Thursday, October 29, 2015

“Bluebloods” on Campus Social Justice Warriors

Not all network TV is liberal propaganda. Example: a recent episode of “Bluebloods” that has a campus feminist playing the victim. It starts with a campus leftist wanting some fellow student punished for unkind (but perfectly legal) messages posted on the campus message board.

Would campus leftists do this? Absolutely. As The Volokh Conspiracy records:
A large coalition of advocacy groups has asked the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights to pressure colleges to (1) punish students for their speech and (2) block student access to certain Web sites — especially sites such as Yik Yak, which allow students to anonymously post their views.

Now, some of the speech that the groups mention consists of true threats of violence, including threats of attack and even rape. Such speech is constitutionally unprotected. (Indeed, some of it — threats against people for speaking, for instance, in support of feminist causes — itself attempts to suppress speech.) It is rightly criminalized and can certainly be punished.

But the letter goes very far beyond just calling on universities to punish threats. Here are some other examples of speech that the coalition points to:
  • “[S]uccessive invidious comments targeting African-Americans, such as ‘Their entire culture just isn’t conducive to a life of success. It just isn’t. The outfits. The attitudes. The behavior.’”
  • “Another comment” that said “Slavery was the worst thing to happen to this country, bringing them over here . . . ugh.”
  • A statement that “I would be completely ok with Clemson being an all white school. Except for football.”
  • A statement that “The only thing niggers are good for is making Clemson better at football.”
  • A statement that “Jesus I hate black people.”
  • A comment saying, “Guys stop with all this hate. Let’s just be thankful we aren’t black.”
  • Statements “target[ing] Indian students and East Asians, referred to as ‘chinks,’ in addition to LGBT students, Mormons, and women.” ”[S]tudents post[ing] dozens of demeaning, crude, and sexually explicit comments and imagery about three female professors.”
All of this speech, offensive as it may be, is protected by the First Amendment. (There is no “hate speech” exception to First Amendment protection.) But despite that, the coalition is arguing that the speech should be restricted precisely because of the viewpoints it expresses, and the offense and “hostile environment” that those viewpoints cause.
The first statement seems to us a perfectly reasonable comment about ghetto culture, and the penultimate one accepts the notion of white privilege and says “stop the hate.” Wanting Clemson to be segregated is certainly a racist comment, but is probably just hyperbole from students unhappy with being berated for being white and being told to “check your privilege.”

But as Volokh says, all are constitutionally protected.

A Bogus Hate Incident

“Bluebloods” then goes further by including in the plot something that frequently happens on college campuses.

Yes, campus activists have often staged racist incidents in order to provoke more “diversity” initiatives.

So what we have here is the reality of contemporary college life. Social Justice Warriors really believe that any expression of opinion they dislike should be made illegal and punished. And since they believe the end justifies the means, they will stage fake incidents to promote their cause.

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Blogger James Pawlak said...

President Thomas Jefferson prescribed for such tyrants as do not understand and obey the First Amendment. The cure is contained in the Second Amendment.

2:15 PM  
Blogger Mark Florio said...

As always, thought-provoking material.

A couple of thoughts.

The late Mario Savio is probably spinning in his grave.

From what I've read about Tom Selleck, he would not be part of a script that gets off the path of commonsense.


11:38 AM  

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