The Real Lessons of Middlebury College, Thomas Sowell, RCP
Many people seem shocked at the recent savagery of a mob of students at Middlebury College, who rioted to prevent Charles Murray from addressing a student group who had invited him to speak. They also inflicted injuries requiring hospitalization on a woman from the faculty who was with him. Where have all these shocked people been all these years? What happened at Middlebury College has been happening for decades, all across the country, from Berkeley to Harvard. Moreover, even critics of the Middlebury College rioters betray some of the same irresponsible mindset as that of the young rioters. The moral dry rot in academia — and beyond — goes far deeper than student storm troopers at one college.
The Kids Are Right, Osita Nwanevu, Slate
There’s nothing outrageous about stamping out bigoted speech.
Berkeley Goes Offline, Andrew Ferguson, Weekly Standard
A few years ago, an adjunct professor and disability-rights activist named Stacy Nowak went to take a look at a college course offered online by the University of California, Berkeley. The course was called “Journalism for Social Change.” Nowak is deaf. She has no connection to UC Berkeley; she teaches art at Gallaudet University. But she was displeased with the quality of the closed captioning the university provided on the course’s video. Nowak, who declined to be interviewed for this article, got hold of the National Association of the Deaf, which she’s a member of. In doing so she set in motion a train of events that will come to a head on March 15. Already famous for other reasons, the Ides of March will likely stand as a signal day in the development of modern liberalism, or progressivism, as we are supposed to call it. That’s when one bastion of left-wingery, UC Berkeley, will give in to the demands of another, the disability-rights movement, to deprive the rest of us of a uniquely wonderful resource of modern technology. It’s not as complicated as it sounds. …
The administrators didn’t need an abacus to reckon that complying with the letter and retrofitting all the MOOC videos would be prohibitively expensive. Merely providing captions for all the videos, to say nothing of adjusting their color schemes and formatting, would cost more than $1 million, one official told the East Bay Times. The easiest course, administrators concluded, was simply to pull all the MOOCs from the Internet, so that disabled members of the general public will no longer have to be subjected to such discriminatory offenses—and, also, so that the federal government won’t sue UC Berkeley. Last week Vice Chancellor Cathy Koshland announced that beginning March 15, Berkeley’s vast library of online courses would no longer be publicly available. If they couldn’t be accessible to a member of NAD, they won’t be accessible to anyone.
“The revolution eats its own children,” said Georges Jacques Danton. Too bad about the collateral damage.
Europe’s Lesson Teaches Us: Don’t Go Green, Stephen Moore, IBD