How’s that for a clickbait headline? Before I am inundated with unhinged emails from perpetually aggrieved, pajama-clad patriots, I hereby pledge my unconditional loathing of Nazis and white supremacists. That such a pledge need be made in America in 2017 is a shame we all should feel in our bones.
Richard Spencer is a white supremacist, a Nazi and a shameless fraudster hoping to cash in on the eternal con that sells resentment to poor whites who somehow buy the lies that characterize Wall Street bankers as benevolent “job creators” and damn all non-whites as thieves out to pilfer the American Dream.
Richard Spencer is a thoroughly rotten person pushing a rancid ideology, but he is also an American. As such, he has a constitutional right to express his diseased mind. Penn State University stepped on Spencer’s free speech rights when it became the fourth university to deny him a platform to try in vain to take his ugly, imbecilic ideas mainstream.
To be clear: Free speech rights do not entitle the speaker to any platform or venue, anywhere, any time. That said, Penn State is a publicly funded university. When a private institution nixes an idiot like Richard Spencer, it’s not news. When a state university stifles any opinion, we all should speak up.
Like UC Berkeley‘s cancellation of speeches by more notable alt-right grifters Ann Coulter and Milo Yiannopoulos, Penn State has not only acted in the interest of un-American censorship, but made a martyr out of a mutt. Spencer couldn’t attract fleas, let alone a substantial crowd of human beings dumb and/or soulless enough to buy his stale appeal to our lesser angels.
Our better angels and the Constitution, however, recognize freedom of speech as the right of every American, including a loser like Richard Spencer and anyone who would sit long enough to hear him speak. Richard Spencer’s ideas are reprehensible, un-American and unworthy of serious consideration.
So is any attempt to stifle him.