Thursday, February 9, 2017

Humans on Campus: Washington before and after Milo

The other day I suggested that a person being shot at a Milo protest in Washington deserved at least as much coverage as, say, Oberlin students arguing about sandwiches ... or even the property damage and action at Berkeley. Because someone was shot.

Now The Chronicle of Higher Education has (paywalled, but this link might work) a detailed, humane, story by Steve Kolowich on Washington. It's exceptionally well reported, tries hard not to reveal the writer's biases (I don't really believe in objectivity, but I do believe that the objective voice is something people can achieve), and lays out the perceptions of the major individuals ON CAMPUS - not Milo - who have to live there before and after he descended.


  • Milo is free. Breitbart pays his way. That's why the campus GOP invites him.
  • The story does not get into the Campus GOP threats post-Milo, where it promises to use violence at other protesters. That's likely a factor of when it was written and filed, not an omission.
  • The people who experienced doxxing and violence were anti-Milo protesters. 
There are lots of stories to be told. The ability of a news organization intent on profiting from division and hate to place speakers on college campuses is a complex one, and protecting free speech matters (it remains a subject for debate whether targeted harassment of vulnerable students is protected speech). But seriously, Milo's speech rights ARE BEING WELL COVERED!

I'd like every news outlet that publishes a story about Milo's speech rights to also spend at least 5 minutes considering the speech rights of his targets. I don't feel like it's too much to ask.