"Either you're with us or you're against us," opened Aaron Short in his article about student protestors at Columbia. It's a great opening because it sums up exactly the mentality of these protesters. Other students on campus expressed fear of being ostracized, ridiculed, or accused of being racist if they did not actively join the movement. The protestors wanted to take away the freedom of choice to join their cause - they wanted to, dare I say it, "enslave" people to their protest. Don't wince. Look at the situation closely. Some of these students use fear and intimidation to force others to align to their value system.
Yes, you read that right, and there's irony there - students who protest against not feeling safe or free to express themselves are doing the same to others and seem to see no hypocrisy. A more pointed example of this hypocrisy involves an incident at Dartmouth:
"Protesters at Dartmouth University disrupted students studying in the library, reportedly directing profanity towards white students and physically pushing others. In a critical editorial, the conservative Dartmouth Review listed some of the epithets hurled by the protesters: 'Fuck you, you filthy white fucks!'“Fuck you and your comfort!''Fuck you, you racist shits!'
So here we have kids quietly studying in the library and, all of a sudden, racial slurs and words of unprovoked hatred are thrown at them. Violence and anger are okay if you are part of the movement, or if you have the correct skin color. How is this in any way justified? Don't say Eye for an Eye, because you know exactly what happens there - it provokes a vicious cycle of action and reaction, evolution and revolution, power-trading, etc., the constant spin of the wheel to decide whose turn it is to put down whom. How can we possibly give this "movement" any credit? And these are examples from students at Dartmouth and Columbia, for fuck's sake - if these are the best and the brightest, I'd rather recruit from community colleges.
For the sake of comparison, consider the student protests of the 1960s, in which the younger generation rebelled against war, wasteful consumption, and social injustice:
"the plight of African Americans was seen as an incredible social injustice that was being ignored by their elders. " Their fight was for fairness, for conscientiousness. And it didn't matter if you were at Berkeley, or just hanging out on Haight-Ashbury - the youth wanted an enlightened revolt.
For a contemporary comparison, we can consider the student protests in South Africa. According to the BBC, these protests started in October as a response to fee hikes: "Many black students say they come from poor families, and fee increases will rob them of the opportunity to continue studying." Here, it's not about world war and wanton consumption. Rather, the fight is over the right and the desire to become educated. Yes, there is a racial element, but the framing of the argument - the motivation for the revolts - are completely different from what's happening in the US. These students appreciate education and are fighting for something they value - and they are not destroying something else in the process. Meanwhile, US protest are about destruction - that's exactly what they seek.
Students in the 1960s were (mostly) peacefully pushing for an end to violence in the world and the equitable treatment of all. Students in modern day South Africa are fighting simply for access to good education. And what do these spoiled American brats do? The protest for "safe spaces" and the right for one group to spread hatred. They do not want to spread peace. They want to hate freely but they don't want anyone else to hate freely. They want to destroy the system and resurrect it in exactly their own image. They want to tear down everything that demands that they, students of universities, become thoughtful adults. American students fail to appreciate the education they get, as flawed as it may be. I sure wish I could've gone to Dartmouth, Columbia, or Yale...not so much Mizzou... But these spoiled brats would rather spit in the face of what they do have, bitch and moan about it, then demand that their every childish wish be granted. As individuals, they do not want to change and grow - they want everyone else to acquiesce to their dwarfed sense of being. Oh you poor, stunted, rotten youth.
Maybe the Safe Space Fairy will come down and no one will ever have to hear a bad thing ever again. Maybe She will make it so no one hates anyone and we all act completely rationally and kindly all the time. Or maybe these students and their bullshit protest should just get some perspective. I'm not saying their precious little feelings are wrong; I'm saying their methods and their ideologies are completely fucking wrong. They are damaging, disrespectful, and mean-spirited. At least the hippies saw the value of peace.
Short, in his New York Post piece referenced above, included the incident of a protest speaker who pointed out a group of guys playing Frisbee. The speaker ridiculed the students and said, "Look at those guys playing Frisbee - that is the definition of privilege." No, Anonymous Speaker Jackass, that is not the definition of privilege. The definition of privilege is being protected as you ridicule your fellow co-eds while attending one of the best universities on the planet. Privilege is being able to cry about how tough life is - not because you sincerely wish for a more peaceful planet - but so the media will cover it and you'll get that attention you want so badly. You ask if I'm with you? Fuck no. Because I actually think peace, respect, and general thoughtfulness matter - I am not with you.