Georgetown University protestors shut down talk by head of Homeland Security

Here’s another instance of deplatforming by the Left, which should be embarrassed since, in the last few years, far more speakers have been disinvited or deplatformed by the Left (traditionally the party of free speech) than by the Right (go back five years in FIRE’s disinvitation database, where the ratio for just this year is about 2:1).

Click on the screenshot to read the New York Times piece:

From the article above:

Kevin K. McAleenan, the acting secretary of homeland security, was forced offstage at Georgetown University’s law school by demonstrators who shut down his planned keynote address as they protested the Trump administration’s immigration policies.

Almost immediately after Mr. McAleenan was introduced to give a speech hosted by the Migration Policy Institute, nearly a dozen advocates and law students in the crowd stood up holding signs saying, “Stand with immigrants” and “Hate is not normal.” Standing at the lectern in front of the packed auditorium, Mr. McAleenan tried to start speaking but was drowned out by chants of: “When immigrants are under attack, what do we do? Stand up, fight back.”

The protesters also read the names of the migrants who have died after being detained at the border.

. . . On Monday, Doris Meissner, the director of United States immigration policy at the Migration Policy Institute and a former commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, pleaded with protesters to allow Mr. McAleenan to speak. She told them they were “robbing” other members of the audience who came to hear him. The demonstrators said that people at the border were being robbed of their lives.

Mr. McAleenan waited for the chants to quiet down and tried to speak at least three times. Visibly frustrated, he thanked Ms. Meissner before walking off the stage. Some people in the audience also expressed disappointment with the protesters. Mr. McAleenan was scheduled to take questions from attendees after his remarks.

“There are some very serious issues that we can talk about in candor in a real dialogue, or we can continue to shout,” Mr. McAleenan said. “I’d like to take our dialogue today above the politics and the daily news cycle and talk about the challenges and efforts that we’ve faced over the past year.”

Here’s a C-Span video of the deplatforming. Clearly, Georgetown needed to call security to clear out the disruptors, who look like petulant children.

Clearly, talk about immigration is considered “hate speech”, or at least speech that shouldn’t be heard. This is an embarrassment to Georgetown, which apparently had no security in place to quiet the protestors and prevent the de-platforming.  Whatever you think about Trump’s immigration policy (and of course I think that much of it is reprehensible), McAleenan should have the chance to make his case.  What kind of University is Georgetown? Clearly not The University of Chicago! Where were the administrators and security personnel?

Even more embarrassing is that students and faculty demanded McAleenan’s removal, and, when they didn’t get it, decided on mob action (my emphasis):

“It’s our belief that no institution should be elevating, normalizing or legitimizing any of the Trump immigration officials who are quite honestly carrying out policies that are rooted in the white nationalism that Donald Trump and Stephen Miller are so blatantly trying to institutionalize,” said Nicole Regalado, the campaign director at Credo Action, an advocacy organization, which helped organize the protest.

She said more than a dozen organizations sent the organizers of the event a letter requesting that Mr. McAleenan’s invitation be rescinded. About 350 Georgetown law students, faculty members and alumni also signed a separate petition asking for his removal.

Why on earth would a Trump official speaking about immigration policy “normalize” that policy? It expresses the administration’s policy, but to say that it has “normalized” those views implies that the audience is brainless, can’t think for itself, and will be swayed toward Trumpism if they simply hear an administration official speaking. This is patronizing: the deplatformers claim the right to determine what everyone should be allowed to hear. (And, of course, it’s only their views.) Have they not heard of free speech and then counterspeech? Do they not think that counterspeech is effective, so that they must quash free speech? The answer is, of course, “yes.”

“Normalizing”, like “nuance,” is a word you should be very wary of in discussions of free speech.

60 Comments

  1. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    There was something like a manual that Obama is supposed to have issued as how to get attention at speeches – remember that? The Right was all over it. I can’t find this “manual” – all the links are about how to give a speech like Obama.

    Because I think this is what the Right was saying Obama was promoting.

    • ThyroidPlanet
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

      ^^^ “this” meaning deplatforming, or doing stuff like interrupting Ted Cruz whole he is eating at a restaurant.

      • WDB
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

        You’re thinking of Sal Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals.

        Your correct in saying that the Right seized on to this and began using it as a model. Now we have this sort of behavior getting much worse

        • ThyroidPlanet
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

          No – there was some sort of claim of Obama training centers and manuals for how to … IDK, get noticed?… by politicians or something. There was poor cell phone video of people … acting up, I guess.

          But this is the problem-I can’t find these stories.

  2. Raph Shirley
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    How many people has the head of homeland security deplatformed? Freedom of speech doesn’t mean anybody is forced to listen.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

      No, but it doesn’t give you a right to veto talks so that OTHER people can’t listen.

      • aljones909
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

        A rather obvious point. I don’t think any of these deplatformed incidents would have required anybody to attend and listen

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

          I don’t understand your point at all.

          • aljones909
            Posted October 9, 2019 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

            Apologies. I think I accidentally replied to the wrong comment.

        • ThyroidPlanet
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

          What isn’t obvious – which I think Saul is alluding to – is how the right to free speech also means the right to hear that speech. It isn’t a one-sided right. Hitchens argued this aspect strongly.

          • Saul Sorrell-Till
            Posted October 9, 2019 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

            Yes, that was my point. Ta.

      • Raph Shirley
        Posted October 10, 2019 at 5:03 am | Permalink

        It is a subtle point because in some sense you are seeking to prohibit the demonstrators’ freedom of speech. All speech is competing for an audience and if a university gives an individual the privilege of a platform how do you recommend challenging that? By listening and writing a blog afterwards? I am playing devils advocate to an extent but I don’t think it is so simple. For instance the television is completely passive. There is no capacity for the audience to retort so there is a power exercised in deciding who has access to the broadcasting apparatus. In a room where one human happens to be standing on a stage and another sitting on a chair they have the rare capacity to retort using the sheer force of volume to attack someone’s capacity to control
        the debate.

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted October 10, 2019 at 5:39 am | Permalink

          Yes, I agree that it’s not as simple as my argument implied. But at some point you have to draw a line otherwise it’s a total free-for-all where the loudest person wins.

        • Posted October 10, 2019 at 10:42 am | Permalink

          It’s not that subtle. I agree the protestors have freedom of speech but it doesn’t mean anybody should be forced to listen to them.

          The protestors’ right to free speech and Mr McAleenan’s right to free speech can easily be reconciled by having them speak in different locations or at different times.

    • Posted October 10, 2019 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      If you don’t want to listen, don’t go to the talk. You don’t have the right to stop me from listening and perhaps challenging his views in the Q&A.

      This was an opportunity lost.

  3. Randall Schenck
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    Probably a very poor choice to speak at the school or almost anywhere today. I think this guy is another acting director, nearly all of Trumps department heads are acting. I believe they showed this on the news the other day, pretty sad. Not saying the school was right but not a bit surprised it went the way it did.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think there’s anything wrong with opposing him being invited, and saying you disagree with the invitation in a letter, or giving your signature to a petition. But once he arrives, and his talk goes ahead, you shouldn’t have the right to stop other people from hearing him talk.

      Protest, wave placards, all of that if you feel the need to. But do not censor. And if you go in, you listen and then make your point in Q and A.
      Some small part of the liberal-left has just forgotten how to argue and debate. But we have the strongest arguments and we have consistently won debates throughout history. That should be our absolute forte. Too hard for some apparently.

      That’s the most disappointing part of this – that some on my side – a minority but still – are losing the ability to _persuade_ their opponents.
      Hectoring, wagging your finger, all that stuff only works if the people you’re talking to agree to be shamed by it. But in the real world that doesn’t work anymore. People will tell you that your bumph about white guilt is bullshit, and they’ll vote for a racist moron who agrees with them instead. All because we’ve forgotten that a necessary part of political progress is _persuasion._

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

        Certainly, all of that. Physically preventing someone from speaking is a childish and stupid way to handle anything. If I was running the school they would not be doing it. But then I would not be in or anywhere near these schools. My worries these days are all in large white house on the east coast, not far from that school we are talking about.

      • Jon Gallant
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

        If these de-platforming exercises had taken place 30 years ago, I too might have shaken my head sadly and murmured that “a small part of the Liberal-Left has just forgotten” etc. etc. At that time, 30 years ago, the liberal/social democratic part of the Left seemed to have regained its place in History, at the head of the wave which demolished the Berlin wall and the rest of the authoritarian Left’s power structures in Europe. But today, we have a not-so-small, self-designated part of the Left which sounds uncannily like the Socialist Unity Party in Erich Honecker’s day or its past admirers. The experiment has been replicated so many time—from Robespierre through Dzerzhinsky to Honecker to its current, comic-opera exemplars on Anglosphere campuses—that I begin to wonder whether the authoritarians might not after all be the more authentic spokespersons for the tendency called “Left”. I had to wonder about this even further, when I realized that, despite my liberal/social democratic inclinations, I would much prefer a government of the rational center-Right (epitomized by say, The Economist magazine) to one epitomized by Andrew Murray, Seumas Milne, or the Dean and Special Assistant to the President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Oberlin College.

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

          Well of course if you go out and pick the most awful people on the left and set them against “the rational centre-right” you’re going to find the latter more attractive.

          And no, I don’t think stories like this legitimise saying the majority of the liberal-left behaves like this. WEIT posts a lot of these stories so reading this site could easily give the impression that most liberal-leftists are pretty much nuts. But that isn’t the case.

        • max blancke
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

          Their behavior reminds me strongly of student members of the Red Guards during the PRC’s cultural revolution. Inflexible, dogmatic, and completely intolerant of dissent.

          Like the Red Guards, these kids have little understanding of the issues they are protesting, and no wish at all to engage in civilized debate, or even to let others engage in it.

      • Helen Hollis
        Posted October 10, 2019 at 1:46 am | Permalink

        Agreed, and my debate team high school level debater agrees!

    • BJ
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      Having one of the most important policymakers in the entire country is a very valuable speaker, no matter the administration or policies.

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted October 10, 2019 at 1:27 am | Permalink

        The acting secretary of Homeland Security “one of the most important policymakers in the entire country”? Really? Exactly how long is any policy he makes going to survive his first mis-step with tRump? Is he just another interchangeable tRump-bot?

        I have mixed feelings about this. I agree that on principle drowning out speakers is breaking the rules of civilised discourse. OTOH, if they’re going to be broken, I can’t think of a better individual to break them over. Is there any point in following the rules as a matter of principle when the other side not only won’t give you any credit for it, they will misuse, bend or break the rules any time they feel like it, and have no principles whatever?

        cr

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted October 10, 2019 at 6:43 am | Permalink

          There is a good point there about the asymmetry in ethics between the two sides, right and left, at the moment.

          How long do you continue to take the political high road when the American right has largely dismissed the rule of law as it applies to them and run roughshod over every tacit societal agreement that the US has?

          Exactly how much good has it done the MSM, for instance, to continue to invite on Trumpite liars and con artists, and engage them in reasonable discourse, giving them time to say what they like and yell over the interviewer, who gets criticised by both sides in the end anyway?

          What good is there in playing by the rules with people like Corey Lewandowski or Trump when they just turn up and essentially say ‘fuck you’ for the duration of a good faith attempt at dialogue?

          I still think that taking the high ground is crucial, because it’s the equivalent of one of those poles people staying in the arctic stick in the ground to guide them in case there’s a blizzard, but I can also understand people who’re sick of being taken for idiots by an American right that has simply left earth and is now orbiting the planet Fruitcakia.

          • Posted October 10, 2019 at 9:36 am | Permalink

            We have to think that most people in the US appreciate the high road being taken. If that’s not the case, we’re all doomed anyway. On the other hand, if the Dems also take the low road then, again, we’re doomed.

  4. Steve Cameron
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Like “normalize” and “nuance” I think “de-platform” is another one of those loaded words that should be avoided in these kinds of discussions. Was he de-platformed, implying he had no agency in the decision and no other way to get his message out, or did he walk off the stage himself after deciding that it wasn’t worth trying to deliver his speech over the shouts of the protesters?

    And regarding all the people in the audience who were disappointed that they couldn’t hear his speech, there must be many other ways they could familiarize themselves with his views. Being an acting director of a major government agency does provide Mr. McAleenan with many other avenues to deliver his message after all. And if these audience members were students who were interested in a discussion, surely a private guest lecture with the director could have been arranged.

    • EdwardM
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

      “Was he de-platformed, implying he had no agency in the decision and no other way to get his message out, or did he walk off the stage himself after deciding that it wasn’t worth trying to deliver his speech over the shouts of the protesters?”

      A distinction without a difference. And a weaselly one at that.

      • Steve Cameron
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

        Exactly my point.

        (But I get the sense you might be disagreeing with me?)

    • BJ
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

      If we can simply have our right to speech (and others’ rights to hear it) revoked because we can do it elsewhere, eventually that leaves us with nowhere. Not to mention it’s just a silly way to get around the fact that his talk was shut down. He was invited and people wanted to hear him speak.

      • Steve Cameron
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

        Good point. Now apply it to the protesters.

        The fact of the matter is he has no “right” to speech any more than anyone else. Neither him leaving the stage nor Georgetown (hypothetically) rescinding their offer would be an abrogation of his speech. Outside of the first amendment, which doesn’t apply here, there are no rights to speech or to hear speech that anyone can claim. If you think he should be heard, please explain why that should involve silencing the protesters. Out of politeness? If you are a free speech absolutist, this event is a good example of it : the guy got up to speak, people shouted him down, he walked off. There was no violence or coercion, just speech against speech. If you don’t agree, maybe you’re confusing free speech with “civil discourse” which is another thing entirely.

        • BJ
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

          There’s no “right” by law, but there is an ideal. Who said the protesters should be silenced? They should be allowed to protest as loudly as they want. But, seeing as how they weren’t invited to the event and the speaker was, they should have to protest outside the venue.

          I’m sorry, I’m just going to come out and say it: this is a dumb argument. The protesters wouldn’t be “silenced” by not being allowed to disrupt the event of an invited speaker. Would they be “silenced” if vegetarian protesters weren’t allowed to keep students from eating on days when the college served meat? Would they be “silenced” if they weren’t allowed to stop any class they wanted, at any time, for any reason? Would they be “silenced” if they weren’t allowed to block Jewish students from the Hillel building? These people could all protest such things, but to stop them isn’t protesting, it’s something else.

          Both sides have a right to be heard. You can’t pretend only one side does and, if they don’t get their way of silencing the other side, that’s somehow a silencing of them. That makes zero logical sense.

          • Steve Cameron
            Posted October 9, 2019 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

            You misunderstand what I wrote and your examples are ridiculous straw men. I don’t think anyone has the right to stop anyone else from doing anything in the name of free speech. McAleenan left because he didn’t want to talk over them, not because the protesters physically forced him off the stage, not because he feared for his safety, not because they took away his microphone.

            But your examples are interesting questions nonetheless. Here’s another one that’s more realistic : are anti-choice protesters “silenced” because they can’t block access to abortion clinics?

            • BJ
              Posted October 9, 2019 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

              No, those anti-choice protesters aren’t silenced. They can protest all they want on the public property outside the clinic, but they cannot bar people from going in.

              It is rather absurd to say that the speaker “didn’t want to talk over them.” You can’t talk over that many people. I think you know that, i think you know the intention of the students was to shut down the talk. I don’t think framing it that way is a good-faith argument.

              Again, they can protest all they want outside the event and make their voices heard. They shouldn’t be allowed to stop the event and take the speaker’s right to speak and crowd’s right to listen to him.

              And, again, I apologize for calling your argument “dumb.” I’ve been in a bad mood all day and I took that out on you. I’m sorry.

              • Steve Cameron
                Posted October 10, 2019 at 11:49 am | Permalink

                Thanks for the apology, thought I don’t think it was necessary. You weren’t calling me dumb after all, just my argument, and I think that’s fair in a debate of ideas.

                To your points above, I think you’re not arguing about free speech as an inalienable civic value, but rather about civil discourse. My understanding is that these protesters were allowed to come to the event, either because they are students or because it was open to the public. You say my arguments aren’t in good faith, but I could make the same charge about yours. Protesting outside the venue quite likely would have made the protesters avoidable and thus invisible and unheard to the speaker and the other attendees since the venue is much larger and has more entrances than, for example, an abortion clinic. It would be like making anti-choice protesters demonstrate a block away, something the courts have ruled unconstitutional. If you’re arguing for a right to speech and for that speech to be heard, how does moving the protest outside and presumably out of sight fulfill that?

                I think that Jerry and many readers here are biased because of the instigators in this case : it’s an attack on free speech wouldn’t you know because it’s those damnable woke university students who are too sheltered to know how our society is meant to work what with their safe spaces, their trigger warnings, and their unreasonable demands for respect. But the argument isn’t as black and white and isn’t as tidy as you are arguing. Let’s use another example of an event Jerry brought up recently : the pro-Nazi rally at Madison Square Garden in 1939. By your reasoning Isadore Greenbaum, who tried to tackle Bund leader Fritz Kuhn while he was speaking on stage, was reprehensibly anti-free speech and, since he tried to get physical, even worse than the protesters at the Georgetown event who merely drowned out a loathsome Trump lackey. Sorry to bring Nazis into this, but this is where these kinds of debates inevitably lead. Is that a bad-faith argument?

        • aljones909
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

          I don’t think there is a “right” to disrupt a private event and prevent others from enjoying the event.
          Let’s say someone objects to the “message” in a Broadway production. The Book of Mormon for example. Would it be fine for Mormons to gain entry and disrupt every performance? Would no action be taken to prevent them doing this?

          • Steve Cameron
            Posted October 9, 2019 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

            Good question. Here’s another one : is it okay for striking workers to prevent scabs from entering their workplace? What about preventing customers from entering? At a certain point this becomes less a question about free speech and more about other laws or regulations that are being violated.

        • BJ
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

          I apologize. I should not have called your argument “dumb.” That wasn’t how I normally debate. I’m in a salty mood, which is in no way your fault, and I shouldn’t have allowed it to affect my response to you.

          Again, my apologies.

        • Roo
          Posted October 9, 2019 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

          If you think he should be heard, please explain why that should involve silencing the protesters.

          Um… I’m gonna go with “because of auditory masking”.

        • Posted October 10, 2019 at 10:47 am | Permalink

          So he who shouts loudest has the most right of free speech. The bully wins.

          The fact is the protestors were not invited and the other people present didn’t want to hear them. Or if they did, the protestors could have made their views known in the Q&A. They might have been more effective, if they had done.

          • Posted October 10, 2019 at 11:04 am | Permalink

            Yes, what the protestors did was just lazy. It is much harder to challenge someone’s ideas in the Q&A. There’s always the risk that the speaker will have a good reply to your attempt to cut them down. There’s nothing worse than asking a stupid or obvious question at a Q&A. Speakers of bad ideas are often well prepared to counter charges that are thrown at them at every speaking engagement.

    • Filippo
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

      ” . . . or did he walk off the stage himself after deciding that it wasn’t worth trying to deliver his speech over the shouts of the protesters?”

      How many times do you hold he should have had to try to talk before you would reasonably agree that he had been unfairly kept from speaking?

      Below in another post you say: “Outside of the first amendment, which doesn’t apply here, there are no rights to speech or to hear speech that anyone can claim.”

      Yes, Georgetown Univ. is a private institution. There are noble souls in this Land of American Exceptionalism who want to privatize as much as possible so as to minimize as much as possible the inconvenience the first amendment causes them.

  5. BJ
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    “About 350 Georgetown law students, faculty members and alumni also signed a separate petition asking for his removal”

    It scares me that some of our future lawyers and, even worse, some of the people teaching them, want this. That’s truly disturbing.

    • Mark R.
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

      They may also be future judges and politicians.

  6. Vaal
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    “Why on earth would a Trump official speaking about immigration policy “normalize” that policy? It expresses the administration’s policy, but to say that it has “normalized” those views implies that the audience is brainless, can’t think for itself, and will be swayed toward Trumpism if they simply hear an administration official speaking. This is patronizing: the deplatformers claim the right to determine what everyone should be allowed to hear.”

    Yes! Thank you! That is so well put. This “normalizing” is a word that, as it is used by the anti-free-speech left, is as flexible as the user wants it to be, and can expand to
    capture ANYTHING the user doesn’t like. Just like the terms “Hate Speech” and “Violence” have been expanded to a self-defeating extent.

    • max blancke
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

      What they seem to be “normalizing” is radical leftist censoring behavior.
      Pretty soon, the kids who are prone to rebellion against norms and drawn to the counterculture are going to have to turn to conservatism.

      • Saul Sorrell-Till
        Posted October 10, 2019 at 6:29 am | Permalink

        Conservatism doesn’t have a youth counterculture, by definition. The best it can summon up is the kind of mindless trolling bigotry of Steven Crowder and Gamergate.
        You’re living in fantasy land if you think ver yoof are going to rise up and start quoting Hayek and Burke and wearing Tucker Carlson bowties.

        • max blancke
          Posted October 10, 2019 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

          When I was at university, it was briefly in vogue to dress neatly and emulate, if not join, the Young Republicans.

          Young adults are perfectly capable of joining a political movement without acquiring an in-depth knowledge of the principles of the movement. When I politely engage young socialists in conversation, I try to at some point ask them to define socialism itself. In my experience, most cannot do so. That goes for the few Neo-Nazis I have spoken with. They don’t know the basics, and have not actually read the literature.

          Youth rebels, usually against whatever they perceive to be mainstream. I doubt there is much room to go left, unless they plan to form communist death squads. That seems impractical and dangerous at this time.

          Also, lots of people are conforming to leftist standards out of fear. We read often enough in these pages what happens to those professors, students, or speakers whom the (self appointed) representatives of the proletariat deem to be reactionary. History has shown repeatedly what happens to people who control others through fear and intimidation once their perceived power advantage disappears.

  7. eric
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Love the idea of speaking (or listing on a big poster) the names of the immigrants that have died in confinement (word choice intentional). But wish they had staged that protest outside the doors to the theater. Or perhaps used Q&A time to bring it up and rake him over the coals over administration policy.

    This is Georgetown, for goodness’ sake. A top flight law school at a top flight University. Surely the students and professors who object to DHS’ policies can come up with some highly effective (and, frankly, embarrassing) policy questions for him. You’re a law student, and you want to make the head of DHS look bad? Show your chops as a future lawyer – ask him a very pointed question that forces him to admit, defend, and try to explain the administration’s terrible acts.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

      Yes, there were plenty of reasons to grill the shit out of this guy in Q and As, and the fact that it’s a law school makes it worse. This is where you sharpen your blade, by holding people like this to account.

      • eric
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

        Makes you wonder if these ‘proto lawyers’ think they’re going to be allowed to shout over opposing testimony as a method of winning cases. Probably the fastest way to get thrown out of court.

  8. dd
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    I saw a Facebook post from a lady claiming to be the mother of one of the organizers.

    She stated how unimpeachably thrilled she was that her son had been a key agent in shutting down the speech.

    • Filippo
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

      I wonder between the mother and son which was more successful in shutting down the other.

  9. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 9, 2019 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    Far as I’m concerned, McAleenan is a useless toady — one of many useless toadies Trump has surrounded himself with, and one of the many Trump maintains in an “acting” position, the better to keep them under his short, abnormally curved thumb. It’s entirely appropriate for students and faculty to seek to protest his appearance, including by making their displeasure known inside the hall where McAleenan was speaking.

    But what they had no right to do was to prevent the man from speaking. Georgetown should have been prepared to take, and should have taken, such measures as were needed to allow him to be heard.

  10. Posted October 9, 2019 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    Stupid protestors! Who knows what laughable Trump policy sound bites we might have gotten had they allowed McAleenan to speak? Alternatively, perhaps he was ready to throw Trump under the bus.

    • Saul Sorrell-Till
      Posted October 9, 2019 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

      There’s no bus big enough to fit him under it.

      I’m thinking it’d have to be a giant bus, like one of the vehicles drawn by that artist, the one who drew cars with giant, absurd back seats and enormous, outsized art deco planes.

      …I’m sure someone will know who I’m talking about here. My dad gave me a book of the guy’s drawings – all fifties style cars and planes of absurd proportions, with giant back seats that could fit fifty people. I tried to google-jog my memory but nothing came up.

      Help anyone?

      • Mark R.
        Posted October 9, 2019 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

        Richard Scarry?

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Scarry

        Gotta learn how to turn Richard Scarry into a link. I have a cheat sheet somewhere…this is quicker.

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted October 10, 2019 at 5:47 am | Permalink

          Np, that’s not him, he wasn’t a children’s author and this guy who I’m trying to think of drew these incredibly beautiful American cars and planes, fifties style vehicles, with absurdly enormous proportions, hugely wide back seats that stretched away into the distance, or enormous wings with people having dinner on them.
          They were really beautifully illustrated, realistic apart from the size.

          I was SURE someone would know…thanks for the try though.

  11. prinzler
    Posted October 10, 2019 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    What speech *doesn’t* normalize itself, merely by occurring? To complain that some speech is being normalized then means nothing more than you don’t like it.


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