Are conservative ideas allowed at American colleges?
Protestors routinely try to shut down speeches by conservatives, like Heather Mac Donald, a Contributing Editor of the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal. She also wrote the book “The War on Cops,” which argues that Americans are less safe because police, for fear of being called racist, back off.
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When she arrived at Claremont McKenna College for a speech, she was greeted by posters saying “shut down Anti-Black Fascist Heather Mac Donald.”
Mac Donald tells John Stossel that to call her anti-black “is ridiculous. I have spent enormous amount of time in high crime, minority neighborhoods talking to the good people there who are desperate for more police, who have a right to expect the same freedom from fear as people in safer neighborhoods take for granted. My agenda is to try to give voice to these people.”
Yet activists on campus didn’t want to let her speak. They formed a blockade in front of the lecture hall and prevented people from getting in.
Mac Donald eventually spoke to an empty room. The college broadcast it on the internet, but no students could ask questions.
Why has free speech come under attack at so many campuses?
Because, Mac Donald tells Stossel, “College once promoted an understanding of Western culture. Today, there is an enormous bureaucratic infrastructure dedicated to teaching students that they’re victims.”
She calls that the “diversity bureaucracy.” The Berkeley Division of Equity and Diversity Inclusion has a $20 million dollar budget. UCLA has a Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, who makes $445,000 a year.
Mac Donald’s response to the protesters: “develop some sense of perspective. You have, at your fingertips every book that has ever been written. You’re surrounded by a beautiful campus. These students who are among the most privileged human beings in human, actually think of themselves as victims. And that, to me, is a very sad state of delusion.”