I’d planned for my next post to be a book review, but someone sent me a link to the video below because it perfectly captures everything I’ve been saying in this series of posts. The college professor in this video is a walking, talking (but barely-thinking) example of the postmodernist mindset described by Stephen Hicks in Explaining Postmodernism.
Now, set aside whatever opinions you have on illegal immigration, illegal immigrants, build the wall, don’t build the wall, etc. That’s not the issue here. The issue is how a college professor – an actual COLLEGE PROFESSOR at Cal State University – deals with logic, evidence and language.
As Hicks described in his book, postmodernists view everything in terms of The Oppressed and The Oppressors. When the speaker cites statistics showing that illegals commit federal crimes at a higher rate than the legal population, the professor immediately tries to blame it on “structural racism” – a term I’d wager a week’s pay she can’t define in fewer than 250 words, most of which will be gobbledygook.
But the really fascinating/horrifying part comes later, when the professor says that by citing these statistics, the speaker is engaging in conversation that is “oppressive.” There it is again, exactly as Hicks describes in his book. According to postmodernists, free speech is oppressive if the wrong people are allowed to speak freely.
(I always think of that scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail: “Come see the violence inherent in the system! Help, help, I’m being repressed!”)
But speech isn’t just oppressive, ya see:
Speaker: So that means that you, a faculty member at an American public university, paid for by taxpayer dollars, are conflating speech with violence.
Professor: Yes. Speech can be violent.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the wackadoodle belief that leads to the cancel culture. If we don’t like what you’re saying, you’re committing violence – so we can shut you up to protect ourselves from the violence. (Or in the case of antifa, we can engage in true, physical violence and then claim we were merely protecting ourselves from your speech “violence.”)
Putting her postmodernist-induced lunacy further on display, the professor wants the speaker to ask the audience if they feeeeel violence has been committed on them. Do we rely on logic, proof, some kind of reasonable evidence actual violence has taken place? No, according to the professor, if people feeeeel violence has occurred, then violence has occurred.
It doesn’t require much imagination to see where this lunatic logic leads: people don’t like what they hear, they decide they feeeeel violence has committed, and they respond with actual violence. We’re already seeing that happen.
The speaker responds like a person with an actual functioning brain:
No I haven’t asked, because no violence has been committed on you, because violence is not a subjective feeling. Violence is an objective fact. I can objectively gauge whether or not someone has become violent.
Objectivist vs. subjectivist mindset. Again, exactly as Hicks describes in his book:
Objectivist: if it’s true, I’ll believe it.
Subjectivist: if I believe it, it’s true.
The speaker goes on:
And I would say to you, as a faculty member at a taxpayer-funded university, this is the foundation of liberal education. If you cannot understand that there is a difference between speech and violence, you don’t understand anything that undergirds the liberal arts or liberal education. And that is a real shame. And I say this with all respect and with great distress for our universities, if our teachers don’t understand the difference between ideas and violence, between speech and violence, then they are in no position to educate the next generation of Americans.
But they are educating the next generation of Americans, some of whom go on to work at Google, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. That’s why the cancel culture is invading those platforms. And that’s why Google, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are starting to suck.