Archive for Civil Liberties

Je Suis James Earl Ray

As he so often does, James Taranto makes the best case against people like Barack Obama who say “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.”

But what can one say about this week’s column by DeWayne Wickham, dean of Morgan State University’s School of Global Journalism and Communication in Baltimore? Choudary and Wickham make nearly identical arguments. Their columns are titled, respectively, “People Know the Consequences” and “ ‘Charlie Hebdo’ Crosses the Line.” Neither man expressly endorses the terrorists’ actions, but both strongly imply the victims had it coming because they offended their killers’ religious sensibilities.

Call it the assassin’s veto. And there is no principled basis to apply such a doctrine only in cases of Islamic supremacist violence. Martin Luther King and other civil-rights leaders were assassinated by white supremacists angry over the things the victims had said. By Wickham’s logic, that would have justified government censorship of speech in favor of civil rights. If the courts adopted the Wickham doctrine, extremists of all stripes would have a powerful incentive to kill.

Martin Luther King knew he was shouting “fire” in a crowded church, not least because there was a fire, or a bomb.

He also knew that by speaking out, he might not live to see the day about which he dreamed.

Like anybody, I would like to live – a long life; longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land. So I’m happy, tonight. I’m not worried about anything. I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.

Who knows how many death threats he received? Who knows how many other black Americans were killed in that lawless century between the Civil War and the Civil Rights era? What Dr. King did know, for sure, was that he was poking a white-robed-and-hooded bear. “I just want to do God’s will. … I’m not fearing any man.”

He may not have feared any particular man, but he would have had plenty to fear from J-School deans like DeWayne Wickham and their ilk in academia and the media. King knew that the possibility of his assassination was a necessary prerequisite for speaking out. Politically correct dimwits like DeWayne would have used it as a reason to censor him.

Yes, you had a dream, Marty, that’s nice. But no one wants to hear about that now. Be a good boy and come down from that mountaintop before anyone gets hurt.

Free speech absolutists (among whom I count myself) claim that censorship is often used against the very people it was meant to protect (anti-pornography laws women “performance artists”). That couldn’t clearer here.

Obama and Kerry tiresomely repeat that we should not hold against all Muslims the acts of a few Muslims (who aren’t really Muslim at all). Agreed (up to a point). But then why the admonition against “slandering the prophet of Islam”? Don’t we have laws and law enforcement to protect us from those very few crazies who would take offense to violent extremes? Should we refrain from going out after dark because of the actions of a very few violent criminals? Or should we live our lives according to the liberties guaranteed in the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence—and expect that the government do one of its enumerated jobs and protect our rights (including the right of self-defense, I would argue)?

I think I know how Dr. King would answer that.

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Why is This Man Smiling?

A massacre of Jews, and he’s not (directly) to blame? What’s not to smile about?

Untitled

His Excellency, François Hollande

Dear Mr. President,

First, I wish to express my deep condolences over the killing of innocent citizens in the recent terror attacks in Paris.

Second, I want to apologize to Your Excellency for not revealing my true identity. After you read my letter, you will realize why people like me are afraid to reveal their real identity.

I decided to write to you this letter after hearing my president, Mahmoud Abbas, declare that you had invited him to attend the anti-terror rally in Paris earlier this week.

Like many Palestinians, I see President Abbas’s participation in a rally against terrorism and assaults on freedom of speech as an act of hypocrisy — a condition that is not alien to Palestinian Authority leaders.

In fact, many Palestinians nearly fell off their chairs upon seeing their president march in the front row of a rally in your capital, in protest against terrorism and assaults on freedom of the media.

President Abbas’s participation in the rally is an insult to the victims of the terror attacks. It is also an insult to Western values, including freedom of expression and democracy.

Your Excellency, myself and other journalists living under the rule of the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank were the first to be offended by the invitation you extended to President Abbas to attend the anti-terror rally.

Undoubtedly, you are unaware of the fact that Abbas is personally responsible for punishing Palestinian journalists who dare to criticize him or express their views in public. Of course, Your Excellency, we cannot blame you for being unaware of this assault on public freedoms because the mainstream media, including French newspapers and magazines, deliberately turn a blind eye to these practices. Every day we see that the Western media does not care about such violations unless they are committed by Israel.

That is why, Your Excellency, you are probably unaware of the cases of several Palestinian journalists who have been arrested and intimidated by President Abbas’s security forces over the past few years. Yes, this is the same Abbas who came to Paris to express his condolences over the brutal killing of the Charlie Hebdo journalists.

The most recent example of Abbas’s crackdown on Palestinian journalists occurred shortly before Your Excellency phoned President Abbas to invite him to Paris. The case involves my female colleague, Majdolin Hassouneh, who was detained for “extending her tongue,” or insulting, President Abbas.

And, Your Excellency, if you want further evidence of President Abbas’s clampdown on political satire, you can ask Palestinian comedians Abdel Rahman Daher and Mahmoud Rizek. The two men are currently in Jordan because they are afraid to return to the West Bank. No, Your Excellency, they are not afraid to return home because of Israel. They are afraid of being arrested by President Abbas’s security forces, which accuse the two men of insulting their leader.

President Abbas, Your Excellency, should be the last person to walk in a march honoring journalists who were massacred because of their satirical work. His participation in the Paris rally is not only in an insult to the memory of the slain journalists, but to all those who believe in freedom of expression and media.

I also want to bring to the attention of Your Excellency that while President Mahmoud Abbas was attending the rally in Paris, a human rights group published a report accusing the Palestinian Authority of “waging war” against university students in the West Bank. According to the report, 24 students have been arrested in recent weeks by Abbas’s security forces for “political reasons.”

Again, I’m sure Your Excellency did not hear about the crackdown on university campuses because Western media outlets and foreign journalists based here do not report about such stories. You read and hear about such incidents only when the Israeli army or police are involved.

I do not want to take much of your time, Your Excellency, by telling you about President Abbas’s double standards and hypocrisy on the subject of terrorism. You can learn a lot about this by going on the Internet and seeing, with your own eyes, how our president often condones and glorifies terrorism and terrorists.

You will even discover that our president, who will soon celebrate his 80th birthday, is prepared to stay awake all night to welcome Palestinians released from Israeli prison for murdering Jews and committing terror attacks no less serious than the ones your country experienced last week.

You will also discover, Your Excellency, that our president also rewards terrorists by granting them monthly salaries and other privileges.

What would be your reaction, Your Excellency, if someone decided to reward financially the families of the terrorists who massacred the innocent civilians in Paris?

Your Excellency, perhaps it is now too late to talk about the decision to invite President Abbas to the anti-terror rally. The damage has already been done, as far as I and many Palestinians are concerned. The way we see it is as follows: President Abbas has once again managed to deceive you and the rest of the international community by placing himself on the side of the good guys in their fight against terrorism and extremism. Even worse, President Abbas has managed to create the false impression that he cares about freedom of speech and independent journalism.

Undoubtedly, now Palestinians like me will now pay a heavier price because President Abbas has been emboldened by his participation in the Paris rally. President Abbas will now step up his assaults on public freedoms because he knows that the international community will only see photos of him marching together with Your Excellency and other world leaders in defense of freedom of expression.

By extending the invitation to President Abbas, you have caused damage to Palestinians like me who have been hoping that someone — maybe even a leader like you — would finally expose the dictatorship of the Palestinian Authority for what it is. President Abbas’s participation in the Paris rally is a severe blow to people like me who are genuinely opposed to terrorism and suppression of free speech.

Your Excellency, now that the damage has already been done, all that is left for people like me is to beg you to take all what I have said into account in your future dealings with President Abbas. Please do not hesitate to raise these issues with President Abbas the next time he requests your support for the creation of an independent Palestinian state. Otherwise, France will be helping to establish another corrupt and repressive Arab dictatorship — one that glorifies and rewards terrorists no different from those who carried out the Paris attacks.

Finally, Your Excellency, I hope that by now you understand the reason why I am too scared to reveal my identity.

Sincerely,

A Palestinian Journalist with No Name or Voice

I wanted to cut more, but I couldn’t.

Aussie Dave at Israellycool.com has the best response.

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Pourqoui Nous Haïssent-ils?

I leave it to others to assign the blame for Muslim terrorists gunning down a dozen cartoonists in Paris this morning—save the terrorists themselves, of course. Anyone but them, and anything but their religion. My mind has been going over what to do about it. With so little known right now, I have had to make certain assumptions, any one of which, if incorrect, would effect my conclusions and suggestions.

This is a generational battle, and I believe the terrorists were home-grown—at least not hit-men from another country. These terrorists will be caught or killed, and the details of their training and planning will be learned. But with 5 million Muslims in France, even a ratio of sympathizers of just one percent would yield 50,000. Say only a tenth of that are zealous enough to act on those terrorist sympathies, and you have more than enough of an army to muster. (I think actual polls show my numbers are conservative to the extreme.) How to combat them, however, without civilian casualties among the other 99% (or even the 99.9%)?

I have two suggestions that don’t violate—much—anyone’s civil liberties. One, increased surveillance of mosques, and currying informers among their worshipers. We know from the Boston Marathon bombers that the big brother, Speed Bump, was not shy about speaking his increasingly unhinged mind among friends. Indeed, we know from reading MEMRI and PMW, much Islamic terrorism is inspired by the imams themselves. Investigators have those 99% (-ish) of honest (-ish) Muslims to harvest their intelligence; it might be enough. At least it will have to do.

My other suggestion is to police Islamic fundamentalism at home the way we have learned to police urban crime in America: using the “broken window” theory of policing. The petty crimes that begin to deface a neighborhood lead to the bigger crimes later on that take an infinitely greater toll. The “petty crime” common among many Islamist terrorist wannabes is virulent Jew-hatred. Antisemitism is not merely a gateway drug; it is an ideological addiction more powerful than any other. By their anti-Jewish ranting shall ye know them. People can think what they wish, they can say much of what they think, but if their words transgress from merely ignorant into incitement (defined as broadly as the law will allow), they should be jailed. For a good while. Get them off the street before they do worse.

The original headline that earned Fox Butterfield the eponymous “Butterfield Effect” read like this: “Crime Keeps On Falling, but Prisons Keep On Filling”. If you fill French prisons with Muslims who plot and preach hate, their crimes will fall. That’s the theory, anyway.

I’ve had the same irrational, hate-filled feelings many of you have had. But I think we can get the Muslim terrorists with the ammunition they’ve given us themselves. If we have the will to use it. It’s only civilization itself at stake.

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The Most Transparent Administration Evah!!

Journalist Sharyl Attkinsson suing Obama administration over hacked computers

Former CBS News correspondent Sharyl Attkisson has sued the Justice Department over the hacking of her computers, officially accusing the Obama administration of illegal surveillance while she was reporting on administration scandals.

In a series of legal filings that seek $35 million in damages, Attkisson alleges that three separate computer forensic exams showed that hackers used sophisticated methods to surreptitiously monitor her work between 2011 and 2013.

“I just think it’s important to send a message that people shouldn’t be victimized and throw up their hands and think there’s nothing they can do and they’re powerless,” Attkisson said in an interview.

I genuinely hope she gets every penny of the 35 million, but I think that she won’t, that she’s wrong, and that we are indeed powerless. We voted to become powerless, by the way. It is comfortable and mindless, and whether BTL or I or you like it or hate it, it’s the way things are.

– Aggie

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¿Cuba Libre?

You tell me:

Here is what the U.S. Agency for International Development, which takes its foreign policy guidance from the White House and the State Department, has to say about Cuba:

Cuba is a totalitarian state which relies on repressive methods to maintain control. Criticism of national leaders or the political system can lead to imprisonment. Members of the security forces harass and physically assault human rights and pro-democracy advocates, dissidents, detainees, and prisoners. The Cuban Government does not allow independent monitoring of prison conditions by international or national human rights groups and continues to refuse access to detainees by international humanitarian organizations (U.S. Department of State Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2011).…

The Cuban Government routinely denies its citizens freedom of association and does not recognize independent associations. The Cuban Constitution prohibits any political organization that is not officially recognized. As a result, grassroots community efforts which operate in a democratic manner are extremely limited (U.S. Department of State Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2011)….

The Cuban Government owns and the Communist Party controls all print and broadcast media outlets. News and information programming is nearly uniform across all outlets, and the law prohibits distribution of printed material from foreign sources considered “counterrevolutionary” or critical of the government. Foreign newspapers or magazines are generally unavailable, and distribution of material with political content, interpreted broadly to include the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, is not allowed and can result in harassment and even detention.

The Cuban Government controls nearly all internet access, with the exception of extremely limited facilities, where foreigners and citizens are allowed to buy Internet access cards for use at hotel business centers, where the price of Internet access is beyond the means of most citizens. Authorities review the browsing history of authorized users, review and censor e-mail, employ Internet search filters, and block access to Web sites considered objectionable (U.S. Department of State Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2011).

Under the arrangement Obama has crafted, Cuba is required to do not a damn thing about reforming any of this. In “exchange,” the United States of America gives Cuba full diplomatic recognition. Plus, Obama tells the world’s other despots that a windfall from Uncle Sam could be awaiting them, too, if they abduct American citizens and hold them for ransom.

It’s true that we have diplomatic relations with just about everybody—North Korea being the only notable exception. But Havana doesn’t sound a whole hell of a lot freer. Pyonyang with an extra ration of fried plantains. Beijing with palm trees.

Cuba’s current sugardaddy, Venezuela, is in its own circle of Hell. If there was ever a time to squeeze Cuba for human rights concessions, this was that time. I guess human rights are just another first-world, colonial imposition on the indigenous proletariat of the world, and Obama says [bleep] that noise. Besides, Major League Baseball could do with a few more power pitchers and right-handed bats.

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Shiva’t Up Your A**

We printed the Mohammed pix, so…

A New Zealand bar manager in Myanmar has been arrested for allegedly insulting Buddhism after posting an online advertisement showing a psychedelic image of Buddha wearing headphones, police said Friday.

The offense carries a penalty of up to two years in prison.

Police arrested Philip Blackwood on Wednesday along with two Myanmar nationals, including the bar’s owner, Tun Thurein, and an employee. Authorities then shut the V Gastro Bar, a tapas bar and lounge, which had opened just two weeks earlier in an upscale Yangon neighborhood.

Is Yangon anywhere near Rangoon? I can’t find it in my 1960 edition Golden Book Encyclopedia. Of course, I can’t find Myanmar either.

But what little I know about Buddha suggests he wouldn’t throw people in prison for such an “offense”. Indeed, if he was offended at all, he’d just chalk it up to suffering. Which is to Buddhism as forgiveness is to Christianity, tikkun olam is to Judaism, and, um, well, uh, peace is to Islam (whew!).

PS: I tried to find an image of Mohammed wearing headphones, but failed. Apparently no one is that depraved.

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We Can Quantify The Loss Of Personal Freedom Under Obama

Do you remember all those people who claimed that George W. Bush was taking away our personal freedoms? All those fiery dinner parties? Where are those folks now?

Americans’ assessments of their personal freedom have significantly declined under President Obama, according to a new study from the Legatum Institute in London, and the United States now ranks below 20 other countries on this measure.

The research shows that citizens of countries including France, Uruguay, and Costa Rica now feel that they enjoy more personal freedom than Americans.

As the Washington Examiner reported this morning, representatives of the Legatum Institute are in the U.S. this week to promote the sixth edition of their Prosperity Index. The index aims to measure aspects of prosperity that typical gross domestic product measurements don’t include, such as entrepreneurship and opportunity, education, and social capital.

The freedom scores are based on polling data from 2013 indicating citizens’ satisfaction with their nation’s handling of civil liberties, freedom of choice, tolerance of ethnic minorities, and tolerance of immigrants. Polling data were provided by Gallup World Poll Service. The index is notable for the way it measures how free people feel, unlike other freedom indices that measure freedom by comparing government policies.

“This is not a good report for Obama,” Legatum Institute spokeswoman Cristina Odone told the Washington Examiner.

In the 2010 report (which relied on data gathered in 2009), the U.S. was ranked ninth in personal freedom, but that ranking has since fallen to 21st, with several countries, including France, Germany and the United Kingdom passing the U.S.

The nation’s overall personal freedom score has declined by 17 percent since 2009, with a 22 percent drop in combined civil liberty and free choice contributing to that decline.

Of the eight categories in the index, personal freedom was America’s second lowest performance relative to other countries. The U.S. had its lowest ranking when it came to safety and security (a broad measure of how threatened citizens feel in instances such as walking late at night, or expressing their opinions) — ranking 31st out of 142 countries.

More at the link.

– Aggie

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Why Bother With Elections?

No matter how you vote, the machine registers for the democrat.

Early voting just started last week in Maryland, but there are already accusations that some voting machines are changing Republican votes to Democrat. Now Republicans are calling for an investigation by the State Board of Elections.

As Marylanders go to the polls, there are concerns that the vote you cast may not be for the candidate you want.

“We’ve heard from scores of citizens in our district and around the state who have had this problem where they hit one button to vote for one person, and when they go to the summary they see that the other person was checked,” said Del Nik Kipke, (R) Anne Arundel County.
Republicans say they’ve received several dozen reports of Republican votes being changed to Democrat.

Del. Kathy Szeliga says it happened to her.
“I kept pushing the Republican guy’s name and the machine kept going beep, beep, beep,” said Szeliga, (R) Baltimore & Harford co.
Now GOP leaders are calling for an investigation.

Investigation, eh? That’ll make a big difference.

– Aggie

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So Much for Diversity and Tolerance

First, language requirements; what’s next, ID cards?

The Navajo Nation’s top court on Wednesday tossed one of the presidential candidates off of the ballot, ruling in a case that touched a raw cultural nerve.

In a three-page decision, the Navajo Supreme Court upheld earlier rulings that Christopher C. Deschene was not qualified to seek the tribe’s top elected post after the candidate refused to demonstrate whether he is fluent in the Navajo language.

Tribal law requires presidential candidates on the reservation, the largest in the U.S., to be fluent in the language, part of the Navajo cultural identity as well as a practical necessity in a region where many people adhere to the traditional ways and language.

Hey, Lizzie Warren! How do you say “tenure track” in Cherokee? She’s out.

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You Watching The Ferguson Riots Tonight? [UPDATED]

Looks like the autopsy supports the police officer’s story

FERGUSON, Mo. (KMOX) – A report by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch this morning shows the official autopsy supports Ferguson officer Darren Wilson’s claim that Michael Brown struggled with him in his patrol vehicle, and that Brown did not have his hands up when he was shot Aug. 9.
A source tells the Post-Dispatch that Wilson testified to the Grand Jury that when he tried to get out of his SUV to talk to Brown and his friend Dorian Johnson about the theft of cigarillos, Brown slammed the door shut and punched him in the face.
Wilson pulled his weapon, and Brown grabbed it. At one point, the barrel was pointed at Wilson’s hip, then a shot was fired hitting Brown’s hand.
Wilson says he then chased Brown, who turned and ran toward him. Wilson said “stop,” then fired. Brown kept coming, so Wilson fired several more shots.
The Post-Dispatch also had three experts examine the official autopsy.
St. Louis medical examiner Dr. Michael Graham says the report supports claims that there was a “significant struggle” in Wilson’s patrol car, and Brown suffered a hand wound at “relatively short range.”
A forensic pathologist from San Francisco, Dr. Judy Melinek, says based on a bullet wound to Brown’s arm, Brown’s palms could not have been facing Wilson in the standard surrender position – with hands up and palms out – when he was shot, and Brown was falling forward or lunging when he was hit by the fatal shot to the top of his head.

Can Eric Holder demand that the Grand Jury indict the police officer anyway? Or can they just throw him in jail or execute him without a trial? Because if not, expect riots (weather permitting).

– Aggie

UPDATE
BTL here, adding this nugget:

Angry protesters in Ferguson, Mo., shut down CNN’s live broadcast Monday night after repeatedly heckling the reporter and cameraperson for working for an organization “run by AIPAC” and “Zionists.”

The heckling is audible in a video filmed by protester Bassem Masri, whose Twitter profile touts the Palestinian cause and reads “long live Palestine.”

“You fucking lie about Ferguson; you lie about Occupy Wall Street; you lie about Palestine. You’re all run by Zionists,” one protester said. “We’re holding y’all accountable.”

The hecklers threatened to shut down future CNN broadcasts. “They’re an AIPAC-run agency,” Masri said. “Don’t even think that we won’t.”

No wonder Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson couldn’t wait to get there.

PS: Curiously, CNN doesn’t mention any of this.

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The Continuing Democrat War On Women

First we had Ayaan Hirsi Ali denied her commencement address and honorary degree at Brandeis. Next we learn that Condoleeza Rice has decided to withdraw her address from Rutgers after a lot of protest. And now we learn that Christine Largarde, the head of the IMF, has withdrawn her commencement speech from Smith College:

The managing director of the International Monetary Fund has withdrawn as Smith College’s commencement speaker after faculty and student protests.

The women’s college in Northampton, Massachusetts, announced Christine Lagarde’s withdrawal Monday. According to the college, she said it was clear that many did not want her on campus and that she did not want to distract from a joyous occasion.

An online petition with hundreds of signatures said Lagarde represents a corrupt system that fuels the oppression and abuse of women worldwide.

Smith President Kathleen McCartney said in a statement issued to the school community that she stands by the decision to invite Lagarde, the first woman to hold the IMF’s top position.

Former Smith and Brown University President Ruth Simmons is stepping in as the May 18 commencement speaker.

Ruth Simmons is doing the world a disservice. They should have some sort of neo-Nazi speaker, or perhaps maybe ask the state to release a con artist for a day to speak to the gals. They should be ashamed of themselves.

On a related note, Harvard Professor Ruth Wisse writes in today’s Wall Street Journal:

There was a time when people looking for intellectual debate turned away from politics to the university. Political backrooms bred slogans and bagmen; universities fostered educated discussion. But when students in the 1960s began occupying university property like the thugs of regimes America was fighting abroad, the venues gradually reversed. Open debate is now protected only in the polity: In universities, muggers prevail.

Assaults on intellectual and political freedom have been making headlines. Pressure from faculty egged on by Muslim groups induced Brandeis University last month not to grant Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the proponent of women’s rights under Islam, an intended honorary degree at its convocation. This was a replay of 1994, when Brandeis faculty demanded that trustees rescind their decision to award an honorary degree to Jeane Kirkpatrick, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. In each case, a faculty cabal joined by (let us charitably say) ignorant students promoted the value of repression over the values of America’s liberal democracy.

Opponents of free speech have lately chalked up many such victories: New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly prevented from speaking at Brown University in November; a lecture by Charles Murray canceled by Azusa Pacific University in April; Condoleezza Rice, former secretary of state and national-security adviser under the George W. Bush administration, harassed earlier this month into declining the invitation by Rutgers University to address this year’s convocation.

Most painful to me was the Harvard scene several years ago when the Committee on Degrees in Social Studies, celebrating its 50th anniversary, accepted a donation in honor of its former head tutor Martin Peretz, whose contributions to the university include the chair in Yiddish I have been privileged to hold. His enemies on campus generated a “party against Marty” that forced him to walk a gauntlet of jeering students for having allegedly offended Islam, while putting others on notice that they had best not be perceived guilty of association with him.

The entire article is well worth your time.

– Aggie

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The Left Continues To March Leftward

This would be a dog-bites-man story if it weren’t so Orwellian

In the U.S., the politics of the left versus the right rolls on with the predictability of traffic jams at the George Washington Bridge. It’s a lot of honking. Until now. All of a sudden, the left has hit ramming speed across a broad swath of American life—in the universities, in politics and in government. People fingered as out of line with the far left’s increasingly bizarre claims are being hit and hit hard.

Commencement-speaker bans are obligatory. Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice withdrew as Rutgers’s speaker after two months of protests over Iraq, the left’s long-sought replacement for the Vietnam War. Brandeis terminated its invitation to Somali writer Hirsi Ali, whose criticisms of radical Islam violated the school’s “core values.”

Azusa Pacific University “postponed” an April speech by political scientist Charles Murray to avoid “hurting our faculty and students of color.” Come again? It will “hurt” them? Oh yes. In a recent New Republic essay, Jennie Jarvie described the rise of “trigger warnings” that professors are expected to post with their courses to avoid “traumatizing” students.

Oberlin College earlier this year proposed that its teachers “be aware of racism, classism, sexism, heterosexism, cissexism, ableism, and other issues of privilege and oppression.” The co-chair of Oberlin’s Sexual Offense Policy Task Force said last month that this part of the guide is now under revision.

I think it’s fair to say something has snapped.

Mozilla co-founder Brendan Eich was driven out as CEO for donating money to support California’s Prop. 8. An online protest tried to kill Condi Rice’s appointment to the Dropbox board of directors over Internet surveillance. Incredibly, Dropbox CEO Drew Houston didn’t cave.

Earlier this year, faculty and students held a meeting at Vassar College to discuss a particularly bitter internal battle over the school’s boycott-Israel movement. Before the meeting, an English professor announced the dialogue “would not be guided by cardboard notions of civility.”

This gets worse and worse. Go to the link and read about the Harvard undergrad who published an article in The Crimson suggesting that we drop academic freedom in favor of social justice. And that we stop all research that doesn’t comply with her idea of social justice. And then read about the agreement that the Obama administration… never mind – I’ll post it:

It’s obvious that the far left has decided there are no longer constraints on what it can do to anyone who disagrees with it. How did this happen? Who let the dogs out?

The answer is not university presidents. The answer is that the Obama administration let the dogs out.

The trigger event was an agreement signed last May between the federal government and the University of Montana to resolve a Title IX dispute over a sexual-assault case.

Every college administrator in the U.S. knows about this agreement. Indeed, there are three separate, detailed “Montana” documents that were signed jointly—and this is unusual—by the civil-rights divisions of the Justice and Education Departments. Remarked DoJ’s Joceyln Samuels, “The government is stronger when we speak with one voice.”

That’s real muscle. But read the agreement. It is Orwellian.

The agreement orders the school to retain an “Equity Consultant” (yes, there is such a thing) to advise it indefinitely on compliance. The school must, with the equity consultant, conduct “annual climate surveys.” It will submit the results “to the United States.”

The agreement describes compliance in mind-numbing detail, but in fact the actual definitional world it creates is vague. It says: “The term ‘sexual harassment’ means unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature.” But there are also definitions for sexual assault and gender-based harassment. All of this detailed writ is called “guidance.” As in missile.

No constitutional lawyer could read this agreement and not see in it the mind of the Queen of Hearts: “Sentence first, verdict afterwards!” Indeed, the U.S. Education Department felt obliged to assert that the agreement is “entirely consistent with the First Amendment.”

First Amendment? It’s more like a fatwa. The Obama administration has issued a federal hunting license to deputize fanatics at any university in America. They will define who gets accused, and on what basis.

The White House enabled these forces again last week, releasing an Education Department list of 55 colleges that are “under investigation” for possible Title IX violations. Not formally cited but “under investigation.” The list includes such notorious Animal Houses as Catholic University, Swarthmore, Knox College, Carnegie Mellon and Harvard Law School. In truth, every school in America is effectively on the list.

And there’s more at the link. The really unfortunate thing for all of us that just want to be left alone is that there probably is no country left on earth where that can happen. If Texas secedes from the Union, I’ll join them. If they’ll have me…

– Aggie

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