The following is the full text of Kassy Dillon’s speech delivered at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri on September 19th, 2017. The speech itself can be watched on YouTube.
It’s a special honor to be able to speak at a college and a symposium with such a strong history. As a student myself, it’s wonderful to see this sort of exchange of ideas on full display. This is what academia should be. It is an open, respectful dialogue which celebrates the idea of diversity of thought. Diversity of ideas is as important as any other kind of diversity.
Unfortunately, the past year has demonstrated that many schools in America no longer believe in such diversity of thought, and especially not in respectful dialogue.
In 2017, conservative ideas are seemingly not welcome on many college campuses in America. Conservative students often keep their mouths shut because they don’t want to be ostracized or harassed for their beliefs. Conservative speakers are often regarded as dangerous to the safety of the student body.
Conservatism in 2017 has also been under assault by opportunists, racists, and fascists. I’m not here to defend those people and say that their ideas are worth our time – because they’re not. College administrators, however, have made a trend of labeling every conservative or libertarian thinkers as those racists and bigots.This isn’t true.
Even President Obama said last year, “there’s been a trend around the country of trying to get colleges to disinvite speakers with different points of view, or disrupt a politician’s rally. Don’t do that, no matter how ridiculous or offensive you might find the things that come out of their mouths.”
Despite Obama’s warnings, colleges have not heeded this advice.
Now, let me give you my definition of conservatism. Conservatism is based on the ideas of conserving the values of the Constitution. It’s the idea that a well-ordered government is necessary to a well-ordered society, but is not the solution to the problems of society. Let me be clear: government exists to defend the rights of the people, not be the source of those rights. Conservatives believe in limited government and liberty for all.
I went into college as an American history student. That’s what I wanted to major in. I never thought I’d want to be a student journalist, none of that. I knew I was a republican, but I never thought I’d be vocal. I thought I’d just stay under the radar, keep my head down, get a 4.0, and hopefully go to grad school and find a job. Then, during my first week of college here was this girl named Yvonne Dean-Bailey, and she posted in this Facebook group. She said, “I’m feeling kind of edgy. Are there any Republicans out there?” So I commented on it and said “Yeah, I’m Republican.”
So for the first semester we were known as the Republican girls. The only two on my campus. Yvonne was actually a lot more talkative about it than I was, and became a student journalist, reporting on protests we had on campus. Students were upset about it. She published stories for conservative websites, and [those students] didn’t like what she had to say. They started putting notes on the door of her dorm, telling her she was no longer welcome on campus. They told her she should leave.
I remember sitting with her at lunch one day, and students got on stage and started calling her a racist and a bigot, and started screaming at us. For me, having not been very vocal, I was scared as well. She ended up leaving, and running for State representative of New Hampshire. I believe she’s the second youngest now.
Things changed on November 8th. I was confronted by multiple people calling me every name in the book. People were asking my roommate how she could live with someone as bigoted as me. I was the only Trump supporter they knew of, so they took it out on me.
A report in Boston Magazine earlier this year tracked the ideological divide between conservative and liberal professors. In California, liberal professors outnumber conservative 6 to 1. In New England, where I’m from, liberals outnumber conservatives 28 to 1.
In July, Pew Research reported that 58% of Republicans view higher education unfavorably. That’s bad, but it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone.
One of my favorite reactions to that Pew study was someone on Twitter who simply responded, “Campus Reform did this.”
Campus Reform, if you’re not familiar with it, is a nonprofit project which documents issues of overt left-leaning bias and abuse in higher education. It’s a way for student journalists across the country to report on their campuses, and track bias both through on-campus incidents as well as social media.
You might look at some of the headlines on Campus Reform and think that it’s The Onion for college campuses, because the stories are often downright outrageous.
Some of the headlines on the site have included:
- UNH professor calls for expulsion of Trump supporters
- “Anti-gun professor calls for shooting up the NRA, ensuring ‘no survivors’”
- “Professor says he’d be okay if Betsy DeVos was sexually assaulted”
I do need to make myself clear: I don’t mean to stereotype every leftist student or professor on campus as intolerant of ideas they don’t like. I’ve known plenty of people who I disagree with who understand that someone’s political ideology is not their whole entire identity. Unfortunately, there are still so many bad apples out there that there is a well-deserved stereotype of leftist lunacy.
Let me give you just a few examples of what I am talking about:
Last year, I reported a story about a protester at UMass Amherst, and the video of this protester was screaming and shouting at the speakers. The internet trolls named her “Trigglypuff,” after the Pokemon. I didn’t name her that. I woke up, and the internet named her that. This girl was so upset at a group of speakers who she didn’t like that she took the time to attend their lecture and shout profanities at them from the audience. She was shouting so much and was right behind me, so that I could barely hear the speakers She was told to be quiet or leave. Her response to this was that her speech was free speech, and their speech was hate speech, and therefore they had to listen to her free speech.
Kellogg Community College
In another incident, three students were arrested at Kellogg Community College in Michigan because they were handing out copies of the Constitution on campus. College administrators attempted to limit the campus Young Americans for Liberty chapter and told the students they could not engage other students in conversation in public places on a public campus because they would “obstruct the student’s ability to learn.”
Yes, apparently talking about the United States Constitution in a public place, on a public campus is obstructing education.
Needless to say the school is currently being sued for violating these students’ first amendment rights.
On the eve of Veteran’s Day last year, students at Hampshire College, one of the neighboring colleges to my own, pulled down an American flag and set it on fire because they were upset about the results of the election. The symbolism of the flag aside, that’s vandalism and destruction of property.
The college, instead, decided that, because we were in an “environment of escalating hate-based violence,” all American flags needed to be removed from campus, “while the community delved deeper into the meaning of the flag and its presence on our campus.”
The administration didn’t punish the vandals responsible: it instead affirmed their wrong idea that the flag didn’t have a place on campus because of Donald Trump.
Now I broke this story on Campus Reform because I thought not only was the vandalism outrageous, but the college’s response was even worse. The local community quickly came together. Hundreds of veterans and some Gold Star parents came with their American flags and uniforms and delivered speeches what the American flag meant to them. Many of them even attempted to engage with students and have civil discussions. Even Donald Trump himself tweeted about the incident, calling for the burning of the American flag to be a crime. The administration backed down and put the flag back up.
And of course, last week: Berkeley. Ben Shapiro’s speech at UC Berkeley only took place after months of back and forth between the College Republicans and the campus administration. The school charged the organization a $9,000 security fee for inside the venue and the total cost for security apparently came to over $600,000.
$600,000 is what is cost for a speaker to speak at a public campus. Concrete barriers were implemented, armored vehicles were present, and police had riot gear. Students protested the event and some members of Antifa were arrested for assaulting police officers and bringing weapons into the perimeter. The administration even offered counseling services to students who couldn’t handle the idea of a speaker they disagreed with. Of course, the event went on anyway as planned.
Ben Shapiro, if you aren’t familiar with him, is the editor-in-chief of the Daily Wire, and an orthodox Jew that graduated from Harvard Law who preaches small government and did not vote for Donald Trump, and often criticizes him.
But, before and during the event, students called him a white nationalist, a racist, and said he was upholding the fascist Trump and Pence “regime.” They didn’t even take the time to Google him and see who he was.
Now, Berkeley, as you probably already know, has been in the news constantly this year, and never for good reasons.
Berkeley, the home of the “free speech movement,” saw right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos run off campus by both angry student rioters, and violent Antifa groups from off campus who showed up just to cause trouble. The campus police had to give up and cancel the event because they couldn’t guarantee security.
Antifa has become the latest threat to free speech on campuses, especially considering that many of its members are not students: rather, they are usually outside protesters who show up to campus specifically for the purpose of shutting down a speaker they disagree with. Antifa is responsible for setting fires on the campus of Berkeley and assaulting reporters who try to photograph them. They may not be students, but often campus police have so far not done enough to keep them from causing mayhem when they arrive.
Ann Coulter, also planned to also speak at Berkeley, and students, once again, were outraged. The administration tried to cancel and reschedule the speech, citing threats to the student body.
This controversy drew strong reactions, and not in ways the administration probably wanted.
Senator Bernie Sanders said of the incident, “People have a right to give their two cents-worth, without fear of violence and intimidation.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren, no friend of Ann Coulter, told students, “If you don’t like it, don’t show up. Ann Coulter has just gotten a much bigger platform because someone tried to deny her a chance to speak.”
Milo, along with Steve Bannon and a few other right-wing figures, are planning to return to Berkeley next week for “Free Speech Week” where there will surely be more protests that will make national news.
Yes, Antifa will almost certainly be back, and there will likely be violence on the campus of Berkeley – all because people cannot handle the idea of speakers they disagree with.
Why Is This Important?
Apparently, college is now a four-year extended vacation where the faculty bows down to our personal demands. If we feel offended by ideas, it’s up to our professors and administrators to make everything better for us. This is ridiculous.
Pew Research reported in 2015 that 40% of millennials believe that the First Amendment needs to be limited, because someone could potentially say something offensive and hurtful.
This was reaffirmed yesterday with a study by the Brookings Institute that said 50% of students say it is okay to shout down a speaker they dislike, and 1 in 5 students believe that is is entirely acceptable to use violence to prevent a speaker they disagree with from talking. This is appalling.
(Ironically, another poll last week reported that 37% of Americans didn’t even know what the First Amendment is.)
The First Amendment is extremely important in academia. College is supposed to be a place where students are exposed to new ideas. It is not the job of a college to protect its students from ideas, but to teach them how to confront them head-on. Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska, who served as the president of Midland College for five years, put it very well when he said that these students are willing to accept soft totalitarianism in exchange for these safe spaces where their own emotions won’t be challenged.
Conservatives and Social Media
This is why I believe conservatism needs to make a strong comeback on college campuses and right now there is a very strong movement of campus conservatives on the internet who operate outside the norms of academia to spread ideas and counter the leftist movement, and that’s all done thanks to social media’s ability to spread a message wide and far.
I started a website called Lone Conservative last year to create a platform for those students to be vocal about their opinions, especially when their opinions are simply not welcome in student newspapers or even casual conversation.
Learning conservative ideas has never been easier. Obviously, you can read the authors who have made modern conservatism what it is today: from John Locke to William F. Buckley and so many people in between. There are contemporary authors from Morton Blackwell to Ben Shapiro and Christina Hoff Sommers.
Dennis Prager has his Prager University which creates short educational YouTube videos about conservative and free market principles. There is a tremendous amount of content online to learn conservative political theory and thought.
The internet, and social media in particular, is a great place to connect with other conservatives, learn from each other, and develop platforms. Were it not for social media, I’d be just another average college student. Because of Twitter I’ve been able to connect with tens of thousands of other conservatives, find stories to report on, and develop my own political views while talking to others. Social media is great for political activism because it opens so many doors that were never there before.
Being Active is Good
I encourage students to be vocal and active on their campuses even though they run a high risk of being ostracized and harassed for their beliefs.
Debating your beliefs in the face of disagreement is how you learn and grow in those beliefs. I think it’s great when conservatives go to leftist-leaning colleges, because that promotes diversity of ideas. It’s a chance to get out of the conservative bubble, talk with people you disagree with, and think through why you believe what you believe. I believe that I am getting the best education at Mount Holyoke College because I am constantly debating my views and having them challenged. The problem isn’t challenging views, the problem is shutting down views. Leftist students who shut out conservatives are only hurting themselves, and conservative students who want to reject liberal thinkers are just as bad.
Now, Kassy, you might ask, I don’t agree with a lot of conservative ideas, and I’m not interested in being politically active. Why should I care?
There’s a quote we feature prominently on Lone Conservative’s website, which is: “History is made by those who show up.”
This quote is from Benjamin Disraeli, a former British prime minister, and we use it as a call to action for both our readers, and writers.
Our generation – the current crop of college students – is going to grow up, and be the people in society that others will look up to. We have a choice: to either complain and throw tantrums when things don’t go our way, or to be responsible adults who recognize that our feelings don’t control reality.
History is going to be made one way or another, and it is our responsibility to choose to show up and do our part.
Now, I’ve talked about how social media being great for activism, but social media has a downside as well. The drive to fit ideas into 140 characters and the constant desire for attention means that both sides are pushed to further and further extremes. The rise of the “alt-right” is the most notable example of this.
I defined conservatism very specifically at the beginning of this talk for a reason, because the racist and fascist movement is most certainly not conservative, even though they try to say it is. They take this concept of free speech and open ideas to an extreme and say that “well, actually, saying racist things is good because it makes people think.”
That is wrong. There are some students out there who try to create their own platforms and use social media to spread lies, racism, anti-semitism, you name it, and they do it in the name of “conservatism.” Some of these alt-right students even have sizable followings.
I wrote an article in The Hill about a month ago, following the events of Charlottesville, condemning this train of thought, and yet I still have people on Twitter demanding to know how I can possibly call myself a conservative.
There are opportunists all across the internet hoping to educate students in their own brand of “conservatism” which appeals to emotion rather than logic, and has no actual rooting in conservatism.
They think that conservatism means “conserving” a white nationalist identity that rejects the core idea in the Declaration of Independence of liberty for all. They think hijacking liberty is necessary to fight back against what they see as multicultural evil.
In Charlottesville, they chanted the words “blood and soil,” literally a phrase originating from the German national socialist movement. They think it is funny to photoshop prominent Jewish conservatives into gas chambers. What started out as worthless internet banter has evolved into a dangerous ideological movement that seeks out young people to ensnare them. There is no moral compass to drive the alt-right.
I’ve seen, and experienced firsthand, the full brunt of the alt-right’s lunacy. This past semester I studied abroad in Israel, and I now have a constant stream of anonymous Twitter accounts tweeting anti-semitic memes at me and questioning my intelligence and making fun of me for my appearance. I’m pretty sure half of them are just bots created for the sole purpose of harassing me. At the same time, I know that these trolls actually buy into the white nationalist and antisemitic beliefs they’re sending my way, and think that they’re better because of it.
We Have to Be Careful With the Internet
People fall into this trap because they rely too heavily on the Internet as a source of information and ideas, and create their own bubbles. Being a well-rounded member of society involves holding yourself accountable in your beliefs, to the world, rather than insulating those beliefs and looking for your own confirmation bias.
Echo chambers are bad for constructive thought. Modern American academia is falling into this by fostering a safe space mentality and rejecting conservative thought. The far right spreads conspiracies, takes on an extreme us-versus-them mentality, and operates in a cult-like fashion, just to encourage its followers to look only to them for answers. On either side there are extremes, and the internet draws us towards them.
Being a campus conservative is difficult, because we are often being pulled on both sides. On one side, we have professors and fellow students who often mock, harass, and devalue us for not conforming to a leftist mindset, and on the other side, we have the “alt-right” movement that wants to delegitimize the values of liberty and replace it with totalitarianism.
It’s difficult to thread the needle between the two, especially when there is overwhelming temptation to succumb to a path of least resistance and go with a herd mentality.
Well, in five years, these “alt-right patriots,” right alongside the crazed student members of Antifa, are going to have a difficult time explaining to employers how they are actually stable, productive members of society.
We Have to Be Responsible
Because after all, the goal of higher education is to prepare us for the world ahead.
Throughout this speech, I’ve been very critical of modern American colleges and the administrations who run them. I’m fully aware, and grateful for the fact, that this college, Westminster College, is an exception to the rule. Laying all the blame on unseen college administrators for the problems in academia would be an easy cop-out.
As Ronald Reagan once said, “We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.”
We, as students, are the ones responsible for restoring sanity to higher education. We cannot just blame the system for being broken. We should reject the “safe space” mentality that is taking over society. We have to recognize that people will disagree with us, even offend us, and life is just going to go on. We can use the power of social media to transform how we engage with ideas and learn, in ways that no other generation has been able to do. But we have to recognize that it’s so easy with the internet to be sucked into ideas that don’t stand the test of time and drive us further from the straight and narrow.
Questions & Answers
Q1: “You talk about how liberal colleges and liberal students behave, well, if you were to look at it as a sociologist or as a liberal scientist, you would say that their behavior is a manifestation of the problem. What is the source of the problem?
A: I think the source of the problem is when you have students growing up, getting participation trophies in different sporting events, they’re not understanding that it’s okay to have competition, it’s okay to interact with things you disagree with.
I think people have been too sheltered recently, and that’s what’s causing this, and I think it’s getting worse.
Last year, when I was speaking at college campuses and going to these events, we saw protesters try to shut down the speakers. Now, we have students who are actually assaulting speakers. In Middlebury College in Vermont, Charles Murray went to go speak a couple of months ago, last semester, and he was assaulted, and so was a professor. This is so wrong. Does that answer your question?
Q1, continued: This sort of sheltering mentality, how do you think it has come about? Do you think this is a purely coincidental liberal movement? Or could this also be argued as a general and non-partisan issue that has led to this?
A: So, I think in the 90s, I’d say it was the conservatives who were the ones that were creating safe spaces. You had conservatives trying to ban violent video games, you had them saying no one can swear on TV and the radio, you had people trying to make them conform to different things and public schools all around America were restricting shirts that might have had something too political on it, so I think the conservatives used to be the ones that were doing this. And I think now it’s turning into the liberals, because they’re trying to make society be more accepting. By doing that, they’re making definitions of what is accepting. They are putting these standards down and are trying to get a consensus, but they’re not getting a consensus from everyone. They’re just getting consensus from their side. And that’s because a lot of campuses, like I said, are just liberal professors.
Q2: You said that conservatism was being co-opted by certain movements, but what do you recommend conservatives do to deal with that?
A: I think the big problem right now is that many people on the left are using this brilliant political strategy that they’re labeling all Trump supporters the Alt- Right. I think the Alt-Right used to be bigger, but I think it has fractioned into three different groups.
So there’s the Alt-Right; these are your neo-Nazis, your white nationalists, the people that openly say, “I support a white ethno-state.” That’s Richard Spencer, and those were the guys that were in Charlottesville; most of them.
Then, there’s the Alt-Lite. These are people who preach Westernism, but you’ll also hear a lot of anti-Islam in it. They don’t explicitly say they’re white nationalists, but sometimes they may have other terms for it. This is your Milo Yiannopoulos. This is your Mike Cernovich. This is your Paul Joseph Watson. In some cases, this is your Alex Jones. You guys are familiar with many of those people.
And then there’s the New Right. These are people that might have been formally Democrat. They might have been formally apolitical. These people solely are part of this group because they support Donald Trump. They’re not Republicans; they’re only Republicans for Donald Trump.
And then when you conflate these groups, you’re making the alt-right look really big, and you’re giving them legitimacy. The alt-right, honestly, is made up of a couple thousand people who sit on their computer all day and troll and they think it’s fun.
The best thing you can do to defeat these people is…mainstream media needs to stop giving them as much attention as they’re getting. They went to this rally that Richard Spencer held that was like 200 people, and made it seem like it was this giant movement in America.
And see, this is a political strategy. By doing that, they are making it seem like Donald Trump started all of these things. The best thing we can do is denounce them, and not give them more attention than what they need.
Q3: So you talk about how, everybody, when they look at the right, they look at the alt-right, which is the very far right. What is it that you stand for? What is it that makes you right and not in the far right? What is it about issues that are important to you that are not alt-right?
A: Yeah, of course, so I don’t believe in white nationalism. I think that’s ridiculous. I’m a Middle Eastern studies student. I’m studying Hebrew and Arabic, and I speak Spanish. I like diverse groups of people, but I like all diversity. I like ideological diversity as well.
I think every person has issues that are really important to them. My issues that are really important to me include gun rights, I’m a big pro-Israel activist, free speech, just normal conservatism, and more like the Reagan-brand conservatism.
But if you look at the alt-right, some of the things they support–like Richard Spencer, he supports socialized healthcare. He actually wrote a giant op-ed about that. That’s clearly not conservative. I don’t think any conservative will agree with that.
So, that’s a little bit about me. It’s mostly free speech that really gets me going.
Q4: (Mostly inaudible, question is from an immigrant from Syria about Kassy’s opinion of the proposed travel ban)
A: So I know what you’re talking about how Donald Trump has had this travel ban, and yes, people are conflicted about it. Even the right is not united on it. A lot of people on the right think about it as an overall strategy, but they don’t think about who it actually affects. They say, “Donald Trump said he’d do this, so you know, let’s support it.” But some people aren’t looking at how it actually affects people.
I’m grateful that the ban is only temporary. If it were permanent I’d be against it. I don’t think we necessarily need a temporary ban to train our people in the federal government or federal law enforcement. I think they’re the best in the world. I think we should funnel some more money into training them. I don’t think that a ban was necessary. But I completely understand what you’re saying.
My recommendation is, are these students who support Trump, do they act like they don’t want your existence? I encourage you to invite them out to coffee and talk to them. I really hate how people at my school, a lot of times, just stereotype who I am and don’t really ask me what I believe in. “She supports Trump, she must support the wall or all of these things!” They don’t come and talk to me about them. So I think it’s really important, if you see a MAGA hat and you think, “they don’t like my existence,” just say “hey, let’s talk about it.” So I’m definitely advocating for more discussions.
Q4, continued: So I know a lot of people who voted for Trump and say they didn’t vote for this or this policy, they only wanted, say, his healthcare plan, and they didn’t want the ban. But do you think it’s still important enough, as a topic, for you to stop voting for an individual? (inaudible)
A: Well, the best way to give the perspective to the figurative student you’re talking about, is to make them see the face of somebody these policies might affect. Now, let’s be honest: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were the least favorable candidates of all time. That’s a fact. People voted for Donald Trump whether they wanted Neil Gorsuch or not; that’s one of the reasons I did. Or maybe they were in middle America and felt like the political elite was not paying attention to them. People didn’t vote for Hillary because they might have not liked her, they thought she was a liar and was crooked, whatever.
I think the problem in America is that we have two political parties that are very powerful, and when you’re voting, you have to pick one. You have to pick your poison, and you’re not going to agree with that one the entire time. So that’s why it’s so important that you vote in local elections.
Q5: Why is that you chose to support Trump?
A: So, like I said, I worked on Carly Fiorina’s campaign. So, I eventually voted Marco Rubio in the primary, and then later on I was kind of supporting Cruz, I didn’t know how I felt about it, and then [Trump] was nominated, he was my nominee, and I refused to vote for Hillary Clinton. I thought a lot of things she did was wrong and I picked my poison. Maybe it was the Supreme Court, that was the biggest, most important thing to me.
Q6: Do you think the two party system that we have here in the United States has destroyed the integrity in politics?
A: I wouldn’t go that far, but I would say that it makes people feel like they don’t have a voice. So, many people don’t vote in America, way lower than any other country because they don’t feel like it does anything. Like in my state, my family didn’t vote. They were like, “it’s going to go blue anyway, who cares?” And that really hurts people, you know? So I think that the two party system isn’t going to change. It’s way too powerful. It would take a really big movement to get it going, but I think it just makes people feel unheard.
Q7: So going off that two party thing, you said it would take a big movement, but back in the, I believe, 2000s as well as back when Abraham Lincoln was president, there were three parties there. So, technically speaking, it is a possibility. So how can someone get a third party in there, or even a fourth or a fifth so that we can get rid of this two party system?
A: You don’t nominate Gary Johnson. That’s my answer to that. The Libertarian Party, they had a good chance this time, but they nominated Gary Johnson and he just made a fool of himself. So the Libertarian Party was the best chance, but obviously they received very little and Jill Stein didn’t do well either. It needs to be a movement, and how you start movements like this is very difficult. There’s actually a group right now called the Constitutional Convention. It would reform the spending cap and all those things, so, maybe after Donald Trump you’ll see more of these movements, and maybe it’ll be a bipartisan movement too.
Q8: You said that, as college kids, it’s up to us to restore sanity to our campus, how do you suggest we do that?
A: So, I agree with Ben Shapiro on most things, but he said when he went to college, he wrote like Bernie Sanders. For me, as a Middle Eastern studies major, I like to find a friend in my professors. I’m really close with a lot of them. I talk to them and I’m like “Hey look, I have a different opinion than you, I’m going to voice it in class, and I hope you enjoy it.” And they actually do. They like having me in the class because I offer a different opinion, and it’s much more fun listening to students debate than preaching at students all day long.
So I think it’s important that students speak up, but do it respectfully. Talk to your professors, make friends with them and you’re going to have to work harder on a lot of your assignments
I have had to sit down with my professors with essays and go over every single thing because they’re like “I disagree with you here, I disagree with you here,” and I’m like, “Well, it doesn’t matter if you disagree with me, is it a good argument?” So, you have to really work harder as a conservative, unfortunately, on a lot of issues. Especially when you’re talking about economics. My economics class did not go well for me.
You have to speak up. Organize. Right now you’re seeing many different colleges organize and create these new clubs. There’s Young Americans for Liberty, which we have a representative here, for Libertarian students. We have Young America’s Foundation, the one that brings Ben Shapiro and all the other speakers everywhere, we have TPUSA, we have the College Republicans, we have Students for Liberty. So, there’s all these different organizations that donors are putting money into, because they realize that we’re not going to educate the professors, so you have these student organizations that are there to invite speakers and educate students.
So, if you guys want to learn how to get involved, you guys should just start a chapter. And not just the College Republicans, because that’s partisan, so you have some restrictions. The non-profits are better because you can get more donors for different speakers.
Q9: I kind of have a comment and a question. First of all, what I like that Ben Shapiro says a lot is that there’s nothing wrong with triggering a leftist, but you have to trigger them with the truth not just for the sake of triggering. I think that’s very important. I think when you speak something that’s true about your beliefs, that’s not the same thing as being blatantly racist. My question is, with all the violence that’s going on recently in St. Louis, that’s where I’m from, related to Black Lives Matter and police shootings and things like that, how do you show opposition to a group where if you do show opposition, you’re going to be labeled as a racist. And what needs to be done to stop all the violence?
A: Well first, shouting cuck at somebody does nothing. Cuck is a term the alt-right likes to use every single day. It does nothing. So triggering, you’re right, does nothing. Now, in response to your question is, there was a Trump rally this weekend in Washington D.C. at the Washington Monument, it was called the Mother of All Rallies, and Black Lives Matter showed up and they went up to the Trump organizers, it wasn’t Trump affiliated but it was a pro Trump rally, and they asked for the stage. And the most amazing thing happened. These guys got up there, they took the mic and I was like okay, okay what’s going on here. Eventually they started chanting “USA, USA, USA.” And then they said this, and I thought this was really smart. They said “I’m not against cops, I’m against bad cops, just like I’m against bad plumbers and bad politicians”. And at this point, when he first got up there the Trump supporters were like “I don’t know if I expected this. What’s gonna happen here?” And then as they started going they were getting claps, they were getting chants. They all started chanting “USA” together so, I thought that was a really good unity moment. They let these guys have the stage and everyone came together. So I think we need more of that.
And now about the violence, it’s honestly really scary. And I think what happens are politicians limit the police from doing their job. You saw this with Berkeley. That’s what was happening before Ben Shapiro was about to come in. The city council allowed the police to actually police. So I think you need to look at the violence. We also need to have more community conversations to figure out what is the source of the violence. Because looking at the violence isn’t the only answer. You need to look at the source of the problem.
Q10: What is your political philosophy? Why do you use the term leftists?
A: So, if I had to exactly pinpoint my political philosophy, I would call myself a conservatarian. I have a lot of libertarian beliefs when it comes to social issues and when it comes to the free market.
However, I like to use the word leftist rather than liberal because I don’t think liberals are shutting down speech. I don’t think that’s a liberal concept. I say leftist, because a lot of these people are Anarcho-Communists or Communist Socialists. So, I like to use leftists because many of these people identify as many different things, so I like to use that term, and I don’t want to insult the liberals because I don’t think that’s a liberal thing. So yes, there are many different groups of people: we’re humans, we like to be in groups, and I think identity politics is a bad thing, but obviously we like to be in groups, but I think it’s more important to preach individualism… even though I’m up here telling you about conservatism.
Q11: I’m going back to what you said on the point of speaking to your professor and using your voice. But I wanted to know how you do that when you’re a minority. How do you express your voice when you’re a minority?
A: I would talk to people, have discussions. One on one chats are my favorite thing. So I think the best thing to do, like most professors have office hours. Go in, talk to them, get to know them I think that’s important. I would say that sometimes it may be difficult depending on who the professor is. For instance, a professor at John Jay College, which is a school that focuses on criminal justice, tweeted out “I have the privilege to have the ability to teach future dead cops” Could you imagine that? Could you imagine going to school wanting to be a cop and have your professor tweeted that about you? It makes you feel really unsafe. So I don’t think that professors like him, because he’s really not rational, would be a good person to go talk to. I think that’s something that at a public school, you should take it up with the dean because I would not want to be in a class with that guy.
Q12: Like you said, I was actually very disappointed with what happened at Middlebury College in regards to you know like, beating up the professor and Charles Murray. What’s your opinion on the works on Charles Murray?
A: Yeah, so I haven’t read The Bell Curve. It’s called The Bell Curve if you guys are ever interested in reading his ideas. I don’t agree with it necessarily, I think that nature vs. nurture argument; you can’t prove either. I think it’s just a wide thesis that he had out there. So I don’t necessarily agree with him but I haven’t read the entire book so I probably should do that. But, if you really disagree with him, go challenge him. Like for instance, Linda Sarsour is coming to my college this year. I am not a fan of Linda Sarsour, at all. Anyone familiar with Linda Sarsour? Organizer of the Women’s March? She’s Palestinian, and she told another Muslim woman who had FGM, told her that she didn’t deserve a vagina. She’s coming to my school, and I’m not going to protest it. I’m not going to organize against it. I am going to go there and ask her a question. I am going to challenge her. I want her to answer something that I’m asking her. Usually she speaks to crowds that are liberal, people ask her questions that are easy. I want to ask her a hard question. So I think if someone went to a Charles Murray speech, and asked him a hard question, that would be more productive than shutting him down because if you shut him down, you’re giving him so much of a platform.
Q12, continued: So let’s say what if there is a biological difference in our intelligence, I think we have to take a moral stance because let’s say, whatever the case, like in a good society people shouldn’t have to get shot by the police just because of their skin color or because someone makes an assumption off them based on where they live. So I think at some point, we have to make a moral judgement about what we do. So what moral judgement would you make? Like if there’s research, let’s say, that people from Nepal have a really low IQ, so does that mean we can’t exist together in society?
A: I would take a moral stance by trying to critique his research, because he did research this he didn’t pull it out of nowhere. I’d critique his research and tell him I don’t agree with it. I think that’s what you should do. There are actually so many books that are refuting what he said, and I think that’s actually important to read.
(Photo credit: Eric Neblock)