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Regulation

New Threats to Freedom: A Reason Event Featuring Adam Bellow, Stephen Schwartz, Christine Rosen, and Katherine Mangu-Ward

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On May 17, 2010, Reason sponsored a panel discussion on the new collection New Threats to Freedom featuring editor Adam Bellow ("Where Have All the Grownups Gone?"), Reason's Katherine Mangu-Ward, Stephen Schwartz ("Shariah in the West"), and Christine Rosen ("The New Behaviorists").

New Threats (visit the book's website here) includes contributions from figures such as Christopher Hitchens ("Multiculturalism and the Threat of Conformity"), David Mamet ("The Fairness Doctrine"), Glenn Reynolds ("Liberty and Complacency"), Anne Applebaum ("The Decline of American Press Freedom"), and Reason staffers Katherine Mangu-Ward ("The War on Negative Liberty") and Michael C. Moynihan ("The Anticapitalists").

In his introductory essay, Bellow calls for a reinvigorated debate about the meaning and necessity of freedom in a world that is a generation past the Cold War. Reflecting on figures such as Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and his own father, the Nobel Prize winning novelist Saul Bellow, he writes,

Many of us assumed that there would always be such people on hand to make the case for freedom and democracy. The loss of many of these outsized intellectual and literary figures in the first decade of this century leaves one wondering whether there are still any grownups around.

But here is a sobering thought: merely to ask the question is to assume responsibility for embracing the task oneself. Resistance doesn't come out of nowhere; it has to be fostered the old-fashioned way, word by word, through magazines and books, think-tank panels, conferences and seminars. We are the grownups now, and we owe it to the next generation to provide a model of how to be serious about ultimate questions.

Approximately 27 minutes. Shot and edited by Dan Hayes, Meredith Bragg, and Josh Swain.

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For a 4.45 minute interview with Adam Bellow, go here.