David Horowitz’s speech at UNC earlier this week, sponsored by the College Republicans among other organizations, has rightfully provoked an outcry, including a social media campaign, #NotSafeUNC, which highlights the various ways students who are members of marginalized groups at UNC are made to feel unsafe.
The groups and students Horowitz attacked have already responded effectively.
They have rightly pointed out Horowitz’s prejudice, his conflation of Muslims and Arabs, and his dangerous narrative of a clash of civilizations. Critics have also pointed out the mindless insensitivity of the College Republicans in inviting his hatemongering to campus in the aftermath of the shooting of three Muslim students earlier this year.
But Horowitz’s appearance is also an example of college campuses lending their gravitas to speakers who offer little intellectual heft to back up their cultural prominence.
Just last week, Duke University invited former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney to speak about President Obama’s foreign policy despite Romney’s lack of practical or academic experience in the subject.