Lenin’s Vanguard at Wellesley College: Get Thee To Hillsdale

An unsigned excerpt from an editorial in a college newspaper, the Wellesley News, was featured in The Wall Street Journal’s “Notable & Quotable” last weekend. It demonstrates that these college students have learned all too well at the knee of the Left.

The editorial board is made up of over two dozen women. The bios on their website provide some insight into both their apparent youth and silliness. Maybe there is hope for them.

Here are just a few:

Opinions Editor Genae Matthews is a sophomore majoring in philosophy and focusing in epistemology.  Genae’s other academic interests include epistemic justice, grassroots organizing, and environmental sustainability.  When not writing news articles or drinking tea in the philosophy department, Genae can be found reading novels, hiking, or making sandwiches at El Table.

Co-Editor-in-Chief Sharvari Johari is a senior majoring in Economics and Sociology. Outside of writing for The Wellesley News she is interested in dance fitness, drinking Earl Grey tea and wearing black.

Co-Editor-in-Chief Mary Meisenzahl is a sophomore. She is a history major and economics minor interested in journalism and issues of freedom of expression. Outside of The Wellesley News, she is usually watching Chopped marathons or taking pictures of her dog.

Now these indulged and misguided darlings are threatening us, and in doing so have demonstrated that they are unfit as at least editors, if not citizens. They do not like or understand free speech—and thus have defaulted to the posture of all tyrants: policing speech.

And by the way, the writing is so stilted that one wonders what passes for journalism and English at Wellesley these days? (As an aside, they do refer to the “founding fathers” without comment on gender or race, the only remarkable thing in the editorial given their goosestep strut with their foremothers’ at Wellesley.)

Our Wellesley community will not stand for hate speech, and will call it out when possible…. Wellesley students are generally correct in their attempts to differentiate what is viable discourse from what is just hate speech. The founding fathers put free speech in the Constitution as a way to protect the disenfranchised and to protect individual citizens from the power of the government. The spirit of free speech is to protect the suppressed, not to protect a free-for-all where anything is acceptable, no matter how hateful and damaging.

We have all said problematic claims, the origins of which were ingrained in us by our discriminatory and biased society. Luckily, most of us have been taught by our peers and mentors at Wellesley in a productive way. It is vital that we encourage people to correct and learn from their mistakes rather than berate them for a lack of education they could not control.  While it is expected that these lessons will be difficult and often personal, holding difficult conversations for the sake of educating is very different from shaming on the basis of ignorance.

This being said, if people are given the resources to learn and either continue to speak hate speech or refuse to adapt their beliefs, then hostility may be warranted. If people continue to support racist politicians or pay for speakers that prop up speech that will lead to the harm of others, then it is critical to take the appropriate measures to hold them accountable for their actions. It is important to note that our preference for education over beration regards students who may have not been given the chance to learn. Rather, we are not referring to those who have already had the incentive to learn and should have taken the opportunities to do so. Paid professional lecturers and politicians are among those who should know better.

Phew, that was painful to read. Maybe their prose is so stilted because the editors are not yet comfortable in their role as the vanguard party, intellectuals laboring to establish a dictatorship of the proletariat.

I move that the parents of the editorial staff get at least a partial refund from the college, and that anyone responsible for the editorial be required to take the Hillsdale College course on the U.S. Constitution. And spend a semester at Hillsdale to detoxify.

If you can stand it, you can read the entire editorial here.