Academia in the U.S. has been completely ruined. The purpose of higher education is to learn and to challenge existing preconceptions. College universities used to be a place where one could flourish amidst new ideas and perspectives.
Now, sadly, such universities serve as little more than indoctrination centers and training grounds for leftist social justice warriors who view legitimate discourse to be hateful and intolerable.
Perhaps nowhere has this sad displacement of discussion become more evident than at Emory University in Atlanta. Students have become shocked and horrified after their alleged “safe space” was violated by what someone wrote in chalk on the university sidewalks.
What was the heinous thing plastered for everyone to see? Was it shocking swastikas? Filthy slurs?
Nope- it was “Trump 2016” and “Vote Trump.” You know—references to an ongoing political election.
One student claimed that she “feared for her life” and said that she thought a “KKK rally” was going on.
Jim Wagner, president of the university, claimed that students were suffering from “genuine concern and pain” and viewed the scrawlings as intimidation. He promptly opened an investigation into the matter and are currently seeking the perpetrators of the “hateful” graffiti.
Wagner sent a letter to students claiming that the crybabies who encountered Trump’s name on the sidewalk “heard a message about values regarding diversity and respect that clash with Emory’s own.”
Various student organizations have provided counseling for students affected by the scribblings. Students have also scribbled “stand against hatred” on the university campus… because expression is fine for them, but not others.
The Black Student Alliance wrote on Facebook: “
We, the Black Student Alliance at Emory University stand in solidarity with the Black and Brown students at Emory, against the intimidation, lies, and deeply rooted racism that people of color continue to face–on their campus, nationwide, and globally. #1969not1836 #BlackBrownAndHere”
“If you’d like to stand in solidarity with us, please use this as your status: ‘I, a [identity] from [college/university/state/country], stand in solidarity with the Black and Brown students at Emory, against the intimidation, lies, and deeply rooted racism that people of color continue to face–on their campus, nationwide, and globally. #1969not1836 #BlackBrownAndHere.”
The Emory Latino Student Organization condemned the chalk writings, saying,
“Yesterday, the Emory community was witness to an act of cowardice, when someone decided to plaster pro-Donald Trump slogans all over campus.
The people who did this knew that what they were doing was wrong, because why else would they do so in the dead of night when no one else could witness them?
“They did not do this merely to support the presidential candidate, but to promote the hate and discrimination that goes along with him.”
Why did they do it in the night? Considering the remarkably-intolerant reaction by students, why would someone do this during the day?
Wagner acted only after student protests emerged outside his office and demanded he do something about the chalk slogans. Wagner obediently complied and issued several mandates that his administration intends to follow that basically pledge committees to “improve diversity” on campus… you know, so long as that diversity does not include diversity of opinion.
Robby Soave at Reason.com, blasted the move, writing,
“Some Emory students are so fragile, and terrified of innocuous political speech they dislike, that they immediately sought comfort from campus authority figures. These figures, of course, were more than willing to coddle them.”
I had the terrible misfortune of attending one of the most-liberal universities in America during the initial rise of Barack Obama. During the height of Obamamania, the enthusiasm was nearly unbearable. “Obama’s going to change everything,” the naïve hipsters droned. “He’s going to give us free college,” they would claim.
And, of course, the continual parroting of instilled messaging was everywhere- “hope and change” and “Yes, we can” was uttered more often than “good morning.”
As obnoxious as it was, I don’t ever remember even contemplating whining to officials about the unabashed enthusiasm. I don’t ever remember reacting in any way more-severely than an eye-roll.
Hell, I even went and saw Obama speak as he visited the campus. Why? Because I was unafraid of differing beliefs.
The left, however, has crafted an atmosphere of intolerance that they have attempted to disguise as “social justice.” This has gone on long enough; if we are to have a chance at turning things around, we must be willing to engage the left not only on a policy level, but on a cultural one as well.
That begins with college administrators standing strong against special snowflakes who feel that they have a right to float through life without ever being offended- by either real insults or imagined ones.
It’s a sad day when simply writing a political slogan on a sidewalk is a brave act.