I got off the phone a little while ago with one of the student organizers of my address tonight at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He told me that I would be led to and from the stage via secret passageway; that thirty security personnel would be on hand (in addition to my own); that attendees would have to pass through metal detectors; and that a bomb-sniffing dog would also be on hand.
It is rather amazing to me that all this would be necessary anywhere in America today — and all because I am saying things they don’t like. MSA students have been accusing me this week of fostering an atmosphere of hate that leads to innocent Muslims being victimized. This is a preposterous charge to make to anyone who is trying to defend human rights, but it is also a noteworthy case of projection: it is they who are fostering an atmosphere of hate and thuggery, with all their lies, smears, and hysterical rhetoric, which combined with the way they and their allies have behaved at talks by previous speakers they disliked has made all this security necessary.
The Left and the MSA’s on campuses all across the country are fostering a very dangerous atmosphere that is completely opposed to the classic spirit of the university. The increasingly apparent fact that all too many universities have become nasty little propaganda camps suggests that the principles of free inquiry, of honest and open discussion and dissent, and of the old adage, “I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it,” are far more endangered than most people realize.