As John Leo wrote, "Campus opponents of (Rep.) Tom Tancredo, an illegal immigration foe, set off fire alarms at Georgetown to disrupt his planned speech, and their counterparts at Michigan State roughed up his student backers. Conservative activist David Horowitz, black conservative Star Parker, and Daniel Pipes, an outspoken critic of Islamism, frequently find themselves shouted down or disrupted on campus." The number of instances involving censorship of conservatives on college campuses and denial of honorary degrees to people who don't toe the liberal line could fill a book.
There is something else about Columbia's decision to admit Ahmadinejad and that is the notion that by exposing a tyrant and religious fanatic to a liberal arts campus - a man who believes he has been "called" to usher in Armageddon - might make him less genocidal and students and the rest of us more understanding. We understand he and his legion of murdering thugs wish to kill us and are contributing to the death of Americans in Iraq. What part of mass murder do they not understand at Columbia, or don't they have time to study history these days?
Ahmadinejad is probably using his visit to case our country, like a bank robber does before a big heist.
Before we allow more of our enemies into America and give them a freedom unknown in their own countries, we should at least demand reciprocity. Their president gets to speak in America? Our president gets to speak in Iran. Their president has access to our media? Our president should have access to their media. And while we're at it, how about for every liberal who gets to speak on campus, the school must also invite a conservative.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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