A Forum for Vigorous Debate, Cornerstone of Democracy
*********************************************************************************************************************************** A FORUM FOR FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND VIGOROUS DEBATE, CORNERSTONES OF DEMOCRACY [For the journal(guidelines, focus, etc.), go to www.theamericandissident.org]. Encouraged censorship and self-censorship seem to have become popular in America today. Those who censor others, not just self, tend to favor the term "moderate," as opposed to "censor" and "moderation" to "censorship." But that doesn't change what they do. They still act as Little Caesars or Big Brother protectors of the thin-skinned. Democracy, however, demands a tough populace, not so easily offended. On this blog, and to buck the trend of censorship, banning, and ostracizing, comments are NEVER "moderated." Rarely (almost NEVER) do the targets of these blog entries respond in an effort to defend themselves with cogent counter-argumentation. This blog is testimony to how little academics, poets, critics, newspaper editors, cartoonists, political hacks, cultural council apparatchiks, librarians et al appreciate VIGOROUS DEBATE, cornerstone of democracy. Clearly, far too many of them could likely prosper just fine in places like communist China and Cuba or Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Russia.
Subject: A Notre Dame sociology professor lampooned in a new P. Maudit cartoon
To the Department of Sociology, University of Notre Dame:
Attached is a cartoon I just finished on one of your colleagues. Why not examine it? The response I received from that colleague was ABSOLUT MINDNUMBERY and is highlighted in the cartoon, which really does strike at the very crux of the problem: your problem, academe’s problem, and consequently America’s problem. I welcome your reaction, though will be surprised if I receive any considering general professorial disdain for vigorous debate, cornerstone of democracy...
[The following essay was sent to Editor Andrew C. Holman and Assoc. Editors Norma Anderson and Ellen Scheible (Bridgewater Review, Bridgewater State University (MA); Ed.-in-Chief Daniel Creed and Faculty Advisor Sherri Miles, The Comment (BSU student newspaper); Professors Carolyn Petrosino and Benjamin Carson; and BSU Library Director Michael Somers. It was also sent to The Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed. Not one person deigned to respond.]
In the Crosshairs of the Cultural Marxist Movement:
Is Bridgewater State Ready… Or Has It Already Submitted?
Some ground rules at the Snowden Multicultural Center’s Whiteness Group: If you have an unpopular opinion, speak up. No white person can ask a person of color questions; white people must try to answer their questions for themselves. And no spreading rumors about what people say during the meetings.
—the Kenyon Collegian, Kenyon College
The problem is that this system gives a perverse incentive for protesters to make conservative speakers prohibitively expensive. The more violence and trouble that groups cause, the more money sponsors will have to pay. As a result, groups will not be able to invite speakers opposed by these groups. Both cities and colleges are supposed to be forums for free speech. It is not a luxury for which you pay a user fee. Those groups like Antifa are the ones causing disruptions and interfering with free speech.
—Jonathan Turley, liberal constitutional law professor
Over the years, an insidious takeover of colleges and universities across the nation has seemingly been achieved, not by white nationalists, but rather by cultural Marxists, who do not favor freedom of speech and vigorous debate, cornerstones of democracy. Are the Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, and Bridgewater Review concerned about that? If not, why not? Perhaps the editors are cultural Marxists themselves or lean in that direction. As for white nationalism, clearly it has not even made a dent in higher education… and certainly not at Bridgewater State.
Ideology has been rapidly supplanting reason and freedom of expression in higher education. It is well known that right-leaning speakers, including Murray, Coulter, and Yiannopoulos, have been shut down and threatened with violence on campuses from Berkeley to Middlebury, NYU, and William & Mary, for example. At which campuses have white nationalists managed to shut down left-leaning speakers?
Speech codes have supplanted freedom of speech in many institutions of higher education. If unaware of this, check out the numerous reports at the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. A quick search on Bridgewater State will reveal that “Bridgewater State University has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application.” Is there a professor at Bridgewater State who even cares about that?
Are vigorous debate and freedom of speech cornerstones at Bridgewater State? Would Bridgewater Review, published by Bridgewater State professors and librarians, or the student newspaper, The Comment, publish this counter-essay? Perhaps not. Why not? Well, back in 2011, I tested the waters of democracy regarding Bridgewater State’s English Department.
Letters to a Young Department Chairperson:
I do appreciate your quick reply. Yet how is it possible that “one of the most vibrant departments” at a state university would not express an iota of interestin The American Dissident, a unique journal devoted to Literature, Democracy, and Dissidence? Well, it is true that“vibrant” means “pulsating with vigor and energy” (i.e., a lot of running around), and not necessarily with curiosity and courageousness. You note the “rich array of courses” at your institution, yet do not offer any courses even remotely similar to “Literature, Dissidence, and Democracy,” the one I created and in which you also failed to express an iota of interest. In fact, how does such lack of interest and curiosity reflect the statement preceding your job ad for English adjuncts: “Applicants should be strongly committed […] to working in a multicultural environment that fosters diversity”? Or am I quite wrong in thinking that by “diversity” you meant diversity of opinions, as opposed to superficial skin color, and diversity of guts, as opposed to mere ethnicity?
Finally, why not mention in your “Chair’s Welcome” that you encourage student and faculty questioning and challenging of all things, including and especially multiculti- ideology and the Academic/Literary Industrial Complex—its mass of institutions (e.g., NEA, Guggenheim, state cultural councils, and universities), prize-winning icons (Beatniks et al), award-winning journals (Agni, Poetry, the Bridge et al), grant-receiving professors, and of course Holy Canon.
Remember: the noble title of "chairperson" must be earned rather than claimed; it connotes conformity and safety rather than mere agreement. Yes, I did paraphrase that from Christopher Hitchens’ Letters to a Young Contrarian.
For Chairperson Benjamin D. Carson’s response and my further retort, see http://wwwtheamericandissidentorg.blogspot.com/2012/01/benjamin-carson.html. I’d also tested the waters vis-a-vis the university president and student newspaper editors at The Comment. Part of that post includes a cartoon drawn on Professor Carson and a letter sent to then President Dana Mohler-Fariaboth, regarding Bridgewater State’s shameful speech codes. Back then it had the worst possible rating, the red light! Neither the student editors, nor the president deigned to respond after I’d sent the items to them. How odd that student editors did not think free speech at Bridgewater State, or rather lack thereof, to be something that might interest students! Of course, the apathy of the president was quite understandable. In vain, I’d also attempted to interest the university library in subscribing to The American Dissident. After all, where else might students be able to read such criticism? Well, I digress… or sort of.
“In the Crosshairs of the White Nationalist Movement: Is Bridgewater State Ready?”, authored by
Professor Carolyn Petrosino (Department of Criminal Justice), evidently reflects cultural-Marxist biases. “Social movements that are negative—that advocate the institutionalized devaluation of others—are what I refer to as dark social movements,” notes Professor Petrosino. “The White Nationalist Movement is in that category.” Okay. I agree. BUT why not also mention the cultural Marxist movement, especially the highly violent, free-speech-hating group Antifa, not to mention BLM, New Black Panthers, and Nation of Islam. The cultural Marxist movement created the it’s-okay-to-hate-whitey enterprise, spread via large numbers of campus workshops, speeches, and mandatory diversity training sessions aka indoctrination sessions. That movement has even begun to penetrate Quebec: Le racisme antiblanc est-il un humanisme? It also invented the absurd inclusion (i.e., exclusion) mantra that defies logic and reason. Professor Petrosino notes she’s taught courses on hate crimes. Does she mention to students that designation is controversial? Why, for example, should a poster or flyer or graffiti constitute a hate crime, instead of an instance of freedom of expression? Well, the cultural Marxists in power easily get around that by designating the poster or flyer or graffiti they do not like as litter or vandalism, which indeed are crimes, therefore hate crimes. Moreover, the term hate is of course subjective. Does Professor Petrosino mention that racism can and might often be black on white or that anti-Semitism is ingrained in the Qu’ran and likely openly expressed by many Muslim Student Association members?
Does Professor Petrosino include, in her examples, hate crimes committed against whites by blacks? Professor Tony Brown at Vanderbilt University notes in a research paper that "African Americans are the only group of persons categorized in significant numbers as both victims and perpetrators of hate crimes.” Can there really be no examples of white students, as hate-crime victims? Professor Petrosino mentions the “Stop (or Fight) White Genocide” email received by faculty and students as “disturbing.” Sadly, in academe, it also seems to be very “disturbing” whenever anyone stands up and dares counter the reigning cultural-Marxist narrative. Does Professor Petrocino mention that some blacks want the “Tanning of America”? How is that not anti-white and not constitute a desire for white genocide, and why does Professor Petrosino not mention that? The Root’s Tracy Clayton and Tracey Ross (the links are for the two cartoons I sketched several years ago) are proponents of that racist wish.
To: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Dialogue on Racism? Or rather Racist Indoctrination!
Date: Tue, 21 May 2013 08:36:25 -0400
To the Editors of The Root,
You evidently are not seeking dialogue on racism at all. What you are seeking is to disseminate pro-black, anti-white racist indoctrination, nothing more, nothing less. The Root is a racist online publication, which is why I have decried it, especially in three cartoons. LOGIC is the motor in my cartooning. Indoctrination, racist or whatever, can never defeat LOGIC. For the latest cartoon, inspired by The Root, see “Stupid White Women.” Scroll down to see toons on Dawkins, Goff, and Tim Wise. A cartoon on Tracy Clayton will be published next week. Conversation on racism? Silence is not conversation!
Did The Root respond? No! So, Professor Petrosino is concerned about “White nationalist recruitment efforts on campus.” Okay. But what about Antifa, New Black Panthers, BLM, or Muslim Student Association recruitment efforts on campus, not to mention the Office of Institutional Diversity and Diversity Consortium efforts to indoctrinate? Might diversity and inclusion practices exclude opinions apt to question and challenge the inclusion mantra? Any mandatory diversity workshops or training courses at Bridgewater State? Any discussion about the white students who might have been rejected by Bridgewater State because of Affirmative Action’s preference for black students?
Professor Petrosino notes that in the 1980s the FBI reported an increase in neo-Nazi skinheads. But she fails to mention the violent Black Panthers of the 1970s. Why? She underscores that the Anti-Defamation League reported at least 147 incidents involving the distribution of racist flyers on 107 different campuses. But what about the BDS (Boycott, Divest and Sanctions) movement and anti-Semitic flyers or posters authored by Islamists on college campuses? What about the Muslim Student Association, attached to the Muslim Brotherhood, which adores homosexuality, kuffars, apostates, and non-hijab-adorning alpha females?
Professor Petrosino aberrantly evokes Trump, as a “symbol of white nationalism.” Was Obama a symbol of the black nationalism espoused by “outstanding human being” Jew-hater Louis Farrakhan? Is there a photo of Trump posing with Richard B. Spencer? Well, there is definitely a photo of Obama posing with Farrakhan! Here it is in case you live in a fully-protected cultural-Marxist safety cocoon and never saw it: “The Media’s Ugly David Duke-Louis Farrakhan Double Standard.” And what about Obama’s fling with “racialist” Jeremiah Wright?
Professor Petrosino and so many others do not understand, let alone appreciate, the First Amendment. In Europe and Canada, citizens can and have been arrested for simply expressing an opinion. Thankfully, in America, that is not supposed to happen. Far too many people do not understand the intrinsic problem with so-called hate-speech legislation. Hate is subjective. Hate is subjective. Capiche? Professor Petrosino puts forth an argument against the First Amendment: “When hateful speech influences public perspectives, it has the potential to shape law and create public policy that negatively impacts vulnerable groups.” How not to mention Islam in Europe? Indeed, hate-speech legislation has been adopted there to essentially not only stop criticism of Islamic ideology, but also nefariously to stop criticism of government policy regarding Islam and Muslim immigration. One can actually be arrested and incarcerated for doing the latter! In Europe, not only right-wing hate speech, but also left-wing hate speech has been prosecuted.
As for the Southern Poverty Law Center, it has become a controversial left-wing, pro-Islamic organization. Professor Petrosino does not mention that. Instead, egregious bias blinds her, preventing her to question and challenge that which evidently needs to be questioned and challenged. She notes, SPLC reported that “at least 23 candidates for public office with radical right-wing views” existed. She fails to stipulate precisely what “radical right-wing views” might be. Is criticism of political Islam a radical right-wing view? Does SPLC list radical left-wing candidates? If so, how many? If not, why not? Is SPLC at all objective? Professor Petrosino states, “Steve Bannon, the former chief strategist for President Trump, has provided a media platform of the alt-right movement (Breitbart News), which supports and advocates white nationalist ideology.” Well, I consult Breitbart News every morning and have yet to come across an article that supports that statement! Has Professor Petrosino ever even examined it? By the way, I also consult the New York Times and Washington Post every morning and am ever disappointed by the important stories on which they fail to report, whereas Breitbart News reports on them. Why, for example, published on the same day, are the NY Times stories, “Woody Allen Meets Me#Too” and “On ‘S.N.L.,’ Trump Calls In to ‘Fox & Friends’” more important than the two Breitbart News stories, both ignored by the NY Times, “Antifa Extremists Try To Shut Down Jacob Rees-Mogg Speech” and “Belgian Senator: Multiculturalist Elites Manipulated Stats to Transform Society with Mass Migration”? Of course, Breitbart News also publishes its share of pop stories. But to simply dismiss it as “white nationalist ideology” serves to assist democracy’s death in darkness, to paraphrase the Washington Post.
Professor Petrosino ought to include one, just one, Breitbart News article indicative of a connection with white nationalism and then also attempt to disprove “National Public Radio Falsely Links Breitbart to White Separatists.” If she is indeed concerned about the “vulnerability” of students to the messages of white nationalists, why is she not concerned about the “vulnerability” of students to the far more potently ubiquitous ideology of cultural Marxism likely pushed by some Bridgewater State professors themselves? She expresses concern for “acts of bigotry” on campus, but fails to mention the left’s ubiquitous “white privilege” courses, workshops, speeches, and mandatory training, as acts of bigotry against white students. Blatantly anti-white racist student campus “whiteness groups” also exist and even kindergarten children are now being “taught” (i.e., brainwashed) about purported “white privilege.” Well, you will not learn about those two realities if you only consult the New York Times and Washington Post!
Now, what to say about “Bridgewater State Professor Says ‘Fuck Any’ Students Who Voted For Trump, They Are KKK And Are Not Welcomed In His English Class”? Freedom of speech? Definitely! But how can professors, including Garrett Avila-Nichols, who proffered that statement, and the Board of Trustees state, without being egregiously hypocritical, “We re-commit ourselves to actions that put into practice our individual and institutional values of diversity, inclusion, and equality for all,” while simultaneously engaging in identity politics, demonization of whites, and exclusion of student Trump voters and alt-opinions in general? How can egregiously biased, cultural Marxist professors like Avila-Nichols possibly make a statement that “We reject all forms of bias…”?
In academe today, it seems “let’s have a conversation about race” has become in reality “let’s have a cultural Marxist monologue about race.” Does Bridgewater State want to graduate questioning and challenging students with the capacity to reason with logic or well-indoctrinated Democrat-Party students with the capacity to skillfully use ad hominem (e.g., KKK) in an effort to demonize anybody daring to proffer uncomfortable truths and/or alt-opinions? Will Bridgewater Review publish this counter-essay, considering that I must certainly be a Nazi white nationalist, racist, homophobe, islamophobe, sexist, who believes that FREEDOM OF SPEECH, not diversity, is our real strength? Does Bridgewater Review want to have a conversation or a monologue about race? Well, as noted, it is closed to outsiders: “Bridgewater Review invites submissions from full- and part-time faculty members and librarians, and others in the BSU community.” In fact, it is not even available online. It is a members-only journal. And yet, as a public university periodical shouldn’t it be open to the public? One must wonder if any non-cultural Marxists even teach at Bridgewater State, especially in the so-called social sciences. It is highly likely that its “forum for campus-wide conversations pertaining to research, teaching, and creative expression” will not include any questioning or challenging of Professor Petrosino. Its forum is likely nothing but a safe space for campus-wide cultural Marxist groupthink monologues… and thus is perhaps the state of higher education in a nutshell.
Finally, objectivity needs to somehow overcome the massive left-wing egregious bias controlling academe today. We have gotten to the sad point where objective facts can now be skillfully warped by hardcore ideologues into subjective falsehoods. Sanctimonious statements of equality and inclusion professed by those like Professor Petrosino are vacuous when the reality is exclusion and inequity. Will Professor Petrosino or any of her colleagues even dare step out of their protective bubble and respond to this counter-essay?
Ideologues Make Shallow Free-Speech Advocates—An Unwanted Addendum to the National Coalition Against Censorship’s “The State of the First Amendment: 2017’s Top Free Speech Offenders and Defenders”
It’s a sign [i.e., whenever she’s told her stance on Islam is “offensive”] that someone is trying to deprive me of my right to free speech and impose censorship on me. It’s a sign that they’ve given up their own right to freedom of expression because of a wish for comfort and a fear of being called racist. They’ve given up the common fight and gone over to the side of the Islamists. But the right to free speech is the most precious right, the foundation for all other freedoms. Blasphemy is a celebration of free speech. It’s a raw form of free speech, yes, but it shows that any ideas and values can be challenged.
Islam is once again mysteriously absent, this time from “The State of the First Amendment: 2017’s Top Free Speech Offenders and Defenders.” As a cartoonist, I have no doubt that drawing a cartoon critical of Islam and Muhammad is by far the most dangerous cartoon I could draw, considering the large mass of Islamic fanatics. The Charlie Hebdo massacre highlighted that reality in 2015. Today, the magazine is located in a secret “bunker” because of constant Islamic threats from those Muslims, who hate freedom of expression. One to two million dollars per year are spent on security and the magazine, not the government, has to pay. Left-wing Charlie Hebdo journalist, Fabrice Nicolino, noted at the third anniversary of the massacre that “At my house, where I am known, extreme left-wingers will no longer say hello to me, because they are certainly not Charlie.” As for Pamela Geller, Ayan Hirsi Ali, and perhaps other such individuals have oddly been listed on Southern Poverty Law Center’s website as hate groups for daring to criticize Islam and thus exercise their First Amendment rights. In America, they must have constant security or will simply be executed by enraged Muslims, one of whom was just sentenced to 28 years in prison. And how to forget the Muhammad cartoon event Garland, TX near-massacre? Well, NCAC forgot it immediately after it happened.
NCAC highlights Colin Kaepernick for “taking a knee to protest racial injustice” and “strengthened every citizen’s right to free expression and peaceful protest.” NCAC ought to avoid making such naive wishful-thinking generalizations! Racial injustice? How odd for the plethora of multimillionaire black privileged ballplayers, not to mention the plethora of blacks who have benefitted from Affirmative Action. Kaepernick doesn’t need armed guards for protection; Geller and Hirsi Ali do and yet courageously persist in exercising their right to freedom of expression. Moreover, what does “racial injustice” have to do with CENSORSHIP as in National Coalition Against Censorship? Also, my purported citizen’s right to “free expression” was certainly not “strengthened” by Kaepernick’s knee activity!
Why NCAC cannot or will not understand Islam as a real threat to freedom of speech can only be explained by NCAC’s ideological anchor… and perhaps funding. Why did it not even mention the Islamic terror attack on the Pulse nightclub in Orlando that took 49 lives… in 2017? Recall how the Southern Poverty Law Center, one of NCAC’s buddies, proclaimed it to be a right-wing plot, despite Muslim Omar Mateen’s having hollered, “Allahu Akbar,” and called 911 immediately prior to the attack to pledge allegiance not to the KKK, but to ISIS. The SPLC by demonizing people like Geller and Hirsi Ali as haters because they dare criticize Islam makes itself an enemy of free speech, worthy of NCAC mention as an OFFENDER. The ACLU, another of NCAC’s buddies, blamed the attack on the Christian Right. Recall that the nightclub was a homosexual hangout and that Muslims are not exactly fond of the idea of homosexuality, a freedom-of-expression concept. And for the mind numb, who still think it was a KKK attack, the Washington Post recently published Under Islam, the Orlando Shooter’s Wife Is also Guilty. In Europe and Canada today, free speech continues to be severely threatened by Islam and its useful idiot political hacks from Trudeau to Macron and Merkel. And what about on the southern border, where Mexican latino cartels are killing journalists and what about the MS-13 latino plague already in America? How might they affect free speech?
Besides Islam, the ideologically-biased media and the nation’s ideologically-biased colleges and universities ought to have figured on NCAC’s list, yet are conspicuously absent from it. The media severely affects freedom of expression by choosing which stories to cover and which ones to bury. Its choices have been increasingly biased and its stories, increasingly slanted. And for that, We, the People have become increasingly distrustful of it! “We note that many of the worst offenders this year are associated with the Trump administration,” notes NCAC in full ideological hate-Trump mode.
“NCAC joined dozens of cultural and civil liberties organizations inprotesting the administration’s travel ban," it notes in full pro-Islam mode. No mention of the Obama administration several years ago when it was working side-by-side with CAIR and the UN to adopt anti-blasphemy Resolution 16/18 (Istanbul Process)! Partisan-politics should not play a role in free-speech advocation!
The worst offenders were not associated with Trump but rather with those who hate Trump, including left-wing ANTIFA and BLM, which have successfully shut down free speech via violent protests on college campuses across the country. NCAC did not even mention the Berkeley Antifa riot! Rutgers, William & Mary, NYU, Middlebury, and other institutions had right-wing speakers silenced. At what colleges did the KKK shut down free speech? The right to protest does not mean the right to shut down the speech of others, whom one does not like. That is called the heckler’s veto, which is against the law. NCAC ought to heed the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, yet another of its buddies: “We urge our readers to identify this pernicious form of censorship, speak out against it, and deny the heckler the power to veto speech. Take a stand for free speech over mob censorship by rejecting the heckler’s veto once and for all” (Zach Greenberg). NCAC ought to clearly list Antifa and BLM, as well as name their leaders, as Offenders, instead of simply mentioning the former in its introduction: “Alt-right provocateurs and antifa alike have attempted to silence their detractors with threats of physical violence, and it seems to be working.”
Antifa should not be conflated with White Supremacist movements because the former, by far, especially on college campuses, not the latter, is clearly an anti-free speech movement. Oddly, or perhaps not, editor Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed, labels White Supremacist poster hanging or distributing leaflets on campuses as “incidents.” Well, if anything, they are incidents of freedom of speech! But that is not what Jaschik means. And yet clearly hanging a poster is not the same as beating people unconscious to shut them up, as effected by Antifa at Berkeley. Jaschik concludes his article, “Surge in Campus Propaganda From White Supremacists,” citing Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League: “White supremacists are targeting college campuses like never before. They see campuses as a fertile recruiting ground, as evident by the unprecedented volume of propagandist activity designed to recruit young people to support their vile ideology.” And what about Antifa? In fact, what about the “vile ideology” of anti-free-speech cultural Marxism, entrenched in so many college campuses today?Silence!
Jaschik and co-editor Doug Lederman refuse to address my criticisms and have even censored my comments on a number of occasions (see A, B, and C). In fact, I featured both of them with censorship-approving President Patricia McGuire of Trinity Washington University on the front cover of last issue of The American Dissident. Perhaps they ought to be highlighted by NCAC as Offenders! In fact, academe in general ought to have been listed as an Offender because clearly far too many colleges and universities and their Deans of Diversity have been pushing the mantra that hate speech somehow is not free speech. Why the silence with that regard, NCAC Executive Director Chris Finan?
NCAC lists the FCC (Ajit Pai) as an “Offender” because of its removal of “net neutrality,” which removed government controls initiated by Obama over the internet, thus somehow “threatening our ability to freely communicate on the internet and potentially restricting what we read, see, watch and write online. […] The FCC has given ISPs the right to control online content and create a tiered internet in which they determine who is and is not heard.” So, why the egregious silence regarding Twitter, Facebook, and Google, which have likely had far more censorial power as to “who is and is not heard” than Trump and Pai? Yes, Twitter has gone from bastion of free speech to global censor. But NCAC chooses not to mention that! And how about the interesting concept of “shadow banning” actualized by Twitter? Silence. And how about James Damore, fired by Google because of his revealing viewpoint diversity memo? Well, Damore is suing Google now. And so is Prager University, a conservative nonprofit that makes educational videos (see "Google has an actual secret speech police"). Others have had their accounts deleted by Twitter and YouTube, including Pamela Geller and Milo Yiannopoulos, usually for ideological non-conformity. Should not NCAC stick up for the free speech rights of those of the supposed alt-right? Or is a free and open internet meant only for those ideologically conformed to the alt-left?
The egregious lack of neutrality or even semblance thereof characterizes NCAC’s Offenders and Defenders list. Alt-left good/alt-right bad constitutes the general slant. Black victimization is highlighted over and again along with the white-supremacy-here-white-supremacy-everywhere mantra from Kaepernick to John Simms (his anti-white supremacy noose exhibit), Sam Durant (his scaffold exhibit noting people of color were hung more), Paul Rucker (his history of racism exhibit), Mark Harris (11 paintings depicting history of racial injustice), Dana Shultz (painting of Emmett Till in his casket), and David Pulphus (cops as pigs painting). The few other examples were certainly in line with the identity politics of the day, including mention of native establishment poet American Sherman Alexie. Clearly, identity politics, rife in the ranks of NCAC, determined who would be selected as Defenders and Offenders. Were there no banned white artists or writers in America in 2017? In fact, one must wonder if racism and identity politics were the only free speech concerns in 2017. Why didn’t NCAC at least attempt to be fair and balanced by including just one conservative voice that was censored in 2017. How about Charles Murray at Middlebury College, my alma mater? Silence. Well, how about the censoring of just one liberal voice by leftists? How about at public Evergreen State College’s “Day of Absence,” requesting whites to leave campus for a day, and where a “deeply progressive” professor, a Bernie Sanders supporter, Bret Weinstein dared protest the event and ended up fully demonized by ideologue students. His safety could no longer be guaranteed at the college, according to its president! He no longer teaches there and won a sizable legal settlement from the college! Silence. Or how about Evergreen’s censoring criticism of BLM via its Bias Response Team? Silence. Or how about liberal professor Michael Rectenwald, who dared challenge NYU’s PC-censorship culture and is now suing. Silence! What is wrong with NCAC, which did not even mention these highly public stories. Instead, it highlights Kaepernick and the private football industry, which can legally censor all it wants.
Aberrantly, NCAC praises Democrat (of course!) Governor John Bel Edwards who vetoed a bill that would have in fact simply echoed the heckler’s veto, which prohibits, as mentioned above, the shutting down of speech via protest, peaceful or other. It also praises another Democrat Governor Terry McAuliffe for vetoing a bill that would have forced schools to inform parents when reading material contained sexual content and, according to NCAC, would have “discouraged educators from choosing important texts because they might cause controversy.” The “important text” used to illustrate the bill was by (surprise!) black author Toni Morrison, which some people had wrongly attempted to ban. But what about books that were actually banned, not simply almost banned, or for that matter writers who were permanently banned from their neighborhood libraries… or might that upset the narrative of the American Library Association, another NCAC buddy, that all libraries are freedom-loving? It is not clear why Edwards and McAuliffe’s vetoes were far more praiseworthy than perhaps thousands of other unmentioned actions. A third Democrat, black Congressman William Clay, is also praised (for backing black artist Pulphus).
What should have been included on the NCAC list is the forcing of PC-vocabulary down the throats of citizens and how some of it definitely has the insidious intention of encouraging self-censorship, including terms like islamophobia, transphobia, racism, sexism and on and on. “He who controls the language controls the masses,” had argued Alinsky. Perhaps for the sake of truth, NCAC ought to rename itself National Coalition Against White Supremacy (and for that matter the SPLC, Southern Poverty Center Against White Supremacy). Its fixation on the race issue blinds it to other important, if not more important, issues of censorship, especially festering, as mentioned, in the nation’s colleges and universities.
“This year, our core values have been attacked by activists across the political spectrum,” notes the NCAC. Well, I for one do not share its core politically-correct ideological, pro-Islamic, BLM values. I for one will NOT self-censor in an effort to gain access. So, evidently, that must render this essay an “attack.” Imagine how many thousands of citizens are perhaps censored in any given year and simply ignored by NCAC. Why doesn’t NCAC mention that and perhaps even add a token to its lists of one of those faceless censored citizens, who cannot, for example, even get his or her story told in the local PC-newspaper, facilitator of community-pillar censors?
“All citizens must demand that our public officials and institutions support our right to free expression,” states NCAC. But it does not inform how citizens can make such demands against such brick walls. How to demand the NEA open its gates to free expression, for example? How to demand the Library of Congress, state cultural councils, and even local human rights commissions open their gates? In fact, how to demand a simple response from NCAC itself regarding its apparent ideological rigidity? Well, I’ve tried and tried and failed and failed. Finally, in America, likely thousands of local governments are either outwardly against free speech or apathetic to concerns of free speech, despite the First Amendment. Test those dubious waters of democracy and ineluctably you will discover a world of difference between de facto rights and de jura rights. NCAC fails to even contemplate this… perhaps because its staff has never contemplated actually testing those waters. It lists eight defenders and nine offenders in total. A few I did not mention, nor did I analyze each one in depth, for each one could probably form the basis for separate essays.