The Middlebury Mob Shows How Thin the Veneer of Our Civilization Is

On March 2, there was one of those oh-so-revealing events that makes people realize that very bad trends are at work in America, trends that are corroding the essence of civilization.

Middlebury College in Vermont is a liberal arts school. The prolific author and American Enterprise Institute scholar Charles Murray was asked to speak at Middlebury and answer questions from faculty and audience members. He is used to confrontations, but could not have imagined how vicious things would get up in the Green Mountain State.

Inside Higher Ed’s story on the event explains that college officials admonished the students prior to the talk that they could protest but not disrupt Murray’s talk, which was to be about the way white America is coming apart—the title of his latest book—along class lines. Unfortunately, that admonition did no good. “As soon as Murray took the stage,” we read, “students stood up, turned their backs to him and started various chants that were loud enough and in unison such that he could not talk over them. Chants included:

Racist, sexist, anti-gay, Charles Murray go away!

Your message is hatred. We cannot tolerate it.

Who is the enemy? White supremacy!

Video of the ugly scene in the lecture hall is available here.

And then matters turned worse. Fearing that there might be a raucous, disruptive mob instead of an audience of students willing to listen and consider Murray’s arguments, school administrators had set up a contingency plan. Once it became clear that the mob had killed the lecture, they moved to another location where Murray would give his talk, which would be live-streamed to students.

Sadly, that location was soon beset by the mob, with banging on windows and pulling of fire alarms. Murray and Professor Allison Stanger, who was the moderator for the talk, tried their best to continue a rational discussion.

Finally, Murray, Professor Stanger, and a few others tried to leave campus. Here I’ll let Stanger’s account (quoted here) take over:

What transpired felt like a scene from Homeland rather than an evening at an institution of higher learning. We confronted an angry mob as we tried to exit the building. Most of the hatred was focused on Dr. Murray, but when I took his right arm both to shield him from attack and to make sure we stayed together so I could reach the car too, that’s when the hatred turned on me. One thug grabbed me by the hair and another shoved me in a different direction. I noticed signs with expletives and my name on them. 

The mob surrounded the car, pounding on it. After a few frightening minutes, the driver, Middlebury’s vice president for communications Bill Burger, managed to get away. Their plan was to enjoy a quiet dinner together, but after arriving, Burger said that the mob had learned of their location and advised that the only safe course was to leave town immediately. (Professor Stanger realized that she was in pain and was later treated at a local hospital for a neck injury she’d suffered while trying to get into the car.)

What could have caused such unrelenting hatred among students at an expensive liberal arts college? Why do some students feel justified in demonizing, shouting down, and even physically assaulting people who are perceived as enemies? Clues are found in the sentiments of Middlebury students such as Nic Valenti, who explained why he thought that it would be perfectly acceptable to shout down Murray in this letter published in the school newspaper the day before the scheduled talk:

When I first arrived at Middlebury I was clueless to the systems of power constructed around race, gender, sexuality, class or ability, and found that when I talked about these issues as I understood them—or rather, as I didn’t—I was met with blank stares and stigma rather than substantial debate. As a young bigot, I can recall thinking: ‘I thought at Middlebury I would get to have intellectual discussions, but instead it feels as though my views are being censored.’ However, as a first-year I had failed to consider a simple, yet powerful component of debate: not all opinions are valid opinions.

What can we make of that statement?

First, it tells us a lot about the instruction at Middlebury. A student who enters the college quickly becomes convinced that he used to be a “bigot” because he hadn’t grasped the leftist narrative that America is a bad country due to its various oppressive “systems of power.” That’s standard fare in an array of “studies” courses, but it’s evident that he heard nothing in his studies to challenge those easily debated notions.

Moreover, Mr. Valenti misses the obvious irony of saying that he was eager for intellectual discussions at Middlebury, but feels himself justified in helping to prevent an intellectual discussion involving a scholar of distinction and the rest of the school.

Finally, it is impossible for Valenti (or anyone else) to know which opinions are “valid” unless the person holding them is allowed to present them and argue the case for them. Presumably he and his fellow mobsters would allow someone to offer a contrarian theory about, say, black holes or the authorship of Shakespeare’s plays. They wouldn’t arrogantly declare the individual’s opinion “invalid” without hearing and considering it first. But when it comes to anti-progressives like Murray, things are different.

The reason why, I think, is explained by the intellectual tribalism that grips much of America.

I mean that many people label others as either being in their tribe (consisting of people who are righteous and always correct) and the opposing tribe (consisting of people who are evil, stupid, and wrong on everything). Real scholars never impart such ideas because they know that reasonable and moral people can disagree on almost everything. They also know that the only way for civilized people to counter error is through debate; they know that people cannot be persuaded with violence.

Unfortunately, intellectual tribalism is spreading like the Black Death among so-called progressives. Anyone who disagrees with progressive policies is likely to be labeled an enemy, much as Karl Marx labeled everyone who rejected his beliefs a “class enemy.” The more influential such a person is, the more vehement the attacks and hatred against him. Murray, for example, is called a “racist” and “white supremacist” even though he is neither.

(Try this thought experiment. What would have happened if one of the good, liberal students had piped up and asked, “But shouldn’t we find out if this guy really is a white supremacist before we shout him down?”)

And turning to the toxic effects of this indoctrination, one is the growing idea that the enemy tribe must be fought by any means necessary. Not only do evil people like Murray not deserve to be heard, they deserve to be punched.

Professor Michael Munger of Duke University recently commented on this disturbing phenomenon after he discovered a flier on campus. The flier, he wrote, “encouraged students to ‘bash the fash!’ meaning physically assault fascists. The definition of ‘fascist,’ conveniently, appears to be anyone who disagrees with the smothering leftist orthodoxy that the flier-istas embrace.” Just smear your opponents with a nasty name and it’s easy to whip up hatred and violence.

In Orwell’s 1984, Big Brother’s regime utilized the Two Minute Hate against an imaginary villain to maintain support among the people. At Middlebury, it was more like two hours, and the “villain” perfectly real, but the effect was the same. The leftist zealots “won” by preventing discussion and forcing “bad” people to flee in fear.

The veneer of civilization is thin enough under the best of circumstances. Education ought to strengthen it by making people more willing to listen respectfully to others, disagree rationally, and peacefully walk away from intractable disputes. The behavior of the Middlebury mob shows that for a significant number of students, education has taken them away from civilization, putting them back into the mindset of primitive tribalism.

  • DrOfnothing

    I agree wholeheartedly that we must respect the views of others, and even someone whose views are so patently wrong as Murray’s needs to be countered with argument, not violence.

    However, it is _profoundly_ hypocritical for Leef to call for the rational, respectful engagement with opposing ideas when his own practice is anything but. He is relentless in his diatribes against Liberals, Progressives, and anyone he disagrees with, essentially the entire Left of the political spectrum. To his list of “villains” we can add most university faculty, administrators, student activists, and anyone working for social causes. He consistently portrays them as deceitful, mercenary zealots who are trying to undermine all that is right and good in America.

    Practice what you preach, Leef, or don’t preach at all.

    • Lou Foxwell

      To his list of “villains” we can add most university faculty,
      administrators, student activists, and anyone working for social causes.
      As indeed they are.

      • DrOfnothing

        Thank you for proving my point about the prevalence of ignorance and disrespect by being ignorant and disrespectful.

        • Smartypants

          Er, DrOfnothing, we are talking here about mob violence — a physical attack that involved physical injury, not disrespect. Or haven’t you noticed?

          • DrOfnothing

            No, this particular thread of conversation has moved beyond the topic of violence and in to, more generally, how each side depicts those with whom it disagrees.

            For the third time now, violence is never acceptable. If Leef had confined his comments to that topic, there would certainly be no disagreement on my part.

            As you may have noticed, the general response of comments here is variations on “we should respond to violence with even more violence.” An eye for an eye until the whole world is blind, it seems.

          • ShermanLogan

            Peace through superior firepower!

          • JohnSilvis1

            Oh for God’s sake stop it. Is everybody totally insane?????

          • ShermanLogan

            Well, what do you think has generally created peace in the world?

          • JohnSilvis1

            How can I put this so you really understand? When Muslims were murdering a good portion of the world’s population(280 million and counting, when the total world population was less than one billion), they thought they had
            God’s blessing on genocide because they were the most powerful, i.e. God rewards with military power. Most Muslims still think along these lines. So do you think might is right, like in Islam?

          • ShermanLogan

            Not entirely in agreement with your stats, but let’s let that pass by.

            So Muslims were on a roll and were conquering the world. Yet they didn’t?

            Why was that? It was because, among other reasons, the West developed superior firepower and drove them back. While this isn’t perhaps “peace thru superior firepower,” it’s certainly an example of “freedom thru superior firepower.”

            Unless you think Islam stopped its conquest because it became pacifistic, or perhaps because the nonviolence of those they were attacking impressed them.

          • JohnSilvis1

            My stats are the best available. Arguably the development of the machine gun helped stop the religion of Jihad. A desire to be killed in battle was universal in Muslim armies. Makes them hard to stop. Adolf Hitler admired Islam because so many were so willing to die in battle. Fact.
            Science is what stopped Islam in recent centuries. Political Correctness is now resulting in the spread of Islam that 1400 of war could not accomplish. We have self imposed ignorance of Islam. We called anybody with knowledge of Islam bad names like Islamophobic. This comes from ignorance and a need to silence all discussion that proves Political Correctness to be wrong. It sure works. Everybody fears being called this name which implies mental illness. Our “intellectual” community has rejected facts and reason and supports a world view that rejects virtually all western values but never tolerates comparisons to other values. These ignorant people just call hateful names. Every other word is some kind of phony phobia. Violence has been a useful tactic. I wonder who the “crazy” people really are. P.C has swept the western world like the Plague. Guns will not stop this form of mania. The concept of Free speech and diversity of thought is and will be punished by our own “intellectuals” and brainwashed media. Maybe some people deserve to be offended.” It takes no courage to bash the icons” Richard Bernstein. Our culture is now a cesspool of intellectual and physical cowardliness. What we really need is reasoning and fact firepower.

          • ShermanLogan

            Should note that Islam has not been uniformly or consistently expansionist. There have been centuries at a time when it just sat there.

          • JohnSilvis1

            Sad rationalization in defense of the indefendable. Barbarians of the steps where indeed horrible murders. That doesn’t excuse what Mohamed commanded and what his followers then did. PC thinking goes like two small children defending their bad behavior. “But Johnny did it too.” Yes Johnny did it too but that doesn’t excuse this inhuman behavior. PC thinking is indeed ignorant but also infantile. In view of this hypocrisy you all sincerely owe the Nazis an apology. After all Islam murdered twenty times more humans than Germany did(including Jews and Buddhists). I could go on about how ignorant and hypocritical Political Correctness is but PC minds are impenetrable in their prejudices. Calling the whistle blowers bad names is all they can do in response. This is education? Who is really phobic here?

          • ShermanLogan

            How do you get a defense of Islam out of what I said?

            I was merely noting that the common idea of Islam having been continuously expansionist for 1400 years is untrue.

            This means its present aggressiveness could go into remission again.

          • JohnSilvis1

            How about if I said that any mass murder has stopped killing for a while? Doesn’t change anything, only makes us less likely to deal with the issues. It is a way to make Islam seem less lethal, which is by definition a way to minimize genocide. Sounds logical but not relevant.Maybe global warming is taking a break, is the relevant to the real issues? Islam is Jihad at it’s core and taking a breather is just that. Islam deals in the long run.

          • ShermanLogan

            Per the stats. It is possible, though I suspect exaggerated, that Muslims killed 280M total. But that would be over 1400 years, which you can’t really compare to the death toll of the Mongols and the commies, each of which killed around 100M in less than a century.

          • Smartypants

            Quoth DrOfnothing: ” , , , violence is never acceptable”?
            Oh, wow. Heavy, man. Heavy.

          • DrOfnothing

            “A man’s gotta have a code.” –Omar 😉

          • JohnSilvis1

            Hitler, Stalin and Mao all had an ideological code too.

          • DrOfnothing

            I’ll have to check my Cliff’s Notes on the Little Red Book and Mein Kampf to be sure, but I am pretty confident that they didn’t include a commitment to non-violence.

          • JohnSilvis1

            I know something about world history, more that current illiberal thugs you and the media defend without engaging your mind.
            Your side always resorts to violence, lies and half truths. Them blames everybody else. For example according to Dr. Henry Lewis Gates Jr. (a black college professor) four times as many black slaves where shipped out of the east coast of Africa than all of the Atlantic slave trade. And factually these slaves were so badly treated it is hard to find their ancestors today. Facts. But you will never hear all the facts in today’s college class. Yet slavery is the responsibly of all white men, that is your religion. Just ignorance and lies. No wonder your hateful race war never ends. Black people owned slaves (in America), black people fought for the Confederacy, all black African slaves where captured and sold by other blacks, freed blacks who founded Liberia treated the native blacks terribly(indeed the freed American slaves acted like their former owners), Mohamed owned slaves, Muslims treated their slaves worse than anybody, Slavery still exists in Africa today, virtually all black American who descend from freed slaves w the have blood of their former owners in their veins, etc, etc, etc. I, like most white men descend from people who never owned slaves. My great great grand fathers brother died in the battle of Fair Oaks Virginia trying to save black people from the situation partly created by what black people did to them. Your whole world view is based on hateful lies. My ancestors died ending slavery. Let’s talk about Frederick Douglass and the 3/5th law sometimes. I can finally give you the whole truth. But you chose to violently and hateful silence free speech. Good luck with your race war, ignoramus. Bring on your hateful cliches’.

          • ShermanLogan

            I seriously doubt Gates ever said 4x slaves were shipped from East vs. East Africa.

            Actual totals for Islamic African (over 13+ centuries) and Atlantic African (over 5? centuries) is somewhere around 10M to 15M each.

            The Islamic total includes those transported across the Sahara and by other routes.

          • JohnSilvis1

            Wrong about everything, again. I am right here you are just ignorant of reality. Gates said that on his TV program on Africa. This was just a week ago. Fact, sorry about your skeptical ignorance. You know nothing about the history of African slavery. via the Sahara only makes matters worse. You total ignorance, controlled by prejudice makes it impossible to reason with you. Get some real facts then we can talk. You lie to support your prejudices. More slaves where sold via the Sahara route going east and more died in route than the Atlantic trade route.Fact. Gates said after disclosing this information that if there is a hell, then the African man responsible is surely is there now. And he certainly didn’t do this alone! My feeling about all the endless hateful lies about slavery that demonized white people just for their skin color. You lie to perpetuate this ignorant racial hatred. Lies are lies are lies. Get the facts that you never got in your brainwashing at your university. You are not entitled to your own reality.

          • JohnSilvis1

            Here’s an idea for you. Part of the problem with fighting PC is that there are never any consequences for lying. You are just acknowledged as right because morally PC is all ways right. So you and I both take $1,000 or even $2,000 and have a third impartial party hold it for us. Then the Gates program is on public television so either one of us can get the program DVD sent to us. Then when you see what I said is exactly right, I can collect the money for the bet. OK? Only we must do this soon before the forces of Political Correctness make Dr. Gates censor his program to meet the demands of the hate and lie racism movement. Even Gates is not above the demands of the powerful political correctness lobby. Perhaps I can show this portion about Zanzibar to your friends (and your students if applicable). Or at your Alma mater. I am a person of courage. OK?

          • ShermanLogan

            I don’t know what Gates said, since I didn’t see his show, but if he did indeed say this, he was wrong.

            Since there are actual records, we have a close approximation of the actual numbers of the Atlantic slave trace, around 12M to 13M, less than 5% of whom came to what is now the USA.

            Obviously, if the East Coast slave trade alone was 4x this, then the Muslim slave trade would have been much more than 50M, since a lot of slaves went via the Sahara, and I don’t know if he was including the Red Sea trade in his numbers, or just those that went via the Indian Ocean.

            I did a fair bit of googling, and a range was quoted at various sites for the total Arab/Muslim slave trade from 10M to 28M, but usually somewhere between 10M and 15M, as I said.

            The Sahara route, for fairly obvious reasons, appears to have had an incredibly high death rate, but I wasn’t able to come up with a mortality rate for the Indian Ocean route. With premodern technology, transporting any large number of people was a huge logistical challenge.

            Your, and possibly Gates’ position of well over 50M Africans exported via the East coast appears to be far outside the mainstream.

            Do you have a reference other than your possibly confused memory of a TV show?

          • JohnSilvis1

            Not confused. Factual and aware. I trust Dr. Gates, more than most “intellectuals”. To some extent I trust Frederick Douglas too. Frederick who you say. How about if I get a copy of the Gate Africa program and send it to you. Seriously, I am so tired of the hate-filled lies that dominate all discussion about race, Islam, immigration, white males, etc. Think about this. When Dr. Livingston was in central Africa, (yes another dead white male who wanted to help save black people’s lives) he witnessed a raid on a small town by black slave traders, that is B-L-A-C-K slavers. They massacred all the black people in the village as Livingston watched. No reason, just the fun of murdering innocent people. I will bet anything,anything that these monsters were Muslins. But our PC culture is so hatefully black racist, pro-Mohamed and psychopathic they cannot tolerate such facts being made public. Just look how hard it is for you to accept what Dr Gates has said! Sooner or later some people I talk to will realize I am totally correct and they just cannot admit the fact that they are almost totally wrong. May my words of truth make you think, something you may not do at our universities and colleges. If you have any character at all you may very well join me in my brave efforts to bring back reason, true fairness and all the facts! We need to fight those who have their own biased truth and only can slander innocent people who resist PC. P.S. I never owned slaves, neither did my father, my grandfathers, my great grandfathers, my great great grand fathers, my great, great, great, grandfathers, etc into the eternal past. Don’t you wish you say the same?

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Yes, but what is the origin of “Cracker”? It being the subject of much speculation hereabouts. Also, it is Henry Louis Gates, Jr., not Lewis.

          • JohnSilvis1

            Spoken like a true hateful racist. Cracker is hate speech. Period. You are a hatemonger. Louis, Luis, it doesn’t matter. If you think it does you are just an ignoramous. You are still a hatemonger, an idiot. Are you an expert on slavery? Of course not. You just cling to anything to defend your ignorance and your hate. PC says of Dr Gates, a black icon, says it is true it is true. You are never going to accept any reasoning, never. You are prejudice and you are factually ignorant. You are a waste of time. You are the bigot and a mouth breathing hillbilly who cannot ever admit that your worship a hate filled religion of PC. “the first thing an ideologue does is lies, the next thing he does is kills.” as a black college professor wisely said. Sooner or later YOU FANATICS BECOME LIKE THE VERY PEOPLE YOU HATE. There is a place” in hell” for you who are responsible for slavery then spend your life hatefully blaming others who did not participate in YOUR historic criminal and immoral culture. Only the truth will set you free! Next you will tell me that Mohamed(the perfect Muslin man) didn’t own slaves. You life is just a lie.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Does this mean that you hate yourself because you called yourself a “cracker”? 🙂

            Cracker is more than just hate speech, at least in Florida.

          • JohnSilvis1

            That is sarcasm, idiot!!!l
            This is how the mindless haters talk. Your response is totally mindless and irrelevant and is proof you cannot respond rationally when confronted with facts that you cannot refute. Don’t waste my time. Please find somebody else to abuse because of their skin color or just crawl back under your rock..

          • ShermanLogan

            The only effective response to violence has always been even more violence, with very rare circumstances where outside pressure or the proclaimed ideals of the oppressors can be used against them.

            As many have pointed out, the Holocaust, the Killing Fields and the Rwanda genocides were not stopped by non-violence. They were all stopped by more effective violence deployed against the killers.

            “An eye for an eye till the whole world is blind” is pretentious posing. The more effective approach has always been to kill the people putting out the eyes of others until they either desist in fear or are all dead.

            This is of course another way of stating my earlier post about peace thru superior firepower.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Possibly, in the examples you cited, plus major wars. But these are the **exceptions** in the vast history of violence.

            In fact, “socio-economic stability seems to be something of an antidote to homicide” since “[H]omicide is much more common in countries with low levels of human development, high levels of income inequality and weak rule of law than in more equitable societies …”

            Women murdered by their past or present male partner make up the vast majority of [female] victims. (per wikipedia)

            But the quote is from Gandhi: “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind,” in a notable counter-example.

          • ShermanLogan

            I am aware of the source of the quote. It happens to have been Gandhi’s opinion, which in and of itself is of no greater authority than yours or mine.

            Gandhi, IMO and that of many others, was the exception that proves the rule. Which is why I referenced as exceptions those “very rare circumstances where outside pressure or the proclaimed ideals of the oppressors can be used against them.” The British were never willing to slaughter tens or hundreds of thousands to suppress opposition, or perhaps they were simply aware that doing so might just lead to full-scale rebellion. At any rate, they never did it.

            Had Gandhi tried his Satyagraha against Nazis or commies or just about any autocracy in history, his enemies would have just killed him and those few following him early in his career, and nobody would have ever even heard of him. But his opponents were handicapped by “outside pressure or the proclaimed ideals of the oppressors.”

            Same, of course, applies to Martin L. King, Jr. Dead men write no eloquent letters from jails.

            There are, of course, exceptions. The Roman emperors were not handicapped by these factors but nevertheless lost out in the long run to Christianity. Brute force does not guarantee victory in the long run. As somebody, I think Talleyrand, once said, “you can do anything you like with bayonets, except sit on them.” Force alone is not a stable basis for rule.

            On the gripping hand, there was the almost completely successful suppression of Christianity in Japan. So a violent enough suppression can defeat even faith-based movements.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Okay, but this would depend on the power of the state — the state claims for itself a monopoly on the use of violence and coercion. We must not air-brush out the power behind legitimate (at least locally) violence.

        • JohnSilvis1

          There is nothing more disrespectful than lies from the politically correct mind. It is hates peech. Why do you think all arguments end with hateful name calling by students and profs and the media?

      • JohnSilvis1

        Such is the nature of Political Correctness that good intentions end up as hate and lies. Open your eyes. See holistically not with distorted prejudiced warped glasses. Or do you still want to be violent toward all who disagree? Extremist ideology eventually makes the radical behaved exactly like the people they hate. You will soon be indistinguishable from the KKK and the nazis just taking it to the other hateful irrational extreme. It is already happening.

    • Smartypants

      Stuff and nonsense DrOfnothing! Respect does not come down like manna from heaven. It must be earned in the good ol’ market place of ideas. But ever since the 60s it has become fashionable to pretend that if one’s views no matter how nonsensical, are is within the ambit of First Amendment protection, they must be “respected.” No they don’t.
      But all this deals with substance of people’s views. How one must go in following the procedure and manner of exchanging ideas is another story. Violence and mobs shouting people down are not entitled to respect. Or to tolerance. Period. And if they cross the line into violence they deserve to be met with force. Otherwise you wind up with societal decay and an invitation to a “man on a white horse” to move into a leadership position and take over — something none of us would like. But at this rate that’s what we will get — it’s only a matter of time.

      • DrOfnothing

        Well, for one thing, it’s worth pointing out that police and campus security believe that many of the “mob” were not from the college.

        Frankly, I’ve never been a big fan of using violence against college students. It’s counter-productive, and the result is usually either excessive brutality or, in some cases, tragedy (e.g. Kent State). They’re just kids, and not very wise. No need to get out the truncheons and rubber bullets just yet.

        Again, let me emphasize I am do not support the response of students to either this or that Milo idiot at Berkeley. That having been said, the students have every right to vehemently protest the College providing (via their tuition money) funds and a public platform for someone whose views they find abhorrent. “Protest” but not “prevent,” let alone “harm.”

        • Joseph Powell

          The little bastard snowflakes DENIED other peoples right to ‘peacefully assemble’ and their ‘freedom of speech’.
          Soon will come a day when these impertinent children will simply be beaten down by the crowd for their attempt to steal the rights of others.
          Cannot happen soon enough.

          • DrOfnothing

            Fantastic reasonable and measured response. I’ll hold the “little bastards” by the neck while you administer the “beat down.” Don’t forget to wear black and red so the blood doesn’t show.

        • Smartypants

          I have heard that “oh, they’re just kids” nonsense for decades, and it has only made things worse. If “they’re just kids” they should be treated like kids, not be allowed to pretend they are adults with adult ideas. Their age does not make them some sort of privileged folks who get to violate basic social norms with impunity using adult force, and then hide behind being “just kids.”. They are legally adults and should be treated as such, or give up the privileges of adulthood. (E.g., no booze, “kids”)
          To allude to an old fashioned idea, when “kids” get way out of line they get spanked. Or deserve to be.
          All this rioting could be stopped instantly if some big company CEOs issued a statement to the effect that inasmuch as business ideas and strategies need to be discussed, debated and thrashed out, forcefully at times, the company in question would no longer interview on campuses of colleges that silence those who disagree with them by mob rule, and would not hire those implicated in violent behavior in violently suppressing the speech of others.

        • Tony

          I see your point, but perhaps we could use a little ten minute Introduction to Acceptable Behavior during freshman orientation. That is: The college is like a “sacred space,” set aside from ordinary utilitarian and political concerns, because the pursuit is TRUTH, and not this or that kind of victory. Within the foul lines of the college, the freedom of debate and discussion must be guaranteed, period, end of sentence. That doesn’t mean that you don’t show up to someone’s talk and ask pointed questions.

          Anybody who violates the Rules within the foul lines shows that he or she does not belong in the game. Punishments can go from probation to suspension to expulsion, depending on the severity of the foul.

          If everybody knows that, right up front, then I doubt very much that students would conduct themselves in this disgraceful manner. They have been TAUGHT to do this, though, by professors themselves. Any professor who encourages this behavior should also be subject to sanctions; just as we would punish a baseball team’s manager who had engaged in behavior that made the playing of the game itself impossible.

          • DrOfnothing

            I’m afraid this is incorrect, or at least, there is no evidence that any Middlebury professors encouraged the students to behave violently. And, as the reports show, there are considerable doubts as to the identity of the most violent protesters, who were wearing masks to conceal their identity, and it is suspected that they may have been from the town, not the college.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Like the Berkeley Ninjas. Resolve the problem of outsiders, and flat-footed administrators, and this becomes a non-issue. Outsiders have been able to project their power inside the school, and this is the problem. All this reminds me of the 1960s, actually. Same issues. Same polarized atmosphere.

    • Mike Danger

      I would suggest that what happened at Middlebury College is a stunning example of the “jack booted” thuggery of the left with specific emphasis on the violent and anti-free speech movement originating from academia. That you would try to rationalize a defense of this appalling behavior makes you “patently wrong”…

      • DrOfnothing

        Please, find the part where I rationalized or even expressed the least tolerance for violence. I dare you.

        You will also notice that most of the commentators here have called for even more violence in response. Presumably, you will recognize this as also being “jack booted” thuggery.

        • ShermanLogan

          So fighting back is thuggery?

          • DrOfnothing

            We’ve got ICE agents kicking down doors, HS forcing people to swear support for Trump in locked airport detention rooms, thousands being held without due process or being tortured in foreign prisons at our behest, Indian men being told to “go back to their country” and shot in bars . . . and you think a few college students shouting slogans and masked townies pulling hair qualifies as “thuggery?”

            You, sir, have lost the plot.

          • ShermanLogan

            Please provide evidence of the following:

            Any significant difference in ICE policy since Trump took office with regard to door-kicking.

            HS forcing people to swear support to Trump. I have no idea what you’re even talking about here.

            Thousands being held or tortured at our behest. A policy that goes back at least 15 years.

            Indian men. Sad story, to be sure. But how exactly does it differ in essence from sad, angry drunk men shooting people in bars for other reasons?

            Yeah, I think people attacking others is thuggery. As are the illegal things you describe. If these policies are illegal, take the appropriate legal steps to get them stopped. If they are legal but you think they should not be, take the appropriate political steps to get them made illegal.

            But don’t launch a mob and attempt to justify their actions, as you do here, on the basis that the other side does worse.

            My “fighting back” refers to on-the-spot retaliation when attacked, which is justifiable self-defense in every state. Your POV seems to be that is someone is harassed in an airport in Mogadishu, then it isn’t thuggery for college students to attack a distinguished college guest in Vermont.

          • DrOfnothing

            Here you go:

            On ICE tactics:

            Apologies, detainees were _not_ asked to take a loyalty test, merely to sign away their legal residency status:

            And please, I have never, not once, defended the actions of the angry mob at Middlebury. But one has to keep these things in perspective.

            Without more details about the murders rates and racial breakdown you mention, I can’t offer an informed opinion on the topic. If you give me the references, I will go check them out and see what’s the what.

            As for the shooting of the Indian man, there is something particularly abhorrent about killing someone solely because of their race. Murder happens for all kinds of reasons, but that type of racist-motivated execution really has to number up there with the worst of the worst.

          • ShermanLogan

            Your ICE link doesn’t really back up your argument. It indicates that present procedures are very similar to those of recent years. That may change, of course.

            ICE is apparently being – slightly – more aggressive about enforcing our laws. Good. If you and others don’t like those laws, work to change them. But don’t insist that we don’t enforce them.

            Per the form signing bit. They were asked to sign a form, or so it is claimed. (Attorneys never shade the truth.). It isn’t even claimed they were coerced. And we certainly don’t have the whole story.

            I think we should just apply the immigration laws of the country from which they come to illegal aliens. That sounds fair.

          • ShermanLogan

            We will probably have around 16,000 murders in this country this year, or about 44/day.

            At the time the Indian guys got shot, Trump had been in office 33 days, which means somewhere around 1452 people had been murdered already during his term in office.

            Yet somehow this one murder out of 1452 defines our country and his presidency. I note that we’ve had another 16 days pass without a similar attack, despite another 700 or so murders.

            Many, many things happen. The specific things the news media and each of us pick out of that stream of events and choose to designate as really important usually tells us more about the person designating than about the world around us.

            For instance, during the 48 days since Inauguration, it’s probable around 60 white people have been killed by black people, while about 27 blacks have been killed by whites. This is, of course, despite the fact that whites outnumber blacks by roughly 5:1.

            So is this rather remarkable disparity in levels of violence relevant? Does it tell us anything about white people, about black people or about America in general? Why or why not?

            Why is one Indian guy getting shot by a white guy vastly important while 60 white people killed by black people is unimportant? I’m not trying to be snarky, I’m really interested in your opinion.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Apparently, there are more suicides in our country than homicides. Why aren’t we talking about them instead? We should be. It is the bigger problem.

          • ShermanLogan

            Because suicide is voluntary and being a murder victim is not?

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Ok. But probably too narrow a view — for example, violent struggles that end in homicide, gang wars, some state-based violence, can demonstrate voluntary participation.

            But if homicide rates are 10 deaths per 100,000 (the rate in the US peaked in 1990, a fairly high rate), it means that 99,990 out of 100,000 persons do not get murdered in a year, and 97,000 of them (a peak rate) are not even assaulted in minor incidents. So, why do we focus on something that does *not* happen to most people? (Stats from Collins 2008:3)

          • ShermanLogan

            16,000 murders. 44,000 suicides.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Wow! I did not realize the disparity!

          • ShermanLogan

            That’s a lot, isn’t it.

            I think it’s fascinating what we collectively decide is relevant.

            400,000+ Americans committing suicide in the decade of the 2000s, no story. Less than 4000 killed in terror attacks, we must go to war!

            A sentiment, I hasten to note, with which I do not necessarily disagree.

          • JohnSilvis1

            Yes. If we can stop the psychotic attacks on white people and deal in facts which may stop much of the “white guilt phobia” that has been used to attack white males. This return to mental health will greatly reduce the number of suicides. Less pathological white guilt and less guilt on black people, the media and college profs who have been living a lie. Such venomous race hatred by these haters takes it’s toll sooner or later. Think about it. A mentally healthier population that rejects the hatred of PC. It’s called win/win and it saves lives.

        • Mike Danger

          You said:

          “To his list of “villains” we can add most university faculty,
          administrators, student activists, and anyone working for social causes.
          He consistently portrays them as deceitful, mercenary zealots who are
          trying to undermine all that is right and good in America.”

          Violence or intimidation by student activists and University faculty or Administrators have sadly become commonplace over the past four months. To disparage those who criticize such behavior implies tolerance towards such behavior. Sadly Academia has become a cesspool of quasi-fascism…

          • DrOfnothing

            Reliable citations, please.

          • Mike Danger

            I agree: citing “your words” constitutes an unreliable citation.

          • DrOfnothing

            Once again, please cite examples of how “Violence or intimidation by student activists and University faculty or Administrators have sadly become commonplace.” Otherwise, go away and let the adults continue the conversation.

          • Mike Danger
          • DrOfnothing

            You asserted that this has “become commonplace over the last four months,” and it is for that assertion that I requested evidence. One instance in four months does not make something “commonplace.” You clearly misspoke, just admit it and move on. I certainly do feel as if I am talking to a child, since I have to repeat and explain, multiple times, even the simplest of requests for confirmation.

          • Mike Danger

            Math is not your forte apparently… Three instances in 28 days supports “commonplace”. Berkeley (2-2-17), NYU (2-3-17), Middlebury (3-2-17). Evidently you did not bother to look at the supplied links. (Clearly you misspoke, just admit it and move on. ) Sloppy…

            If we include cancellations of conservative speakers after student protests’ (suppression of free speech through intimidation) and violent protest not occurring at a University but with a significant student presence than we can see a trend going back a couple years.

            I’m guessing it is easier to accept the growing fascism of academia if we pretend it isn’t happening…

          • JohnSilvis1

            U of C Berkeley last week, No one dare speak out against your hate speech. Fear of being irrationally labeled a racist, bigot, xenophobe, Islamophobe, etc silence all speech. You are all hate mongers and you create fear among people who only want free and open discussion and revelation of all the facts you hide. You hate freedom of speech and diversity of views.

          • DrOfnothing

            Please stop posting when you are clearly inebriated. I cannot make any sense of this response, and you did not offer any citations or references to the events you are mumbling about either.

          • JohnSilvis1

            I referenced Berkeley. Are you also ignorant of current events? Another ignorant hate filled response by a warped politically correct mind. You PC lunatics only respond with mindless attack. I am not drinking anything. You obviously live your whole life stoned. Smoke away comrade it makes the lies easier to tell and the venom easier to spread. You are a liar and a hatemonger. Your mind is warped with hate. You have no morals at all. In fact your whole life is a hateful lie. Only the truth can set you free. Move to Berkeley so you can be with others haters of free speech.

          • DrOfnothing

            You are clearly a very angry person. Perhaps you should refrain from posting on policy websites until you can control your temper and converse with others in a civil manner.

          • JohnSilvis1

            We should all be angry at the ignorance and hypocrisy of people like yourself. PC thing is irrational and hateful. You do not address the issues being discussed. So personal attacks and cliches are how you respond.

          • DrOfnothing


          • JohnSilvis1

            Your comrades recently attacked the University of California Berkeley and local businesses. What is happening is very wide spread at universities and in the media. You have your head stuck in the sand. You are not entitled to your own facts.

          • Mike Danger

            What are you talking about? I think you misread my post. I believe you should direct your comments to DrOfnothing who is supporting the radical protests.

          • JohnSilvis1

            I didn’t mean to post against your comments. Must have put it in the wrong place. Just read my other posts.

          • Mike Danger


    • bdavi52

      No, you misunderstand. Leef calls for the very thing that Valenti says he first desired: “intellectual discussions” / “substantial debate”. Leef does not seek to forbid the Left from speaking, to drown them out, shout them down, chase them from the campus, rather he encourages engagement and a robust back & forth (a back & forth which is sadly lacking). He asks and hopes that his voice, Murray’s voice, the Conservative voice, even the apolitical historical voice be heard.

      Certainly he decries, as we all would, the replacement of teaching by indoctrination, our faculty telling students what to think, not how to think. But the need to teach a history & philosophy other than the Marxist perspective on power & class oppression is drowned by a tidal wave of ‘hands over ears’ refusal. And not simply refusal but violent rejection.

      What we see at Middlebury is simply the logical extension of the doctrine given voice 3 years ago by Harvard’s Sandra Korn, who told us, “The words used to articulate a research question can have implications for its outcome. No academic question is ever “free” from political realities. If our university community opposes racism, sexism, and heterosexism, why should we put up with research that counters our goals simply in the name of “academic freedom”?” She proposed what she termed a “more rigorous standard” she called “academic justice”. And what is “academic justice” (the ‘justice’ we seen enacted at Middlebury)? She explains, “When an academic community observes (anything) promoting or justifying oppression, it should ensure that this research does not continue.”

      And what constitutes promoting or justifying oppression, why anything we so label. “The power to enforce academic justice comes from students, faculty, and workers organizing together to make our universities look as we want them to do.” What she proposes and what we see enacted at Middlebury, et al, is just a different kind of cleansing.

      • DrOfnothing

        “Certainly he decries, as we all would, the replacement of teaching by indoctrination, our faculty telling students what to think, not how to think. But the need to teach a history & philosophy other than the Marxist perspective on power & class oppression is drowned by a tidal wave of ‘hands over ears’ refusal. ”

        Throughout 11 years of studying in HE and and 15 years subsequently of working with it, I have met one single professor who was a Marxist . . .

        . . . and he was determined _not_ to teach from a Marxist perspective.

        Leef’s entire proposition about “indoctrination” is simply wrong, and the only reason people give it the least bit of credibility is a.) they have spent no time whatsoever on a college campus and b.) they only read pundits and websites they already agree with. Every single time a writer here has said “discipline X is completely ideological and is rejecting all traditional teaching,” I have gone to the course offerings and proven them wrong. English departments still teach mostly classic English and American literature. History departments still teach mostly US and European history. The X Studies departments (e.g. Women’s Studies, Afam Studies), which are supposedly “taking over the campus” make up a very, very small proportion of the faculty and majors.

        If you think he is expressing respect for the other side, you haven’t read his articles very closely. His tactics, and those of Civitas, the JMC, FIRE, etc. are no more than bullying and intimidation, all with shady funding from plutocrats like Pope, Koch, etc. who care _nothing_ whatsoever for the average taxpayer. There is no principle of freedom or justice at work here, just a hypocritical Neocon ideology and an attempt to bring in exactly the type of intellectual conformity that they insist they are fighting.

        The violence at Middlebury is inexcusable. But the anger, given that the right has helped elect a bigoted, ignorant,narcissist who flaunts his disrespect for the constitution and personal liberty, is understandable.

        Before you reply, please spend some time on the webpages, module catalogues, and other portals to get some reliable information on what these schools and departments are actually teaching and how they are teaching it. Don’t believe what you are being fed–think for yourself! If you return with solid evidence that gives credence to Leef’s claims, I will be very surprised, but will respect it nonetheless.

        • bdavi52

          Appreciate the well-considered response.

          Some quick thoughts (he says, optimistically)…
          Your experience and my own is significantly different. Our departments are drowning in Marxist, dogmatic, left-wing, socialist/social justice agendas. It’s been more or less that way (at least within the realm of most small, liberal arts colleges and/or so-called ‘elite’ universities) for decades (more so in the last 10 years or so), even to the point at which University vision statements have been rewritten to align more closely with the tripartite god, Diversity, Inclusion, Equality. My own, personal experience as an undergrad in the Long Ago & Far Away are equally aligned.

          As for corroboration… you might look here: or here:… or here: (a collection)… and here, an in-depth examination of the corruption of U.S. History curricula by the NAS:… here: … and finally a fascinating 3-part look at the politicization & post-modernization of Music Education, here:

          All of these can be argued, of course, but their conclusions bear out my own experience (and those of my colleagues at other schools) quite closely. That is not to say that (let’s call it ‘normal’), apolitical, objective, fact-based social sciences, literature, art, music education is not occurring. It is. It is simply being consistently drowned by the din of the post-modern/marxist (little ‘m’) voices on the other side. [I should, however, hasten to note that you can’t tell a book by its cover, and a simple scanning of course titles or even a collection of syllabi will not tell the whole story.]

          As for ‘respect’ for the other side, that is a separate issue. There is respect in the sense that you afford/allow the Other to speak, to present, to proclaim perspectives radically at odds with own. And in that sense, obviously, Leef, et al. demonstrate significant respect for those voices on the Left who speak both loudly and assuredly, pretty much everywhere. And then there is ‘respect’ in the sense that one does not strongly disagree, or harshly criticize the view being presented (in the sense, perhaps, that children are to respect their parents, or youngers to respect their elders). That is, however, a false respect easily confused with submission. Leef, et al, does not submit and his criticisms are, or can be, harsh & pointed (as are my own). But to be harsh & pointed in a public form or a published article is not the same as shouting one’s opponents down, disinviting them to speak, refusing them a platform or opportunity to voice their opinion. And, of course, a far, far cry from physical intimidation, firing, tenure-denial, etc

          I am glad, of course, that we are in agreement that the masked and jack-booted violence at Middlebury is absolutely unacceptable….but I would go further and say that it is equally absolutely irrational. It is not understandable in the least, save as a child’s tantrum.

          Trump, of course, goes out of his way to demonstrate any number of unattractive qualities, but ‘flaunting a disrespect for the Constitution and personal liberty’ is not one of those qualities. To suggest that the Middlebury Mob’s violence was ‘understandable’ (though inexcusable) given Trump’s mythological status , is to give them far more credence & intellectual gravitas than they deserve

        • Lurker

          FIRE is a great organization. I am a professor and I fully support what they do. They call out unconstitutional speech codes at public universities. They call out similar codes at private institutions that are in conflict with a free exchange of ideas and a diversity of viewpoints. And they legally support students who have been oppressed by these often illegal actions at public institutions. And they win, most of the time. FIRE makes higher education better.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            Yes, I don’t think FIRE deserves to be lumped in with the other orgs. FIRE is quick to assist students in need of assistance, and is very good helping to enforce state public records laws. Certainly, FIRE is a major influence for holding higher ed to a higher ethical standard, however much those ethical standards are subject to change.

        • JohnSilvis1

          Even George Bernard Shaw praised the Soviet Union. But he never moved there. I don’t think he even visited Russia. How absent of reality is the views of the so called “intellectuals” and how disastrous for all of humanity.

  • Dwight Lee

    DrOfnothing seems a bit confused. It’s hardly hypocritical for Leef to criticize physically assaulting people to prevent them from presenting their point of view because he has an opposing view and presents it without trying to prevent others from doing the same. DOn owes Leef an apology unless he has evidence that Leef has been using force to silence those he disagrees.

    • DrOfnothing

      He is absolutely right to condemn the violence, and I never suggested that he was guilty of it himself, nor of encouraging it in others.

  • William L. Anderson

    Dwight, I fully agree with you, and it only is a matter of time before we see this mentality bleeding into every aspect of society, not just the university. Furthermore, leftists tend not even to understand what they are saying. For example, last year, one of my MBA students complained that the text I use for the class, a reprinted version of Alchian & Allen’s Exchange and Production, was “Republican,” and, thus, had no place in a classroom. Yes, Armen Alchian (rest his soul) as a right-winger. That is the leftist mentality and there is nothing we can do about it. These are the kind of people who refuse to learn anything because they already are omniscient.

  • Servo1969

    The Progressives’ intent is make words they don’t like the legal equivalent of physical assault. And when is it often held to be legal to defend yourself violently? When someone is in the act of physically assaulting you.
    The Progressive end game is to make the following statement true: “I have the legal right to beat the s- out of anyone who says something I don’t like.” That’s it. That’s the ultimate goal. The absolute opposite of Free Speech.

  • Mark Zurawski

    Until these protestors are expelled from schools across the country, nothing will change.

    • ShermanLogan

      Expel, arrest, indict, prosecute, jail.

    • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

      Not expelled — they may not even be students. But keeping non-students off campus would help.

  • theBuckWheat

    How many more millimeters of cultural and moral corrosion do we have before the left starts to resume plans to assassinate a Senator or starts to place bombs at places where there opponents where known to gather?

    Not far fetched. Been there, been through that in the 60’s with campus radicals such as Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn.

    John Kerry, who served in Viet Nam was a member of Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW). While there is some ambiguity as to whether or not Kerry was at the meeting in Kansas City November 12-15, 1971, the group discussed a plan to assassinate pro-war US Senators.

    If Kerry was not part of that decision, at the very least these were the level of radicals that he associated with. This is not my speculation, this is out of an article
    John Kerry’s Political Friends, written by Thomas H. Lipscomb and published in The New York Sun | Monday, March 15, 2004.

    Readers of this blog can easily find information about the bombing campaign that Ayers, Dohrn and others participated in. They all have blood on their hands. And now again how close are we to the left going full radical on us again? Worse, should they ever get into federal office again, how close are we to what happened in Russia as Stalin was coming to power? Happily the one big difference between then and now is how many firearms are in private hands.

  • Lou Sander

    Leadership is absent at Middlebury College.

    • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

      Well, no — quite obviously some (as of now unidentified) group has taken control. Like the Ninjas at Berkeley. Deft moves, prescient intelligence (inside leaks maybe?) and the ability to mobilize. Emergent leadership, to be sure, that seems to have overpowered admins.

  • JRDF

    As long as Higher Education has “diversity” programs, this will continue to happen. The diversity programs are in fact and in practice the indoctrination arm of the progressive ideology. “Diversity” is just a “nice” cover for the identity politics / tribalism of the “progressives”. And as usual they use emotions and scapegoats to forward their discredited ideology on unsuspecting students.

    This is not new, a 20th century dictator once wrote:
    “the masses are feminine and stupid. Only emotion and hatred can keep them under control”.

    Again you will never get a handle on this until you de-fund the “Diversity” bureaucracies at universities.

    To the “tribalist” this means one hates diversity — No… one hates government mandated / government managed “diversity”. We hate the micro-managing of students’ relationships. The most basic and fundamental fact lost on these diversity bureaucracies is that — AUTHENTIC relationships are … voluntary!

    This very rejection of the Diversity bureaucracy, tribalism, identity politics played out in the 2016 presidential election:

    The synopsis of the 2016 presidential election is : “I am not a bigot.”

    Question: — What did the voters of the “Blue Wall” (Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania) learn from the 2008 & 2012 Presidential elections?
    Answer: — No matter how many times they voted for Barack Obama, they would still be called bigots.

    Or — Trump is Obama’s legacy (born from Obama’s identity politics.)

  • JRDF
  • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

    “We must never forget that genuine schools [of thought] are sociological realities. They have their structures–relations between leaders and followers–their flags, their battle cries, their moods, their all-too-human interests. Their antagonisms come within the general sociology of group antagonisms and of party warfare. Victory and conquest, defeat and loss of ground, are in themselves values for such schools and part of their very existence.”
    –Joseph Schumpeter, History of Economic Analysis

  • DrOfnothing

    For the sake of accuracy, it’s worth mentioning that the author has either misinterpreted (or just fabricated) the Karl Marx quote. He did not label anyone who rejected his beliefs as a “class enemy.”

    The term “enemy of the people” was used by Lenin, not Marx. Though its origins lie much earlier (Nero was declared an “enemy of the people” by the Roman Senate in AD 68).

    This is not the first time that the author has misquoted sources or quoted sources completely out of context, and it really needs to be addressed.

    In current political discourse, the only person to use the term “enemy of the people” recently was Donald Trump (he directed it at the press).

    • JohnSilvis1

      You sure know a lot about Marx, comrade. If you had any respect for free speech or non-violence you would not be engaged in this discussion. It’s called “double think” and it is apparently a foundation for your mindless biased education. Next thing is you are going to do is try to silence me by calling me a “racist”, even though you know nothing about my views. Your cliches are so predictable but so dangerous to freedom of opinion. Immoral and untruthful in the extreme but you will never see it. Try “bigot” that usually works comrade. What you pedal is hate.

      • DrOfnothing

        Yes, I have read, and taught, most of the major political thinkers of the 17th, 18th and 19th c., from Hobbes and Locke to Marx and St. Simon. This is why I can discuss their merits, flaws, contribution, and contradictions in detail. Like Leef, however, you have clearly read none of them, which is why you resort to ranting and ad hominem attacks. But please, I invite you to find anything, anywhere, in any single one of my comments where I “pedal hate.”

        • JohnSilvis1

          You just did. You make assumptions, like all ignorant people. Yes I read Locke and Kant and Socrates when you were still in diapers. They haven’t changed, but the universities have. What a odd response, I read hobbes so I am smarter…Dah! These are dead white men you mention so, by your own prejudiced standards, they are no longer relevant to any discussion. You are the one who did the ad hominem attacks. I just cannot tolerate your bigotry. Get out of your shell, leave the classroom and go to other colleges and look without prejudice. You will be amazed at what reality looks like. You only argue to defend your own biases.

          • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

            John, what is your point?

    • ShermanLogan

      The term was perhaps most famously used by the French Revolutionists.

  • John Silvis

    The dogmatic attack on free speech by the left and ideologue universities is nothing new. I recommend a book entitled “Dictatorship of Virtue” by Richard Bernstein from 1990s, This unending attack upon free speech and diversity of ideas is a great threat to democracy, It is also contrary to the basic foundation of academic inquiry. This is far more a threat than Donald Trump. “The first thing an ideologue does is lies. The next thing he does is kills.” Thomas Sowell a black university professor. We need to teach student how to think(reason) not what to think.

    • DrOfnothing

      Wow, so a gaggle of students and English faculty have more power than the Executive Branch of government? Who knew?!

      • JohnSilvis1

        Obviously you don’t. It is not a gaggle, this disease infects the majority of Colleges. You create more fear on campus than Muslim terrorists. Who created Trump. You created Donald Trump. The future and the present is controlled by these so called “intellectuals”. Your mindless prejudices speak so loudly I can no longer hear your hate filled lies. We must save free speech from you wacko extremists. Get an education. Shake off your prejudices.

        • DrOfnothing

          I can no longer make sense of these rants and ad hominem attacks. How do I “create more fear on campus than Muslim terrorists?” How does “the graduate program at the University of Minnesota keeps formerly rational professor in fear?” Please either respond with concrete substance, or don’t respond at all.

      • Publius

        Indeed who knew. However, you are conspicuous by what you don’t say. Is the behavior of the Middlebury mob acceptable? Yes or No.

    • Publius

      It wound change if Dept. of Ed. sent out a “dear colleagues” letter to universities, modeled on the ones sent out under Obama. The mere knowledge that Dept. of Ed. is monitoring for cases of 1st Amendment suppression, with the implied threat of loss of Federal funds, would be enough for universities to provide equal protection for conservatives. College faculty and administrators are not radical leftists, just cowards.

      • Glen_S_McGhee_FHEAP

        The loss of Federal funds happens so infrequently that this is not a plausible approach.

        Another problem is that situational violence, such as Berkeley and Middlebury, is transient, nearly impossible to predict, and therefore not subject to control by the authorities. A vast network of secret police, such as those in East Germany and Egypt, could possibly help limit situational violence, but this kind of monitoring would limit the very freedoms you seek to defend, not just on campus, but for the public as well.

        • JohnSilvis1

          Without real action and media support these attacks, like terrorist attacks, will be very commonplace. Just like terrorism we will accept this mindless violence as part of everyday life. “He who does not punish evil commands it to be done.” Leonardo Davinci .Your approach will guarantee that this evil will continue to the detriment of all civilization.Or is that your true intent?

          • DrOfnothing

            Glen is one of the most reasonable and calm people who posts on this board. Your aspersions are both irrational and unmerited. Please go away.

      • JohnSilvis1

        Amen Publius.

  • wade

    Anybody still believe that the Left is tolerant? These people are the thugs we know them to be. They are not capable of rational thought. This is the ideology of the Left on display for all us to see.

  • Len

    Good report. I live part time within 8 miles of Middlebury College, and parttime in NC, having spent 20 years at NCState. I think that the response of the Middlebury College faculty to those students who thought that it was their “right” to completely reject free speech on that campus is a bright sign in an otherwise dismal scene. I am proud of little Middlebury for taking what I hope is a national lead in righting the ship. Colleges and universities have become so neutered in their obsession to be . “politically correct” that they have lost their way. Maybe this will signal a reversal of that spiral. I also hope that those students at Middlebury who were involved in the violence are sent home from the campus. The nonstudents involved need to be subject to legal action.

    • Jonathan O’Quinn

      I spent about nine years at NC State between 89-97. I do not recall anyone having problem with the campus free expression tunnel, where anybody could spray paint anything they wished, not do I remember students being intolerant of opposing viewpoints.

      I fear for the future.


    • Leslie Woodhull


  • MsNancy

    Charles Murray, a racist white supremacist? He spent his twenties with the Peace Corp in rural Thailand where he married a Thai girl and had 2 children. I think not!

    It seems that nobody protesting against Dr Murray had read his books or heard him speak. What he had to say was that people like these students live totally separate lives from lower and underclass Americans, never get to know them and therefore can’t empathize with them. It is from this class that the people who make laws and affect policy come from. Here was an opportunity for these privileged students to hear what Dr Murray had to say about this situation. Instead they riot and make ridiculous statements about him. They, the university and their parents should be ashamed at having such narrow minds.

  • Leslie Woodhull


  • I Love Libertarians

    Cheer up. The word is the local libertarian students tracked down the ringleaders (all non-student) and beat the living daylights out of these paid far-left thugs…

    Then politely handed them Nolan Quizzes, of course.