Here’s a footnote to Monday’s post on Ben Shapiro’s attempts to discuss free speech with Christina Hoff Sommers at DePaul University. And specifically, the claim that his visit would be dangerous, and therefore impermissible, because the university doesn’t have sufficient security staff to protect either the speakers or their audience from harassment and thuggery by its own students.
Well, it turns out that DePaul did manage to scrape together 30 burly chaps in order to repel, as Shapiro puts it, “a 5’9” Jewish guy.” You see, in modern academia, you mustn’t be allowed to discuss censorship and intolerance in modern academia. Because of “security concerns.” At a lecture with no visible protesters. In case you’re wondering, Mr Shapiro ended up having to Skype Dr Sommers from several blocks away, at which point they had a brief online chat for the benefit of the audience, before relocating the event, along with the audience, to a nearby off-campus theatre, where the discussion could take place as intended. The Skype chat starts around 32:38.
And do note the YouTube warning, informing us that the video is “unlisted” and that you should therefore “think twice before sharing.”
Here’s more of Mr Shapiro, filmed last night at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where things got lively. And where leftist protestors tried to prevent non-students from attending the lecture, and then blocked the stage, before finally conveying their righteousness by pounding on the floor. And note Shapiro’s comment about the protestors’ evident privilege when it comes to disruption and impunity. Do we think that a conservative protest against a leftist speaker, with protestors acting in the same manner, using the same tactics and comparable language, would be accommodated in a similar fashion? Without consequences?
Rules are for the little people, you see.
A white female journalist, Vicki McKenna, was covering the UW-Madison event. Here’s how she was treated by the leftist protestors. And again, note the behaviour of campus security.