Thursday, May 05, 2005

What Next, A Vial Of Acid Or A Gun?

Ideally, students should be exposed to a variety of opposing views with reference to social, political and economic issues that expands their vision and enriches their college experience. Unfortunately, on most college campuses today, the main guest speakers are nothing more than mere inculcations of the university's philosophies, thus starving and suffocating free thought while promoting single-minded intolerance to the views of others.

It's a disappointment to me that when someone demonstrates a clear conflict of visions, the talk fades precipitously and following closely on its heels are physical and verbal assaults. As example, Ann Coulter was jeered off the stage of Earlham College in 2000. Then a couple months ago she became the physical target of a student at the University of Arizona. Within the past month we have seen Pat Buchanon, William Kristol and David Horowitz all being physically assaulted while speaking on colleges campuses.

How can this disingenuous behavior, eradicating any vestige of civility, be thwarted?
First, the students themselves, who appear to be satisfied with achieving low intellectual content, and who shun the rigors of free thought and free speech, share in the blame.

Second, the tone must be set by university leadership at its highest levels. More and more, today's student articulates what is in the hearts and minds of an overwhelming majority of college educators (monkey see, monkey do.) And the academic community is in denial of the extraordinary seriousness of this situation.

As the debate goes forward, I hope we begin to talk in terms of civility and mutual respect toward those whom appose our political, sociological and economic views. Otherwise, I fear we can we expect an escalation in future assaults as students take on an ever increasing flavor of violent behavior, eventually trading pies for a vile of acid or a concealed weapon.

William Kristol and David Horowitz were both guests on our radio program on Saturday morning, April 23rd, to discuss these issues.

Christopher L. Dickson



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