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US Politics the Biden's age a nothing burger edition


DireWolfSpirit
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2 minutes ago, Altherion said:

I completely agree with you in that Stefanik had a follow up to the reasonable question with something trickier, but the solution to that cannot be to answer the reasonable question with this bizarre hedging. There is nothing Stefanik could have followed up with which would have allowed her to score as many points or generate the kind of soundbites that she got from trying to avoid the preliminary question.

I agree that they handled the questions very poorly.  I watched a 3 minute excerpt, and it's clear they were trying to answer the question in a way to try and head off some follow up questions that they were assuming that Stefanik was going to ask.  And yeah, their answers sounded really bad.  I think the better approach would have been to just directly condemn any calls for genocide, and then deal with the follow up questions separately.

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9 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

It really isn't the slippery slope you described. The greater concern should be with the turning of a blind eye to people expressing they want others to be killed because of their ethnicity and/or religion. That's not free speech, that's hate speech. It shouldn't be hard to call it out. 

Hate speech is generally protected at universities, unless it is made against a specific person.

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31 minutes ago, Mudguard said:

Universities are in a difficult spot because of the importance they place on freedom of expression and free speech.  Should a student that states that they support Hamas be expelled?  If yes, this starts you on the slippery slope of expelling students for saying all sorts of objectional comments, and clearly the universities don't want to go down this path.

The three universities asked the question were all private universities, so I think they had more leeway in how they could potentially respond to such speech.  But at public universities, First Amendment free speech protections probably would prevent expulsion for just making general comments of supporting Hamas.

The President of Penn was absolutely correct when she says what she says below:

https://x.com/visegrad24/status/1732572404113703049?s=46

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19 minutes ago, Mudguard said:

Hate speech is generally protected at universities, unless it is made against a specific person.

Probably not the best approach to let it slide during a war. 

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I am actually quite appalled at the idea that a major university, private or public, would consider calling for the genocide of a group of people not a violation of their code of ethics or standards. “Depends on the context”? Wtf? Under what context would that be acceptable?

Edited by Fragile Bird
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Well, Columbia University has prohibited any groups that are calling for humanity for Palestinians.

The divisions on campuses, particularly here in NYC, the most Jewish city in the world outside of Israel, are making everyone, students and faculty weep.

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3 hours ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

Calling for genocide of any group of people is evil.  

Indeed, but those who believe in total freedom of speech believe state curtailment of said evil speech is an even greater evil. If a university campus is an arm of the state (which public universities possibly are, but private ones are probably not), then can it be against a university code of conduct to speak in favour of genocide as that may be a violation of the constitution?

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10 hours ago, Mudguard said:

Universities are in a difficult spot because of the importance they place on freedom of expression and free speech.  Should a student that states that they support Hamas be expelled?  If yes, this starts you on the slippery slope of expelling students for saying all sorts of objectional comments, and clearly the universities don't want to go down this path.

The three universities asked the question were all private universities, so I think they had more leeway in how they could potentially respond to such speech.  But at public universities, First Amendment free speech protections probably would prevent expulsion for just making general comments of supporting Hamas.

I think these universities would save themselves a lot of trouble by remaining neutral on the issues of the day that don't directly impact them. Harvard should take no unified stand on abortion, or immigration, or Black Lives Matter, or any of these other political subjects, because the students they are supposed to serve likely don't all agree. 

The Harvard president admitted in her testimony that despite a long-standing policy of flying no flag but the stars and stripes, the university flew a Ukrainian flag when Russia invaded. Sure, she wasn't prez when this happened, but it made her protestations of neutrality look weak, which they certainly were. That was an easy stance to take, I imagine the reasoning went, because most college folks aren't fans of Russia invading its neighbors, but of course there's a ton of pro-Palestine sentiment among young liberals. (I personally think some of this sentiment is weird and anti-semitic, but there you are.) So now these universities are faced with the Sophie's choice of denouncing an openly anti-Israel organization (Hamas) and pissing off many of their students, or being silent and crossing their pro-Israel students and donors. If they'd just maintained a policy of neutrality on all these issues...

Edited to add: It's silly to claim that FERPA prevents one from disclosing that, yes, a university has disciplined unnamed students for harassment. FERPA doesn't prevent that, just as HIPAA doesn't prevent a hospital from telling you how much they charge for a CAT scan. These claims of privacy are just a dodge.

Edited by TrackerNeil
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7 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Indeed, but those who believe in total freedom of speech believe state curtailment of said evil speech is an even greater evil. If a university campus is an arm of the state (which public universities possibly are, but private ones are probably not), then can it be against a university code of conduct to speak in favour of genocide as that may be a violation of the constitution?

Explicit calls for violence should not be protected by either principles of free speech… or… the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution.  A call for genocide of any group of people is certainly a call for violence.

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On non-college news, North Carolina just (finally!) did a solid for about a half-million of its residents and accepted the Medicaid expansion.

Even all these years after the passage of the Affordable Care Act, I am still floored that news media don't better report this stuff. They jump all over Trump's "Day One" remark--which he'll just pass off as a joke--and let slide the fact that, should Trump become president once more, the health insurance for tens of millions of Americans will be at risk.

It's this horse-race view of politics, like it's all a big game--who's up vs. who's down. I no longer view politics that way, and I don't care for news coverage that does.

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57 minutes ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

Explicit calls for violence should not be protected by either principles of free speech… or… the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution.  A call for genocide of any group of people is certainly a call for violence.

And yet university presidents at our top institutions essentially said it is. That's what they believe. The backtracking on their comments is 100% about covering their asses, not clarifying what they really meant or think. 

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23 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

And yet university presidents at our top institutions essentially said it is. That's what they believe. The backtracking on their comments is 100% about covering their asses, not clarifying what they really meant or think. 

Right, and I suspect that if the context were not the current Israel-Hamas context, these same people would say that such speech is NOT protected. 

These are the contortions we find ourselves making when we try to hold a belief in protected free expression, but also the conviction that words equal violence. Personally, I think we just have to let go of the latter notion, and accept that we're sometimes going to hear things that make us uncomfortable, but that's not how college campuses are going these days.

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15 minutes ago, TrackerNeil said:

Right, and I suspect that if the context were not the current Israel-Hamas context, these same people would say that such speech is NOT protected. 

It's hard to say. Some universities allow more space for hate groups than others. Honestly I'm mostly okay with schools doing this in a vacuum, but when a situation like this is happening leaders need to be firm and not tolerate it. 

Quote

These are the contortions we find ourselves making when we try to hold a belief in protected free expression, but also the conviction that words equal violence. Personally, I think we just have to let go of the latter notion, and accept that we're sometimes going to hear things that make us uncomfortable, but that's not how college campuses are going these days.

I guess my biggest concern is allowing free speech that preaches violence against a group and treating it like it's just speech. 

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5 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

I guess my biggest concern is allowing free speech that preaches violence against a group and treating it like it's just speech. 

I think it's pretty difficult for a university to state that it's okay to support genocide, but not okay to oppose DEI statements. (Yoel Inbar would probably agree.) 

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8 minutes ago, TrackerNeil said:

I think it's pretty difficult for a university to state that it's okay to support genocide, but not okay to oppose DEI statements. (Yoel Inbar would probably agree.) 

Sometimes smart people overthink things too much. :dunno:

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So, the shooting in Las Vegas at UNLV hits home.  My nephew is a student there who, fortunately, was not on campus at the time of the shooting.  He does however, live about two blocks away.  Haven't' spoken to him yet, my brother let us know yesterday his son and his gf were safe.

Now what?  In the texts I'm getting from my brother, my beloved youngest brother and sibling, his trauma is beginning to emerge.  He's angry and is becoming enraged.   Bro' is liberal, he is not at all violent, never interested in in guns and weapons at all.  Nephew is studying music and has been able to play professionally since moving to LV last year.   

My nephew, brother and family now have a definite 'before and after'.   Grateful that my nephew survived, and sorrowful that there have been three deaths reported.  I hate the 2A bullshit!  I hate the 'thoughts and prayers' (which we call tots and pears) nonsense.  

fuckity fuck fuck fuck     :crying:   :frown5:   :angry2:

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3 hours ago, TrackerNeil said:

On non-college news, North Carolina just (finally!) did a solid for about a half-million of its residents and accepted the Medicaid expansion.

Even all these years after the passage of the Affordable Care Act, I am still floored that news media don't better report this stuff. They jump all over Trump's "Day One" remark--which he'll just pass off as a joke--and let slide the fact that, should Trump become president once more, the health insurance for tens of millions of Americans will be at risk.

De Satan also vowed to repeal and replace the ACA. Haley has vowed to "reform" both Social Security and Medicare which sounds like it was a plan written by right-wing billionaires. Trump will likely win the nomination, but if something happens such as a medical emergency the Republicans have pretty much made sure the winner will be someone who intends to go after a large government program. (Or 2 in Haley's case)

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