Brace yourself for shocking news. DePaul University banned conservative commentator Ben Shapiro from speaking on its campus!
I know what you’re thinking, and yes, of course I’m being facetious. Today’s American campuses are breeding grounds for a strain of hypersensitivity that routinely morphs into intolerance of right-of-center ideas.
Mr. Shapiro is only the latest victim of progressives’ assault on speech not in conformity with the radical ideas indoctrinated into our youth by academia.
Here’s the story. The executive board of DePaul’s chapter of Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) received a letter from a university administrator stating:
“Given the experiences and security concerns that some other schools have had with Ben Shapiro speaking on their campuses, DePaul cannot agree to allow him to speak on our campus at this time.”
If you’ve ever listened to Shapiro speak, or read one of his syndicated columns or books, you certainly recognize that he’s opinionated, but certainly not controversial.
This ban comes on the heels of DePaul deciding against permitting the campus’s College Republicans from hosting alt-right, Breitbart News editor, Milo Yiannopoulos.
It is true that, unlike Shapiro, Yiannopoulos epitomizes provocative commentary. But why does that matter?
The students who indefatigably cry “victim,” or threaten disruptive and violent behavior, eventually will leave their college bubble, and no longer be shielded from thoughts with which they disagree, or hurt their feelings.
But an even larger problem exists than the mere lack of tolerance of liberal, progressives who ironically are ferocious in their campaigns to denounce the intolerance of others. The consequences of fostering this environment are far worse.
University officials are oblivious to the harm inflicted on students who, when they enter the professional world, are ill-prepared to endure the “emotional crisis” of interacting with people who hold opposing views.
Undeniably, DePaul, and other private universities, have the right to reject speakers from appearing on their campuses. But higher education has a moral obligation to offer a precious gift to young, developing minds — unlimited access to diversity of thought. When it’s removed, a virulent plague of ignorance is unleashed on society, making thoughtful, intellectually honest public discourse impossible.