Campus Free Speech: Further Thoughts and Hard Questions
Aaron Hanlon
1

I’m sorry but your point is just not clear and is, in my opinion, sophmoric. If you determine free speech by “value” you are still limiting the free expression of an idea. You can’t change a concept by simply changing the word or the definition used to describe it. It is clearly the side which is provoked by “conservative” concepts — or values — that are in opposition to Coulter. It is the left and the liberal who do not want her to speak or express oppositional concepts so they are not allowing her “values” to be given on campus.

I noticed you didn’t use the example of, hm, let’s say inviting Maduro of Venezuela to speak at Berkley. You used only ultra-right examples; white supremacists and Nazis, not Communists or Socialists who have destroyed entire countries and allowed their people to starve to death. Would Maduro’s “values” be welcomed to a college campus for presentation and without threat of violent response? Do you see the weakness in your argument? And my point is supported further by the idea that you seemingly defended the Jamal speech given at Goddard College. He was certainly not stopped by opposition, was he? (The opposition to his “freedom of speech” was from those who believe that he is indeed guilty, including the families of the police officer he killed, despite his claims to the contrary.) So your point is just not supported by the defense you give.

Also the idea that the cost of protection must be considered is silly. “Emotive response” is what teaches the young and the curious new concepts or affirms what they already believe — learning to control that “emotive response” is important to their education as well. If insitututions were to actually allow and teach the idea that free speech is (still) necessary but may not reflect one’s “values” then the idea of violence and protection from angry non-listeners is mute. And that is what institutions are producing … non-listeners. You have not clarified your point of free speech VS cencorship at all.

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