minor

NEW YORK, June 20, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – A high-profile liberal U.S. cardinal has been removed from public ministry for credible and substantiated allegations of abuse of a minor. Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, a former priest of the Archdiocese of New York and cardinal emeritus of Washington D.C., “is no longer to exercise publicly his priestly ministry,” says a news release from New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan. “The review board found the allegations credible and substantiated,” Dolan’s statement said. “The Vatican…Continue Reading

Trump Admin Withdraws U.S. From UN Human Rights Council That Pushed Global Right to Abortion

The Trump Administration announced today that the United States is withdrawing from the UN Human Rights Council. That’s good news for pro-life advocates as the so-called human rights organization pushed for a global right to kill unborn children in abortions. According to news reports: The Trump administration withdrew the U.S. from the United Nations Human Rights Council, with U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley calling the 47-member council “a protector of human rights abusers, an

Conway: ‘As a mother, as a Catholic,’ no one likes migrant family separation policy

White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said Sunday “nobody likes” the Trump administration’s policy of separating families who cross the border illegally, but indicated President Trump will not act unilaterally to change it. “As a mother, as a Catholic, as somebody who’s got a conscience … I will tell you that nobody likes this policy,” Conway said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “Congress passed the law that it is a

Advertisement(2)

Holy Bashfulness Vs. Shame By ALICE von HILDEBRAND

My dear young friend, Years ago, Cardinal O’Boyle was discussing some sexual matters with a group of men; all of a sudden the cardinal noticed that a young girl had joined the group, and interrupting his talk, he said to her: “Please excuse me.” But he was immediately rudely rebuked by one of the men…Continue Reading

On The Role Of Beauty In The Spiritual Life

By JAMES MONTI In recent years, thanks largely to Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, the role of beauty in the sacred liturgy — and the appalling chasm created by its absence — has been a topic of frequent discussion among those concerned with a restoration of the sacred in divine worship — the beauty of the…Continue Reading

Civil Court… Rules Fulton Sheen’s Remains Can Go To Peoria

NEW YORK (CNA/EWTN News) — The Superior Court of New York ruled June 8 in favor of Joan Sheen Cunningham, who had petitioned to move the body of her uncle, Venerable Fulton Sheen, to the Cathedral of St. Mary in Peoria. The body of the late archbishop is currently in St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New…Continue Reading

Lindsey Graham’s Unjustifiable Call for War

By TERENCE P. JEFFREY (Editor’s Note: Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor in chief of CNSnews.com. Creators Syndicate distributed this column.) + + + Question: Has North Korea reinvaded South Korea since it signed an armistice 65 years ago suspending the Korean War? Answer: No. Question: Why? Answer: It has been deterred. Question: Would it…Continue Reading

Love And Cruelty In Ireland

By DONALD DeMARCO On the night of August 21, 1879, Mary, the Mother of God, appeared to a group of ordinary people in the village of Knock, County Mayo. She was flanked by St. Joseph on her right and St. John the Evangelist on her left. She said nothing and was described as being deep…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

None Dare Call It Treason

By DEACON JAMES TONER (Editor’s Note: Deacon James H. Toner, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus of Leadership and Ethics at the U.S. Air War College, and author of Morals Under the Gun and other books. He has also taught at Notre Dame, Norwich, Auburn, the U.S. Air Force Academy, and Holy Apostles College & Seminary. He serves in the Diocese of…Continue Reading

The Glorious St. John The Baptist

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Solemnity Of The Nativity Of St. John The Baptist (YR B) Readings Isaiah 49:1-6 Acts 13:22-26 Luke 1:57-66, 80 Today we celebrate the birth of a man who is important to us in a variety of ways. St. John the Baptist is, according to our Lord’s own words, the greatest man born of woman. For this…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World… Will Marriages Outside A Church Keep Couples In The Church?

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK The Church makes exceptions to its own rules; this is well known. There are God’s rules, such as the Commandments, exceptions to which cannot be granted by man. And then there are the regulations promulgated by the Church, using the authority given her by the Lord, in order to better facilitate the pastoral work of…Continue Reading

The Sacraments Instituted By Christ . . . Understanding Confession More Deeply

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 33 When Jesus gave the apostles the power to bind and unbind things here on Earth (Matt. 18:18), He gave them authority over His flock. Hence, from the very first century, Popes and bishops passed laws to be observed by the people. Consequently, considering the seriousness of sin, and the risk many take for…Continue Reading

Man’s Desire For Happiness

By DON FIER Significant to note from last week’s consideration of the eighth Beatitude: “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 5:10), is that the reward promised is identical to that of the first Beatitude: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 5:3).…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Joseph Cafasso

By CAROLE BRESLIN Truman Capote wrote: “Love is a chain of love as nature is a chain of life.” More important, grace is a chain of grace with one grace leading to another. And holiness a chain of holiness as God pours His love through one person to another, as the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mediatrix of all graces, pours…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Joseph The Hymnographer

By CAROLE BRESLIN In the late sixth and early seventh century, the glories of Gregorian chant began to develop in Rome. Then, in the thirteenth century, St. Thomas Aquinas wrote beautiful hymns to celebrate Corpus Christi and to honor the Real Presence. In the Eastern Church, around Constantinople, they also sang hymns, but it was not until the late ninth…Continue Reading