Friday

August 18th, 2017

Insight

Another Temper Tantrum on a College Campus

 Bernard Goldberg

By Bernard Goldberg

Published March 6, 2017

Another Temper Tantrum on a College Campus

The cupcakes have struck again.

This time it was at Middlebury College, a small liberal arts school in rural Vermont, where hundreds of cupcakes (also known as snowflakes) disrupted a speech by the conservative scholar Charles Murray.

The cupcakes say he's a bigot so they wouldn't let him talk. They chanted, "Racist, sexist, anti-gay, Charles Murray, go away." I think they threw in the "anti-gay" part because they needed something to rhyme with "go away."

According to news reports some students stomped their feet and set off fire alarms.

Can you blame them? If they didn't scream and yell and chant and set off fire alarms they may have had to listen to something they didn't want to hear. Oh, the horror! They might have actually learned something. And if something that horrible happened they might have needed therapeutic puppies to calm them down.

The reason they don't like Charles Murray goes way back to a book he co-wrote in 1994 called The Bell Curve, a book I'm willing to bet no one stomping his feet actually read. The book was controversial because it linked intelligence levels to heredity and briefly brought race into the discussion. Hence, to the cupcakes, Murray is a racist.


Except he's not. Not even close. Murray is a brilliant social scientist with degrees from Harvard and MIT, an intellectual who looks at the data and comes to conclusions - absent any concern for political correctness. Here's what he wrote on page 311 of The Bell Curve:

"It seems highly likely ... that both genes and the environment have something to do with racial differences [in IQ scores]. What might the mix be? We are resolutely agnostic on that issue; as far as we can determine, the evidence does not yet justify an estimate. "

"That's it-the sum total of every wild-eyed claim that The Bell Curve makes about genes and race," he later wrote.

But liberal students who demand "safe spaces" for themselves wouldn't provide a safe space at Middlebury for Charles Murray. According to Bill Burger, the college's vice president for communications and marketing, Murray and Professor Allison Stanger who was escorting him off campus were "physically and violently confronted by a group of protestors."

Burger said college public safety officers put Stanger and Murray into the administrator's car.

"The protestors then violently set upon the car, rocking it, pounding on it, jumping on and try to prevent it from leaving campus," he said.

"During this confrontation ... one of the demonstrators pulled Prof. Stanger's hair and twisted her neck," Burger said. "She was attended to at Porter Hospital later and is wearing a neck brace."

So who are these liberal brats who behave like the brown shirts of the bad old days in Germany? Myron Magnet, a conservative scholar himself, taught at Middlebury in the 1970s and upon hearing what today's cupcakes did to Charles Murray wrote about his experience at the college.

"I remember two salient traits of the majority of students in those days. One was their extraordinary intellectual laziness and lack of curiosity, especially infuriating because so many were such intelligent kids. The other was their immense privilege. Shiny new BMWs filled the student parking lot, each fitted with racks holding the most technologically advanced skis for whizzing down the slopes. There were battered Volvos, too. They belonged to us teachers.

"Since the rest of the collegiate world, hostile to any new or challenging idea, has adopted the anti-intellectualism that characterized the Middlebury I knew, it's hard to imagine that much has changed in the Green Mountain Shangri-La in that particular. And with a yearly cost now topping $66,000, I expect the same fancy cars are ferrying similarly pampered owners to frolic on the slopes."


I don't know any students who go to Middlebury and so I don't know their parents. But it's a safe bet that they not only pampered the little darlings who stomped their feet and pulled fire alarms but also gave them a sense of entitlement that they don't deserve. And when you do that, there's a good chance you'll wind up with infantile college students who refuse to listen to ideas that make them feel uncomfortable.

A lot of ordinary Americans - especially blue collar Americans, I suspect — have lost patience with these privileged cupcakes on college campuses who have no respect for people and opinions they don't like. You think that in some small way contributed to Donald Trump's victory in November? I do.

The president of Middlebury says she will be" responding" to what happened on campus. Here's a suggestion on how to respond: Expel the students involved. Kick them out of school. That might send a message to cupcakes on campuses all over the country: The lunatics will not be allowed to run the asylum - no matter how many times Mommy and Daddy told them how wonderful they are.

JWR contributor Bernard Goldberg, the television news reporter and author of several bestselling books, among them, Bias, a New York Times number one bestseller about how the media distort the news. He is widely seen as one of the most original writers and thinkers in broadcast journalism. Mr. Goldberg covered stories all over the world for CBS News and has won 10 Emmy awards for excellence in journalism. He now reports for the widely acclaimed HBO broadcast Real Sports.

He is a graduate of Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey and a member of the school's Hall of Distinguished Alumni and proprietor of BernardGoldberg.com.


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