Future Lawyers Shout Down a ‘Controversial’ Speaker at Yale | National Review

Future Lawyers Shout Down a ‘Controversial’ Speaker at Yale | National Review

Yale students hold signs in protest of the event (Screenshot via Washington Free Beacon/YouTube)

Yale Law is supposedly one of our “elite” law schools but you wouldn’t know it from the conduct of a substantial number of students, who decided that they wouldn’t allow Kristen Waggoner, general counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, to speak. You might think that students at such a school would seek to debate with someone whose views they oppose. But you’d be mistaken. The mindset of “progressives” is that they’ve done something good by preventing a speaker they regard as controversial from speaking at all.

Richard Cravatts has an excellent description of the events at Yale Law here.

He writes, “Preventing someone with opposing views to even speak, to make his or her opinions known and heard by the campus community, means that the disruptors are so sure of their beliefs, so positive that their perception is the valid one, the only true one, that they are comfortable with suppressing the alternate beliefs and ideology of those whose speech they seek to silence.”


Yale apparently is going to do nothing about the disruptive students.

Cravatts correctly observes, “As future lawyers, they will not be able to pound on a table and suppress the speech of others in the courtroom, including opposing counsel and a judge. They will not be able to only present their side of a case without having the other side present theirs. And the university is a place where the same decorum and procedures for promoting views, developing intellectual arguments, providing facts and research to support one’s opinions, and inspiring academic inquiry and scholarly debate is fundamental to the advancement of learning.”

The shout-down at Yale is a manifestation of a deeper problem in our education system, namely that so many of the teachers and professors these days believe that their job is activism — to instill in their students a fervor for all the right causes. That fervor includes intolerance of any disagreement. People who don’t go along with “progressivism” in any respect are demonized. Students aren’t taught to use their minds but instead to react emotionally.

That bodes ill for our future.

George Leef is the the director of editorial content at the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal.

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About the Author

Tony Beasley
Tony Beasley writes for the Local News, US and the World Section of ANH.