Following in the footsteps of students at Missouri and Yale, students at Vanderbilt are now petitioning for the suspension of Professor of Law and Political Science Carol Swain for being “hateful” toward minorities. According to Peter Kirsanow in National Review, Carol Swain, who is black, made “politically incorrect statements about radical Islam and her traditional Christian beliefs, statements that the petitioners deem intolerant.”
Without any apparent sense of irony, the petitioners make the inevitable demand that Swain be sent to diversity training camp (along with the rest of the faculty) so that she will think and speak in a manner approved by the commissars of political correctness.
The WSJ reports that Mitch Daniels, former Indiana governor and now president of Purdue University, addressed the issue of the children’s revolt at Yale and Missouri in a letter “to the Purdue community.” Read here President Daniels’ letter that embraces tolerance, yet remains committed to free speech and open debate.
Events this week at the University of Missouri and Yale University should remind us all of the importance of absolute fidelity to our shared values. First, that we strive constantly to be, without exception, a welcoming, inclusive and discrimination-free community, where each person is respected and treated with dignity. Second, to be steadfast in preserving academic freedom and individual liberty.
Two years ago, a student-led initiative created the “We Are Purdue Statement of Values,” which was subsequently endorsed by the University Senate. Last year, both our undergraduate and graduate student governments led an effort that produced a strengthened statement of policies protecting free speech. What a proud contrast to the environments that appear to prevail at places like Missouri and Yale. Today and every day, we should remember the tenets of those statements and do our best to live up to them fully.
Here are the protests at Yale and University of Missouri respectively: