Thursday, March 23, 2006

Yale and the "Taliban Man" 

John Fund has an excellent summary of the Yale/Taliban spokesman controversy in today's Wall Street Journal, which can be accessed online here.

It seems to me that many of our so-called "elite" institutions of higher learning, like Yale and Harvard, have jumped the shark like the New York Times. I have always believed that universities were indeed places where controversial ideas could be aired and debated in a civil manner, without fear of retribution. In too many of today's universities, however, free expression is available only to those adhering to transnational progressivism and similar multi-culti "isms." Along with this pandemic of political correctness there is an appalling lack of morality. Yale, for example, apparently plans to admit into its degree program the infamous Mr. Hashemi, the onetime (and apparently unrepentant) spokesman for the Taliban.

You remember the Taliban, don't you--those who governed Afghanistan according to strict sharia law--who beat women with sticks because they showed too much skin on their hands and wrists--whose penalty for homosexuality consisted of placing the offenders in a ditch and causing a masonry wall to fall on them--who impose the death penalty on Muslims who convert to Christianity.

Anyway, Yale believes it's OK to have Mr. Hashemi on campus, but not ROTC or military recruiters, purportedly because of the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy. (Which obviously must be much worse than execution by brick wall.)

The last paragraph of Fund's essay gets it exactly right:
There is a line beyond which tolerance and political correctness become willful blindness. Eli Muller, a reporter for the Yale Daily News, was stunned back in 2000 when the lies of another Taliban spokesman who visited Yale "went nearly unchallenged." He concluded that the "moral overconfidence of Yale students makes them subject to manipulation by people who are genuinely evil." Today, you can say that about more than just some naïve students. You can add the administrators who abdicated their moral responsibility and admitted Mr. Hashemi.
My 12-year-old is a pretty smart kid--straight As last semester, and she's already accomplished a lot in music and dance. Unless there's a sea change on campus there's no way in hell that Yale will be on the list of colleges for her to consider.

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