Saturday, February 28, 2009

More Academic Fascism from Radicalized Muslims and Leftists

From the American Thinker:
The virulence of anti-Israelism and antisemitism at The University of California, Irvine campus, for instance, has been so flagrant and endemic in recent years that it actually prompted an investigation by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights, the findings of which were issued in a damning 2007 report. But San Francisco State University is not far behind in the ignoble way it has enabled its Muslim students’ organizations to create a veritable reign of terror on campus against Jewish and pro-Israel students, while simultaneously attempting to silence voices of opposition, a situation made evident this January when SFSU’s College Republicans were once again pushed into the limelight for their outspoken challenges to the school’s ubiquitous Palestinianism.

Playing off the recent indignity suffered by former president Bush when an insolent reporter hurled a shoe at the President’s head during a press conference, the College Republicans had set up a booth to let students who so wished to sign an anti-Hamas, anti-terror petition and throw a shoe at a Hamas flag. Deeply “offended” by the Republicans for daring to condemn terrorists, rather than the Israeli state in defending its civilians from genocidal attack, members of SFSU’s General Union of Palestinian Students (GUPS) and socialist club overturned the table, seized the Hamas flag, and were physically aggressive enough in their assault of the Republican students to result in two of their members, Muhammad Abdullah and Jeremy Stern, being put under arrest.

The outcome of this event, one would think, would be fairly straightforward, since the pro-Hamas protesters clearly violated SFSU’s own rules for student behavior, which clearly prohibit “conduct that threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person within or related to the university community, including physical abuse, threats, intimidation, [or] harassment,” all of which the Republican group experienced.

But in the morally-inverted world of academia, the Republican group, for the third time, find themselves the target of punishment and censure, not their attackers, and the “offended parties” -- the GUPS and the socialist club -- have made some breathtakingly audacious demands to the SFSU administration: the College Republicans must be punished or sanctioned for throwing shoes at the Hamas flag; pending charges should be dropped against the two protesters who assaulted the College Republicans and seized the Hamas flag; and, most ominously for defenders of free expression on campus, a forum should be created to “educate” students about what forms of speech the “offended” students deem acceptable or unacceptable, including what the Left regularly tries to proscribe as “hate speech.”
Of course, “hate speech” is simply speech that you don’t like.

Expressing hatred of whites, males or Christians is an absolutely normal activity around any university.

Of course, one could say that the College Republicans’ protest was rather provocative and uncivil -- a relevant observation if you think only genteel speech is protected by the First Amendment.
Were only the College Republicans acting out in a provocative way on an otherwise peaceful SFSU campus, they might well be rebuked for being crude and demonstrating impolite and impolitic behavior. But not only has the campus gained notoriety for the outrageousness of some of its morally-defective protests, but the same “offended” parties who sought punishments for the College Republicans, the General Union of Palestinian Students, have continually been at the center of a succession of riots, protests, and anti-Israel, anti-American hate-fests and counter-protests at which radical speakers regularly, and with unbridled invective, denounce and demonize Jews, Zionists, Israel, Republicans, and America.

Most notorious, for example, was the Muslim student-sponsored, pro-Palestinian April 2002 demonstration that included odious flyers and posters depicting a dead Palestinian baby on a soup-can label imprinted with the words “Palestinian Children Meat, slaughtered according to Jewish rites under American license,” echoing the centuries-old blood libel of European antisemitism that accused Jews of murdering Gentile children and using their blood to bake matzos -- a slander that has, not surprisingly, currently gained credence in the Arab world. Even if the perpetrators of this cruel protest consider this type of expression merely “academic free speech” and legitimate debate about Zionism, and also disingenuously claim that that there is no underlying Jew-hatred here, only debate about Israeli policies, and even if they are to be believed, might not such flyers possibly offend Jewish students on campus? Could accusing an ethnic group of infanticide possibly be construed as “intimidation” or fostering “incivility” on campus?
Fascists, here as elsewhere, simply aren’t willing to apply their anti-free speech doctrines in an even-handed way.

Which is why, in some borderline cases, we are less disturbed by restrictions on speech than about even-handedness. If people who want to shut up speech know that they might be subjected to exactly the same restrictions they want to impose on others, that would constitute a built-in protection against excesses. The situation, in other words, would be a prisoners’ dilemma.

But on a modern university campus, where all people are divided into politically correct “victim” groups and politically incorrect “oppressor” groups, even handedness is hard to find.

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