Hillary Clinton is in hot water over a $225,000 speaking fee she will reportedly receive for an upcoming appearance at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
UNLV students are demanding Clinton to return what they see as an “outrageous” speaking fee for an October event and have criticized the school for paying her so much money at a time when tuition is scheduled to spike by 17 percent over the next four years.
“We really appreciate anybody who would come to raise money for the university,” UNLV student body president Elias Benjelloun told a Nevada television station. “But anybody who’s being paid $225,000 to come speak, we think that’s a little bit outrageous. And we’d like Secretary Clinton, respectfully, to gracefully return to the university or the foundation.”
Benjelloun said the potential 2016 presidential contender should donate her fee to the university.
Republicans have spread a video of student leaders slamming the university’s decision, hoping to paint Clinton as out of touch with working families, much the same way as Democrats attacked Mitt Romney for being too rich in the 2012 presidential campaign.
It’s not often we see liberals hoisted by their own petards, so to speak, and I have to admit that I’m immensely enjoying the Clintons’ decades-old class warfare arguments being turned against them at a critical time in the run-up to the former Sec. of State’s expected (expected by me) announcement at another run for President.
For better or worse, Democrats have “set the standard” upon which the so-called “rich” should be judged going back many years, and Mrs. Clinton right now is on the receiving end of the negative backlash of a ridiculous, divisive (not to mention double) standard she and her party have held Republicans to since they’ve been active in politics, one which is now being used as a criticism against … her. It is to laugh.
In case you were thinking that Cosmopolitan magazine was going to dial it down a notch or two in the aftermath of the outrage and disbelief over comments one of their managers made in response to Miss USA’s remarks on self defense in the context of campus rapes, think again. Cosmo sex editor Anna Breslaw stomped her feet and churned out this head-scratcher:
During the question-and-answer portion of the Miss USA pageant, 24-year-old Miss Nevada Nia Sanchez, who took home the crown, said she believed some colleges might sweep campus rape under the rug to prevent bad press. Sanchez, a fourth degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do, added, “more awareness [of the issue] is very important so that women can learn to protect themselves … You need to be confident and be able to defend yourself. That’s something we need to start to implement for a lot of women.”
Self defense isn’t icky, and anyone with a fifth-grade reading comprehension level can understand that’s not what Elisa was saying.
Actually, yeah – it was:
Can’t get much more plain that that. And as I noted in my prior piece on this issue, she was far from the only one.
Breslaw went on:
What is icky is the idea that we’d pour the entirety of our time, energy, and federal funding into training every 18-year-old girl in America to be jacked, gun-toting Lara Crofts rather than, oh, I don’t know, teaching boys not to rape or shaming college administrators for not taking sexual assault allegations seriously.
What’s “icky” is Ms. Breslaw assuming that most people who did a double take at Ms. Benson’s remarks believe there’s only room for one solution. Also “icky” is her implicit assumption that boys aren’t taught from a very early age to respect women. Disturbing is her obvious belief that if respect is taught then it automatically means that a young man won’t grow up and eventually hurt a woman. We can and should drill it into the heads of every single one of them that respecting women is not optional, but that doesn’t mean on down the line he’s going to abide by that.
Which is where self-defense comes into play. Fortunately, Breslaw is on board with women learning self-defense. Sorta:
Self-defense is a fantastic thing for every woman (or man) to have under their belt — in fact, experts say would-be attackers are often deterred by the confident manner in which women educated in self-defense carry themselves — but this limited view of campus sexual assault prevention perpetuates dangerous myths about sexual assault and shames victims for not adequately “preparing” to defend themselves against rape. It’s the same mentality as blaming sexual assault victims for wearing provocative clothing and therefore “brought it upon themselves,” rather than blaming their attackers for the actual assault.
Do me a favor and please re-read the bolded part of the above paragraph. Then digest it. Self-defense “perpetuates myths about sexual assault” and …. “shames victims” for not preparing to defend themselves?? SAY WHAT? She actually thinks promoting self-defense is the equivalent to those who snidely say “but she was wearing a short skirt so she was asking for it”? And it “shames” women who have been victims of sexual assault? In what universe does Ms. Breslaw reside? One wonders if she’d say that exact thing to victims of sexual assault who take up self-defense training and who tour and give speeches promoting that very thing as a very useful tool in preventing an attacker from doing a woman harm?? Good grief!
She says she believes all this but yet wants you to think that she harbors a “big tent” approach to the issue combating violence against women that includes incorporating self-defense into the mix? I don’t think so. Here’s the shorter version of Breslaw’s ridiculous argument: ‘Let’s not emphasize self-defense because we don’t want to risk hurting the feelings of women who have already become victims. In fact, let’s put the onus for trying to stop future assaults entirely on “society” rather than try to educate women on how to better protect themselves.’ Maybe that “solution” would work flawlessly in Breslaw’s Feminist Utopia but here in the real world, the reality is that there are bad people out there and no matter how much we try and communicate that it’s not ok to hurt women, those who want to WILL.
Rape is more of a crime of opportunity than it is some guy hiding in an alleyway waiting for you to walk by. With increasing frequency, a rapist is more likely to be someone you know or are otherwise somewhat acquainted with, perhaps casually, than not. Either way, it’s best to be prepared for any situation. Travel in groups. Hold tight to your beverage of choice at all times. Don’t binge drink. Do not walk to your car alone at night. Lock your car doors and windows – and the doors and windows to your house. Do NOT answer the front door if you don’t know who the person is or if they just make you uncomfortable. Do not get into a car with a man you don’t know. Do not be free-flowing with personal information about yourself (such as where you live and your phone number) with guys who you’re just getting to know. The list goes on and on.
It goes without saying but I’ll repeat it anyway: You could do all of the above and then some and still end up a victim of a sexual assault – and if it does happen, it is imperative that you understand that it is/was NOT your fault. Unfortunately, there is no “fool-proof” way of avoiding the possibility of something happening to you. But you’ll lessen the chances of it happening if you take precautions. We tell young kids they can’t walk half a block to the store alone because someone might snatch them. We instruct teenagers to run away if someone they don’t know approaches them in a vehicle. These are common sense precautions that no one ever thinks twice about. Why would anyone on earth hesitate to make sure women are given the vital tips they need in order to try and avoid becoming a victim of a violent crime, in addition to continuing to educate young men that they must respect women?
Unlike Ms. Breslaw, I don’t speak out of both sides of my mouth. I really do believe we should do everything we can to prevent future assaults, not just by continuing to instill values at a young age to boys (and girls) that they should respect each other, but also by trying to ensure that women have every available tool at their disposal – both knowledge and physical power – to protect themselves. Nothing “icky” or shameful about it. The phony, warped political correctness behind Breslaw’s “but we’re shaming victims by doing this!!” mentality only serves to create more victims of rape down the road. She might be ok with that, but I’m not.
In an editorial published at Bloomberg View – which was adapted off of a commencement speech he gave yesterday at Harvard, Michael Bloomberg makes some surprisingly good points about the intolerance of liberals at colleges across America towards conservative thought (via):
There is an idea floating around college campuses — including here at Harvard — that scholars should be funded only if their work conforms to a particular view of justice. There’s a word for that idea: censorship. And it is just a modern-day form of McCarthyism.
In the 1950s, the right wing was attempting to repress left-wing ideas. Today, on many campuses, it is liberals trying to repress conservative ideas, even as conservative faculty members are at risk of becoming an endangered species.
Perhaps nowhere is that more true than here in the Ivy League. In the 2012 presidential race, 96 percent of all campaign contributions from Ivy League faculty and employees went to Barack Obama. That statistic, drawn from Federal Election Commission data, should give us pause — and I say that as someone who endorsed President Obama. When 96 percent of faculty donors prefer one candidate to another, you have to wonder whether students are being exposed to the diversity of views that a university should offer. Diversity of gender, ethnicity and orientation is important. But a university cannot be great if its faculty is politically homogenous.
In fact, the whole purpose of granting tenure to professors is to ensure that they feel free to conduct research on ideas that run afoul of university politics and societal norms. When tenure was created, it mostly protected liberals whose ideas ran up against conservative norms.
Today, if tenure is going to continue to exist, it must also protect conservatives whose ideas run up against liberal norms. Otherwise, university research will lose credibility. A liberal arts education must not be an education in the art of liberalism.
This spring, it has been disturbing to see a number of college commencement speakers withdraw, or have their invitations rescinded, after protests from students and — to me, shockingly — from senior faculty and administrators who should know better.
It happened at Brandeis, Haverford, Rutgers and Smith. Last year, it happened at Swarthmore and Johns Hopkins. In each case, liberals silenced a voice and denied an honorary degree to individuals they deemed politically objectionable.
As a former chairman of Johns Hopkins, I believe that a university’s obligation is not to teach students what to think, but to teach students how to think. And that requires listening to the other side, weighing arguments without prejudging them, and determining whether the other side might actually make some fair points.
If the faculty fails to do this, then it is the responsibility of the administration and governing body to step in and make it a priority. If they do not, if students graduate with ears and minds closed, the university has failed both the student and society. If you want to know where that leads, look no further than Washington.
PJ Tatler’s Bryan Preston responds:
I am aware that Bloomberg remains a hypocrite on guns who believes that his use of wealth to push his policy preferences whether people want them or not will buy his way into heaven, even though he doesn’t really believe in God. He’s a small man with a gargantuan ego. But when he’s right, he’s right, and in this speech, he’s right. His commencement address is an important one.
Yes. As the old saying goes, a broken clock is right twice a day. While Bloomberg is frequently wrong – more wrong than right, in fact, at least in this instance he hit it on the mark. Well done. For a change.
Sad to say but it looks like campus fascists have won out:
Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has decided against delivering the commencement address at Rutgers University following protests by some faculty and students over her role in the Iraq War.
Rice said in a statement Saturday that she informed Rutgers President Robert Barchi that she was declining the invitation.
“Commencement should be a time of joyous celebration for the graduates and their families,” Rice said. “Rutgers’ invitation to me to speak has become a distraction for the university community at this very special time.”
But some students and faculty had protested, staging sit-ins and saying Rice bore some responsibility for the Iraq War as a member of the Bush administration. Barchi and other school leaders had resisted the calls to disinvite Rice, saying the university welcomes open discourse on controversial topics.
In her statement, Rice defended her record, saying that she was honored to serve her country and that she had “defended America’s belief in free speech and the exchange of ideas.” But she said she didn’t want to detract from the spirit of the commencement ceremony.
Even the university’s president, who had at one time stood strong against the opposition, seemed to throw in the towel recently over the controversy:
In a statement when the controversy first erupted, Rutgers President Robert Barchi said, “We cannot protect free speech or academic freedom by denying others the right to an opposing view, or by excluding those with whom we may disagree. Free speech and academic freedom cannot be determined by any group. They cannot insist on consensus or popularity.”
Barchi had adopted a different tone this week: “I frankly wish from my point of view that this whole affair was not here right now because it’s distracting from what great things we’re doing as a university. … It does have us, for better or worse, right in the crosshairs right now.”
As always, Ms. Rice was a complete class act in her statement – while the self-important nitwits at the university who militantly protested her over simple political disagreement put the “a**” in classy. Chalk up Rutgers as being one more in a long list of “institutions of higher learning” where liberal talk of respecting and welcoming a “diversity of viewpoints” is little more than a meaningless, empty slogan. Wusses.
Roughly 50 Rutgers University students staged a sit-in at a school administration building in New Brunswick on Monday to protest the school’s decision to invite Condoleezza Rice to speak at the university’s commencement next month.
The school’s Board of Governors voted to pay the former secretary of state under President George W. Bush and national security adviser $35,000 for her appearance at the May 18 ceremony, where she will be awarded an honorary degree.
But several faculty members and students want the invitation rescinded because of Rice’s role in the Iraq War. Rutgers’ New Brunswick Faculty Council passed a resolution in March calling on the university’s board of governors to rescind its invitation.
Photos and videos of Monday’s protest posted to Twitter showed students lining a staircase leading to University President Robert Barchi’s office, The Star-Ledger reported.
Some students held up signs reading, “No honors for war criminals,” “War criminals out” and “RU 4 Humanity?” the report said.
Fortunately, Barchi is standing strong in the face of the attempts by these “tolerant” students to engage in the hypocritical selective “diversity” so often displayed by the activist left:
Barchi and the university’s board of governors have resisted calls to “disinvite” Rice. In a letter to the campus last month, Barchi said the university welcomes open discourse on controversial topics.
“Like our fellow citizens, you and I — our colleagues — have deep and sincerely held beliefs and convictions that often stand in stark contrast to others around us,” Barchi wrote. “Yet, we cannot protect free speech or academic freedom by denying others the right to an opposing view, or by excluding those with whom we may disagree. Free speech and academic freedom cannot be determined by any group. They cannot insist on consensus or popularity.”
— Amani ????? ???????? (@amanialkhat) April 28, 2014
Oh, what rebels they are. /sarc
In late February, the City University of New York announced that it had tapped Princeton economist and New York Times blogger Paul Krugman for a distinguished professorship at CUNY’s Graduate Center and its Luxembourg Income Study Center, a research arm devoted to studying income patterns and their effect on inequality.
About that. According to a formal offer letter obtained under New York’s Freedom of Information Law, CUNY intends to pay Krugman $225,000, or $25,000 per month (over two semesters), to “play a modest role in our public events” and “contribute to the build-up” of a new “inequality initiative.” It is not clear, and neither CUNY nor Krugman was able to explain, what “contribute to the build-up” entails.
It’s certainly not teaching. “You will not be expected to teach or supervise students,” the letter informs Professor Krugman, who replies: “I admit that I had to read it several times to be clear … it’s remarkably generous.” (After his first year, Krugman will be required to host a single seminar.)
Sooo, basically the esteemed Krugman will get paid $225,000 a year to do … nothing. In fact, it sounds like this “position” will benefit Paul Krugman a hell of a lot more than those whose incomes he supposedly wants to make “more equal.” Sound familiar?
New Brunswick Today reported this week that controversy has erupted on the Rutgers University campus over the decision by the university’s board of governors to invite former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to speak at this year’s commencement ceremony (via Fox News):
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—Rutgers University’s New Brunswick Faculty Council passed a resolution on Friday condemning the selection of Condoleezza Rice as the 2014 commencement speaker.
Rice, who is considered by many to be a controversial official in the administration of President George W. Bush, has not been well-received by the university community since she was announced as the graduation speaker last month.
“Condoleezza Rice…played a prominent role in the administration’s efforts to mislead the American people about the presence of weapons of mass destruction,” reads the resolution adopted Friday.
“[She] at the very least condoned the administration’s policy of [torture] such as water boarding.”
The council had been working for several weeks to see this resolution through. It was introducted by chemistry professor Robert Boikess.
According to Boikess, ““Commencement should be about celebrating. It shouldn’t be about politics and polarizing student and faculty by bringing such a controversial speaker.”
Several other faculty voiced their support for the resolution.
French professor François Cornilliat criticized Rice’s selection as “heavily political”, asserting that “our students are being manipulated to deliver a political point.”
History professor Rudolph Bell was somewhat ambivalent, saying that Rice should not speak at graduation, but should be welcome to speak at some other event. Bell suggested that Rice was not the right person to “inspire graduating seniors.”
The Faculty Council resolution called Rice’s selection “misguided,” and called for the Board of Governors to reconsider its decision.
The Rutgers Board of Governors unanimously approved Rice as the commencement speaker in February, and approved a $35,000 honorarium for the former Secretary of State.
Rice will also receive an honorary Doctorate of Laws degree from the university.
The resolution said that such a degree “should not honor someone who participated in a political effort to circumnavigate the law”.
“A commencement speaker, who is entrusted with speaking to graduating students about the direction of their future lives, should embody moral authority and exemplary citizenship”, reads the resolution.
“[P]olitical effort to circumnavigate the law”? “[S]hould embody moral authority”? Guess this means in the future that President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, former IRS official Lois Lerner and other Obama administration officials should be left off the invite list as well.
It’s getting bad out there, folks:
Cancel the philosophy courses, people. Oh, and we’re going to be shuttering the political science, religion, and pre-law departments too. We’ll keep some of the English and history folks on for a while longer, but they should probably keep their résumés handy.
Because, you see, they are of no use anymore. We have the answers to the big questions, so why keep pretending there’s anything left to discuss?
At least that’s where Erin Ching, a student at Swarthmore College, seems to be coming down. Her school invited a famous left-wing Princeton professor, Cornel West, and a famous right-wing Princeton professor, Robert George, to have a debate. The two men are friends, and by all accounts they had an utterly civil exchange of ideas. But that only made the whole thing even more outrageous.
“What really bothered me is, the whole idea is that at a liberal arts college, we need to be hearing a diversity of opinion,” Ching told the Daily Gazette, the school’s newspaper. “I don’t think we should be tolerating [George’s] conservative views because that dominant culture embeds these deep inequalities in our society.”
Swarthmore must be so proud.
Over at Harvard, another young lady has similar views. Harvard Crimson editorial writer Sandra Y. L. Korn recently called for getting rid of academic freedom in favor of something called “academic justice.”
“If our university community opposes racism, sexism, and heterosexism, why should we put up with research that counters our goals simply in the name of ‘academic freedom’?” Korn asks.
Goldberg goes on to add more examples of this fascistic train of thought, and finishes with this:
More pernicious, however, is that they believe the question of justice is a settled matter. We know what justice is, so why let serious people debate it anymore? The millennia-old dialogue between Aristotle, Plato, St. Augustine, Aquinas, Machiavelli, Rawls, Rorty, Hayek et al.? Shut it down, people. Or at least if the conversation heads in a direction where the Korns, Chings, and Streisands smell “oppression” — as defined solely by the Left — then it must not be “put up with.” Diversity demands that diversity of opinion not be tolerated anymore.
I’ve noted here and elsewhere numerous times (and have included examples) about how modern liberals are some of the most intolerant, closed-minded people you will ever come across – in spite of popular myth (as routinely and eagerly perpetuated by their allies in the mainstream press) to the contrary. And as Goldberg pointed out, some of the worst of it comes from our institutions of “higher learning” – you know, the places you’re supposed to go to learn how to think outside of the box? And once they graduate, they move on to bigger and better attempts at shutting down debate by declaring any attempts you make at preserving your right to speak out, think differently,observe your religious beliefs, and hold on to more of the money you earn as the equivalent to “racism, homophobia, sexism”, etc – as we’re seeing play out in states like Kansas and right here in NC.
In a nutshell: “diversity” to the left is not diversity at all. Was having a bit of a discussion with a friend here in NC about this, and her comment to me was that unfortunately this type of thing will never change – and in fact appears to be getting worse, but as I told her, that doesn’t mean we should ever stop raising hell about it. You know what they say about sunlight …
And they say conservative women are fainting couch prudes? Via the Boston Globe (bolded emphasis added by me):
A realistic-looking statue of a man sleepwalking in his underwear near the center of Wellesley College has created a stir among the women on campus, especially as more than 100 students at the all-women’s college signed a petition asking administrators to remove it.
The statue, called Sleepwalker, is part of an art exhibit featuring sculptor Tony Matelli at the college’s Davis Museum. The exhibit, New Gravity, features sculptures that are often reversed, upended or atomized.
However, the statue of the sleepwalker — which is hard to miss in a high-traffic area by both pedestrians and drivers near the campus center — has caused outrage among some students in just one day after its Feb. 3 installation. Zoe Magid, a Wellesley College junior majoring in political science, started a petition on Change.org with other students asking college president H. Kim Bottomly to have the statue removed.
“[T]his highly lifelike sculpture has, within just a few hours of its outdoor installation, become a source of apprehension, fear, and triggering thoughts regarding sexual assault for many members of our campus community,” says the petition. “While it may appear humorous, or thought-provoking to some, it has already become a source of undue stress for many Wellesley College students, the majority of whom live, study, and work in this space.”
Davis Museum director Lisa Fischman wrote on Wellesley College’s official website that the sculpture was meant to evoke response.
However, Magid said over the phone Tuesday that Fischman’s response failed to address students’ concerns.
“We were really disappointed that she seemed to articulate that she was glad it was starting discussion, but didn’t respond to the fact that it’s making students on campus feel unsafe, which is not appropriate,” Magid said. “We really feel that if a piece of art makes students feel unsafe, that steps over a line.“
Really. The pearl-clutching over this at Hillary Rodham Clinton’s all-girls alma mater is hysterical. I thought feminists were supposed to have thicker skin than this? It’s a statue. A tacky one, but a “piece of art” all the same. What is it that makes them feel “unsafe”? The fact that the statue is nearly naked or … gasp … that it’s a reminder of the dreaded “patriarchy”? Either way, grow a pair, ladies. There are actually much more important, pressing things going on in the world that you might wanna tackle before waxing indignant over a harmless male sculpture.
Related – via NRO’s Kevin D. Williamson: The Feminist Mystique