March 04, 2008

Congratulations . . .

to my friend Jojo on winning a debate at York University, about the morality of abortion on demand, last Thursday.

Too bad the debate never took place.

Jojo wins by default, simply because the student blackshirts of the York Federation of Students decided that they were the arbiters of the limit of free speech, and that holding this debate would be tantamount to debating the morality of wife-beating. (That is, unfortunately for the blackshirts, a very apt comparison, since the very issue in the abortion debate is the use of physical violence to cause harm to another human person.) An alternative location was quickly arranged, but the pro-choice debater, a member of a campus atheist club, apparently didn't want to darken the door of a Baptist church. (Maybe there was a lightning storm pending, or something.)

But get this: At the time of writing, the blackshirts' Web site has this button on their front page:

"Denial of Free Speech at McMaster"

It links to a letter of protest [PDF] that the students' union at McMaster University has banned the use of the term "Israeli Apartheid" on campus. This, we learn, is "a blatant violation of democratic freedoms of speech and dissent." "It is the position of the WFS and GSA," the letter continues, apparently completely missing any trace of irony that might happen to be present, "that universities are sites where discussions and debates about difficult geo-political questions should be promoted, not stifled."

Sure, as long as the "difficult geo-political question" is on the blackshirts' approved list of subjects up for debate.

Meanwhile, tonight Jojo is supposed to be debating the same topic at @#$%head University, whose own censorious student nitwits recently banned pro-life clubs from campus. It was his debate at Carleton U. that precipitated this whole debate there in late 2006. So his very presence on two campuses has already caused two student governments to collectively wet themselves - will he hit the trifecta tonight?

This also serves to remind me that I have yet to complete my review of Indoctrinate U., which was screened two weeks ago here in Ottawa. Patience, patience.