Imagine a college scene. Throngs of excited people gather at an arena. There is music, cheering, chanting and high fiving. Banners and signs proclaim support and loyalty to the home team. The visiting team is on the floor warming up and making their final preparations. The referees call for the game to begin but the home team is a nowhere to be found.
Although the home team was a no show, that still didn’t stop the fanatics from trying to win the competition. Some ran onto the court trying to play but when they failed, the crowd just jeered the opposing team louder. Then they tried to steal the ball. The visiting team, knowing they had the moral and legal right, went to retrieve their ball. Well, as any sports fan knows, the first punch isn’t penalized it’s the retaliation that is caught.
This is what is happening at college campuses all over the country and most recently here at UCONN. This isn’t a sporting event, but a conservative speaker trying to give a talk on college a campus. The fervor to oppose these speakers these days is no less than any school’s sport team receive. The problem lies in the fact that the visitor came prepared to play the hosts did not.
“When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser.” – Socrates
The only way to shut down idiotic ideas is to debate them. Our education and political systems are based on open debate. The Socratic and Scientific Methods are the way we learn and advance as a society. We employ questioning and reason to argue our points as others will use the same to argue against us.
But student protestors on campuses have become intellectually lazy. Instead of challenging speakers on the merits of their ideas they shout down people based on six second Instagram videos. In most cases, these memes are the sum total of someone’s reason for opposition.
Students think just because they attend an institution of higher learning that they are already smart enough to win the game. They don’t need to show up. They don’t need to prepare. They have all the years of intellect the college or university possess to support them. They have an invented righteousness instilled in them that screams “How dare you question me and my beliefs. I know better than you.”
And all this empty, intellectual ego does is attract more of the provocateurs. They come knowing how the game is going to be played. The put a salacious title on their speech that will fuel social media posts and draw cameras to the event. Many of them have no intention to convince anyone of their position they are just looking for rabid participants that will feed their own YouTube sites with videos.
Such is the case with Lucien Wintrich. Unlike Ben Shapiro or Anne Coulter, Wintrich is on stage to merely provoke and not educate. I went to his web page and tried to research several of his positions. I say try because he argues in circles and often has no point whatsoever. Shame on UCONN students for being so gullible. WIntrich’s whole mantra is merely screaming for attention.
But UCONN students obliged and responded to another supposed conservative’s dog whistle. It would be a safe bet to say that Wintrich’s entire demographic, cis-gendered, conservative gay men would have been outnumbered by the protestors alone. Yet they still came out and gave him exactly what he wanted, more attention, more clicks and more likes.
When students finally used some sense and decided to chant their way out, apparently this wasn’t the result sought by a Quinebaug Valley Community College student advisor. Catherine Gregory approached the lectern and stole the speakers notes. Wintrich gave pursuit to retrieve them and was arrested for an altercation that more resembled siblings fighting over a remote control than a criminal act.
Wintrich is unlikely to suffer legal consequences. Connecticut state law is clear that people have a legitimate right to protect their property.
A person is justified in using reasonable physical force when and to the extent he reasonably believes it necessary to (1) prevent attempted larceny or criminal mischief involving property or (2) regain property that he reasonably believes was stolen shortly before. (CGS § 53a-21).
The fact that he was charged at all is another failing of the campus.
UCONN President Susan Herbst, in response to this incident of moral shame, came out with a new pacifier for students that speakers will be better screened in the future. She strangely came to the conclusion that the incident played out because a traveling companion of Wintrich had a past criminal charge and thus this left these poor UCONN students unprotected. Never mind that this person did anyhting but record the proceedings, never raised a hand to anyone and was never charged with a crime at the event. But in Herbst’s mind these sort of deplorables should not come into contact with college students.
We spend huge sums of money to educate our students in this state. But as this incident proves we are not getting our money’s worth. UCONN isn’t educating these students they are placating them. They have spent decades indoctrinating them and now when opposing views come along these students are ill prepared to deal with them in a rational manner. They have regressed back to crib behavior and bellow until they get their way.