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In the age of Trump, cocooned college kids believe violence is okay to stop offensive speech

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College students today have likely never been taught the basics of the Bill of Rights or why our nation’s founders valued protecting offensive speech from government prosecution. The term seditious libel has likely never been spoken to them. Unless these young adults come from a country like China or Thailand, where laws like Lèse majesté make it a crime to insult the king, they don’t know anything except the liberty of the U.S. First Amendment.

It’s therefore no surprise that a Brookings Institute study found that 1 in 5 college students think it’s okay to use physical force to silence someone who makes “offensive and hurtful statements.” They don’t understand the reason the First Amendment, protecting free speech against the government is necessary to preserve a government of the people. They are blind to the consequence of their ignorance.

If it’s okay for individuals to resort to violence to prevent someone from saying things that offend them, then shouldn’t it follow that when those people are voted into office, that they can use the power of government to stop free speech? If individuals believe in a right to their own speech, and also to a heckler’s veto, then those individuals, once elected to office, will ignore the First Amendment protections our constitution guarantees and use government power to enforce their will.

Our president has done nothing to disabuse these misguided young adults’ of their disastrous mistake. Back in 2016, ProPublica (admittedly liberal-leaning press) noted that Trump might represent the “return of seditious libel.”  Of course, nothing of the sort has occurred, or is likely to. Yet Trump’s penchant for legal revenge against reporters who besmirch his name makes the case that “might is right” in the battle of words.

And college kids don’t have the power of a few billions dollars. They do, however, possess the power of numbers and time on their hands to conduct protests. Add into the mix the professional activists, communists, and anarchists of Antifa, and you’ve got a recipe for violence.

The colleges themselves have done nothing to cure this toxic mix. Offering counseling and “safe spaces” for speakers like Ben Shapiro only reinforces the victim mentality that someone else’s words are hurtful in a physical sense. Allowing segregation to creep back into schools as a way of avoiding possibly being offended is turning our schools into training centers for future despots who would roll back our basic liberties of a free press and free assembly.

Perspectives

Students Defend Offense-Free Environment | Bob Shimshock, The Daily Caller

http://dailycaller.com/2017/09/19/are-college-kids-really-ok-with-prohibiting-speech-this-poll-has-all-the-answers/Fifty-three percent of students surveyed indicate they favor creating “a positive learning environment for all students by prohibiting certain speech or expression” more than an “open” environment inclusive of all speech, according to a Brookings Institution poll.

Forty-four percent of students said “no” to a question on whether the First Amendment protects hate speech, while 39 percent of students said “yes;” 16 percent indicated they did not know. A plurality of Democrats — 41 percent — thought that the First Amendment did not protect hate speech, whereas 44 percent of Republicans asserted it did. Fifty-one percent of male students thought the First Amendment protected hate speech, however a majority of female students thought it did not.

The End Of The First Amendment | Daily Wire

http://www.dailywire.com/news/21325/end-first-amendment-ben-shapiroThe preparations for the visit were patently insane. First, the school charged the sponsor group, Young America’s Foundation, a $15,000 security fee. Then, the school blocked off the upper level of the auditorium, fearful that radicals from the violent far-left-leaning group Antifa would infiltrate the speech and begin hurling objects from the balcony onto the crowd below. Finally, the school ended up spending some $600,000 on additional policing, including the creation of cement barriers and hiring of hundreds of armed police officers for a prospective riot.

All this so that I could deliver a speech about personal responsibility and individualism.

A chilling study shows how hostile college students are toward free speech – The Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/a-chilling-study-shows-how-hostile-college-students-are-toward-free-speech/2017/09/18/cbb1a234-9ca8-11e7-9083-fbfddf6804c2_story.html?utm_term=.0d3339ce43bfStudents were asked whether the First Amendment requires that an offensive speaker at a public university be matched with one with an opposing view. Here, 6 in 10 (mistakenly) said that, yes, the First Amendment requires balance.

Let’s say a public university hosts a “very controversial speaker,” one “known for making offensive and hurtful statements.” Would it be acceptable for a student group to disrupt the speech “by loudly and repeatedly shouting so that the audience cannot hear the speaker”?

Astonishingly, half said that snuffing out upsetting speech — rather than, presumably, rebutting or even ignoring it — would be appropriate. Democrats were more likely than Republicans to find this response acceptable (62 percent to 39 percent), and men were more likely than women (57 percent to 47 percent). Even so, sizable shares of all groups agreed.

Hate Speech & First Amendment: Not Protected, Say College Students | Katherine Timpf, National Review

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/451523/hate-speech-first-amendment-not-protected-say-college-studentsLook, kids: Not only does the Constitution protect hate speech, but it should protect hate speech. Is that because hate speech is good? No, I don’t like the speech that I consider hate speech, and that’s the point — everyone is going to have a different opinion of what is and is not “hate speech.” What some people consider “hate speech,” others might consider to be hilarious or even virtuous speech, and it would be dangerous to allow the government to decide what qualifies. Any time you start thinking the government should intervene to stop speech that you don’t like, realize that those exact same rules could eventually be used to stop your own speech.

Reactions

Final thoughts

As the tweet above points out, nobody needs to defend speech with which everyone agrees. Only speech that’s offensive to someone, critical of the government, or hateful on its face requires protection. It’s not the government’s job to protect individuals from hearing speech that offends them. It’s not the right of individuals to use violence or force to prevent anyone else from speaking in public places.

And when individuals become the new guardians of our rights, they must not forget that offensive speech against the government or against anyone is protected. We’ve already lost that understanding among our university administrators. We’ve lost it among some of the largest American companies. Next we will lose it in the halls of government. When that happens, our democracy will be mortally wounded.

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Culture and Religion

Dr Paul Lim tells how he went from atheist to Christian… at Yale

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Dr Paul Lim tells how he went from atheist to Christian at Yale

Universities aren’t usually considered likely venues for people to turn to the Christian faith. Ivy League universities rife with atheist professors are even less likely than most to yield a conversions to the faith. If anything, they’re efforts are often directly focused on converting Christians into abandoning their faith.

Dr Paul Lim tells a different tail. His personal journey from South Korea to California, then Pennsylvania on to Yale, is an exception to the rule. His journey is not common, but then again who’s to say what sort of journey to embracing Jesus Christ can be considered common?

It’s not too long, clocking in at just over 48 minutes, and much better than your average network television hour. If you already believe, it may help you open the eyes of others. If you don’t believe, your eyes may be opened.

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Education

Why wasn’t a thwarted school shooting a major news story?

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Why wasnt a thwarted school shooting a major news story

(Please note that we are not using the perpetrator’s name to keep the focus on the heroes who stopped this potential tragedy)

The liberty grabbers on the left usually jump at a chance to demonize the 2nd Amendment. Why not in this case?

Three staff members of Smith High School in Greensboro, North Carolina stopped a potential tragedy on Monday by quickly locking down the school and arresting the perpetrator.

The first to intervene was Patrick Jordan, a Behavioral Intervention Specialist who works at the school. He noticed someone who did not “fit in” walking past in the courtyard. Jordan then approached the man to ask why he was there, and after a short exchange the individual raised his shirt to show a handgun. Assistant Principal, Lashonti Hines, also noticed the gun. Hines and Jordan immediately called for a lock down. The criminal ran and was arrested after being tased by school Resource Officer, D.K. Evans.

The perpetrator had previously assaulted his girlfriend in Virginia Beach Monday morning before allegedly stealing the victim’s car to drive to the School in Greensboro, North Carolina.

The man had a backpack with two loaded handguns and eight boxes of ammunition. It was reported in the Sacramento Bee that the man had a “hit list” with plans to kill a woman and her parents in Durham, and then move on to Smith High School in Greensboro to kill two people. He then planned to drive to Maryland and kill one more person.

Why wasn’t this a major news story?

This potential mass murder in a school and elsewhere took place several days ago. While it did receive some perfunctory notice by some local and national news sources, it was quickly glossed over in favor of other stories. Why?

Several reasons can be gleaned from the accompanying video on the hero who stopped this tragedy. Suffice it to say that the ethnicity of the perpetrator, as well as the victims, did not fit the usual narrative. The featured video also had one of the heroes referring to that which is generally taboo with secular socialist television.

The primary difference between this case and others is that the perpetrator didn’t succeed. There were no images or video of children fleeing for their lives from the scene, and a decided lack of relatives of the victims emoting on-screen demanding for restrictions on freedom.

Colleague, Lorie Wimble, noticed a similar pattern with regard to a rape allegation by Katie Brennan, in which a political inconvenient story ends up getting buried in the news cycle. In this environment it’s mind-boggling that the media doesn’t understand why they are no longer trusted. It’s equally perplexing that they don’t understand that their bias is manifestly obvious.

A lost opportunity to demonize liberty

Compare the coverage of this potential “serious crisis” with one that is ripe for exploitation by the freedom floggers. Wall-to-wall coverage would soon be initiated after word of an exploitable tragedy coming in over the optic fiber (followed by the usual admonitions about our issue with liberty and how we must now restrict freedom) then, somber denizens of the nation’s Socialist left will pontificate on the dire need to control personal property, as well as everyone’s online speech.

One can easily imagine the gatherings of excited leftists in “news” rooms around the nation hoping for another chance to further their gun confiscation agenda, only to be disappointed that the obvious solution of armed school security saving the day. The sheer letdown for them, in the midst of their writing up of tweets with the hashtag #GunReformNow (meaning #GunConfiscationNow), when the news breaks that ordinary citizens stopped evil dead in it’s tracks.

Killing off the contagion

Studies show that over-the-top media coverage and making perpetrators “anti-heroes” tends to encourage copycat crimes. Even far-left publication ‘Mother Jones’ recognizes this problem. It’s also logical that publicizing the failure of one of these murderous miscreants would discourage this behavior in others with similar ideas.

Those planning these crimes go through five distinct planning phases. Seeing that someone was thwarted by an armed response may end the fantasy of an active shooter once and for all.

The takeaway

Truly common sense measures, such as eliminating so-called ‘Gun-Free’ zones and freeing people to carry concealed weapons, would dramatically reduce if not eliminate these tragedies. But for some, security is more important than essential liberty. Perhaps that is why they oppose the common sense solutions.

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Education

Ben Shapiro to testify in Ohio

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Ben Shapiro to testify in Ohio

The states are the “laboratories of democracy” (Justice Louis Brandeis) and “education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom” (George Washington Carver). These two quotes will be put to the test with Ohio House Bill 758, the FORUM Act, which aims to protect and promote free speech on state campuses.

DailyWire editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro will be one of several experts to testify on behalf of the bill. Shapiro is arguably the left’s favorite target when he goes to college campuses around the nation to speak, drawing protests and “trigger warnings” because of his conservative views. He is often accused by left-leaning campus groups of spreading dangerous ideologies, defending hate speech, and being antisemitic.

Shapiro is Jewish.

Alliance Defending Freedom senior counsel Tyson Langhofer is also scheduled to testify.

ADF: Ohio bill sends right message on campus free speech

http://www.adfmedia.org/News/PRDetail/10647“The free and open exchange of ideas is essential to democracy, and perhaps no place is it more important than on public university campuses,” Langhofer said. “Public colleges and universities are meant to be marketplaces of ideas—where our future teachers, lawyers, judges, community leaders, and voters can exercise their constitutionally protected freedoms. Unfortunately, public universities are some of the most ideologically intolerant places in the entire country. This bill will help ensure that public universities again become places where intellectual diversity flourishes and all students are able to engage in the exchange of ideas rather than censorship on campus. We commend Ohio lawmakers for considering legislation that protects students’ First Amendment freedoms.”

The FORUM (Forming Open and Robust University Minds) Act is designed to reduce efforts to suppress free speech on state-funded campuses. It will eliminate “free speech zones,” allow students to hold events and activities on campus without interference, and promotes expression on campus regardless of political party or ideological preferences.

My Take

Universities have been turned into leftist indoctrination factories. The predominance of left-leaning faculty at most colleges has not only assisted in this systematic indoctrination, but has also emboldened students to utilize intimidation techniques against any high-profile conservative speakers.

Reading through HB 758 reveals some interesting measures that other states should consider. This isn’t really a defense of the 1st Amendment, though the attachment of state funds allows it to be framed within that narrative. But of greater importance is the practice of free speech itself in all of its non-detrimental forms on campuses that desperately need to hear both sides.

While progressives often try to suppress conservative ideas by labeling them as “dangerous” to justify their unhinged actions, most conservatives generally welcome dialogue on campuses from every side of a debate. We recognize that through dialogue we have our greatest opportunity to open minds and change hearts.

Conservatives, by our nature, will not suppress ideas as progressives often do on campuses. We need bills like these to give us a chance of breaking through the indoctrination. The greatest fear of campus progressives is someone like Shapiro spreading the truth.

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