I have heard that Harvard University is losing donors because of its perceived lacklaster response to the Hamas attacks, and its refusal to condemn the hate-filled actions of some of its students.

Likewise, the CEO's of some companies have asked to be given a list of those students who have supported the hateful statements and demonstrations, so that they can be sure not to hire any of them.

I make no apology for my own strong support of Israel, but a few things come to mind:

  • Colleges and universities should not be expected to take a stand on political issues. Their job is education, and they would do well to pay more attention to doing that well, and less to yapping about things that are none of their business.
  • It is the right—nay, the duty—of an individual, a company, or a foundation to make sure that the values of the organizations they support align sufficiently with their own. That's why we stopped supporting our own alma mater long ago.
  • I believe some students, not only at Harvard but all over the country, are willfully doing evil things, though most of those involved in the demonstrations are probably just guilty of unthinking peer-dependency. Like it or not, however, college students are renowned for doing stupid things. I know; I was in college in the early 70's. The leadership ranks of many, maybe most, modern organizations are filled with executives who did very stupid, even evil, things in college. Hence my suspicions that the wish to blacklist certain students might be a tad hypocritical.
  • Despite what I said above about colleges not getting involved in politics, I believe that the the opinions and actions of some of Harvard's students were so egregious that Harvard should have officially, strongly condemned the ideas while still supporting the rights of the students to hold wrong views and to make them public.
  • I've said it before, and I'll keep saying it:

If we don't believe in freedom of speech and the right of peaceable assembly for those whose ideas we hate, we don't believe in them at all.

Posted by sursumcorda on Saturday, October 21, 2023 at 7:02 am | Edit
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