Dave Rubin may have been criticized for not challenging some of his “problematic” guests (e.g., Milo Yiannopoulos), but I think that criticism is largely unfair, for Rubin’s brief is to just let guests talk on the premise that unfiltered, un-reactive speech is useful in letting viewers see someone’s true opinion. And you may object to some of Rubin’s views, like his libertarianism. But one thing you can’t accuse him of is being mean, abrasive, or promulgating “hate speech”. He has one aim: to promote discourse between people separated on the political spectrum, hoping it will bring them together. Maybe that’s a vain hope, but it’s a noble one.
And having met Rubin, and been on his show, I can vouch for the fact that he’s a really nice guy (everyone agrees on this, from right to left), and is mild mannered and calm. Say what you will about Rubin, his talks are not going to incite violence. (Well, given today’s students, I may be wrong!)
So it’s especially galling that, according to The Tab, Rubin’s upcoming talk at the University of Southern California (USC) has been postponed indefinitely by safety concerns—by the Department of Public Safety (DPS). Rubin was invited to speak by the Young Americans for Liberty (YAL):
According to an email provided by USC YAL President Chad Lonski, DPS said that they would need to have two armed guards “trained in dealing with potential disruptions or protests.” YAL would have to front the costs as well. For two DPS officers, it would cost $67.50 and they would have to work a minimum of four hours. That’s a total of $540.
DPS’s Threat Assessment Detective determined that Rubin’s controversial history “may present security issues,” that a bag checker would not be able to solve. Rubin says he is a classical liberal thinker, though he has recently distanced himself from progressive liberals, who he refers to as regressive. In a recent PragerU video called “Why I Left the Left,” Rubin said that “the regressive left ranks minorities in a pecking order to compete in a kind of oppression Olympics.”
. . . At USC, Rubin will discuss how Democrats allowed Trump to win if YAL are allowed to follow through with the event or receive enough funding to pay for armed guards, Lonski said.
The Tab notes as well that Rubin, unlike Yiannopoulos, has no history of inciting violence or strident protest at his talks: Rubin’s recent talk at UCLA drew only a handful of protestors.
Here’s the 4½-minute Prager University video in which Rubin classifies himself as a “classical liberal”. You probably won’t agree with all of Dave’s sentiments, nor do I: I think that if you can’t force a baker to bake a cake for a gay wedding (and Rubin thinks that bakers should have that “freedom of religion”), then why can you force a baker to bake a cake for a Muslim, or a black person? He presumably agrees with the Hobby Lobby decision as well, and I don’t. (Note, though, that gay activist Peter Tatchell agrees with Rubin on the cake issue, though he objects to the messages sometimes put on the cakes, not that they’re ordered by gays.)
Regardless of whether you agree, though, can you really make the case that Rubin’s purveying “hate speech,” or that his appearances should be postponed or canceled? After all, he is raising questions that impugn not people but ideas, and his own ideas are surely worth discussing. It’s galling that today’s generation of students would find sentiments like those in the video above so disturbing that they would engage in violent or uncontrollable disruptions.
Apparently even the mildest criticism of today’s Left is considered “hate speech,” and that’s a sad state of affairs.