Remember when Ben Shapiro was scheduled to speak at Berkeley last year and the school’s administration set up special counseling sessions for any students who were too traumatized by his being in the same county to face another day? Ah, good times, my friends. But that was then and this is now. At a different school, another “controversial” speaker is going to be taking the stage and someone needs to think about the emotional well being of the students who may be similarly affected.
This time it’s the University of Connecticut and the speaker is none other than Linda Sarsour. You may remember Ms. Sarsour for her leadership role in the women’s march, her admiration for the noble fighters of Antifa, her support for Sharia law and her disdain for Jewish people. With someone so clearly divisive and disturbing coming to town, will there be any special safe spaces of emotional therapy groups set up for conservatives (or simply sane people) who are put off by her presence? As Campus Reform reported this weekend, it seems that little detail has been overlooked.
The University of Connecticut will host Linda Sarsour this month with no restrictions despite placing restrictions on the Ben Shapiro event in January.
Sarsour, a Women’s March organizer and open advocate for Sharia Law, is scheduled to speak on UConn’s campus for the opening of Women’s History Month lecture series “Nevertheless she Persisted,” according to The College Fix.
“A speaker’s presence on campus doesn’t mean that UConn as an institution has endorsed his or her message.”
The lecture series is sponsored by the UConn Center for Diversity and Inclusion and the Women’s Gender and Sexualities Studies Department, among other campus organizations.
The College Fix asked UConn about this seeming double standard but the responses they received were meandering at best. The administration continues to insist that, “public universities should be places where differing views can be expressed respectfully and where our students and other guests can consider and challenge a variety of opinions.”
Just as at Berkeley, UConn offered special services for students when Shapiro appeared there in January. Since both are being allowed to speak, and considering that UConn went out of their way to point out that Sarsour’s appearance doesn’t represent an “endorsement” of her by the school, I suppose that’s true to a point. But all of this is supposedly being done to benefit and enrich the students. Shouldn’t that include their mental health and safety as well? If you’re going to spring for counselors when a conservative speaker comes to town, how about the case of an Antifa-loving person who implicitly endorses violence?
Not so much, I’m afraid. But in the end, it probably won’t matter. I somehow don’t expect the College Republicans or whichever other conservative groups have eked out a foothold at UConn to run for the fainting couches when they hear a differing opinion. That seems to be reserved for the snowflake squad.