New Breitbart "Investigation" Reveals Hollowness Of His Views On Education

Blog ››› ››› NED RESNIKOFF

Andrew Breitbart loves to complain about political censorship on college campuses, but Big Government's latest deceptively edited "investigation" proves just how thin his commitment to on-campus free speech really is.

Here's Breitbart on page 122 in his book Righteous Indignation:

In other words, if you disagreed with [philosopher Herbert] Marcuse, you should be forcefully shut up, according to Marcuse. This made political debate very convenient for him and his allies. This totalitarianism is now standard practice on college campuses, in the media, and in Hollywood--the very places that the Frankfurt school sought to control.

But far-left college students -- even Communists -- are surely just as entitled to their political views and freedom of speech as their conservative classmates. That's why it's a little odd to see someone on Breitbart's Big Government complain that a college professor didn't do a good enough job making students with opinions Breitbart deems unacceptable shut up.

Yet that's the charge leveled in a Big Government post against Professor Judy Ancel, one of the targets of Breitbart's attempt to "go after the teachers." One of Ancel's crimes, according to Big Government, is that she "repeatedly failed to criticize statements made by Giljum or by students endorsing violence."

Yes, some college students have extreme views. But the classroom is supposed to be a safe place to air those views and have a reasoned, informative debate about them. If Professor Ancel started publicly embarrassing students just because she disagreed with them, that would be tantamount to shutting down the sort of open classroom debate Breitbart claims to be fighting for.

Maybe Breitbart means to say that it's up to the teacher to define the acceptable parameters of debate. But isn't that the "totalitarianism" for which he blames Marcuse? How is that not what he calls "cult brainwashing?"

For all of Breitbart's sanctimonious posturing, this latest smear is nothing less than an attempt to enforce on-campus censorship. And while his cronies can call student privacy a "red herring" all they want, it doesn't change the fact that Professor Ancel is right when she says that publicly releasing the words and faces of students who thought they were speaking confidentially will "have an enormously chilling effect on freedom of thought and expression." The fact that Big Government responded to her concerns with yet more dishonest attacks just goes to show that their objective was never "freedom of thought and expression" in the first place. It's just another excuse to smear people with whom they disagree.

Posted In
Education, Intellectual Freedom
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