"Behold, the perfectly creepy and Orwellian capstone to a week of campus insanity and inanity, courtesy of the dim bulbs who populate the editorial board of Wellesley College's student newspaper.
I've employed that ad hominem descriptor for two reasons:
First, their argument is a logical train wreck, but that's par for the course with anti-speech tyrants.
Second, a compounding sin: It's horribly written.
Their prose is truly and embarrassingly atrocious.
It's as if a group of mostly-literate sixth-graders joined forces to whip up a self-important harangue, straining and failing to evince erudition.
The resulting product is a jumble of incoherence that should theoretically humiliate the "elite" all-female institution that (a) admitted these students, and (b) cultivated this sort of thinking -- and I use that term loosely.
Wellesley is certainly not a place for racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, transphobia or any other type of discriminatory speech. Shutting down rhetoric that undermines the existence and rights of others is not a violation of free speech; it is hate speech. The founding fathers put free speech in the Constitution as a way to protect the disenfranchised and to protect individual citizens from the power of the government. The spirit of free speech is to protect the suppressed, not to protect a free-for-all where anything is acceptable, no matter how hateful and damaging… We have all said
problematic claims, the origins of which were ingrained in us by our discriminatory and biased society. Luckily, most of us have been taught by our peers and mentors at Wellesley in a productive way.
It is vital that we encourage people to correct and learn from their mistakes rather than berate them for a lack of education they could not control. While it is expected that these lessons will be difficult and often personal, holding difficult conversations for the sake of educating is very different from shaming on the basis of ignorance. This being said, if people are given the resources to learn and either continue to speak hate speech or If people continue to support racist politicians or pay for speakers that prop up speech that will lead to the harm of others, then it is critical to take the appropriate measures to hold them accountable for their actions. It is important to note that our preference for education over beration regards students who may have not been given the chance to learn.