I spoke to a packed house of over 300 students at Brown in October 2007; there were a few louts in the back trying to shout me down, and the question period was full of the usual self-righteous and ignorant Leftist rants that one expects on college campuses these days, but I was able to make myself heard. Now it looks as if things have gotten much worse at Brown — and, I suspect, at campuses all over the country. Leftist and Islamic supremacist students imitate the Nazi brownshirts of the early 1930s, who would show up at lectures by anti-Nazi professors and shout them down, sometimes roughing them up as well. Instead of standing up to this, then as now university officials let it happen. In this case, Brown professor Marion Orr even asked the thuggish neo-brownshirts for a list of speakers who would be acceptable to them, after wistfully saying: “I thought that you all, my Brown students, would challenge him in a fundamental kind of way. I don’t think he could”ve withstood it if you guys had challenged him in that kind of way. There’s no way he could have stood up to it. That’s what I wanted you all to do.”
Orr is out of sync with the times. University students don’t challenge opinions with which they disagree anymore. They don’t engage rationally. Nor do Leftists and Islamic supremacists in general. Instead, they just shout down their opponents, or get their events shut down, while smearing them with all manner of ad hominems. If Orr wants a rational debate, he will have to leave academia.
“Brown Prof apologizes for inviting Ray Kelly,” by William A. Jacobson at Legal Insurrection, October 31 (thanks to Anne Crockett):
We previously have reported on the shout down of NYC Police CommissionerÂ Ray Kelly at Brown University on Tuesday, causing cancellation of his lecture:
- The angry face of the Brown U. shout down
- Author at The Nation: Ray Kelly being shouted down “was glorious”
- Brown U. student called “White Supremacist” for wanting to hear Ray Kelly speak
- Brown U. students shout down Ray Kelly
A public forum was held at Brown last night to discuss the controversy generated by preventing Kelly from speaking.Â The forum was reported live by multiple campus student publications.
One of theÂ early speakers was Marion Orr, Professor of Political Science,Â Public Policy and Urban Studies.Â Orr also isÂ Director of the A. Alfred Taubman Center for Public Policy and American Institutions, which invited Kelly.
Orr apologized “especially to my black students and Latino brothers and sisters” for the “hurt” he caused by inviting Kelly, and indicated he did not expect such a reaction.
Orr alsoÂ requested a list of people he should not invite in the future. I spoke with Orr, who said that he meant that request for a list as “tongue in cheek” and that everyone in the room understood that he did not really want such a list. Orr said that he was trying to make a point along the lines of “do you really want to have a list?” Orr did not dispute the substance of the quotes attributed to him regarding the list, but disputed what he meant by the request.
The Brown Daily Herald reported, Hundreds assemble to confront Kelly controversyÂ (emphasis added):
Marion Orr, director of the Taubman Center, which sponsored Kelly”s lecture, expressed regret for the controversy.
“I sincerely apologize to my students,” Orr said. “Especially to my black students and Latino brothers and sisters “” it wasn’t my intention to hurt you, and it hurts me to hear that my decision caused so much pain.”
Orr asked the students to submit a list of speakers whom they would not approve of coming to campus, adding that he never expected the intense reaction to Kelly”s event….