You’d be hard-pressed to find a more likable — and reasonable — representative for conservatism than Guy Benson. But a group of students at Brown University, where Benson is scheduled to speak today, have decided that by virtue of his conservatism, Benson has no place on their campus:
We will not stand idly by as our proud history of student activism is belittled and the real emotional, physical, and psychological needs of marginalized students are denigrated as illogical and irrelevant. We, the undersigned, are staunchly opposed to this event. We consider Benson’s invitation yet another iteration of a conversation that is misguided, narrow-minded, and explicitly dangerous to the well-being and continued thriving of people of color and other marginalized people at Brown University and the broader community.
So often, popular conversations around free speech focus on the right of people with power or who hold privileged identities (i.e. who are white, or cisgender men, or wealthy, or able bodied, etc.) to espouse hateful rhetoric which actively makes others less safe. Rarely do these mainstream conversations on free speech consider the urgent need for people of color and other marginalized people to speak back against systems of oppression for their own self-preservation.
It is the responsibility of every member of the Brown community to look deeply within themselves and within their surroundings to see and speak against subtle and not-so-subtle traces of white supremacy and fascism that exist or are enabled in our community. White supremacy and fascism are not outside problems. These are Brown University problems and we must be unequivocal and unrelenting in our pursuit of their eradication.
Read the whole thing, if only to witness the amazing depth of these students’ insanity.
These students are concerned that Benson will argue in favor of silencing “marginalized communities,” so … they’re coming out against giving him a platform to speak. Never mind that one could argue that Benson, as a gay conservative, himself is a member of a marginalized community.
Round of applause for the Brown University students who want to cancel @guypbenson's speech in order to avoid silencing *adjusts glasses, squints* LGBTQ people. https://t.co/vBcBQLoDRl pic.twitter.com/4o9x1eQ5Bp
— Alex Griswold (@HashtagGriswold) February 13, 2018
Let’s all clap!
In any event, Benson doesn’t seem fazed by the students’ aversion to hearing him speak:
A group of students has apparently determined my talk tonight at Brown University to be "dangerous to the well being" of marginalized groups and 'enabling' of white supremacy. They call the event "unacceptable."
It will go forward as scheduled. https://t.co/csoIsLvWwO
— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) February 13, 2018
Yes! And that’s why we love — and respect — him so.
Go for it😎👍😎
— Salvador (@SalvadorNewYork) February 13, 2018
The ones who are against him speaking are the ones who need to hear him most.
and conservatives will continue to pretend every oddball thing on a college campus is seeping out into the real world. "my god, wait until the keg party supporters show up at your office and FORCE you to drink" https://t.co/EkcMBDwTct
— Oliver Willis (@owillis) February 13, 2018
Yeah, discussion-ending oversensitivity and ideological tribalism is definitely confined to a few “oddball” events on campus. Nailed it! 👌 https://t.co/AoU34zf8Bn
— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) February 13, 2018
Benson’s detractors are only proving him right.
This is embarrassing. https://t.co/RGtXo2WNS9
— David M. Drucker (@DavidMDrucker) February 13, 2018
You gotta be kidding me. 🤦🏻♀️ https://t.co/sC9U9OdZgn
— Mary Katharine Ham (@mkhammer) February 13, 2018
Sounds about right. Clearly, you’re a monster.
— Bearly Legal 🐻 (@MichaelCoughlin) February 13, 2018
Guy Benson is like the least dangerous person I've ever met. When my kid was a newborn he was more dangerous than Guy. https://t.co/4XxE0MnSZW
— Liz Mair (@LizMair) February 13, 2018
These students fancy themselves social justice warriors … but they’re not brave at all. They’re cowards who can’t bear the thought of venturing outside their warm, fuzzy bubble and exposing themselves to a different point of view.
What are they afraid of? That you will nicely state your opinion and be respectful?
— commonsense (@commonsense258) February 13, 2018
They might actually learn something! And they can’t have that.
— Christine Faressa (@cefaressa) February 13, 2018
I understand objections to Milo. But to you? Basically ANY speech that doesn't conform to their narrow little box now is unacceptable. That's frightening.
— Pam D (@lifebythecreek) February 13, 2018
True story, I don't like your opinion on most things. But you have the right to present them.
— JLovelac (@j_lovelac) February 13, 2018
I am a liberal and probably disagree with you a great deal. (Don't really know who you are.) But you should have the right to speak and I can't stand when my leftist brethren try to shutdown free speech.
— joe ro (@joero3) February 13, 2018
Brown students demanding @guypbenson not be allowed to give a talk are admirably clear about their belief Republicans have no right to free speech. None of the usual obfuscation here: https://t.co/bQGMRaDQh4 pic.twitter.com/uliI5hj9Wt
— Jonathan Chait (@jonathanchait) February 13, 2018
So much for "safe spaces." It just goes to show identity is just a proxy for ideology; the left has weaponized and homogenized acceptable political opinion on campus, leading to the downfall of critical thinking. It is impossible to think for oneself and think like everyone else.
— Kyle Becker (@kylenabecker) February 13, 2018
People dismiss the campus speech wars and say it doesn’t matter. They’re wrong. Stupidity is contagious. https://t.co/RWII6uHyLk
— Sweetened Beverage Recovery Fee (@jasonelevation) February 13, 2018