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The fact that a professor was involved in the silencing has Twitter in a storm:
This has been a long time coming on campuses.
Jonathan Chait, liberal columnist at New York Magazine, writes Can We Start Taking Political Correctness Seriously Now?:
The student protest at the University of Missouri began as a response to a serious problem — outbursts of vile racism on campus — and quickly devolved into an expression of a renewed left-wing hostility to freedom of expression. At the protest on Missouri’s campus yesterday, on a space that is expressly open to free expression, protesters barred journalists from covering the demonstrations….
In recent weeks, UCLA, Wesleyan, and Yale have seen left-wing student activism aimed at shutting down the expression of contrary viewpoints.
That these activists have been able to prevail, even in the face of frequently harsh national publicity highlighting the blunt illiberalism of their methods, confirms that these incidents reflect something deeper than a series of one-off episodes. They are carrying out the ideals of a movement that regards the delegitimization of dissent as a first-order goal. People on the left need to stop evading the question of political correctness — by laughing it off as college goofs, or interrogating the motives of p.c. critics, or ignoring it — and make a decision on whether they agree with it.
The attention on physical and other intimidation to silence opposing viewpoints is welcome, but don’t think this is something new on campuses, even if liberals are just paying attention because liberals now are targeted.
For Israelis and pro-Israel students, physical disruptions of events by groups such as Students for Justice in Palestine, have become common.
We reported just the other day how Protesters shouted down an Israeli Professor at U. Minnesota law school. Law Professor Dale Carpenter gave this first-hand account:
The lecture, which I attended, was delayed half an hour as one by one the protesters stood up to shout denunciations of Israel and were escorted from the hall by university police. One young woman came screaming back into the lecture after having been ejected. Outside the hall, the protesters chanted so loudly that it was difficult to hear Halbertal, much less to concentrate on what he was saying, until 45 minutes after the lecture was to have begun….
Just a couple of weeks earlier, an Israeli diplomat — who happens to be the first Israeli diplomat who is Bedouin — had his event disrupted at the University of Windsor.
The walkout tonight was in protest to a pro-Israeli Arab speaker by the name of Ishmael Khaldi. He came to our campus to speak about minority rights in Israel (as if those exist), and we as pro-Palestinians refused to allow a Zionist to lead the discussion on such a topic. After we left we held a talk outside the room to dicuss what is really happening in Israel, and opened the floor to intersolidarity. The pro-Palestinian voice is in charge of leading the discussions on Palestinian human rights on our campus, not Zionists.
Posted by University of Windsor Palestinian Solidarity Group on Wednesday, October 21, 2015
A “Taste of Israel” event at Tufts University was disrupted in late October.
Cornell students were physically threatened by SJP and Ithaca activists for silently holding pro-Israel signs (language warning):
And a speaker from TIAA-CREF was disrupted:
“Dorm Stormings” and other aggressive behavior are meant to intimidate others into silence (language warning).
And the list goes on and on. Cornell is by no means the worst campus. This happens nationally.
Some of the disruptions are minor — but why do anti-Israel students feel the need to disrupt someone else’s speech, rather than expressing their own without disrupting someone else’s?
Don’t be so shocked that at Mizzou a professor was involved. The academic boycott movement against Israel is led by professors. Despite systematic academic boycotts having been declared by the American Association of University Professors to be a violation of academic freedom, thousands of faculty at U.S. campuses have signed on. This fall and winter will see academic boycott efforts at the American Anthropological Associations, the Women’s Studies Association, the American Historical Association, and from what I am hearing, others as well.
Anti-Israel students and faculty long have run amok in silencing opposing views and rejecting academic freedom. They are steeped in the same far-left ideology that Chait described in New York Magazine:
But to imagine p.c. as simply a thing college kids do relieves us of taking it seriously as a coherent set of beliefs, which it very much is. Political correctness is a system of thought that denies the legitimacy of political pluralism on issues of race and gender. It manifests itself most prominently in campus settings not because it’s a passing phase, like acne, but because the academy is one of the few bastions of American life where the p.c. left can muster the strength to impose its political hegemony upon others. The phenomenon also exists in other nonacademic left-wing communities, many of them virtual ones centered on social media, and its defenders include professional left-wing intellectuals.
We have lived for years in a campus environment that now is so shocking to liberals because it no longer is targeting just Israelis and pro-Israel students.
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