Middlebury College Under Fire For Canceling Event By Conservative Speaker

We have previously discussed the anti-free speech controversies at Middlebury College where a professor and a speaker were attacked. Now protests have erupted over another conservative speaker, Ryszard Legutko, who was invited to speak on campus but then forced into a small classroom presentation. That did not satisfy students who demanded to know how such a speaker could be invited and how it would be avoided in the future. According to a recording of the meeting, the college officials apologized for allowing such a speaker and promised actions in the future to avoid such controversies.

First and foremost, I have no idea who Legutko is or what he believes. He is a polish philosopher and politician who was invited by the university’s Alexander Hamilton Forum series, the Department of Political Science and the Rohatyn Center for Global Affairs. From a free speech perspective, I am more concerned about the suggestion of these administrators that future speakers would be chosen based on the content of their views. Students were reportedly upset by his views of homosexuality.

The meeting was held with Sujata Moorti, the new dean of the faculty, Dean of Students Baishakhi Taylor and Renee Wells, director of education for equity and inclusion. One told the students “I hear you, and you should be outraged, and we should acknowledge that and apologize, because that’s the least we can do right now, because we can’t make it right in the moment. But in the future we will do everything we can to make it right.”

This followed a canceling of the original venue on the same type of vague security concerns that we have seen used by other schools as a way of preventing controversial (and often conservative) speakers from appearing on campus.

One student reportedly stated

“I wanna express my frustration and point out that there’s a pattern. Could you demystify both decisions and rationales for those decisions and how that is completely an exertion of power over students, and how that is horrifying, scary, like powerless, awful, terrible … I honestly think it is appalling that this is the school that I go to right now. I know that the three of you … I’m not saying that you are the individuals involved in it but I do want to say that I’m pretty disgusted right now, and I hope that’s communicated.”

The response from the administrators was not to say that students are exposed to different ideas at college and that such views are part of an intellectually pluralistic environment. Instead, they reportedly said the following:

“I can’t answer what specifically what will be different, but I can assure you something will be different … or I won’t be here anymore either,” an administrator said. “So one of the things that we will be working on is saying we need to be having very intentional conversations about how we got to this place and be accountable for that, and be also accountable about what we are going to do. … I am willing to put every ounce of energy I have into the conversation, and will hold people accountable who are not playing into the conversation the way they need to …”

Now my understanding is that this person was invited as part of the the school’s academic program and various students and faculty wanted to heat his views. Yet, one student captured the expectation of viewpoint regulations that these administrators were fostering: “I didn’t need a homophobe on this campus. There are so many other people that could’ve talked about it, and yet there’s this push for diversity of thought. I don’t need to pay money to have someone that trivializes our identities to come here.”

Of course, the student pays money to be educated in one of the premier intellectual institutions in the country. The touchstone of such an education was free thought and free exchange of ideas. One student however defined academic freedom as being less free to discuss academic viewpoints: “That is not academic freedom, that is putting the burden on marginalized students to educate their peers that homophobia is wrong. I’m not learning anything from doing that.”

Some newspapers like The Wall Street Journal have written about the incident but the school itself appears to be assuring students that it will not allow free speech to break out again on campus.

We previously discussed the courageous stand of my alma mater, University of Chicago, against the growing speech codes and “safe spaces” in campuses around the country. Purdue University also took a stand in favor of free speech in adopting “the Chicago principles.” Christopher Newport has also joined schools in support of free speech.

Again, I do not know this speaker but the greatest threat that I see to the intellectual life and integrity of Middlebury is the response of these administrators.

150 thoughts on “Middlebury College Under Fire For Canceling Event By Conservative Speaker”

  1. Just in. One of my relatives sponsors academic scholarships each year. He had two senior high school students on the bloc. One was wanting to go to Middlebury. My relative emailed me about this story and said he was sponsoring the second candidate who wants to go to Univ. of MO St. Louis. I agree.

  2. The university stated that no protesters planned to disrupt and then cancelled the event citing safety issues because of the number of people expected to attend the lecture. But if the administrators really believed that no disruption was expected it wouldn’t matter if ten people or one thousand people showed up.

    1. They didn’t say no disruption was expected, but only that those with announced plans to protest had vowed not to interrupt or attempt to block the speech. Others attending – either pro or con – might and they did not have the resources to police the numbers expected.

    2. If there was not enough room in the facility then they do what other universities do when teaching classes. They open up another room with Video and microphones. It’s not that difficult. After all Middlebury is supposed to be a place of higher learning.

      1. Easy for Allan to say. I encourage him to open his home for speakers, protesters and counter protesters. I’m sure all will have fun and good will and brotherhood will prevail. If not, the police and EMT’s are free, right?

        1. Actually I am involved with groups that have brilliant speakers and debates. We pay for our own police protection because we have to protect ourselves from the violent leftists our universities produce. I note that lately Jewish schools and Temples have had to add security because of leftist anti-Semitism and they als pay out of their own pockets.

  3. One so called student was heard to say: Hotzie totzie, I smell a Nazi! His name was Mueller Berry and he hailed from Vermont. Another guy said: Moe, Larry, Cheeze. Is this school in the Ukraine? Connecticult? Vermont? MA?

    Weenie beanie bo beannie
    bannan fanno fo meanie.

  4. “premier intellectual institutions in the country.” It is completely and totally laughable you actually used those words in this article. You should be ashamed of yourself.

  5. I wondered what G. Gordon Liddy & Don Rickles got paid for speaking fees, when they both showed up

  6. the courageous stand of my alma mater, University of Chicago,

    There’s nothing ‘courageous’ about it. They’re merely saying the institution isn’t run by sectaries enforcing an Official Idea. Pretty bog standard 35 years ago.

  7. JT says “Of course, the student pays money to be educated in one of the premier intellectual institutions in the country.” Insert “what was once” between “in” and “one”.

      1. Martha:

        He’s an accomplished churchman and a good choice. Perhaps his morality offends you given the snark arising from your manifest predisposition but thousands come to hear him speak. About 25 showed up to hear Beto speak Friday. How are your audience counts?

  8. As word spread Wednesday about another conservative figure being unable to speak at Middlebury, some academics far from campus spoke out against what happened. Robert George, a Princeton University professor who has defended the right of controversial academics (on the left and right) to speak, offered a series of tweets.

    A “liberal arts college” that bans speech is like a “cigar bar” that forbids smoking. What’s the point of the place? #middleburyyieldstothemob

    — Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) April 17, 2019

    Middlebury yields to the mob’s threats of violence. No questioning of campus dogmas permitted. Why keep the place open? “College Cancels Conservative Philosopher’s Lecture on Totalitarianism”: https://t.co/303oDFTFfC

    — Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) April 17, 2019


    1. From the article: “The cancelation comes two years after a Middlebury lecture by conservative academic Charles Murray was disrupted by protesters, who later attacked Murray as he walked to his car and sent another professor to the hospital. None of the dozens of students who participated were suspended or expelled, with most receiving “a permanent record in the student’s file.”

      Since the university did nothing to punish those involved it becomes clear that the university tolerates such attacks. If that is the case then the university needs to hire off duty policemen to control university “accepted” attackers and pay the price.

  9. All of the idiocy of the Left and Democrats including Safe Spaces, intersectionality idiocy, Obama worldwide Mea Culpa tour, disdain for American exceptionalism, hatred spewed towards conservatives, and smear tactics against anyone on the Right has created a weak, inane and intellectually stunted group of college students and college professors. They are unable to argue with rational disagreement and can only spew 5 word, protest-sign ready thoughts. Watching the staff at these universities kow-tow to 19 year olds, who are unable to piece together cogent argumentation and will be unable to mature into adults for decades is a disgrace. The Universities and these professors are doing the US the greatest disservice but the good news is at least half of America is on to them.

    1. There is no “Left” or “Right” any more, and to the extent that there are such designations, they don’t apply to Trump. Faux News likes to use such designations to cause Trump supporters to believe there is equality between them and those opposed to Trump and to provide daily affirmation that Trumpsters are good, clear-thinking people with solid American values that are under attack by the bad people on “The Right”.

      The majority of Americans did not vote for Trump, and consistently disapprove of him. Trumpsters, are a small minority in the 30% range–nowhere near half of voters. People who oppose Trump are not “The Right”, “Dems”, or “Libs”. Trumpsters are not even conservatives, because conservatives do not embrace growing a deficit, racism, misogyny, homophobia or xenophobia. Conservatives want fair elections, without meddling by a foreign enemy. Trumpsters are not offended by constant lying, bragging about assaulting women, and praise for White Supremacists. Bragging about assaulting women, constantly lying, arrogance and cheating on your spouse are not Evangelical values, either, and yet hypocrites like Mikey Pence stand next to this man, smiling. Trumpsters are not bothered by a POTUS who cheated to “win the victory” with the help of a foreign enemy. These are un-American characteristics, not conservative values. Thank God most Americans see this narcissist for what he is, which is not the champion for “The Right” or conservatism.

      1. Percentages in the low 40s are not ” in the 30% range”; but if it helps Natacha to believe that, I think she should stick with that belief.

  10. End any federal funding of universities that inhibit free speech.

    I would also consider revoking tax benefits to all universities except those benefits actively involved in education.

  11. Caught my attention and read the Middlebury Campus newspaper coverage. Perhaps JT should have done further research before jumping in.

    The decision to cancel was for supposed safety issues, not student protests. In fact the protesters stated their intent to not disrupt the speech. Beyond the speakers attempts to pit Christianity against gay rights, and his blanket resistance to other perceived threats from those favoring tolerance of feminist and African rights, his party – he is an EU representative – passed the Polish law outlawing speech which places any blame for the Holocaust on Poland or Poles. So much for free speech.

    From the Campus newspaper:

    ““We canceled the event because we simply did not believe we could respond effectively to potential security and safety risks given the large number of people planning the two events – the lecture and the event the students had planned in response,” Ray wrote.

    The planned student protest, a celebration of queer identity, was intended to be peaceful and non-disruptive, and the students planned to allow Legutko’s talk to play out uninterrupted. In a second email on Thursday, Ray clarified that, “The fact that there were students who were planning to hold an event near the lecture was not an issue.”

    “The safety concerns stemmed from the rapidly growing number of people who had expressed an interest in attending the two events,” she reiterated. “We simply did not have adequate staffing to ensure the safety of all the attendees.”

    When asked whether other students were threatening the protesters, Ray responded that she could not confirm this.

    In an email sent on Wednesday evening, Cason and Taylor recognized the protesters’ intention to be non-disruptive.

    “We recognize that students worked hard and transparently to plan a non-disruptive event that would remain within the bounds of our protest policy,” they wrote. “We also recognize that students, staff, and faculty planning to attend and critically engage with Ryszard Legutko’s lecture lost the opportunity to do so.”


    Initial coverage of the speech by the Campus paper here:


    1. The decision to cancel was for supposed safety issues, not student protests.

      You fancy the opposition on campus isn’t wise to this ploy? It’s a standard bit of fraud by administrators.

        1. “You fancy the opposition on campus isn’t wise to this ploy? It’s a standard bit of fraud by administrators.”

          Ploy: “A cunning plan or action designed to turn a situation to one’s own advantage.”

          Understanding English permits one to better understand what happened.

    2. “Caught my attention and read the Middlebury Campus newspaper coverage. Perhaps JT should have done further research before jumping in.”

      I read in the Palestinian Post some time ago that Judas was truly conflicted about the 30 pieces of silver and when he leaned in to kiss the Messiah whispered, “Hey, I think these guys with swords and cudgels are up to no good. You might wanna leave.” It was unsourced but they did say it came a highly placed source in the Garden which likely means an olive picker or bird watcher. I’d say that’s exoneration.

    3. So they canceled the event due to safety concerns, after admitting that there was no safety concern because the students were not going to protest the event.
      I believe a course in reading comprehension would help you considerably. That, and possibly spend a few minutes thinking about the situation before you comment on it.
      What this administration did was find a suitable excuse, and then put their weight behind it to make the decision they did.
      People like you are simply not astute enough to figure it out. You are willing to accept whatever excuse fits with your preconceptions.

      1. Speaking of reading comprehension courses, you fail. They said the anticipated turn out from pro and con attendees was beyond their capacity to guarantee safety.

        1. They said the anticipated turn out from pro and con attendees was beyond their capacity to guarantee safety.

          And you believed that tripe? If the college had a history of promoting peaceful demonstrations and punishing anyone that actively threatened the safety and security of all attendees, then it is reasonable to conclude there wouldn’t be this perceived risk. The fact is this college created the environment that they now insist is unsuitable for free speech. And any school that is not committed to the security of natural rights of it’s attendees should never receive taxpayer funding.

    4. Excerpted from the article linked above:

      The subject of Legutko’s lecture is not his views on gay rights. His talk is entitled “The Demon in Democracy: Totalitarian Temptations in Free Societies,” and will examine the way “that western democracy has over time crept towards the same goals as communism, albeit without Soviet-style brutality.”

      Russian Professor Kevin Moss, who studies gender in Eastern Europe, first encountered Legutko’s position on tolerance and the LGBT community last week when he saw that Legutko had made incendiary comments about homosexuality on a Polish news channel.

      “Through my colleagues in Poland I became aware of what else he had said, and what his views were, and it turned out that the ‘demon’ in democracy that he is referring to is tolerance,” Moss told The Campus.

    5. Excerpted from the link within the article linked above:

      But having now lived for three decades under a liberal democracy, he [Legutko] argues that western democracy has over time crept towards the same goals as communism, albeit without Soviet-style brutality. Both systems, says Legutko, reduce human nature to that of common man, who is led to believe himself liberated from the obligations of the past. Both the communist man and the liberal democratic man refuse to admit that there exists anything of value outside the political systems to which they pledged their loyalty. And both systems refuse to undertake any critical examination of their ideological prejudices.

      [repeated for emphasis]

      Both systems [communism and liberal democracy] reduce human nature to that of common man, who is led to believe himself liberated from the obligations of the past.

      [end excerpt]

      Well, then, to what past are we “commoners” obligated? Absolute monarchy? The divine right of Kings? The Holy Roman Catholic Church? As taught to us via The Vicar of Christ? If we believe ourselves to have been liberated from Popes and Kings, or even from Tsars, then we might as well be “logically equivalent to Communists”? Really? Did you know that Legutko opposes “tolerance” on the grounds that “tolerance” is supposedly “The Demon in Democracy”? Thusly are we “commoners” expected to “tolerate” a speaker who would refuse to “tolerate” us. And we should “tolerate” Legutko for the express purpose of proving Legutko wrong about the “demonic” nature of “tolerance.”

  12. This is not the first speaker to be disinvited or shouted down at Middlebury. The school has a good reputation but why attend if “big brother” has taken over? Here is a video of the faculty/student meeting:


      1. Outside speakers on campus are perfectly unremarkable. There is no ‘story’.

        1. Politically incendiary speakers should expect fire. That’s the point. This guy was not going to speak about Plato,

          1. Curiously, Plato may very well have been Gay. And Legutko appears to be rather enamored with Plato’s critique of democracy. Evidently we are all to be governed by Philosopher Kings and their Guardians at The University of The Republic of The Good.

      2. If he spoke shouting down might very well have occurred as on other campuses.

        1. And if you go to Poland and note any Polish collaboration in the Holocaust, this guy’s party has a law and jail for you.

          1. Your opinion on free speech makes us think that you wish to import such laws to the US.

            1. No, Allan. Legutko seeks to import speech restrictions to the U. S. on the grounds that liberal democracies are supposedly possessed by a Demon Legutko calls “tolerance”.

              Did you know that if you click the left mouse button while hovering it over the linked articles that Anon provided, not only would you find out what Legutko is talking about, nor even just what Anon was talking about, but you’d find out what you, Allan, were talking about without actually knowing it?

              1. ” Legutko seeks to import speech restrictions to the U. S.”

                Right or wrong Legutoko has a point of view which he wishes to express publically. Some wish to hear what he has to say. That is free speech. We have seen members of the left prevent many different views from being discussed and they have done that using violence. The left is not using free speech in those cases rather they are using violence and should be locked up.

                If there is a point from what Legutko has said in the past that you wish to point out you too have free speech and can copy that point and say what you want about it. Maybe neither of us will like it but that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be permitted make that point.

            1. Legutko is formally opposed to “tolerance”. He calls it “The Demon in Democracy.”

              Do you perceive the relevance of Legutko’s opposition to tolerance now that you’ve been duly informed of it?

          2. https://newrepublic.com/article/121880/new-laws-ukraine-make-it-illegal-bring-its-ugly-past
            Not just Poland; after the 2014 “protests” that drove Yanukovych from power, there were a series of laws passed that in some respects are similar to the Polish law.
            There are other counties that have “speech penalties” for a variety of “offenses”.
            A good deal was made of Paul Manafort’s association with the previous ( Yanukovych) government.
            While his convictions did not specify the association with an elected government that the U.S. and Europe disliked, it was a “negative PR” element often brought up in media portrayals of Manafort.
            The newly- elected president of Ukraine, a comedian with no political experience, probably can’t do any worse than his two predecessors.

      3. “No one intended to shout him down. How he got invited is a bigger story.”
        I’m anxiously awaiting that part of the invite story where we learn about the stationary rag content and the font used on the letter assuming snail mail is all the rage. Personally hoping for Verdana but Bookman Old Style seems a good plot twist. If its Comic Relief we know its not to be taken as serious writing.

  13. One of the three administrators reportedly said, “So one of the things that we will be working on is saying we need to be having very intentional conversations about how we got to this place and be accountable for that, and be also accountable about what we are going to do . . .”

    Now there’s a fine example of how to speak without saying anything. The “assertions” are actually questions masquerading as answers. What are they going to do? They are going to work on saying . . . [mumble, mumble] . . . what they are going to do. That’s what Lou Costello wants to know. What are they going to do? Beats me. Probably nothing.

    1. “Now there’s a fine example of how to speak without saying anything.”
      Yet another one of those once-a- millennial occasions when we heartily agree. Is the moon in the seventh house?

      1. I think it might be technically impossible to disagree about everything. Unless I’m just not trying hard enough.

          1. Eleven inches of variance per statute mile was good enough for Mason and Dixon. And there were bear on the ridge lines and peasants with pitchforks down in the hollers. The citizens were on the Maryland side whenever the Pennsylvania tax collector came to town and on the Pennsylvania side whenever the Maryland tax collector came through. Apparently that made the citizenry the first “bipartisan” consensus builders, while Mason and Dixon were the first deep-state operatives.

            Perfection remains the province of the bear up on the ridge.

            1. Where did they bears pay tax? Or were the “revenuers” too afraid to ask? If so, there’s a lesson there.

  14. The kids are jerks and do not merit much respect. In higher education, people who complain (other than faculty) are as a matter of course treated to passive-aggresive evasion or told to buzz off (and, if they continue to complain and aren’t paying for the privilege, are shoveled out the door). These kids were propitiated because the conflict is a pantomime and the complaints provide the s***y administrators with an excuse to do what said administrators want to do anyway. If faculty have any misgivings about it, these are trumped by their desire to not appear to be one of ‘them’ in front of their peers. Faculty are nothing if not other-directed.

    What you don’t admit in these posts is that the culture of higher education is rotten. The student affairs apparat is rotten, the academic administration is rotten, the arts and sciences faculty is rotten, the teacher training faculty is rotten, the social work faculty is rotten, the law faculty is rotten, the public relations apparat is rotten. The rest of them cannot be bothered to stick out their necks and correct the rottenness. And, as always, the trustees are utterly negligent and the most consequential scandal of them all.

    1. “Faculty are nothing if not other-directed.”
      If we could translate this line into Latin it would make an apt motto for most college seals.

  15. It’s time to have a “conversation” (love the leftist euphemism for doing nothing) about the utility of non-Democratic, unAmerican institutions in America. And this time “conversation” means a complete overhaul of the personnel and policies of these intellectual gulags. First step is abolishing tenure since the academic freedom street only has a left lane. Second step is a 50 percent cut in administrators and third, abolishing all degrees in frivolous subjects like gender studies, womyn’s studies, diaspora studies and any other left wing tripe masquerading as an academic field. Then we can make professors at public institutions get back to teaching instead of researching such monumental issues as “Intersectionality in the recipes of Martha Stewart” or some other never-to-be-read faux “research.”
    I wouldn’t recommend torches and pitchforks yet for these Frankenstein castles but it’s an option.

    1. The worst part is that the students have no choice in the matter. [Sarcasm Alert] They are marched into The University at bayonet point and forced to attend Maoist re-education indoctrination camps while their poor parents are forced to pay a ransom to keep the kids from coming home. There has to be a cheaper way of kicking the fledglings out of the nest than hiring The Red Army to take them off your hands. This is America, damn it.

  16. Some things about human nature will never change.
    The Nazis denied they were evil.
    Charles Manson denied he was crazy.
    Liberals deny they are both of the above.

    1. Dawn:
      Good comparison but Manson and the Nazis were better dressers and hung around with a better crowd than Nancy, Chuck and Jussie.

    2. The person you are upset was not allowed to speak is a leader of the Polish political party which passed a law making it a crime to blame Poland or Poles for any part of the Holocaust.

          1. Are you are saying that if we can read about it then one can obstruct freedom of speech of the talk variety?

            1. By your reasoning, we are all owed a venue at Middlebury College to spout off on the issues or our 1st amendment rights have been violated.

              1. PS Do you believe Farrakhan should have a venue at Middlebury College if a professor wants to invite him?

                1. Official bodies within my old employer invited Al Sharpton to the campus and the student newspaper gave him fawning coverage. Not a single faculty member or administrator objected.

                    1. All Sharpton a liar and a cheat who has used intimidation for years. Politicians mostly on the left fall for his sh.t and almost all the candidates want his blessings. He caused race problems in NYC by creating false events. He is a true left wing Democrat. My suspicion is that even my friend Enigma doesn’t like him.

                    2. True. Sharpton’s not known to talk numerology and never had plans to start a business producing personal hygiene products.

                2. Whether professors have a right to invite speakers is up to the school but if Farrakhan was invited to speak under the same process others have spoken then he should be permitted to speak.

                  The funny thing is that the left won’t riot when Farrakhan speaks and most of the times the right will be peaceful.

                    1. The school receives federal funding so the school cannot discriminate against alternative ideas if those ideas do not advocate violence. He was invited by a group of students just like left wingers are invited.

                      All must be treated equally under the law. If not all federal funds including federal scholarships should be removed.

                    2. He was not denied venue due to his political beliefs. His incendiary statements might have raised questions, though that was not the issue.

                    3. “might have raised questions”

                      It sounds as if you might believe in prior restraint of speech.

                    4. His incendiary statements

                      He didn’t make statements of that kind. He’s a frigging academic. (And, keep in mind, it isn’t hard to find ringers collecting salaries from colleges like Middlebury). That some people are emotionally unstable isn’t his doing or the doing of those who extended the invitation. There wouldn’t be any issue with disorder of Antifa creeps weren’t working to generate one. Again, chutzpah.

                      Correct-the-Record is hiring the unsubtle.

                    5. The moderator did not call attention to any 1st Amendment issue. He called attention to a free speech issue. He’s not referring to their legal obligations, but to the performance of their function as an institution (and, commonly to contractual obligation). You playing these sorts of games is tiresome.

              2. “we are all owed a venue at Middlebury College to spout off ”

                No we aren’t. Student clubs of all types invite speakers. Either ban all or permit all. Don’t make the choice of excluding people because it offends leftist opinions.

                1. The speaker was no banned because he offended anyone but for safety reasons. Read the Campus news coverage. The protesters were looking forward to the event.

                  1. What was the safety issue? The last time the school permitted someone objectionable to the left the school had problems but did nothing to stop those problems from happening again. Instead the school incentivized the problems because the school refused to arrest people and throw people out of the school. Had they done that future events would likely be peaceful again.

                    Withdraw federal funds from Middlebury.

                    1. Invite him to your house. If he draws a crowd I’m sure you won’t mind any safety issues.

                    2. “Invite him to your house. ”

                      I’m a private individual and when I have people speaking at my house they do it for free or we pay a speakers fee. That money is after tax money.

                      Middlebury is not private and receives federal funds. We can take away all federal funds and tax benefits and then Middlebury can discriminate against whomever they wish.

      1. “The person you are upset was not allowed to speak is a leader of the Polish political party which passed a law making it a crime to blame Poland or Poles for any part of the Holocaust.”

        I hate his views but isn’t that what free speech is all about? Or is free speech only the type of speech you like or agree with?

        1. Are you proposing that Colleges and Universities are obligated to host any and all political speech? We have the courthouse square for that, bring you’re own soap box. The University of Florida decided they had that obligation and allowed Richard Spencer space at a campus venue. It disrupted business and traffic for the entire day in the host city, literally hundreds of thousands in security by local and stater law enforcement – which the University stiffed the county on for a bill presented – people were beat up, classes closed, and shots were fired. Ohio State wisely told him to go f.. off, he threatened to sue, and then went away. One of the few times OSU beat UF in anything.

          1. “Are you proposing that Colleges and Universities are obligated to host any and all political speech? ”

            No, but what is good for the goose is good for the gander. If the university doesn’t want such speakers they should place a ban on all speakers. Security concerns should not be an issue. Arrest the vandals. Throw them out of school. If the university refuses to do that blame the problems on the administrators.

            Richard Spencer caused a traffic jam. How could one person jam up all the streets? The traffic jam was not caused by him and his hateful speech. It was caused by protestors that didn’t leave the roads clear. We have been too lenient on organizations such as Antifa which have been violent. Arrest them and charge them.

            1. Read about Spencer’s speech at UF. I’m not exaggerating any of what I wrote, including the $200,000 bill the county presented UF which they welched on. City, state, and other nearby localities also provided police security, that half of down closed down, classes closed, people lost work, others were beat up, and right wing maniacs from out of state shot at people and are now sentenced.

              1. The school should be suing the rioters and the parents of the rioters. That will stop the problem real quick. I don’t care who is arrested as long as justice is served equally to all.

                In the future make believe it is your mother that is always speaking and they are throwing rocks at your mother. Think of how you would handle that type of situation.

                I was brought up by a very socially liberal family. In grade school my best friend made a joke about black people. My mother told him to make believe he was the individual involved before making any such comments. We separated as we went in different directions but found each other again decades later and in our first discussion he remarked to me how valuable my mother’s remarks were.

            2. “Security issues should not be a concern”. Really? You didn’t mean to post that I’m sure.

              1. “Security issues should not be a concern”. Really? You didn’t mean to post that I’m sure.”

                I absolutely meant it. The only problem is that you misquoted me. My comment was “If the university doesn’t want such speakers they should place a ban on all speakers. ***Security concerns should not be an issue***” in choosing speakers. Arrest the vandals.

                If the school maintains order by using law enforcement and expelling students security concerns take a secondary consideration. The aternative is to ban all speakers and then there are no security concerns.

                Your attitude promotes violence and puts up walls that stop students from learning. The first step in learning is self control.

                1. The other part of you statement was even more ridiculous than the 1st and I held back on humiliating you twice.

                  College and institutions are free to make their own decisions on speakers and security, fortunately. Apparently Allan wants to use the force of the feds to dictate to them on this issue.

                  1. “The other part of you statement was even more ridiculous than the 1st and I held back on humiliating you twice.”

                    Up until now Anon we dispensed with the rancor and hostility, but once again you start with this type of cr-p like you did under Jan F. and earlier under your present alias. You are a nasty fellow that has a right to say what he wishes on this open list.

                    That is how things are at public universities and federally funded ones. One shouldn’t be censoring one side of a debate. Middlebury should lose all federal funding. They can make decisions as to what type of security they wish and they can ban all talk. The objection is when the school interferes with free speech.

                    1. Private institutions are properly cash-on-the-barrelhead. All of them. No grants, no subsidies. Starting tomorrow. As for public institutions, berths are properly rationed and distributed according to examination scores (which is not what their administrators wish to do). Every last one of them is properly as subject to constitutional obligations as any municipal government.

                    2. DSS, I can’t think of any significant university offering a 4 year degree, except for Hillsdale, that accepts no funding. I am sure there are other schools. I just don’t know who they are.

                    3. Hillsdale and Grove City are colleges, not universities. All private universities are on the dole.

                      Again, it’s of no interest to me the extent of the dependency right now, as long as the spigot is shut off tomorrow. Everywhere. Private institutions get nothing and public institutions get only state funds.

                    4. Actually, they can and should be doing exactly what they are doing, which is balancing the security of their students and the school with promoting and allowing the use of their facilities for free and reasonable discussions of ideas within those boundaries. They have no obligation to allow anyone to speak.

                      I apologize for my uncalled for insult, though you have freely insulted me in the very recent past.

                    5. “I apologize for my uncalled for insult, though you have freely insulted me in the very recent past.”

                      I generally respond based on the level of the person I am communicating with. You were the first to start with the insults and I showed you that by quoting your own words when you were Jan F. Recently the insults stopped so there was no reason to insult you back until you restarted the cycle. I held off and presently accept your apology hoping to normalize discussion.

                      Back to the discussion. Federally funded universities (and colleges, DSS reminded me) don’t have a right to use public funds to promote one type of political discussion over another. Universities need not have guest speakers but if they have them then all speakers sponsored by the appropriate groups should be permitted to speak. The only reason those speaking for the right are being kept from speaking is because those on the left have protested violently. That is not a good excuse for the school to prevent the right from having their speakers. The choice of the school is to end all speakers or to arrest those on the left responsible for the violence and expel the from the universities (and colleges) those on the left that are creating security concerns. Doing anything other is incentivizing leftists to violent protest more and more which is what we have seen.

                      You may have noted President Trump a short time ago stated federal funds will be denied to public universities (and colleges) that do not permit the equality that should automatically exist in places of higher education. After all, that is where diverse ideas should be freely discussed.

                    6. which is balancing the security of their students

                      There wasn’t any balancing going on, and their students were not threatened by anyone other than the complainers. It’s called an excuse, something which keeps escaping you.

                    7. “There wasn’t any balancing going on,”

                      DSS this posting seemed to be addressed to me but I think it was meant to go to Anon.

                      “There wasn’t any balancing going on, and their students were not threatened by anyone other than the complainers. It’s called an excuse, something which keeps escaping you.”

                    8. Both Allan and absurd continue to try to shoe horn this situation into JT’s and their premise, which firs their worn out and knee jerk grievance plea, but not the facts.

                      The administration cited safety based on their expectations of opposing crowds gathering for the event. The student group with a planned protest stated they did not want to block the speakers event, nor would they seek to disrupt the speech. Their protest included a nearby dance party which they looked forward too.

                      The crowds expected by the college would likely include non-students, both for and against the speaker and protesters, i.e., left and right rabble rousers. That is exactly what happened at the Univ of Florida Richard Spencer talk which included mostly peaceful huge crowds with police blocked traffic, some fights, and shots fired by out of state right wingers, now in jail for significant sentences. The overall cost, not including lost work – campus was closed as were nearby businesses – was at least 1/2 million for combined state and local police.

                      UF made a huge jistake allowing this event to take place. Middlebury has every right, and a responsibility, to protect itself and it’s staff and students, and the local town, from danger and expense. It has none to the speaker or his advocates.

                    9. Anon, the university administrators have alternatives to inhibiting or preventing free speech. Those alternatives should be exhausted before free speech is prevented. Then the inherent problem should be corrected so that free speech could again be allowed so that all sides can be heard.

                      Your solution seems to be to permit only your side to have free speech.

                      What could the administration have done to prevent what has occurred. I will number a few items so we don’t continuously repeat what has been said before while leaving out reasonable alternative methods of solving the problem. To make it simple I will create two student groups, Progressive and Conservative, both permitted by the university to have speakers but the Left, not the progressives, will not permit conservative speakers to speak without threatening security.

                      How do the administraters offer equality of freedom of speech to the Progressives and Conservatives while maintaining adequate security.

                      1) Ban all speakers for both groups. That is the right of the university (and college etc.) That means neither the Progressives or Conservatives bring in outside speakers.

                      2) Fear of non student agitators: Close the speech to anyone that is not a student or professor. Close the campus if necessary and call the police to arrest agitators or those trespassing.

                      3) Fear of student agitators: Set up an area for protest. Arrest and expel any students that do not act appropriately. Once the agitators are expelled from school or jailed they are not around to protest again. The reason we have such violent protests in certain areas is because these people were permitted to be violent in the past encouraging more violence. There are many events throughout the country where there is fear of violence. If everytime we worried about security at a ball game we stopped the ballgame there would be none. NYC is constantly under threat yet NYC has about 1,000,000 people standing in Times Square on New Years Eve.

                      Do you wish to stop violence by staying inside and locking your doors?

                    10. What could the administration have done to prevent what has occurred.

                      Very simple:

                      1. Tell them the world doesn’t revolve around their collective tuchus. That they’re upset is of interest to them, not anyone else.

                      2. Tell them to invite their own bloody speakers to campus.

                      3. Tell them that no one is compelling them to attend the speech if they can’t bear to hear it.

                      4. Tell them to pose questions given designated opportunities if they don’t like what’s said.

                      5. Tell them to stand outside the auditorium with sandwich boards and pamphlets if they have an alternative message they want to promote.

                      6. Tell them that if they try to shout anyone down, security guards will take them into custody. If it’s a well run campus, a critical mass of your security personnel have been deputized, you have the whole staff on call, and you have off-duty cops on retainer (and on call that day).

                      7. Point to the applicable provisions of the student handbook and tell them the penalties are suspension and expulsion, depending on a number of unspecified If’s. Remind them that the dean of students will have them off the campus in 72 hours and if they want to appeal to the j-board, that will have to wait.

                      8. Remind them that the institution employs counsel and will press charges. And, by the way, the local JP won’t be biased in your favor.

                      This might not suffice the first time. Suspend and expel 30 students for making a public nuisance out of themselves and bringing charges for disorderly conduct and harassment against them will suffice to prevent a next time for the next half-dozen years or so.

                      This isn’t that difficult. The helplessness is learned, and, in fact, contrived.

                    11. I’m not going to continue to beat this dead horse beyond this response to Allan. I refer to my several posts above and the Campus Newspaper articles I linked above – or wherever they are. This web site is hard to maneuver.

                      You insist this is a left vs right conflict at Middlebury, when there is no proof of that at all. The speaker is not someone who I would think mainstream American conservatives would embrace nor is the incendiary nature of his viewpoints expected to draw only left wing rabble rousers. Middlebury does have conservative speakers – if you look at the campus based organization who sponsored this guy web site, you’ll see William Kristol was there recently.

                    12. “I’m not going to continue to beat this dead horse”

                      The horse is still alive. you have only beaten the inconsequential elements of the horse and never responded to the ideas behind the 3 points I mentioned or any of the other important points. The reason for that lack of response can only be because you have none. That is the problem. That is why such violence and attitudes continues to be permitted on university campus’s.

                      You assume I embrace mainstream conservativism, but I am not really a conservative in the sense that many Republicans are today and were before so I object to many things I see in discussions I have had a part in promoting but I am willing to peacefully listen to those things that I have disdain for. If I judge there is too much of that type of rhetoric I talk with my feet and wallet walking out and ceasing to support such organizations.

                      I see that you are continuously deciding what the different points of view are, “Middlebury does have conservative speakers”. What you don’t seem to understand is that it is not your right to determine who is or is not a good speaker. That is the right of the group sponsoring the speaker. You seem too enamoured with the fact that William Kristol was there. He doesn’t represent me and I think he is a jerk but he satisfies many on the left as a speaker the Conservatives have a right to provide. What hubris.

                    13. One last shot on absurd’s long post. He continues to act as if the campus group planning to protest the speaker is responsible for his appearance being cancelled. Both from my summations on this thread and the linked and quoted articles I posted from the Middlebury Campus Newspaper, that is just factually wrong. The protesters planned a queer dance party nearby but said they would not try to block or disrupt the speech. Absurd needs to wake up to the facts, a common problem with him.

                    14. “One last shot on absurd’s long post. He continues to act as if the campus group planning to protest the speaker is responsible”

                      If you are correct and all that the administration was worried about was peacful protest then there were no security concerns and the speaker could have been permitted to speak. You are refusing to get to the core of the discussion.

                      The reason for such security concerns was created when administration permited groups of students to threaten and violate the rules and regulations of the University. Columbia University could be considered one of the originators of the problem. I refer you to how they mismanaged student discontent and how that created a lot of what we see today.

                    15. You insist this is a left vs right conflict at Middlebury,

                      Of course he does. He’s not an idiot and he’s not pretending to be one for effect.

                    16. He continues to act as if the campus group planning to protest the speaker is responsible for his appearance

                      You either have very poor reading comprehension or you’re deliberately lying. The interaction between protester and administrator is a pantomime. This has been pointed out quite explicitly on this thread. That’s how it works.

                    17. “You either have very poor reading comprehension ”

                      DSS I believe this comment was directed at Anon not to Allan. When you reply and there is no reply below I think you need to use the reply botton on the email sent to you or address the name of the person when responding. Otherwise it seems you are talking to whomever had the last reply on the board. That becomes confusing and can cause unintentional ill will.

          2. The argument Anon is offering is the curt definition of chutzpah.

        2. https://www.timesofisrael.com/yad-vashem-says-polish-holocaust-law-amendment-a-step-in-the-right-direction/

          What Anon’s not telling you is:

          1. The draft law was amended to remove penal provisions.

          2. The party in question is the government party in Poland.

          3. The law is of a sort you find in one European penal code after another.

          Looking forward to Anon arguing that Justin Trudeau, Jeremy Corbin, and which ever douche is currently in charge of the Swedish Social Democratic Party should not be permitted on campus.

          1. Absurd needs to review articles he links more closely. As a staubch defender of freedom of speech, I’m sure he did not mean to endorse the Polish criminalization of blaming Holocaust collaboration on Poles or Poland.

            1. I sincerely apologize for my absence, Anon. You stood your ground on this thread in single combat. I hope to get my “chutzpah” back on by tomorrow.

              1. Anon said, “I apologize for my uncalled for insult, though you have freely insulted me in the very recent past.”

                What insult? I’ve been over the comment nest several times and I don’t see any insult to Allan from Anon. Is this what you’re apologizing for:

                “The other part of your statement was even more ridiculous than the 1st and I held back on humiliating you twice.”

                That is not an insult where Allan is concerned. Allan is one of the most insulting commenters on this blawg and thoroughly obnoxious to boot. Your statement might qualify as a taunt. But Allan does taunts, too, everyday now. And one ought never to apologize to Allan for anything until he earns that apology.

                1. Anon demonstrated decency and restraint. Though we will likely never agree I believe Anon and I will now have discussions without all the insults and rancor. You, Diane, can go on as usual. We all know what and who you are.

                  1. Allan said, “I am not really a conservative in the sense that many Republicans are today . . .”

                    No kidding? That’s because Allan is a disciple of Richard Spencer, Milo Yianopoulos, Ann Coulter, Ben Shapiro and, of course, The Master of Ceremonies, David Horowitz, who literally runs the show on the foregoing quartet of conservative intellects.

                    Anon has not yet been here long enough to figure out that Allan is, ever was, and will ever remain quite literally incapable of decency or restraint. It is my sworn duty to warn everybody about you, Allan. It’s my job–Punk!

                    1. “No kidding? That’s because Allan is a disciple of Richard Spencer, Milo Yianopoulos, Ann Coulter, Ben Shapiro and, of course”

                      Diane, you feel that way because you have Stalinist sympathies and truth to you is meaningless for ideology is the only thing that you find important.

                      All four of the names you mention reside in different types of arenas but Richard Spencer is a total outlier to the other three. Most of the poltical beliefs Richard Spencer has are in common with the left. The others are said to be on the right. Richard Spencer and David Horowitz would never mix so you have exposed your ignorance of those two and the other three as well.

                      You should really learn what you are talking about.

                2. LD, I agree with your general comments regarding Allan’s posting style, but I think he has refrained from personalizing this particular thread and I’ll honor and encourage that.

                  1. Anon, we can debate posting styles from here to eternity and get nowhere. But, when you were Jan F. we had a mutual dispute over what started the rancor. I copied your posting showing what you said and it remained undisputed. Jan F. left the scene and reappeared.

                    I don’t think we should worry about posting style for you and I will likely never agree and our disagreements will have some harshness in them because the topic is harsh. We don’t need Diane setting the stage for your agreement and my disagreement. She should be left out in the cold where she belongs.

                    1. The Trophy Polisher said, “we can debate posting styles . . . [edit] . . . But, when you were Jan F. . . .”

                      And there you have it, Anon. Should he live long enough, then even twenty years from now The Trophy Polisher, Allan, will still be polishing whatever trinket, bauble or gew-gaw he thinks he won as a booby prize at the expense of whoever he thinks you used to be in a past life.

                      Allan is a barnacle.

                    2. “whoever he thinks you used to be in a past life.”

                      Diane, there is no question that Anon and Jan F. are the same. I think he will admit to that as well. Right now Anon and I have come to a truce and are holding off the personal vitriol something that seems impossible with your type. You want to insert yourself so you can have an ally not in ideology but an ally in slinging sh!t. I don’t think Anon will oblige.

  17. A lie has short legs. That the far left has nothing but stifling free speech is actually encouraging. In the 60s it was the left that railed against repression. Now the reverse is true. I see an ascendant tide of fresh conservatism taking root in universities. The staid faculty push leftist thought so conservative is now cool.

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