It’s Time for Millennials to Grow Up
March 31, 2016 • 563 views
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Free speech is under assault on America’s college campuses.
Last week at Emory University, students woke up to a number of pro-Donald Trump chalk writings on the sidewalk. The writings said things like, “Trump 2016”, among other similar benign slogans. A series of protests then ensued among students who say the chalk writings made them feel ‘unsafe’ and ‘threatened’ on campus.
I am no fan of Donald Trump, but in the United States we have freedom of speech, which includes speech that we don’t agree with. Sometimes we hear and see things that we don’t like. But mature people do something that would be considered radical on many college campuses today–they get over it.
The protests at Emory are just the tip of the iceberg. Across America, free speech is under assault on college campuses. Speakers are shut down, faculty are put under public pressure to resign, and students are openly marginalized. Their crimes? Having an opinion that does not fit their liberal orthodoxy.
In 2014, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was invited to give the commencement address to the graduating class at Rutgers University. Graduating students had a chance to hear from one of the most powerful and accomplished African-American women in the history of the world. However, the campus erupted in protests over Rice’s support and handling of the Iraq War during her tenure as a member of the Bush Administration’s Cabinet. After weeks of protests on campus and threats of a walk-out at the commencement, Rice decided not to attend.
In November 2015, conservative Vanderbilt professor Carol Swain wrote a column after the Paris terrorist attacks criticizing the treatment of non-Muslims and women in much of the Muslim world. Students deemed her column ‘hate speech,’ and demanded her resignation.
At Temple University, a Jewish student had a verbal confrontation with a member of Temple’s Students for Justice in Palestine. After a series of anti-Semitic slurs, the Jewish student was then assaulted and taken to a hospital.
At UCLA, a Jewish student was not allowed to be a member of UCLA’s student government over concerns that her faith and views on Israel would impede her judgment.
On a countless number of occasions, pro-life displays on college campuses have been vandalized. A few examples include at the University of Miami, Clarion University, DePaul University, American University, University of Texas, George Washington University, and the list goes on and on.
Whatever your opinions on these controversial issues are, the suppression of viewpoints should never be acceptable. College is supposed to be about being exposed to various cultures, viewpoints, and ideologies. Rather, many liberals on college campuses think that they deserve to be coddled and exposed only to viewpoints that they agree with. Further, those who disagree are to be not only openly condemned, but also punished.
The real world will not coddle you. The real world will not expose you solely to viewpoints that you find palatable. The real world is difficult, the real world is ideologically diverse, and you are frequently going to hear things that you don’t like. So I have a simple message to the anti-free speech babies on college campuses– it’s time to grow up.