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Berkeley on offense for Bill Maher

Berkeley on offense for Bill Maher

“…this university has not in the past and will not in the future shy away from hosting speakers who some deem provocative.”

http://youtu.be/JDFrNQAjDYA

We wrote previously about UC Berkeley students’ attempt to block comedian Bill Maher from speaking at the university’s commencement ceremonies. Students circulated a petition citing “hateful” statements like the one contained in the tweet below as reasons why Maher should not be allowed to speak at the ceremony.

Unfortunately for Berkeley’s future community organizers, Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas B. Dirks disagrees with the premise of their petition, and has overturned a student vote blocking Maher from speaking at graduation.

Via Inside Higher Ed:

“The UC Berkeley administration cannot and will not accept this decision, which appears to have been based solely on Mr. Maher’s opinions and beliefs, which he conveyed through constitutionally protected speech,” said a statement from the university. “For that reason Chancellor Dirks has decided that the invitation will stand, and he looks forward to welcoming Mr. Maher to the Berkeley campus. It should be noted that this decision does not constitute an endorsement of any of Mr. Maher’s prior statements: indeed, the administration’s position on Mr. Maher’s opinions and perspectives is irrelevant in this context, since we fully respect and support his right to express them. More broadly, this university has not in the past and will not in the future shy away from hosting speakers who some deem provocative.”

Bravo, Mr. Chancellor. For the first time in perhaps forever, someone at Berkeley has admitted to a full and fair understanding of what it means to have free speech in America. I applaud this decision not because I’m a fan of Maher (that only happens about 60% of the time) but because for once, someone has taken a stand and said “no” to the budding ranks of the thought police.

Comments on the original petition have gotten more and more colorful since the Chancellor’s announcement:

“The administration claims to be upholding free speech by letting Bill Maher speak at the commencement. What the administration fails to realize is that it has turned its back on MANY other values that it is supposed to uphold such as equality and anti-discrimination. Also, having a speaker who has said offensive and ignorant things about certain members of society is not just about free speech. It is, in some way and to some extent, endorsing his beliefs since he is allowed to address the graduating class.”

Curious about what Maher has to say about all this? You’ll have to wait until Friday—but I’m sure it’s going to be colorful!

That being said, wouldn’t it be a gas if Maher went on national TV and told the students at Berkeley where to get off? Talk about “hate speech!”

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Comments

I hate Bill Maher with a passion, he is a vulgar, rude, far left ideologue who thinks that anybody that doesn’t agree with him is a stupid hick and that anybody that believes in ANY kind of higher power is a delusional moron.

However, I do respect 2 things about him:

1) His right to say whatever the hell he wants. This is America, and he is absolutely free to be a vulgar, rude, douchebag

2) His hatred of religion covers ALL religions, and the fact that he refuses to give Islam a pass, unlike so many others on the left that bash Christianity and treat their refusal to accept gay marriage as some kind of horrendous hate crime worthy of their imprisonment, yet bend over backwards to refuse to acknowledge the barbarians in Islam.

    Ragspierre in reply to Olinser. | October 30, 2014 at 8:17 pm

    o/t but anytime…any. time…Dr. Milton Wolf runs for anything, anywhere, I will support him.

    Class. All the way up and down.

    Another Voice in reply to Olinser. | October 31, 2014 at 12:41 am

    “1) His right to say whatever the hell he wants. This is America, and he is absolutely free to be a vulgar, rude, douchebag”

    Which in of itself defines the chasm between the liberal and conservative parties.

    Conservatives with strong deference to the constitution and the foundation of a country established to administer a democratic government in a country formed as a republic. Liberals want to evolve the constitution to a populist document ever moving away from the concepts of state and individual rights to a centralist socialist democracy where government leads the people and not of the people as defined in being a republic. Only a conservative gives your statement the validity it merits and the consideration it deserves .

I would like him to remind them that the 60’s campus revolution started at Berxerkley with the “Free Speech Movement” and note that the Cal administration and the students seem to have switched sides.

Ask the hostile students how Bill Maher would be dealt with if they were to apply ordinary Sharia law. And would they prefer it to anything else?

(That is, let them contemplate the ultimate extreme and then try to make arguments to walk back from it.)

Insufficiently Sensitive | October 30, 2014 at 10:54 pm

because for once, someone has taken a stand and said “no” to the budding ranks of the thought police.

Oh frabjous day, calloo, callay, it’s about fookin time. The trend in our ‘educational’ system is the opposite to this decision, and it’s stupendous to hear that a Berkeley Chancellor remembers how to tell the rabble ‘no’.

I would like him to remind them that the 60′s campus revolution started at Berxerkley with the “Free Speech Movement”

And that was deliberately provocative speech, too, issued by the same generation as the current Chancellor. The speech police at the time called it the Filthy Speech Movement, and that it certainly was, in bits and pieces. It appears that (some of) the speakers of ’64 have finally grown and matured.

Just don’t ever trust anyone under 30.

I wonder if the University Administration would have said the same thing if the speaker involved were a conservative. I doubt a conservative would have ever gotten the invitation in the first place.

    JOHN B in reply to Mike45. | October 31, 2014 at 8:20 am

    Nothing to “wonder” about.

    No way would the university take a “brave” stand if it was not a celebrity like Maher, who, except for his recent welcome Islam comments, has made a career out of attacking anyone conservative, encouraged violence against Sarah Palin, and other vicious commentaries.

    And he vocally supported the 9/11 terrorists back before he decided Islam isn’t perfect.

this university has not in the past and will not in the future shy away from hosting speakers who some deem provocative.

Well, he’s making the right noises, but I’d be far more impressed if I thought he actually means it.

Does anyone really think that the Berkeley Chancellor would have made a similar statement if the students were protesting any speaker with conservative values?

A BDS supporter would be welcomed with open arms.

“This university has not in the past and will not in the future shy away from hosting speakers who some deem provocative.”

Calling Ted Nugent!

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