November 21, 2017

CHARLES C.W. COOKE OFFERS A CORRECTION TO AN OTHERWISE GOOD PIECE ON CAMPUS FREE SPEECH: Richard Spencer Hasn’t Been Invited By Campus Conservative Groups:

In New York magazine, Jesse Singal pens a long defense of free speech on campus. It’s well done, and worth reading. Overall, I’d recommend it. But I must push back against the opening, which includes a rather misleading implication:

The existence of white nationalist Richard Spencer, and other bigoted far-right figures like him, poses a genuine challenge to public universities. Conservative student groups invite these sorts of figures to speak fairly often, and the courts have consistently held that public universities can’t really interfere with such events.

Having read this, you could be forgiven for thinking that “conservative student groups” have invited ”white nationalist Richard Spencer” to speak on campus, and that they have done so “fairly often.” This isn’t correct. Richard Spencer has indeed spoken on college campuses recently. But, invariably, he has invited himself.

Just FYI.

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