UC Berkeley public policy professor Robert Reich has come out to support freedom of speech in light of Ann Coulter’s recent speech cancellation with the following statement:
“It was a grave mistake [to cancel Ann Coulter’s speech at UC Berkeley]….
How can students understand the vapidity of Coulter’s arguments without being allowed to hear her make them, and question her about them?
It’s one thing to cancel an address at the last moment because university and local police are not prepared to contain violence – as occurred, sadly, with Yiannopoulos. It’s another thing entirely to cancel an address before it is given, when police have adequate time to prepare for such eventualities.
Free speech is what universities are all about. If universities don’t do everything possible to foster and protect it, they aren’t universities. They’re playpens.”
Dr. Reich is absolutely correct on free speech, but Berkeley has become far more dangerous than mere playpens.
With the recent episodes in stopping individuals from speaking on campus, it has become a cesspool of highly-entitled children who would sooner commit violence than to hear different opinions.
Berkeley has a long way to go before it again can call itself the home of the “free speech movement.”