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Are we going to admit Universities are producing thin-skinned people?

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11 hours ago, cybercoma said:

Conservatives do. They believe employers should be able to fire anybody at any time for any reason.

Those are two different questions. One is if the reason is justified, the other is if a reason is required. The answer to both questions can be no and not be a contradiction.

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Free Speech indeed. 

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/02/02/512992000/breitbart-editors-event-canceled-as-protests-turn-violent-at-uc-berkeley
 

Quote

 

A planned appearance by far-right commentator Milo Yiannopoulos was canceled Wednesday at the University of California, Berkeley, after a group of protesters shot fireworks at police, broke windows, started fires and threw barricades.

It's far from the first time a Yiannopoulos speaking event was canceled because of protests, which occur regularly at his events.

In a statement, the university said: "The violence was instigated by a group of about 150 masked agitators who came onto campus and interrupted an otherwise non-violent protest."

 

I'm not defending the speaker in question. But instead of letting a person that has loathsome opinions speak, they become loathsome vandals themselves. And in doing so, they give the speaker exactly what they want. 

These Safe Space Seekers did themselves no favours. 

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Margaret Wente writes, not for the first time, on the groupthink and political correctness of leftist university campuses and the motivating thought behind the Left's repressive attitude on free speech.

The flight from free speech is no accident. In fact, it is rooted in ideas that have spread like invasive weeds and strangled most of the liberal arts. These ideas were advanced by Herbert Marcuse, Theodor Adorno and other Marxist intellectuals who argued that Western civilization must be overthrown because it allows systemic inequality to persist. Mr. Marcuse’s essay on “repressive tolerance” argues that intolerance toward privileged groups is perfectly acceptable to achieve a tolerant and fair society. In other words, our duty is to oppress the oppressors.

It follows that free speech – far from being the bedrock of a fair and just society – is illegitimate and even dangerous when the oppressive class uses it to hold on to power.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/why-campuses-are-ditching-free-speech/article34356708/

Edited by Argus

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Citing Margaret Wendt probably doesn't go very far with certain people on this site. 

Andrew Sullivan was on Bill Maher last week and called the kind of Groupthink we see on Universities as a type of Leftist Religion. 

Edited by Boges

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14 minutes ago, Boges said:

Citing Margaret Wendt probably doesn't go very far with certain people on this site. 

Mostly she's quoting another, cited source. In fact, all the things she speaks of are provable fact, then with some condemnation attached.

14 minutes ago, Boges said:

Andrew Sullivan was on Bill Maher last week and called the kind of Groupthink we see on Universities as a type of Leftist Religion. 

Certainly in its intolerance and anger towards heresy it resembles one.

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8 minutes ago, Michael Hardner said:

Especially because you are (I think) referring to Margaret Wente.

A spelling complaint? 

Seriously, what do you think of her point on Herbert Marcuse and his philosophy that free speech should be denied to the 'ruling class'.

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9 minutes ago, Argus said:

1 ) A spelling complaint? 

2 ) Seriously, what do you think of her point on Herbert Marcuse and his philosophy that free speech should be denied to the 'ruling class'.

1 ) She is an eminent writer, so I just couldn't let that stand

2 ) I don't think you can legislate free speech regulations on the 'ruling class', and legislating culture in general is fraught with problems such as when people want to put fences up around some nebulous thing called 'Canadian culture'.  

Generally, this whole thing is an outcropping from pressures on political dialogue across the spectrum IMO.  We seem to be unable, as a group, to define what "fringe" means in the presence of our new media landscape.  It may be because the idea of an "elder" dies in the face of new media.  Why would we accept conventional wisdom when we have our own channels telling us that that wisdom is no longer relevant, that so-called universal truths have been wrong forever ?  

I do think that if power isn't shared, if there isn't an open environment for a discussion with a public then problems happen.  You can map that to all kinds of situations today.

 

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4 hours ago, Michael Hardner said:

 Why would we accept conventional wisdom when we have our own channels telling us that that wisdom is no longer relevant, that so-called universal truths have been wrong forever ?  

Isn't that the kind of thing which our universities are supposed to teach? Instead it looks like our universities are filled with professors who only believe in THEIR freedom of speech, and not anyone elses.

4 hours ago, Michael Hardner said:

I do think that if power isn't shared, if there isn't an open environment for a discussion with a public then problems happen.  You can map that to all kinds of situations today.

What if you don't deserve to share power? What if you don't vote (most young people don't), don't pay much or no taxes (college students rarely do) and are too immature to have any sort of thoughtful understanding of how the world operates, much less a government? Do the people who do vote, do pay taxes, and do have a more mature understanding have to share power with you?

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4 hours ago, Michael Hardner said:

I do think that if power isn't shared, if there isn't an open environment for a discussion with a public then problems happen.

It depends on how much you think power needs to be shared. In my view no system can be completely fair, and in some cases a certain "unfairness" is necessary.

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33 minutes ago, Michael Hardner said:

To answer both of you, yes power is necessarily shared.

There's lots of situations where it should not be. One should differentiate between "sharing power" and "controlling power".
 

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I could never understand the idea that if your grandad did something awful to someone, their grandkids can come and impose Sharia Law on you do something awful to you. 

And it's okay, as long as that is the direction it flows.

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17 hours ago, Michael Hardner said:

To answer both of you, yes power is necessarily shared.

So if you have non-working teenagers living in your house you share power with them?

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10 minutes ago, Argus said:

So if you have non-working teenagers living in your house you share power with them?

No, I don't have teenagers but we're drifting the thread here...

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2 hours ago, Michael Hardner said:

No, I don't have teenagers but we're drifting the thread here...

Not really. What we have are these young people with very little understanding of the world and on responsibilities, demanding their elders crack down on freedom of speech which offends them. They don't understand why freedom of speech is important because many of their left wing teachers don't support freedom of speech (except, of course, for themselves).

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34 minutes ago, Argus said:

  They don't understand why freedom of speech is important because many of their left wing teachers don't support freedom of speech (except, of course, for themselves).

Do you think that they would admit they don't support freedom of speech ?

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1 hour ago, Michael Hardner said:

Do you think that they would admit they don't support freedom of speech ?

Of course not! But if they're embracing the philosophy of Marcuse then clearly they do not. If they're writing letters demanding the administration not allow someone to speak at the university because they're offended by them then clearly they do not. If they're down in front of the building trying to block people from entering, or to commit acts of violence on them, then clearly they do not. No one who organizes to stop someone else or some other group from speaking their mind or having a dialogue or discussion believes in freedom of speech. Full stop.

 

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14 minutes ago, Argus said:

Of course not!   No one who organizes to stop someone else or some other group from speaking their mind or having a dialogue or discussion believes in freedom of speech. 

 

Ok.  Well it sounds like you might have a basis for discussion there.  You have different groups who have different values, so to me the only way to deal with that is through dialogue.

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Just now, Michael Hardner said:

Ok.  Well it sounds like you might have a basis for discussion there.  You have different groups who have different values, so to me the only way to deal with that is through dialogue.

Well, in the cite I last posted the 'dialogue' consisted of either trying to block the speaker from coming, or physically attacking the speaker, and driving him off campus.

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22 hours ago, bcsapper said:

I could never understand the idea that if your grandad did something awful to someone, their grandkids can come and impose Sharia Law on you do something awful to you. 

And it's okay, as long as that is the direction it flows.

I can see how the consequences of what a grand-father did would blowback in his descendants faces if what he did was especially awful. In the case of a really beloved and honoured grand-father where the grand-kids just can't bring themselves to condemn or reconcile the awful things that grand-dad did I can easily see how those consequences would continue blowing back for generations.  

I like your analogy that a nation is like a person. Recall how I often point to big powerful nations that diddle with smaller powerless ones as being an awful lot like an adult who sexually abuses a child. What's most comparable is how the dysfunction that such depravity causes can persist and reverberate down thru the generations.

Most people also have a really tough time facing the fact their grand-dad was a disgraceful pervert, especially in the case of a grand-dad that's regarded as a moral pillar of a community - a Shining Beacon so to speak.

Edited by eyeball
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43 minutes ago, Argus said:

Well, in the cite I last posted the 'dialogue' consisted of either trying to block the speaker from coming, or physically attacking the speaker, and driving him off campus.

I think his point of view is reasonable enough to warrant a discussion.  I don't know why it's so difficult to get people to the table.

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