Just when I thought I’d seen all of the techniques to shut down free speech, from pulling a fire alarm to singing songs, all the way to actual violence, students at Beloit College prove me wrong. Several students at this Wisconsin school stacked chairs on the stage to physically prevent Erik Prince, founder of the security company Blackwater, from speaking, according to The Daily Caller News Foundation.
The drum-banging was also an attempt to make it impossible to HEAR Erik, who had been invited by a conservative group. Erik and Blackwater are controversial because, a little over a decade ago, Blackwater guards killed 17 Iraqis in Baghdad. Beloit College condemned the disruption in a statement, but, in the heat of the moment, instead of making campus police keep the students in line, the school’s interim dean of students simply cancelled the event.
Now if you’re a regular viewer of Campus Unmasked, you might remember that President Donald Trump signed in late March an executive order protecting free speech on college campuses. He threatened withholding federal research funding from schools that do not do so. Many private schools do get this funding — $25 billion of it — However, Beloit College isn’t one of those schools.
So I guess there’s no incentive…because, you know, some people need to be pressured to do decent, common sense things like protect free speech. So in the more than 300 Campus Unmasked episodes I’ve done so far, I think this is the first story I’ve done on Beloit College. But there was actually another rather curious happening there recently. After the New Zealand massacre a couple weeks ago, Beloit suspended Muslim student Nathaniel Acharya after he posted to Snapchat, saying “hey if you post on 4chan or 8pol, I don’t care what board you’re part, you deserve to be shot for knowingly partitioning” — think he means partaking — “in one of the biggest breeding grounds for white supremacist terrorists of the modern era [thank you],” according to The Round Table.
Um, link please? With Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit constantly getting censored, 4Chan and 8Chan are two of the last bastions of free speech online. Sure, there’s some nasty stuff, but a lot of it is satire and it’s precisely this sometimes caustic and vitriolic speech that serves as a counterbalance to the left’s continual narrowing of the Overton window. Also remember some of the fantastic investigative journalism work these sites have done, like the identification of bike lock professor Eric Clanton. Then there’s always the very real chance that if you don’t let people vent their disgusting opinions online with words, they might feel like they have no other choice but to express them with bullets.