When it comes to Second Amendment rights, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is a disaster. He’s wrong, not factual, and continues to waste his money in frivolous public relations campaigns pushing gun control. Yet, when it comes to free speech and combating the culture of political correctness that’s destroying American college campuses across the country, we should be right there with him.
Bloomberg delivered the commencement address at the University of Michigan, where he said that the “safe space” is “one of the most dangerous places on a college campus.” Here’s a portion of his address [emphasis mine]:
The most useful knowledge that you leave here with today has nothing to do with your major. It’s about how to study, cooperate, listen carefully, think critically and resolve conflicts through reason. Those are the most important skills in the working world, and it’s why colleges have always exposed students to challenging and uncomfortable ideas.
The fact that some university boards and administrations now bow to pressure and shield students from these ideas through “safe spaces,” “code words” and “trigger warnings” is, in my view, a terrible mistake.
The whole purpose of college is to learn how to deal with difficult situations -- not run away from them. A microaggression is exactly that: micro. And one of the most dangerous places on a college campus is a safe space, because it creates the false impression that we can insulate ourselves from those who hold different views.
We can’t do this, and we shouldn’t try -- not in politics or in the workplace. In the global economy, and in a democratic society, an open mind is the most valuable asset you can possess.
Of course, there were some precious cupcakes that disagreed stringently with Bloomberg; you can hear them in the background. Ironically, some of these Michigan kids (with their jeers) have just proven his point. All he said was that open minds are what has made America great, and that tolerating views that you find deplorable is the price you pay for living in a free thinking society. It’s time to grow up, kids. The First Amendment is law, and you’re going to have to deal with it. In fact, the mere instance that Bloomberg got some audible boos when he was merely articulating his pro-free speech stance, and how it’s beneficial to American society, both domestically and internationally, is rather frightening. Nevertheless, while I pretty much disagree with the mayor on every issue, I will defend him every time he tells precious cupcakes that their ethos of censorship is wrong.