There comes a time in every society where even its most basic values come under attack. In the United States, since the beginning of our country’s founding, we have had certain God-given unalienable rights: freedom of religion, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, due process and freedom of speech, among them. Today on American college campuses the value most important to ensure a strong, diverse education, freedom of speech, is under attack.
Last week, DePaul University informed the DePaul Young Americans for Freedom chapter (of which I am Vice Chairman) that they plan to partake in this attack. DePaul University has banned conservative commentator Ben Shapiro from appearing on campus. Mr. Shapiro’s strong defense of the Constitution and conservative values is apparently too much for the University and its students to handle.
Bob Janis, Vice President of Facilities Operations at DePaul, in an email to the DePaul YAF chapter’s executive board, said, “Given the experiences and security concerns that some other schools have had with Ben Shapiro speaking on their campuses, DePaul cannot agree to allow him to speak on our campus at this time.”
Frankly, this is an embarrassment for DePaul.
Read the rest here.
Here’s Young America’s Foundation’s statement on this decision:
For the past six months we have worked with Ben on a high-profile tour of college campuses and witnessed with our own eyes the vicious and threatening behavior of tyrannical leftists who have been programmed by progressive administrators to silence all speech they disagree with—If DePaul cannot trust its delicate liberal snowflake students and administrators to allow Ben to speak his mind safely and freely, it has utterly failed in its mission to “[foster] a community that welcomes open discourse.” Make no mistake, any security concerns we face on campuses are 100 percent incited by the censorious, intolerant Left. DePaul should publicly thank its Young Americans for Freedom chapter for boldly doing the school’s job of providing “exposure to differing points of view” for it and allow Ben to speak, not begrudgingly, but happily. It’s incumbent upon the intolerant Left, not hardworking YAF students, to allow conservatives to express their viewpoints without fearing for their safety. Thankfully, Ben, and YAF activists across the country, believe deeply enough in free speech to fight for their values, even as the Left attempts to intimidate them from even speaking.
If DePaul does not reverse its decision to ban Ben, it must immediately remove any claim to support free speech and expression from its website and marketing materials or become a fraudulent laughingstock.