Friday 13th December 2019

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Defining “Safe Space” . . . A Place For Leftists To Hide From Their Own Hate And Damage

November 17, 2019 Frontpage No Comments


The passage of a half-century or more can bring on considerable change in a technological era, but new decades being born don’t invert physical laws.
The principles of flight remain the same, although biplanes getting off the ground applied them differently than spacecraft leaving the stratosphere.
Communication connects people with each other and events, but an early electrical telegraph had a world of difference with electronically based twenty-first century social media.
On the other hand, left-wing political causes have a way of going from one point to its exact, conflicting polar opposite, but all in the same name of some brand of justice or equality.
Consider how the Berkeley, Calif., so-called Free Speech Movement that began to assault U.S. society in the mid-1960s bears no resemblance to what leftists claim regarding speech now.
On the campus of the University of California, Berkeley, 1960s radicals sprouted to say that free speech meant their ability to scream and spit obscenities right in your face. If you didn’t like that, better get used to it anyway.
Critics called it the Filthy Speech Movement, a part of the rioting drugs and sex campus anti-culture that seemed to erupt right out of the blue — or, more likely, from the depths of Hades. Everything had to be questioned or defied, no matter how disruptive or bruising the process.
If leftists felt insufficiently in control back then, a look at the Berkeley website the evening of November 13 showed the campus to be under their firmly censorious heels now. Only one way is acceptable now, set to the grating tune of left-wing sloganeering.
The officially sanctioned propaganda blasts included the school’s chancellor posting about confronting “the forces of hatred, intolerance, and division,” a law school admonition on “defeating racial fearmongering,” a lecture on “social justice and carbon reduction,” and a film on “indigenous activism.”
In language more appropriate to Soviet Newspeak, Berkeley proclaimed that its “Division of Equity & Inclusion provides leadership, accountability & inspiration to the UC Berkeley campus in integrating equity, inclusion, and diversity into all aspects of university life.”
Diverse? Procrustean is far more accurate.
Wikipedia says that the Free Speech Movement’s legacy continues today “to shape American political dialogue both on college campuses and in broader society, impacting on the political views and values of college students and the general public.”
Well, one thing has remained constant. Hurting conservatives is always good, whether the conservatives are in the boardroom or, more likely today, kicked out onto the sidewalk, or the gutter.
Leftists asserted their freedom brazenly to offend anyone and everyone else, but now their chilling “snowflake” culture says they themselves must feel secure in their “safe spaces,” and merely making them feel “unwelcome” or “hurt” is not only unacceptable but punishable.
An example of where this dictatorship is headed in the vital field of communications occurred at Illinois’ Northwestern University after the campus newspaper actually did an article on students angrily protesting a talk there by former Republican Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
One might think the protesters wanted publicity as they tried to close down Sessions’ talk, but apparently they thought they should be allowed to shut him up in secret, as in any strong-arm regime.
A story posted November 6 at The Daily Northwestern said students offended by campus Republicans hosting Sessions’ speech attempted to interrupt him “by climbing through open windows and pushing through doors.”
Some had signs saying “No conSessions, No racism, No KKK, No Facist (sic) USA,” the story said, while some chanted, “I-C-E, KKK, how many kids have you killed today?”
One photo showed a bent poster being shoved through a door, some of whose words appeared to be “. . . you believe in white supremacy….”
Those attending the talk were denounced as “clowns” who were “disguising (their) racism as free speech,” the Northwestern story said, and one protester denounced “accepting hate speech and fascism.”
Strong words indeed, but acceptable for attacking conservatives. The protesters’ own feelings were very tender, though, and the coverage of them offended them.
The editor and his deputies at the Northwestern soon groveled publicly, on November 10. They lamented that they had caused “harm” to students and were perceived as being “retraumatizing” and “invasive” with photo coverage.
Alas, among these masthead journalists were two “diversity and inclusion” officials.
“While our goal is to document history and spread information,” the editors apologetically wrote, “nothing is more important than ensuring that our fellow students feel safe — and in situations like this, that they are benefitting from our coverage rather than being actively harmed by it. We failed to do that last week, and we could not be more sorry. . . .
“We know we hurt students that night, especially those who identify with marginalized groups,” the apology added.
Fortunately, a number of adult journalists criticized this groveling, and the student paper’s editor replied in part, “Our statement addressed some legitimate areas of growth we noticed in our reporting, but also overcorrected in others.”
The dean of the university’s journalism school said the original coverage “was in no way beyond the bounds of fair, responsible journalism.”
But even if the student editors aren’t adults yet, they’ll grow up to replace those in media who are. And some offended protesters will become school officials.
Fox News’ Tucker Carlson warned: “A lot of these shallow neurotic narcissists we’re making fun of will, in the end, wind up running this country. Those people writhing on the floor about how they’re so ‘threatened’ — they’re going to be in charge.
“They shouldn’t be,” Carlson added. “But because the system is rigged, they will be. They’ll be making the decisions that affect your life and the lives of your children and grandchildren.”
The Federalist website’s culture editor, Emily Jashinsky, citing the Northwestern incident, wrote: “Far from being tempered by the harsh realities of post-college life, graduates are increasingly shaping the so-called real world into a version of their campuses, importing far-left standards into newsrooms and boardrooms. This is why it’s important to watch what’s happening on campuses.”
National conservative columnist Quin Hillyer told The Wanderer on November 13: “In the real world, there are no ‘safe spaces.’ Those who try to shut others up will find that others find not their views, but their actions, to be unsafe, and they will be penalized. As well they should be. Actions that infringe on others’ rights merit firm punishment.”
In a column posted November 12 at the Washington Examiner, Hillyer said in part:
“Students involved in a public protest trying to shut down the free speech of a former major U.S. government figure are here portrayed as not just traumatized, but ‘retraumatized’ by seeing photos of themselves at their own protest. Reminders of their public actions in a public space are not just invasive but actually do ‘harm’….
“Spare us your pity party,” Hillyer added. “These editors, and the students they illy serve by pathetically coddling them, need to step out into the real world. Right now, they are practicing not journalism, but unlicensed public therapy. Worse, it’s therapy of the sort that doesn’t help patients or students overcome unwarranted fears, but instead makes them even easier prey to childish paranoia.”
In another incident of leftists trying to censor recognition of opposing thoughts under the guise of “safety,” the Daily Caller site posted on November 12: “Harvard University’s student government voted to condemn its campus newspaper for reaching out to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for comment on a story.”
The Daily Caller said the student government’s Facebook page said, “We condemn actions or policies that endanger undocumented and immigrant students on campus, and we encourage The Harvard Crimson to revisit their policies and make adequate changes. It is imperative for The Harvard Crimson to commit to journalistic practices that do not put students at risk.”
Meanwhile, the Crimson posted a story that began: “Harvard students experience significantly higher rates of depression and anxiety than the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s reported national average, according to mental-health survey results conducted by Harvard University Health Services in 2017 and 2018.”
How many safe spaces does it take to make all of this anxiety go away? Or is there a better answer for dealing with life’s problems?

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