We saw the film Tuesday evening and it pulls together the attack on free speech that characterizes many college campuses today. As expected, there are several scenes from what used to be known as the home of free speech—the University of California Berkeley. I attended Cal in the late 1960s after the free speech issue on campus had been resolved and am frankly stunned at the way speech is shut down there today.
Of course, that’s not unique to Cal. As the documentary shows, it widespread across college campuses and not limited to the rare conservative voice invited to speak on campus. It also includes liberals who dare to vary from what’s now considered the orthodoxy on campus. It showed two Evergreen University professors who dared to challenge a campus event that asked white people to stay away. They lost their jobs and received a $500k settlement.
The documentary also includes comments from liberals such as retired Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz, CNN commentator and progressive Van Jones and talk show host Dave Rubin. All echo the conservative concerns about minds and ears that are absolutely closed to speech with different viewpoints and decide to shout down and take out (jobs in the case of the professors) those people.
Prager operates Prager University, which produces five minute videos on various topics distributed as PragerU. Utube has put about 100 of the PragerU videos on the restricted list for failing to meet its standards. Among those being censored is one on the 10 Commandments, presumably, as Prager notes in the film, because it contains the admonition not to murder.
The run in theaters likely will end in the next week, but it should be available on streaming services.
Incidentally, my wife’s cousin, Noah Yaffe, was one of the producers. See his name on the big screen in the credits truly was cool.
We were fortunate enough to join the thousands of people who have enjoyed Hamilton last week in San Francisco. The play exceeded all expectations—high-energy, superbly acted and sung.
What amazed me is how miserable the creature comforts are at the Orpheum, an historic movie theater changed into a site for musical theater by the Shorenstein organization. Way, way back when, when I was attending Amador Valley High I remember taking a field trip to San Francisco to see a movie on the big screen there.
It appears the owners have done almost nothing, other than some Americans with Disabilities Act work, to upgrade. The lines for the restrooms, particularly the women’s were astonishingly long, particularly given the tight 15-minute intermission. And the seats were tiny as was the leg room as I watched taller guys stuff themselves in place with the legs jammed against the seats in front of them.
Rather amazing that the organization can command premium ticket prices with such outdated facilities