Tag Archives: free speech

Civility and its discontents

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House Press Secretary, probably made the right call in leaving the Red Hen restaurant during the appetizer course. When the owner of a restaurant tells you that the staff doesn’t want to feed you–regardless of … Continue reading

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How activists should respond to the racist right: 3. ignore them (sheetcake)

The fish that always rises to the bait doesn’t live very long or very well. (Another entry in the series I started a month ago; you can find part 2 and part 1.) The racist right feeds on the (justified) outrage of … Continue reading

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How activists should respond to the racist right: 1. nonviolent counterdemonstrations

Of course it’s heartening to see 40,000 explicitly anti-racist demonstrators turn out in Boston (August 20), dwarfing the assembly they were protesting against. Was it the best approach to countering white nationalist mobilization advancing in response to Trump adminstration policies … Continue reading

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Free speech on campus? Provocation and protest.

Berkeley has become the indispensable stop on the right-wing lecture circuit. Antifa (anti-fascist) groups in the Bay Area now reliably turn up on campus to try to make sure offensive ideas don’t pass unchallenged. Oakland Antifa has already announced a … Continue reading

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Flag battles at Hampshire College: the politics of diversion

Do you want to talk about the American flag? Hampshire College, in Western Massachusetts has (temporarily) removed the flag from its central flagpole to foster a dialogue about symbols. Upset about Donald Trump’s election, the next day students lowered the … Continue reading

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Start with the flag

The tragic racist killing of nine people at Charleston’s African Methodist Episcopal Church, following a year of activism around #blacklivesmatter, drew unusual attention to a range of issues around political and economic inequality.  Striking the battle flag of the Army … Continue reading

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Patriotic conflict at UC-Irvine unflagging

Amazingly, national interest in the flag conflict at the University of California, Irvine, where I teach, is unwavering.  More than a few people seem to think that there is political mileage in beating up on a few students who sponsored … Continue reading

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