Friday Ephemera
She’ll Ruin The Leather

Elsewhere (262)

Mary Katharine Ham on woke scolds and public pushback: 

Here’s how the removal of the [painting, Hylas and the Nymphs] went down — in the most eye-rollingly woke, modern-art-professor way possible. A professor and five members of a “drag collective” walk into an art gallery to talk about viewing art in a non-binary way. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before.

Amy Wax on sinking standards and The New Unsayable: 

An open letter published in the Daily Pennsylvanian and signed by 33 of my colleagues… condemned and categorically rejected all of my views [on the importance of bourgeois values]. It then invited students, in effect, to monitor me and to report any “stereotyping and bias” they might experience or perceive. This letter contained no argument, no substance, no reasoning, no explanation whatsoever as to how our op-ed was in error… To students and citizens alike I say: Don’t follow their lead by condemning people for their views without providing a reasoned argument. Reject their example. Not only are they failing to teach you the practice of civil discourse —the sine qua non of liberal education and democracy— they are sending the message that civil discourse is unnecessary

This, remember, is the University of Pennsylvania Law School. For background, see the first items here and here

And Andy Ngo on the “social justice” Sturmabteilung

On Saturday we’re hosting a panel [at Portland State University] featuring James Damore, the Google employee who was fired last July for writing a memo expressing heterodox views about sex disparities in the company’s workforce… The left-wing newspaper Willamette Week published an article with a false and inflammatory headline: “Tech Bro Fired from Google for Saying Women Are Biologically Unfit to Be Engineers Will Speak at PSU Next Month.” The sub-headline inaccurately attributed to Mr Damore the view that “women can’t do math.” Campus activists called us misogynists, white supremacists, neo-Nazis. A person claiming to work for campus audio-visual services tweeted that he could break into our event through a back entrance and “literally turn the whole building off.” There were threats of violence. A Facebook user—it’s not clear if he’s connected to PSU—suggested he’d throw “active grenades” at Mr Damore onstage.

One local feminist group declared itself “appalled” that a discussion touching on statistical gender differences should be permitted without the involvement of enlightened beings such as themselves. The aggrieved ladies were seemingly unaware that the organisers had approached every tenured and tenure-track Women’s Studies professor on campus and had been rebuffed by all of them, presumably of grounds of heresy. Having failed to prevent the discussion occurring by hoarding and destroying tickets, other self-styled “activists” attacked the venue’s audio system in an attempt to prevent the speakers being heard, before being escorted out by police. One of the “activists” – this charming young lady here - subsequently berated the police for failing to see how “oppressed” she is.

Update, via the comments:

It turns out that the blue-haired vision of loveliness, Heather Clark, the one claiming to be “oppressed” while vandalising other people’s property, isn’t even a student at PSU. Yet she feels entitled to determine, forcibly, who gets to speak there – who is “absolutely not welcome,” as she puts it - and to determine what people on campus may or may not talk about. Which is quite a conceit, really. The word megalomaniacal comes to mind. And consider Ms Clark’s associates. Imagine being the kind of self-styled intellectual who demands to know whether a speaker is even “qualified” to talk about matters deemed “intersectional,” as if intersectional voodoo were on a par with quantum chromodynamics. The kind of person who delights in vandalism and stealing other people’s tickets, and who threatens to cut power to an entire building because someone might say something, or ask something, that they don’t want people to think about.

Yes, a self-imagined intellectual who doesn’t want people to think.

As usual, feel free to share your own links and snippets, on any subject, in the comments.