Ethics Dunce And Weenie Of The Month: Scholar And Author Mary Eberstadt

Eberstadt, recently the writer of “Primal Screams: How the Sexual Revolution Created Identity Politics “was scheduled to give a speech about her book’s thesis at Furman University today. Prior to her scheduled appearance, the South Carolina campus was festooned with protest fliers. The online student newspaper accused Eberstadt of perpetuating “dangerous myths.” Letters denigrating Ebestadt’s character and demanding that credit for attending her speech be denied were sent to the university’s Cultural Life Program.

So she bailed out, ran away, and capitulated to the mob. In an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, Eberstadt complained that though the odds of physical violence being inflicted on her if she appeared were low, they were not“not non-existent.” She defended her flight from conflict by writing in part,

Bullies have a right to protest, but that right doesn’t extend to dragooning others into untruths—including the untruth that people who join a hateful mob have any intention of listening to a speaker in the first place. They don’t, and the rest of us are under no obligation to help them live that lie by playing along.

Uh huh. She’s a weenie. Remember after 9-11 the cliché that if Americans stop doing X then “the terrorists win”? If conservative speakers let the radical, totalitarian, brainwashed, censorious woke on college campuses and graduate school prevent their views from being heard through abuse and intimidation, then our current domestic terrorists of the Left win. When they win, the First Amendment and democracy loses.

Our personal liberties and the core principles of democracy need steadier, more dedicated and braver champions than Eberstadt, who is a disgrace to her own stated values. Her duty was to appear, try to give her speech, and if she was shouted down, to make certain that the display of anti-speech misconduct was egregious enough to attract national publicity and create the kind of campus turmoil and debate now taking place at Stanford Law after its terrorist got their way.

There are probably hundreds of famous and astute quotes expounding on the need to do exactly what Eberstadt would not. I’ll just pick a few at random:

  • “People have only as much liberty as they have the intelligence to want and the courage to take.” ― Labor leader Emma Goldman
  • “For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”—-Nelson Mandela
  • “Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.” ― Henry David Thoreau
  • “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” ― George Orwell
  • “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” ― Benjamin Franklin
  • “Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigues of supporting it.” ― Thomas Paine
  • “Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!”
    Patrick Henry

Eberstadt is one of the villains in today’s battle for liberty and rights: the supposed defender of American values who lacks the fortitude and dedication to make the necessary sacrifices. Thomas Paine showed that he understood her kind, an anchor on all worthy battles, when he wrote, in his “The American Crisis No. 1”:

“THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated.”

2 thoughts on “Ethics Dunce And Weenie Of The Month: Scholar And Author Mary Eberstadt

  1. When a person uses passive language like “untruths” instead of the word “lies” you can reasonably expect the foundation of their principles is poured on ground subject to liquefaction.

  2. Given her body of work to date, I certainly expected better from Eberstadt. Her actions are very disappointing, and cast doubt on the seriousness of her commitment to her stated positions.

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