Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Hate speech and intolerance deserve regulation by colleges (?)

I have reproduced below a student editorial from Penn State.  I have given it in full because it does have a superficial reasonableness about it and in some circumstances I might even agree with it.  As the saying goes, however, the Devil is in the detail and what college speech codes end up doing is banning criticism.  Not all criticism is banned.  You can criticize Christians and conservatives all you like.  But that is about it.  Criticize anybody or anything else and you are guilty of "hate speech".

So college speech codes are fundamentally anti-intellectual. Criticism should be the lifeblood of higher education.  All orthodoxies should come under fierce scrutiny there.  And if not there, where? Disrespect of everybody and everything should be permissible there.  As it is, speech in many colleges is as restricted as it was in Stalin's Russia or Mao's China:  Not exactly an inspiring model, is it?  Has the land of the free become a land of stifling orthodoxy?  In America's seats of higher learning it has.  And the orthodoxy concerned is in fact rather similar to Mao Tse Tung thought.  An outbreak of Little Red Books would be no surprise

The pretext of speech codes is that they aim to protect the feelings of minorities.  But that is creating a fool's paradise.  The world outside the academy is a cold, hard place and everybody, minorities included, needs to be prepared for that -- not sheltered in some sort of adult kindergarten.

And people tend to like others who are like themselves so minorities will always be discriminated against in one way or another -- mostly covertly these days.  So minorities need to learn to deal with that, not break down in a crying heap every time someone criticizes them.

And, as it happens, some minorities are in any case not at all inclined to break down in a crying heap every time someone criticizes them.  As all the research shows, blacks tend to have very high self-confidence and self-esteem.  Their feelings are not easily dented.  And Muslims of course think they have the right religion and feel quite superior about it.  So they too are not easily ground down.  Most minorities could actually do with more humility in my observation.  It would get them further in life


UPDATE:  As a good academic, I avoid empty assertions and would not like to be accused of them.  So below are some thoughts from Chapter 4 of Mao's Little Red Book that do, I think, remind us of college speech codes:

(1) Words and actions should help to unite, and not divide, the people of our various nationalities.

(2) They should be beneficial, and not harmful, to socialist transformation and socialist construction.

(3) They should help to consolidate, and not undermine or weaken, the people's democratic dictatorship.

(4) They should help to consolidate, and not undermine or weaken, democratic centralism.

(5) They should help to strengthen, and not discard or weaken, the leadership of the Communist Party.

(6) They should be beneficial, and not harmful, to international socialist unity and the unity of the peace-loving people of the world.
 



At a medium sized college in the southwest of Minnesota, freedom of speech has come under fire on a national scale.

Southwest Minnesota State University recently garnered national attention for a provision, and then revision, within their student code of conduct. Previously, the university specifically prohibited any jokes, comments, or public talks that exhibited what they deemed “cultural intolerance.”

Any insults, slurs, or phrases that discriminated against or belittled a larger group of people could be punishable by the school. The university faced harsh criticism from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, which monitors schools levels of freedom of speech on campus. Before the revision, SMSU received a “red light” rating.

While this may have been done in the name of free speech, such a revision essentially allows and facilitates hate speech on campus. Universities and academic places should be inherently inclusive of all cultures, and the rule in its original form had intentions in the proper place.

Punishing students who outwardly slander races, religions, or other cultural groups should be within the rights of a university.

A college’s main priority ought to be the support and facilitation of a civil, respectful education for all its students. and students who create hostile environments for others at the university do nothing to benefit the academic culture.

Harassment is just that; it has no place in a scholastic setting. Providing a safe, conducive learning environment for all students is the duty of universities, and that should not be sacrificed in the name of respecting intolerance.

SOURCE 

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Harassment is just that; it has no place in a scholastic setting. Providing a safe, conducive learning environment for all students is the duty of universities, and that should not be sacrificed in the name of respecting intolerance.

I agree.

Bird of Paradise said...

Its time to totaly defund these leftists run universities and collages let them get by with private grants from liberal leftists

Dean said...

Sven and Ole were touring Norway on motorcycles last year. As they were heading to the next town and a warm hotel late one evening Ole pulled over.
"What's da matter?" Sven asked.
"I can't see to ride," Ole explained, "do danged light went out."
So they spent a cold night along side the road trying to catch a few moments of sleep
Early the next day they arose and walked the stiffness out of sore muscles As they did the sum peeped over the horizon.
"Oh good," Ole said. We can go now. Da light's back on."

That would most likely get me suspended from most colleges today. At our Sons of Norway meetings or the motorcycle sites I visit it would get a good laugh.

Alpha Skua said...

Hate speech at least with liberals is any speech that critisizes Obama and his cabinet

Anonymous said...

Who you bitches gonna complain about next January 20? Probably Hillary.

Anonymous said...

I am part Polish. I was never offended by "Pollock" jokes. I guess my generation had a thicker skin.

stymphalian Bird said...

Q. How many liberals dose it take to screw in a lightbulb? A. Two one to screw in the lightbulb the other to check out for any rainforest products used

Anonymous said...

ANON 8:07 AM

Us bitches will get to complain about the great zero for as long as it takes to get rid of his legacy; trillions in national debt and ludicrous socialist policies.


MDH

Canary, caged, safe, and pretty said...

Regarding: "Harassment is just that; it has no place in a scholastic setting. Providing a safe, conducive learning environment for all students is the duty of universities, and that should not be sacrificed in the name of respecting intolerance."

The most significant word here is "safe". There is inherent risk in everything and every place. There is no guaranteed safe place, no safe activity, no safe interaction with someone else or others. Always there is risk. So the safety excuse can be used indefinitely and to any extent to keep tightening restrictions, confining freedoms, disallowing any degree of free speech and action, until nothing is left but rigid confinement of freewill, and confined with it all freedom of pursuit, speech, thought and intellect.

Safety and the idea that it should be socially applied to the individual is currently one of the left's trump cards. It is a deceitful tactic though, for leftists care nothing for the well being of others, but only for their own influence over others. For them it is all about feeling good and right and powerful. They care only about emotions, image and status, and power and control.

Kookaburra, the laughing bird, said...

Re. Anonymous 8:07 AM said... Who you bitches gonna complain about next January 20? Probably Hillary.


Lefties complain the most, and mostly about reality and the freedom of others.


Spurwing Plover said...

Whine,whine,whine listen to the wussiepants liberal whine,whine,whine

Anonymous said...

I agree Canary.
Safe is the key word.
I think Universities (and everywhere) should be safe places where you are free from physical violence or arbitrary denial of property.
But 'safe' should not, and should never, mean free from having your beliefs questioned, or assumptions tested, or myths poked. Nor should it mean never having to defend an idea or risk being offended.
And it is precisely the enforcement of group-think that is letting our Universities down so badly.

canary, free therefore responsible said...

Re "I think Universities (and everywhere) should be safe places where you are free from physical violence or arbitrary denial of property."

hmm... You are sounding like a feminist woman who expects someone else to make her safe wherever she is.

Reality dictates that safety requires a level of personal responsibility though.

As a man I should not be so foolish as to believe I simply "should" be able to walk wherever I like, through any neighbourhood, even with my gold wedding ring and expensive watch showing, and that some indefinable something or someone should keep me safe from being bashed and robbed.

My safety is contingent upon me. If others help or contribute to my safety, such as government, employer, university management, police, friend or strangers,... then I may appreciate and be thankful for their contribution, but I should not hand over my responsibility for myself to them and expect that they provide my safety for me.

We agree on your other points.