CNN’s Fareed Zakaria has certainly criticized President Trump, but he’s mostly an even-handed commentator. And on his show Sunday, he condemned liberals for showing intolerance to conservative points of view.
He used commencement speeches this month at a variety of universities to state his case in a lengthy monologue.
“We’re at the height of commencement season and people are imparting their words of wisdom on newly minted graduates. I was honored to give the commencement at Bucknell this year. But at Notre Dame, where Vice President Mike Pence was giving the commencement address, the ceremonies were interrupted by a hundred students who turned their backs on Pence and walked out in protest,” Zakaria said.
“A few weeks earlier, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy Devos was booed while giving the commencement address at Bethune-Cookman University. I talked about this issue at Bucknell and I wanted to share those thoughts here.”
“American universities these days seem to be committed to every kind of diversity – except intellectual diversity. Conservative voices and views, already a besieged minority, are being silenced entirely.”
“The campus thought police have gone after serious conservative thinkers like Sarah MacDonald and Charles Murray, as well as firebrands like Milo Yiannopoulos and Ann Coulter. Some were uninvited, others booed, interrupted and intimidated.”
“It’s strange that this is happening on college campuses that promised to give their undergraduates a liberal education. The word liberal in this context has nothing to do with today’s partisan language, but refers instead to the Latin root, pertaining to liberty. And at the heart of liberty in the Western world has been freedom of speech. From the beginning, people understood that this meant protecting and listening to speech with which you disagreed.Advertisement
“Freedom of speech and thought is not just for warm, fuzzy ideas that we find comfortable. It’s for ideas that we find offensive.”
Campus protests have been on the rise since President Trump took office in January. There have also been violent protests at Cal-Berkeley caused by scheduled events featuring the now-disgraced Yiannopoulos, and later Coulter.
Zakaria put the finishing touches on his piece with this: “There is, as we all know, a kind of anti-intellectualism on the right these days. Denial of facts, of reason, of science. But there is also an anti-intellectualism on the left. An attitude of self-righteousness that says we are so pure, we are so morally superior, we cannot bear to hear an idea with which we disagree.
“Liberals think they are tolerant, but often they aren’t.”