by Rick Moran
Former Breitbart editor Ben Shapiro is scheduled to speak at the University of California-Berkeley campus on September 14, But even before Shapiro utters a word, the university is offering "counseling" to students who might be offended by a speech given on campus by someone they disagree with.
LA Times: "We are deeply concerned about the impact some speakers may have on individuals’ sense of safety and belonging,”
Berkeley has kicked off a "Year of Free Speech" where officials want to "teach" students how to debate unpopular speakers. But even this appears to be too much for the snowflakes.
This is fine, as far as it goes. Unfortunately, the school believes that Shapiro isn't the one being "threatened" and that it's the snowflakes who they believe are being "harassed" by Shapiro's visit.“We are deeply concerned about the impact some speakers may have on individuals’ sense of safety and belonging,” Alivisatos said in the memo posted on the university’s website. “No one should be made to feel threatened or harassed simply because of who they are or for what they believe.”The memo drew scorn from conservative websites, including the Daily Wire, where Shapiro serves as editor-in-chief. The site called the measures extreme and criticized them as a sign of the university’s intolerance.
Alivisatos’ email also mentions the all-too typical “[some] speech this is antithetical to our values” and points to a campus free speech forum which took place last evening. At that forum, Berkeley Law School Dean Erwin Chemerinsky and the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society’s john powell (yes, lower case) collided over the extent of the First Amendment.Remember: Berkeley is still considered one of the finest institutions of higher education in the country. That they even had this "debate" is indicative of a moral rot and towering ignorance of why the First Amendment is important.
Chemerinsky (rightly) noted “All ideas and views can be expressed on campus, no matter how offensive,” whereas the best powell could muster was to say the US Supreme Court has been made unjust decisions in the past.
“[T]he Supreme Court has previously supported harmful decisions, such as allowing women to be excluded from the workplace and allowing slavery,” The Daily Californian reports powell as saying.
powell added he believes certain speech can “directly harm people,” and said dismissing its (psychological) effects “uses the same rationale that upheld segregation.”
That even the prospect of someone speaking on campus that they can choose not to hear triggers any anxiety or fear at all is idiotic. Shapiro hasn't even opened his mouth and he's already triggering people.
Is free speech at Berkeley dead? How actively police work to protect Shapiro and anyone who wants to listen to him will tell us a lot about the state of liberty at the university. But anyone who has seen the reaction of Berkeley police to Antifa and other violent protesters recently shouldn't feel confident of a positive outcome.
Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter
Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.