179 Comments

I want to know how come we aren't criticizing Masha Gessens analogy by talking about Hamas money? They have had infusion of tens of millions of dollars where her analogy of German ghettos were brutalized by poverty.

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Universities have always been a bit of a microcosm in a way. The antisemitism on campus is just a slice of reality... sure the firing won’t help, but it sure sends a message to leadership and potential leadership around the country to stop f*cking around. I certainly stand for free speech but there needs to be a clear line on what overreaches and clearer words spoken from leaders about where that line is drawn so that students, employees & the public can follow suit. Bad speech should be allowed, but it needs to be beaten by better speech and better speech code/policy (but NOT censureship).

There was a bomb threat at a synagogue near my hometown in Bucks County PA. They had to be evacuated both there and the nearby school, and thankfully nobody hurt. One of the reddest counties in PA and maybe the nation, sure, but you can bet your ass it wasn’t a Conservative who called that threat in...

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It’s been attributed to a French philosopher that didn’t agree with what you said but he will defend to the death your right to say it. Without searching I think it was attributed to Voltaire but it really doesn’t matter. The principle counts, and that is true free speech. Where I part with you is the reality or the perceived reality of aspects of physical violence that has accompanied antisemitism on campuses, whether at Penn or others. The death in the defense of free speech comes on the side of defending it not attacking it. When you step in to threatening you’ve gone out of free speech.

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"it would have demanded a fortitude and moral clarity that Magill, like so many of our so-called leaders in the third decade of the twenty-first century, seem congenitally incapable of."

The ouster of Liz Magill won't solve the problem, but if Liz Magill is "congenially incapable" of showing "fortitude and moral clarity", her ouster is the correct first step.

Rather than pressuring her to do what she is incapable of, isn't it the right decision to look for someone who is capable?

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Or she was simply an incompetent administrator and displayed the natural wisdom of a fence post. I'm sure she was also ably aided with response language from Penn's elite lawyers so as to not be able to answer a simple question regarding genocide. Their intellectually suffocating responses should qualify each of these college presidents inclusion in the Guiness Book of World records.

Academic freedom has produced a generation of academics and college grads who are prepared to sacrifice themselves on the altar of DEI or, more accurately a doctrine that seeks to entrench acceptable forms of racism, bigotry and ignorance for the sake of satisfying a self-serving narcissm and nihilism that is running amok in this country. There is no instrumentation capable of measuring the intellectual vacuum this garbage produces and is now presented as a form of "academic freedom." What some might call academic freedom more often resembles an intellectual absurdity that only our elite academic institutions are capable of spawning. Contemptible doesn't even begin to cover this ideological garbage.

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The ouster of Penn's president isn't supposed to "fix the problem". It supposed to remove an incompetent administrator.

Why does every left-leaning twit think that every goddamned action must somehow be part of a larger effort at "systemic change"?

Getting even with this whiny bitch from U-Penn is a good enough reason for raking her over the fucking coals and shitting her out the back end.

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Her staying was clearly not making life safer for Jewish student- so please, spare the world your indignation.

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I am all in favor of free speech, but it does not mean you can threaten other people with violence. That was my understanding of the failure here by Penn leadership. Students at Penn and other universities who happen to be Jewish or Israeli are feeling threatened and physically intimidated. They are not just in disagreement with other students. The president must set the right moral tone for passionate disagreements on campus and that can never sanction threats or violence.

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Dec 13, 2023·edited Dec 13, 2023

Will. My mind is open. How about returning Title IX to its intent; removing expansions/modifications, mission creep, that permitted it to be weaponized to combat speech DEI types dislike.

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I appreciate Savodnik's argument, but doubt that Magill would be willing or able to change anything about the status quo at Penn. My concern is that she will now become a martyr for the pro-Hamas movement, but honestly, her vibe is so smug and joyless that it's hard to imagine anyone wanting to be in the same room as her.

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She likely will. Surprisingly I didn’t consider that. Hmm.

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What she was supposed to say was well-written, I support that. But saying she stood up for freedom of speech, for antisemites or anyone else, is BS. She stood up for nothing and nobody. She just cowered before the woke mob dictating what the culture shall be in the academy (and corporations and elsewhere). To have her stay in her position would be a scandal - although that's exactly what I expected

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So it looks like Claudine Gay will stay. Pay attention to the statement - https://time.com/6364418/claudine-gay-harvard-president-staying-board/

“Our extensive deliberations affirm our confidence that President Gay is the right leader to help our community heal and to address the very serious societal issues we are facing,” the Harvard Corporation said in a statement following its meeting Monday."

Putting pressure on these colleges to dismiss their presidents won't get rid of the issue, as others have pointed out. You have to address the issue head on - DEI being used as a cultural weapon to change society in educational institutes, and why that kind method (and the principles in it), are not the way forward. That's an ongoing debate specifically calling out what's wrong with the ideology, and if there is merit, providing a better alternative. Otherwise we live in a world where those who are called out, are the ones being attacked by the usual villains (white supremacy, patriarchy, micro-aggressions everywhere, etc) and where it's just proof that backs up the the oppressor/oppressed ideology.

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"fortitude and moral clarity that Magill, like so many of our so-called leaders in the third decade of the twenty-first century, seem congenitally incapable of." BUT "Magill should have held on to her job". That's internally contradictory.

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Magill resignation by itself is not doing much. BUT, what are the true expectation of the leader of her scale and impact. I believe, this is what was challenged during the hearings. I nether have seen a leader in her nor a person who is ultimately seeking the truth, as a most important pursued in education. I am all for her removal, as well as for MIT and Harvard "leaders."

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She could have just read aloud the letter U of C sends to incoming freshmen, though Penn and Harvard are two of the few major universities that have NOT formally adopted the so-called Chicago Principles.

https://chicagomaroon.com/22405/news/university-to-freshmen-dont-expect-safe-spaces-or-trigger-warnings/

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Right on. The amount of UChicago students screaming antisemitic hate slogans and UChicago administrators spewing evasive crapspeak = ZERO.

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Less, anyway.

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I like this piece. Savodnik succinctly addresses the entirety of the situation. There is illiberal rot that needs to be removed. The president's job is too often about fundraising, instead of education and building character. The resignation will mean only another fool leads Penn. Remember Watergate? Many historians have concluded all he had to do was admit a mistake early on and he would have likely been forgiven by the American people. If one major college president stated, years ago, there's something rotten in Denmark, we might not be where we are today. I hope this incident serves as a cue to the others. Dedicate yourselves, college presidents, to that which Savodnik suggested for Magil. Stand up for God's sake!

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