Issues

Harvard student says she wouldn’t be able to handle class if other students didn’t support abortion

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We’ve recently explored the ways college pro-abortion activists are woefully ill-equipped to confront pro-life thought, and now a recent segment on Fox News gives us a glimpse why.

Megyn Kelly recently interviewed Rachel Huebner, a Harvard student and staff writer with the Harvard Crimson, who says she has witnessed “open discourse [being] stifled” and a “lack of freedom of expression,” which is “occurring at Harvard and campuses nationwide.”

She cites a particularly glaring incident involving abortion:

HUEBNER: We were discussing general guidelines for class and specific things that people might find offensive, and this was just one specific instance of a comment that a student contended may be something that could hurt someone’s feelings.

KELLY: So she didn’t want to sit across from somebody who wasn’t pro-choice because she couldn’t handle the class if she just knew in her head the person was not pro-choice.

HUEBNER: Correct. It was something she deemed offensive.

Huebner elaborated on this incident in an article she wrote for the Crimson, recounting what passed for the student’s logic: “as a woman, she would be unable to sit across from a student who declared that he was strongly against abortion” (emphasis added). Not exactly the vision of strength and confidence women are supposed to be getting from feminism.

Worse, her classmates “vigorously defended this declaration” and the professor—you know, one of the role models ostensibly there to help students grow as thoughtful and well-adjusted human beings—“remained silent.”

Kelly marveled at the sad spectacle, asking how “these students think they’re gonna be able to function in the world with this sort of coddling.” But it’s worse than that – as Live Action covered in December, other schools extend this sort of coddling to “bias incident” reports, so nice officials can see to it that delicate pro-abortion flowers never have to endure the trauma of someone expressing disagreement in their presence.

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In her article, Huebner explains how starting college disillusioned her assumption that everyone appreciated America’s tradition of open discourse, “that it was understood that without a marketplace of ideas, our society simply could not flourish.” Instead, she found a culture “where one has to monitor every syllable that is uttered to ensure that it could not under any circumstance offend anyone to the slightest degree.”

Of course, it’s all but impossible to shield one group from offense without offending another group, relegating pro-life perspectives to second-class status. So it’s not even about any sincere-if-misguided conviction that everyone’s beliefs must be treated gently; it’s a front to give the preferred biases protection at all costs.

That’s why this trigger-mania is so cancerous on two levels. The first is that, as we saw in Ben Shapiro’s exchange with pro-abortion campus zombies, it raises young people to become even more convinced that their support for abortion is morally and intellectually infallible, giving the abortion lobby unearned support that is both more extreme than it would have been and harder to reason with.

The second is that, as Shapiro also showed us, it takes the people we count on to be the next generation’s parents, voters, community leaders, businessmen, scientists, politicians, etc., and leaves them without real critical thinking or problem-solving skills, or clear principles by which to solve moral quandaries—while smugly convinced they’ve got it all figured out. If you’re pro-abortion, that may not bother you right now because you’re getting what you want out of the deal. But it should, because those handicaps will inevitably rub off on all the other aspects of life, culture, and politics they’ll be influencing.

Finally, Huebner notes a particularly sad irony of this craze:

The rise of safe spaces has also deeply encroached upon open dialogue and free expression. It is ironic that while the origins of the term safe space can be found in the 20th century women’s movement, where it “implies a certain license to speak and act freely,” today the term has come to be associated with precisely the opposite: the inability to speak freely. Journalists have been silenced in the name of safe spaces and debates have been barred. Books have been banned and conversation topics prohibited.

These are not what feminism or higher education were supposed to be. These are not the personal fortitude, confident independence, careful thought, or hunger for knowledge we were supposed to arming future Americans with. Until we stop this insanity, we will continue to fail our kids, both in and out of the womb.

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