Are today's colleges and universities still bastions of free speech or just degree mills for spoiled kids?

One speaker brought on to replace another speaker who had been forced out surprised the students by castigating those responsible in no uncertain terms.

The stunning move by a commencement speaker at Haverford College on Sunday to use the celebratory occasion to lambaste students who had protested against another speaker drew a standing ovation but also sharp criticism.

William G. Bowen, former president of Princeton, called the protestors’ approach both “immature” and “arrogant” and the subsequent withdrawal as a speaker of Robert J. Birgeneau, former chancellor of the University of California Berkeley, a “defeat” for the Quaker college and its ideals.

Bowen’s remarks to an audience of about 2,800, plus nearly 300 graduates, added a new twist to commencement speaker controversies playing out increasingly on college campuses. Bowen — one of three speakers who received an honorary degree — faced no opposition, but chose to address the issue, calling it “sad” and “troubling.”

The controversy arose over Birgeneau’s leadership during a 2011 incident in which UC Berkeley police used force on students protesting college costs. A group of more than 40 students and three Haverford professors — all Berkeley alums — objected to Birgeneau’s appearance, noting that many of them had participated in Occupy protests as well and wanted to stand in solidarity with Berkeley students. (source)

I went to college in the 60's, an era rife with student protests and the clash of political ideas. But we invited and listened to one speaker after another. Today's students often appear to lack enough confidence in their own ideas to let their minds be exposed to alternative ideas. Most students were eager to hear opposing ideas. Sure there were the few who tried to shout down a speaker, but most sat and waited for a chance to talk to those they oppose either in a question and answer session or in a reception or by debating about the speaker in the student newspaper.

Why to do so many of today's students just want silence alternative ideas?

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And Adam, for the record..I am in the same generation as you and I am with Unseen on this one so speak for yourself when you say the only ones agreeing are those from that generation. You, sir, are ignorant. 

You must be new here. Welcome to TA.

Now don't worry, this is how me and Unseen debate. Its nothing personal.

You may carry on.

I too worked at a call center for the EXACT same position. It was horrible and the treatment is absolutely crude. NEVER AGAIN

Who is "a part of the problem"? An entire generation or just some individuals who have come to your attent who HAPPEN coincidentally to be boomers?

Believe me now: there are members of your generation who are—or will be—fucking things up for the next generation, too. Get off your high horse.

You see we actually admit we have many problems in our generation. Unlike your generation we don't try to ignore it and then blame it on someone else, but rather we try to fix it right away for a better future.

Btw I don't see you anywhere admit the fault of Birgneau at all. Instead you actually agree with Bowen. Just goes to show that you baby boomers are no different from each other really.

So about you get off your high horse. 

you baby boomers are no different from each other really....  we try to fix it right away for a better future

It's looking more and more like not only do you over-generalize, and confuse socio-economic groups with generations in some of the causal relationships, but you also are playing an identity politics game.

So, since 'your generation' is so great at fixing problems right away for a better future, how soon will it be until you uber-youngin's get the world straightened out?

It would be a lot sooner if your generation would just get out of the way instead of trying to still control everything and run for politics. 

How many business have members of your generation started and made successful?

How many political elections have members of your generation entered and won?

Once members of your generation start accomplishing things, they'll be in their 40s and have a new generation with a small element of whiny pinheads telling you how bad you jacked the world up.  Enjoy the cycle of life.

I love how you took my statements out of context and put it into a statement.

I simply took a strung out pouty fit that you didn’t have the honesty and integrity to claim for your own with “I” (and instead pretended to speak for an entire generation), and pointed out the ridiculous nature of such behavior.

collectively you are all bunch of failures.

When you say this I know you don’t mean the huge advancements in technology and science, the improvements in production in agriculture and manufacturing, or the weaving together of the world into a tighter community.  I don’t see a balanced analysis of positive and negative; all I see is a tantrum.

destroyed our generation's future.

Every generation has a hand that they are dealt that comes with its own challenges, just like every individual has a hand that she/he is dealt that comes with its own challenges.  You can approach those challenges as a victim and whine, cry, and be miserable.  You can also approach them as opportunities to grow stronger, and grow stronger.  Warrior ethos indeed.

Every generation has a hand that they are dealt that comes with its own challenges, just like every individual has a hand that she/he is dealt that comes with its own challenges.  You can approach those challenges as a victim and whine, cry, and be miserable.  You can also approach them as opportunities to grow stronger, and grow stronger.  Warrior ethos indeed

Yea good one, now that you are on your deathbed,  you must be gifted with all that wisdom huh? After you and your fellow boomers have looted all the wealth of this country, now you want us to be "stronger" and "work together"

Good joke. No one is "whining" here. We are talking about the REALITY of what is going on in our current economic state. So keep your half time locker room inspirational speeches to yourself. You are not fooling anyone with that type of rhetoric. 

you and your fellow boomers have looted all the wealth of this country

You have a bad habit of confusing socio-economic class and generation. 

now you want us to be "stronger"

I don’t want anything.  I’m simply stating that if people focus and work hard, then they will reap the benefits.  If they whine and expect other people to give a shit about their ‘feelings’, then they are in for misery and disappointment.  That’s the way life works… always has, and always will.

We are talking about the REALITY...

No, WE are not.  You are operating on the fantasy that an entire generation left the planet in ruin, without any consideration to the overstatement of that position, without any consideration to the ‘good’ that was done within that generation, without any consideration to those who actually are responsible for our economic or other problems, and without any consideration to those within that generation who have been fighting to fix the very things you are pitching a fit about.

I’m stating that every generation has a portion who focus, work hard, roll with the difficulties of life, and live generally happy lives because of it.  I’m also stating that a portion of every generation grows up thinking that they’re special and life is easy, and then when they get into the real world they realize that life is hard and they have to work for what they want…. and their reaction is like this;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ycoXiEDBZk

       I’m simply stating that if people focus and work hard, then they will reap the  benefits.

Previous generations could count on that; not so much today.  If one grows up in a generation where that idea is pretty much a given, it's hard to recognize it's not true anymore; and those who point out it's not true anymore are called whiners.

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