1 readers online now  |  69 million page views

Why is dissent so problematic?

Reader comment on item: Columbia University vs. America

Submitted by Brian Anderson (United States), Apr 4, 2003 at 15:40

...Sure, a professor interrupting class to rant on a political topic is an example of someone not taking their job seriously enough, but most of the rest of your examples are just strong opinions. Their expression should be acceptable to anyone who truly believes in the ideals of free speech and academic freedom. Incitements to violence are a grey area, and I'm not going to comment on them because a) I'm not a legal scholar and b) it would take a lot more than a short email to do the subject justice I imagine.

Please don't focus on this grey area to the exclusion of my previous, clear point that, for example, seeing the US government as a brutal, oppressive regime is a legitimate, dissenting opinion whose expression should be protected, both in terms of free speech and academic freedom.

Finally, lumping all of those people together into the same sack doesn't make sense to me. As a trivial example, not all of them are "leading lights". Second, I wouldn't characterize any of them as promoting the same message as any of the others. Oversimplification doesn't seem to move this debate anywhere in my opinion.
Submitting....

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Comment on this item

Mark my comment as a response to Why is dissent so problematic? by Brian Anderson

Email me if someone replies to my comment

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

See recent outstanding comments.

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List
eXTReMe Tracker

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2020 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)