Campus Free Speech

Republicans Don't Support Campus Free Speech When It Concerns Bill Ayers

Campus censorship: It's not just for far-left social justice warriors (and never has been)

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Bill Ayers
Fox News

Campus censorship: It's not just for far-left social justice warriors (and never has been). Some Republican politicians are perfectly willing to set aside their support for free speech when the speaker in question is a source of conservative ire.

I'm speaking, of course, about Bill Ayers.

Ayers, a former 1960s radical, is considered a domestic terrorist for his participation in Weather Underground's activities, though all charges against him were dropped decades ago. He now teaches and lectures about social justice.

His recent visit to Pennsylvania State University triggered the exact sort of hand-wringing about the limits of free speech that one frequently hears coming from the left. According to newsinpenn.com:

About a half-dozen senators and representatives took their outrage to [Penn State President] Barron in two separate hearings Tuesday, many even while saying they understood the decision to bring in Ayers was not the president's call.

Rep. Mike Vereb, R-Montgomery County, expressed shock that any group of students could look at Ayers as a guy "we should have in here to inspire us or get our education."

Sen. John Rafferty, R-Montgomery County, bemoaned the fact that Ayers, whom he called "an unrepentant engineer of standing against everything… this country was founded on," was paid to speak instead of World War II veterans or leaders of the American Civil Rights movement. …

Sen. Randy Vulakovich, R-Allegheny County and a former police officer, raged that Ayers' appearance was "an affront to policemen, to veterans… and the rule of law.

Barron shielded himself with the armor of free speech. …

But several lawmakers persisted in asking Barron to do more.

Rep. Jeff Pyle, R-Indiana County, asked if students – or their parents – can ask for refunds for a portion of student activity fees used to support programs they want nothing to do with.

"At what point do you step in?" asked Sen. Kim Ward, R-Westmoreland County, raising the specter of groups that that are potentially far more dangerous right now seeking an audience on campus.

At no point does the president of a public university step in to prohibit students from bringing a controversial speaker to campus. This is exactly what college is for—the opportunity to interact with perspectives that challenge one's own, that present different, even disturbing, ideas. Unfortunately, too many people on both the left and the right see the public square as a place where only friendly ideas should be allowed.

In this case, I speak from personal experience. I met Ayers in 2010, when he visited the University of Michigan during my senior year of college. I interviewed him for a long piece I was writing for the student paper, The Michigan Daily, about the history of radical activism on campus. Upon meeting him, was I instantly persuaded that all of his ideas were good? Of course not. Nevertheless, I found him to be a fascinating figure with a well-informed perspective on the subject I was researching. I value having had the chance to speak with him—I daresay I'm a smarter person because of it.

We must resist efforts to deprive students of similar opportunities, whether they come from thin-skinned hypocrites on the right or the left.

(I dug up my Daily article on Ayers and activism; it's here. Fun fact: Immediately after it was published, I submitted it as a clip for my Reason internship application. I got the job.)

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  1. That is one confusing headline.

    1. And opening couple of paragraphs.

      Some Republican politicians are perfectly willing to set aside their support for free speech when the speaker in question is a source of conservative ire.

      I’m speaking, of course, about Bill Ayers.

      Bill Ayers is a Republican politician?

      1. The R’s listed strongly criticized Ayers, but they did not actively work to block him from speaking.

        That is a pretty big difference, the D team actively blocks and gets speakers canceled, the R team criticizes others. I’m no fan of the R team, but to say they’re as bad as the D team on free speech in the 21st century is absurd.

        This article reads to be as a suppression of the free speech it claims to support. Are R team members not even allowed to criticize now?

        1. Exactly. What a gay article. Way to go, Robby – you found so vile an individual that R’s don’t want to listen to him, but hardly does this rise to the level of uniform support for suppressing free speech that the Dems ROUTINELY engage in EN MASSE (campaign finance, anyone? Hate speech laws, anyone? A side of campus speech codes with that?).

          Dumb article. Ayres is a dick. But I don’t have to listen to him. Really reachin’ on this one, Robby. Richman-esque.

        2. It’s not Ayers speaking that bothers the vast majority of Republicans, it’s the fact someone as extreme left as Ayers is given complete freedom to not only speak but even teach while even moderately right leaning Republicans are either forbidden to speak or if “allowed” they are prevented from doing so.

          1. It is truly vile that Ayers is in any way a respected educator. He should have spent most of his life in prison. Or at least unable to find any kind of a decent job. This is just more proof of how evil progressives truly are.

      2. Wasn’t the Weather Underground violent?

    2. It’s perfectly clear. Republican politician, Bill Ayers, doesn’t support free speech on campus. All other GOP politicians do.

      1. Grammatical corrections – the highest form of internet discourse

        1. I literally L’d OL at this.

      2. It should also be made clear that neither Ayers, not other Republicans, support subversively radical speech in the form of inappropriately deadpan email parodies sent out in the “name” of well-connected academic department chairmen. See the documentation of America’s leading criminal satire case, including the remarkable trial testimony of several New York University officials, at:

        http://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

          1. Talking about a case where someone set up am internet identity of someone else and then made derogatory comments, as though the person he was representing himself as, had said them.
            When he was held accountable, he said it was just a joke – that’s the “satire” reference above – but it was clear what the intent was, to denigrate the one, whose identity was stolen.

    3. Give Rico a break, guys. Bet he’s still giddy from his recent vindication.

      1. By giddy you mean still drunk, right?

        1. I would never make such a scurrile accusation.

          1. Yeah but I would.

          2. I thought it was a compliment.

      2. his recent vindication

        Did he finally get that master’s?

    4. The title is a grammatical abomination.

      1. An abortion, even.

          1. All is forgiven, Switzy. However I would gladly accept a pint as compensation for the epic trolling you did on me.

        1. I changed the title. Thank you all for your kind feedback.

          1. We do it out of love, Rico – out of love

          2. You should’ve made it even more ambiguous. Giving in to commenterrorists never ends well.

            1. If he gives into the commenterrorists, they win.

              1. AND YOU’RE A TOWEL, EPISIARCH!

                1. I’ve been wondering around on my own for the past few weeks. You know, helpin’ people out with towel safety and proper towel use. It’s important!

                  1. Hey, anyone wanna get high?

                    1. Don’t forget to bring a towel!

                    2. You’re the worst character ever.

              2. It’s different if they’re freedom commenters that we support, of course.

            2. Forget it, ProL – it’s HyR Town…

        2. A CIRCUMCISED, DEEP-DISH, MESSICAN, GAI abortion at that…

    5. I’m sorry I started this, Robby.

      Actually, no I’m not. It’s great fun to watch the commentariat just…go like that.

    6. I make up to usd90 an hour working from my home. My story is that I quit working at Walmart to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $40h to usd86h Someone was good to me by sharing this link with me, so now i am hoping i could help someone else out there by sharing this link……… Try it, you won’t regret it!… http://www.wixjob.com

    7. I make up to usd90 an hour working from my home. My story is that I quit working at Walmart to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $40h to usd86h Someone was good to me by sharing this link with me, so now i am hoping i could help someone else out there by sharing this link……… Try it, you won’t regret it!… http://www.wixjob.com

    8. Not to me! I just wonder how he would be treated by Democrats when considering the, exact, actions of the Weather Underground are discussed. Weren’t they violent?

  2. I’m tempted to say that what’s good for the SJWs is good for the gander.

    But, to be fair, whatever Bill Ayer’s crimes are, he’s legally a free man and is entitled to the same rights as everyone else.
    And I too believe in a society where people are free to express offensive views. I do not wish to emulate the intolerance of the social justice crowd.

    1. Yeah, that’s tempting, but that means abandoning the moral high ground. I think the proper response to this is to let the event go on. Allow, but don’t encourage protests against him. No safe space or alternative event bullshit. Then invite a series of liberty-minded speakers.

      It’s sad to see the nominally braver party reduced to SJW-levels of pants-wetting hysteria.

      1. “nominally braver party”?

      2. I’m not sure if a group of Republican politicians is “the nominally braver party.” Pants-wetting hysteria is not a new look for them.

      3. You’re right, guys. Now, where’s that edit button?

        1. +10,000

      4. I miss the days when someone like Ayers would be on a blacklist. Marxism is inherently treasonous.

  3. I’m gonna quibble – these lawmakers are douchebags, but in the comments listed, I don’t see anyone saying “ban him”. i see them questioning if he’s “the right sort of person”. I didn’t see any protests, sit ins or reduced funding for the univ.

    the closest thing was the oblique question about whether students might request their activity fee be reduced.

    So, no, not at all like the shrieking and actively chasing away people BEFORE they even speak that we see from the SJW types.

    Again – quibbling. These people are assholes, too – but for me, the SJW types are way bigger assholes much more committed to inflicting actual pain. These dicks? Whatever – words.

    1. This is a fair point–questioning the propriety of a shithead speaking is one thing, suggesting or even implying that government should block his speech is another thing altogether.

    2. I don’t see anyone saying “ban him”.

      Good catch. And I think it’s more than quibbling. There’s a big difference between expressing distaste for a speaker, and demanding that they not be allowed to speak.

    3. OK, but when the guy holding the purse strings is “Just asking the question”, are they really just asking questions?

      1. Which is the problem with government officials running their mouths.

        1. Which is the problem with government officials running their mouths public universities and non-secondary schools, among other things..

      2. Particularly when they are taking these “questions” to the president of the university and one of those questions is “At what point do you step in?”

    4. Sure, there’s a log in the social left’s eye, but what about the motes in these Republican’s eyes?

      1. Like I said, “They’re dicks, too”.

    5. these were politicians attempting to dance over the line of their own authority.

      there is of course a difference between the sort of ridiculous SJW activism we see organized by students and these types of closed door meetings between university presidents & senators – the latter is much, much more dangerous to free expression.

      1. Apparently not. Ayers actually spoke at the event. Unlike a shitload of right wingers who were chased off by SJW’s.

        1. Exactly. The fucking reaching that Soave is trying to do to paint the right with the moral equivalency brush is going to cause him to pull and abdominal muscle.

    6. Honestly I think the only difference is that the Republicans lack the power that the SJWs have to run people off.

      If they had the power, I do not imaging that they would hesitate to use it.

      1. right, but punishing someone for a miss cleo moment of cynicism isn’t precisely the same thing as having evidence to back up the premise of this article.

  4. OT: I stumbled across Kennedy’s show last night while channel surfing. It sucked. The end.

    1. What was she wearing?

      1. A shirt that made her arms look fat.

          1. Fat arm fetishist? Is this a thing?

            1. Paging John…

        1. Your fat arms make your fat arms look fat!

      2. Hoop earrings and hipster glasses, I’d wager.

      3. Hyperactivity.

        1. I know. I have a semi just thinking about it.

          1. “half-chub”

            1. That’s for applause substitutes, Epi!

    2. Oh come on! It’s not that bad…at least she’s throwing out a different viewpoint.

    3. Kennedy, while ranking high on my list of those with whom I’d like to have a drink, is too punch-drunk on herself to produce a decent program. She still “acts” like a VJ, and the intellectual content is approaching zero.

    4. Liked the “independents” . . . absolutely HATE this current version of whatever the hell hair and makeup magic they’ve done.
      She’s being such a douche. Stopped watching soon after it morphed.

  5. I got the job

    Yeah but do you get a living wage?

    1. He gets paid in hookers and blow.

        1. Sign me up!

          1. Put that hooker down. Hookers are for closers only.

            1. *puts down hooker – stares at floor morosely*

              1. *picks up orphan

        2. Monocle -wearing blow-covered orphan hookers!

          1. Great title for a drive-in movie. We’ll take the Mustang, put the top down, have a pop and watch the action.

            1. In that case it should probably be Monocle-wearing blow-covered orphan hooker zombies. The sequel can be Monocle-wearing blow-covered orphan hooker zombies…in space!

              1. #WINNING

  6. Nobody should have the right to complain about someone freely speaking their mind on campus!

    1. + nice

    2. you get that these were politicians attempting to use the influence of their office in this capacity, right?

      If Obama held a press conference tomprrow and said: “Glenn Beck shouldnt be allowed to speak to students” would you treat it as flippantly or would you be howling about the progtards and the peacenazis?

      1. No one blocked him from speaking nor even tried to block him. The contrast is with members of the Left who have managed to scare off or outright block various Rightwing speakers from speaking.

  7. Rep. Mike Vereb, R-Montgomery County, expressed shock that any group of students could look at Ayers as a guy “we should have in here to inspire us or get our education.”

    These expressions…don’t look accurate

  8. Bitches need more Areopagitica.

    1. Thanks for bringing that up, Warty. I’ve always found Milton dreary, but this deserves a read.

      1. It’s important, but it’s such a slog to read. I was reminded of it because I read Brendan O’Neill restate it quite effectively here.

  9. I met Ayers in 2010, when he visited the University of Michigan during my senior year of college.

    Are you trying to tell me that you do not in fact have a Masters from the Columbia School of Journalism?

  10. Also, it doesn’t sound like anyone tried to censor him.

    They were expressing displeasure that such a shitbag was being paid to speak at the school.

    1. Yeah, I don’t understand the complaint about the GOP expressing displeasure equates to “suppressing free speech”.

      Ayers will still got paid, and the speech went on.

      How many times has the left ACTUALLY BANNED people from speaking it didn’t agree with?

      We could just start with Ayaan Hirsi Ali and go from there.

      1. Puts me in mind of something that Ace of Spades wrote today:

        What I believe is that the left invokes General Principle and a Controlling Rule when it takes an unpopular position, claiming there are no exceptions to the rule.

        The rule may be stern and unforgiving, the left tells us, but the rule is the rule, and society will fall if we admit exceptions to it.

        It is only later, when the left wishes to spare one of its own from the stern application of the Controlling Rule that they suddenly inform you, “Oh well there are some exceptions here and there, you know.”

        When the Rule supports the Left, they invoke the Rule, and claim there are no exceptions possible in it; when the Rule runs against the Left, they start telling you that the Rule is cruel and senseless, unless it is supplemented by lots of humane Exceptions and Caveats.

        In other words: They are always dishonest

        1. BAM! THIS ^!! And Robby fell right into it….

          Can’t imagine if anyone in this commentariat would hesitate even a second to jump on an R that ACTUALLY tried to ban someone or keep someone from speaking.

          The left of course does this everyday.

        2. Shorter version:

          Principals over Principles

  11. Upon meeting him, was I instantly persuaded that all of his ideas were good? Of course not. Nevertheless, I found him to be a fascinating figure with a well-informed perspective on the subject I was researching.

    What an interesting assertion. If one concedes that knowledge is grounded in truth, then the fact that Ayers is well-informed should translate to more reasonable ideas, that is valid conclusions, rather than the reverse. So either Ayers is NOT well-informed like you state (being instead just another clueless little red Marxian) or he’s completely insane.

    1. Or, you know, sometimes the truth can be hard to figure out and there is room for subjectivity.

      Not that I’m defending Ayers. But come on.

      1. Re: LynchPin1477,

        Or, you know, sometimes the truth can be hard to figure out and there is room for subjectivity.

        Which is more likely, that he’s an unrepentant ideologue unwilling to see the truth, or someone who has a more nuanced view of the world?

      2. “Or, you know, sometimes the truth can be hard to figure out and there is room for subjectivity.”

        Except that most of us go about trying to figure out that “truth” without using bombs and guns in the hope of installing a totalitarian dictatorship complete with death camps (a stance Ayers has not changed, incidentally).

    2. What about just evil?

    3. Or he’s just, you know, fallible.

  12. We must resist efforts to deprive students of similar opportunities, whether they come from thin-skinned hypocrites on the right or the left.

    Let’s hear it for Creationism and Eugenics!

    Let’s not deprive, I say.

  13. Some Republican politicians are perfectly willing to set aside their support for free speech

    You mean Republicans and Democrats are barely distinguishable?

    I might have heard that somewhere before?

    1. Yeah – meant to comment on that – “since when have Repulicrats ‘supported free speech’?”

      1. That was my first thought as well. It’s not that they aren’t any less censorious fucks, just that they don’t have the cultural power they once did.

    2. Except, of course, that no republicans suggested banning Ayers.

      1. As I also noted above…

        But TEAM RED is not known, in my experience, for vociferously supporting free speech. Not at all.

      2. Except, of course, that no republicans suggested banning Ayers.

        How many Republicans have proposed constitutional amendments on flag burning? Westboro church protests? Porography? How about this little number

        The republicans are in favor of free speech. Free speech they agree with. JUST LIKE DEMOCRATS.

        1. ITs the Obama admin that has started Operation Chokepoint to stamp out porno, dude…

          1. It was the Bush admin who put the 1000 foot protest barrier around the President.

            1. Only because all those Code Pink hippies are so smelly.

        2. “The republicans are in favor of free speech. Free speech they agree with. JUST LIKE DEMOCRATS.”

          That may well be true, but this clearly isn’t one of those cases.

    3. “You mean Republicans and Democrats are barely distinguishable?”

      Generally, it requires a bright light and strong magnification to distinguish the differences between their pols.

  14. In my experience, the more radical the ideas of the radical–the more likely a reasonable person is to discount those ideas. So go ahead and bring in Ayers.

    This is not to say that lefty radicals are to be balance by righty radicals. No, radicals are balanced by thoughtful speakers with balanced ideas. But the radicals make us think, and thinking is almost always a good outcome.

    The SJW crowd is made up of wussies so afraid of their own shadows that ideas outside of their own radical views scare them. They should be punished for their petulance by listening to Pat Robertson, the full collection.

  15. You know who else bombed the US military?

    1. The JOOOZ!

    2. the US Military?

      1. d’oh!

    3. Milo Minderbinder?

      1. Look, what’s good for the syndicate is good for the country.

    4. Gomer Pile?

      1. microaggression

    5. The Germans at Pearl Harbor?

      1. AND WAS IT OVER THEN??

        1. HELLLLLLL NO!

    6. the US military?

    7. Gary Busey’s and Tommy Lee Jones’ characters in “Under Siege”?

    8. Bob Hope?

    9. The Pyschlos?

  16. Ayers, a former 1960s radical, is considered a domestic terrorist for his participation in Weather Underground’s activities, though all charges against him were dropped decades ago.

    I think the right calling all this attention to the guy ultimately deprives him of the obscurity he so richly deserves. That said, the argument that the charges against him were dropped is a little disingenuous. It’s not like they found out the guy didn’t do anything. Prosecutors simply overstepped their boundaries in establishing the fact that he was a terrorist. But, that doesn’t change the fact that he was, in fact a terrorist.

    1. It’s almost as if the Obama administration wanted to return those five Taliban commanders and merely used Bergdahl as the mechanism. But hey, no president would do such a thing.

      1. Certainly not the most transparent president in history.

    2. I still think it was good to bring him home.

      1) He’s been charged but not convicted.
      2) Even if convicted, innocent until proven guilty, meaning that at the time of the exchange he was technically innocent.
      3) Technicalities aside, better that he be brought home, tried, convicted, and punished according to American military justice for breaking American military law, as opposed to whatever the Taliban count for.
      4) When it comes to “leave no one behind”, probably best to err on the side of caution than to start making exceptions for suspicious activities.

      I’m not military, but from what I understand “leave no one behind” is pretty important.

      1. Yeah, I’m sorry, I’m not military, but fuck Bowe Bergdahl, and fuck Obama and his hacks for orchestrating this wretched, horrid trade for the useless traitor.

        1. Could not agree more.

      2. “Leave no one behind” never meant trading five top enemy commanders for one enlisted deserter.

        1. Yeah, there was a Rose Garden ceremony with Bergdahl’s parents where Obama said Bergdahl served honorably when there was a fair amount of evidence he had deserted already. And trading five Taliban commanders for him and acting like it was a good trade for us wasn’t exactly good PR.

    3. No. They just couldn’t get out of prosecuting him.

  17. So aside from being a violent revolutionary, what qualifications does Ayres actually have? And why shouldn’t he be banned if conservative speakers (or even politically incorrect non-conservatives such as Ayaan Hirsi Ali) are? Do you think such bans should only go one way, given that bans by politically correct liberals are routine in academia?

    1. Tu Quoque HARD, baby! Do it!

      1. Well, if those unacceptable to PC liberals are excluded, and no one else, what do you think the long-term consequence will be? Obviously, it means people making sure they say nothing to disturb the politically correct. That isn’t free speech, and a lot of libertarians (John Stossel impresses me that way) seem unable to realize the implications.

    2. He’s a trusted advisor to the President! That’s a lot of qualification. /sarcasm

  18. It’s hilarious watching Barron hide behind free speech while he and his administration so readily repressed Students for Concealed Carry while I was there just last semester. While I agree Ayers should be allowed to speak, other controversial topics should receive the same treatment. Btw, Penn State’s College Repubs are pretty libertarian. Here’s an article by the old president. http://onwardstate.com/2015/03…..on-campus/

    1. It might be instructive for CYR or Students for Liberty chapters at PSU to ask the administrators of the Student Fee to list the honorariums paid speakers this year and then see if libertarians are getting a fair shake or not? I wonder what Ayers was paid vs. what, say, the Jacket would be paid?

  19. “… This is exactly what college is for?the opportunity to interact with perspectives that challenge one’s own, that present different, even disturbing, ideas….”

    I thought college was about math and science and stuff like that. It is school, isn’t it?

  20. Exactly how does GOP Congressmen and Senators griping about someone being invited to speak at a University constitute something equivalent to University administrations actually disinviting people to speak due to pressure from liberal students and faculty?

    1. its sophomoric Reason, case closed

  21. title says “republicans” implying all, the article of course back tracks and says “some”
    learn to write

  22. Yes, the 1st Amendment protects Ayers as much as anyone else.

    Let’s look at some of Rico Suave’s comments:

    “Ayers, a former 1960s radical, is considered a domestic terrorist for his participation in Weather Underground’s activities, though all charges against him were dropped decades ago.”

    If by “considered a domestic terrorist,” you mean “proudly avowed it in his memoirs,” then yes – while I haven’t read the book, I used the Amazon search feature to find instances of the word “bomb” and got lots of results:

    http://www.amazon.com/Fugitive…..bill+ayers

    1. And don’t forget his NY Times intereview, published Sept. 11, 2001:

      “”I don’t regret setting bombs,” Bill Ayers said. ”I feel we didn’t do enough.'”

      http://www.nytimes.com/2001/09…..-with.html

    2. Yeah, the “former” part jumped out to me.

    3. But . . . but . . . he’s an ACTIVIST!

  23. “Immediately after it was published, I submitted it as a clip for my Reason internship application. I got the job.)”

    Hopefully someone gets their ass fired for it.

    By the way, you fucking toady, there’s no comparison at all to be made for thugs stepping in forcibly preventing people from engaging in free speech and a bunch of people signing a piece of paper announcing their disgust at the continued employment and idol worship of a fucking terrorist and murderer.

  24. When your icon is Bill Ayers, you are beneath contempt.

  25. Start working from home! Great job for students, stay-at-home moms or anyone needing an extra income… You only need a computer and a reliable internet connection… Make $90 hourly and up to $12000 a month by following link at the bottom and signing up… You can have your first check by the end of this week………….

    http://www.Jobsyelp.com

  26. It’s the “terrorist” they object to, not the “left”.

  27. Besides ingesting LSD and living in fantasy land he was able to come up with brilliant campaigns like THE DAYS OF RAGE in Chicago expecting 200,000 people to show up to “fight in the streets of Chicago” Less than 200 did. They decided what the hell and proceeded to physically attack people in the streets, putting one in a wheelchair for life.

    That was when they came to the attention of the KGB who through Cuba contacted them and welcomed them to receive “training”. Cuban Intel was being run by the Soviets and the plan was wait for a sign to strike. A sleeper agent. He had proven he had no problem hurting unarmed people.

    So they went “underground” in America. Which meant no more talking about the war.

    While they were waiting for their orders, baking and mowing the lawn the true heroes of the anti-war movement arose.They were called The Vietnam Veterans Against The War.

    Before them, at any point in a march or picket we could be attacked. That stopped when they showed up. Once the violent melees stopped, whole families would show up to protest.

    When Ayers and Dohrn his girlfriend at the time tried to recruit me, I said, “How do you know that when the war ends, you won’t go work for your father’s law firm and I’ll be sitting in jail for life?”

    I was pretty smart for a 17 year old to say that. And right.

  28. Ayers is a worthless piece of dirt but as an American citizen he has same rights as anyone else. The attempts to stop him from speaking is another example of the hypocrisy on both sides of the fence. However, progressives are more often the offenders with all of their PC crap. The government has too much power and it sickens me when either side tries to use the government to impose their views on others. Let Ayers talk as Megyn Kelly did. He comes across as an arrogant ass which is exactly what he is.

  29. Ayers should not be in a position to give speeches anywhere. He is a terrorist who should be spending the rest of his days rotting in a cell down the hall from Ted Kaszinski and the blind sheikh.

  30. First Amendment is one thing, common sense discretion is quite another. Would it be a reasonable exercise in higher education to give, oh say, Charles Manson (were he free to do so) a platform from which to spew his insanity? Airing divergent opinions is an intellectually healthy thing, but affording a stage for someone who’s only claim to infamy was violent acts of terrorism seems beyond the pale of being of any educational value.

  31. ^Here, here. The fact that he was given a forum for his speech says a lot.

  32. Moral decrepitude. Ayers should be dead.

  33. Ayers is a scummy Radical supporter of the kind of government that murdered a hundred million people in the 20th Century. I have scant patience for fans of Communism, and none for the ’60’s radicals, most of whom had heads of solid biscuit. The few exceptions are, if anything, worse. They either should have known what they were supporting, and turned a blind eye because they wanted to be “hip”, or they knowingly supported governments that ran of mass murder.

    What I want to know is; if this prat’s visit in any way paid for with public moneys? Because if so, the Conservatives who are complaining are spot on.

    We really need to stop conflating “Censorship” with “Declining to pay for”.

    OTOH, if a campus group funded exclusively by voluntary donations wants the idiot to address them, of well. College students fall for all kinds of claptrap, and unless his participation in acts of violent lawbreaking can be proved at this late date, there’s not legal grounds for doing what I’d like to (shoot him).

  34. As a day to day recovering red teamer (My name is Bill and I use to believe in government), I’ve found it much easier when discussing the political parties to think in terms of them as pedophiles. Pedophiles are certainly not all the same, they each have their own heinous acts of violence they like to perpetrate against their helpless victims. I suppose you could take the time to measure to which degree each pedophile committed such and such act, you could even argue about which pedophile, did which act to a worse degree, and which pedophile harmed their victim more. But are those really the most important conversations to have about pedophiles? It seems to me the most important conversation is how to remove pedophiles from our lives, not whether or not the one in the blue shirt or the red shirt is marginally better or worse when committing a particular act of violence.

    I suppose I’m saying that I feel dirty when I start talking about equivalency between the various violent acts of politicians.

  35. Bill Ayers is strongly anti-American, friend of Obama, and should not be allowed to teach kids his warped, twisted view of American history and politics. The problem with academia, period, is that no one that isn’t a left wing nut gets to teach. The left has a monopoly in the academic world. Liberals go where there is no chance of them getting fired and they hire their buddies to make sure no one else has a chance.

  36. This article is just annoying and hysterical. I’m not seeing the censorship. I’m just seeing outrage. Which is deserved. BFD.

  37. I guess it won’t be long before we get a panel discussion, “Why NAMBLA is right.” with video appearances by Jerry Sandusky…..and a defrocked priest…..’

  38. The reason Ayers is “considered a domestic terrorist” is because he committed domestic terrorism. He just got away with it due to police bumbling. He shouldn’t be rewarded with a teaching position, tenure or paid public appearances. The man is objectionable and not simply because of his views.

  39. (Not Freddy [space] B, although maybe not that different.)

    I’m less inclined to defend “free speech” when I’m paying for it. He can say anything he wants on his own dime, tho.

  40. So how exactly did Republicans show they don’t support campus free speech? They criticized the university bringing Ayers and suggested finding a way to reimburse tuition dollars spent on bringing Ayers. However, they didn’t stop him from speaking. It sounds like that combated an evil man’s speech with more speech, which is exactly the point of the 1st Amendment.

  41. This country has been, since its beginning, about the best hope for free speech. But the continued move to the left has pushed free speech to be lop sided toward the left. I see no other way, but to push back. The most obvious can be be witnessed with the Scopes monkey trial where the left only wanted a balanced presentation of evolution. But the balance slowly evaporated. The same goes for global warming, now morphed into climate change. The political pressure from the left is monumental, because so many of them hold positions that control who gets traction on the issue. Those in disagreement either shut up or lose their job. Most of those on my side of the political spectrum have not pushed back. Pushing back is long passed due.

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