Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Animal Farm at St. Mary's University

In George Orwell's Animal Farm the chant that drowned out discussion was "Four legs good, two legs bad." If you want to see it in real life, go to this article from the Calgary Herald and check out the link to the video of pro-abortion fanatics disrupting a pro-life meeting. Campus security eventually shut down the meeting instead of ejecting the morons and the Student Union is trying to de-certify the pro-life group. Why? Because they dared to express an opinion on abortion that is verboten, politically incorrect, already decided, not permitted to be debated.

The university has shamefully failed to live up to its responsibility to protect free speech and open debate of controversial ideas. They think they have academic freedom just because issues that everyone on campus agrees on can be debated on campus. They are wrong.

It is time to start asking why universities have failed so miserably in promoting critical thinking, free and open debate. Why should they be funded with public money if they do not serve as places where debate on the great moral issues of the day can take place? Are Canadian universities so focussed on therapy and entertainment plus job training that producing students who can defend their positions with rational argument is no longer of any concern? What happens to a country when the universities become ideologically driven by one narrow ideology that is not shared by the majority of the population? Where does real debate take place? How does such a society come to shared views on the great political and ethical issues of the day? Where do young people learn to debate in a civil manner with those with whom they disagree?

Incidents like these (and they are becoming increasingly common across Canada today) raise many questions. But I don't have lot of answers. Do you?

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