n op-ed in the Princeton University student newspaper attacking conservatives’ right to free speech has triggered an impassioned response from many students, and even a professor.
Princeton student Ryan Born argued in his op-ed for The Daily Princetonian that “when conservatives appeal to ‘free speech,'” it is safe to ignore them, since “they are appealing to a right that does not exist.”
“In my belief, when conservative ideas are opposed, there is no right that is being infringed,” he adds.
(Note…. Princeton recently dissolved conservative editorial board)
Notably, an editor’s working comments were accidentally left in the print edition of The Princetonian, showing that even the paper’s allegedly left-leaning editors were uneasy with the argument.
“I don’t think this makes sense,” the editor wrote next to Born’s comments, asking that he add “in my belief” to the sentence.
“Because ‘free speech’ is a cornerstone of our rights under the Constitution, it can appear that conservatives’ socially free speech has this constitutional tradition as its backbone,” he continues, but contends that conservative speech “is something much different” because “conservatives are interested in being able to propose their ideas without any political opposition to their right to speech.”
Born goes on to contend that “if conservative arguments were strong, they would be convincing, and if they were convincing, they would not meet political opposition,” and conservatives would consequently not need to rely on appeals to free speech.
“If the only justification conservatives can offer for their ideas is that they merely exist, then let me say as Trotsky did: ‘You are miserable bankrupts, your role is played out; go where you ought to go—into the dustbin of history!'” he declares.
Born closes by stating that there exists “no such thing as ‘social free speech,’ where ‘free’ refers to a right to speak free from obstinate opposition. And if conservatives disagree, they are welcome to it. I, and others, are happy to respond accordingly.”
Read the rest at CampusReform