In a recent issue of The Student Life, we came across a funny little name for CI articles that ruffle campus progressives’ feathers: “That One Article.”
Some would see a problem. We see an opportunity. As a long-ignored voice on campus, it is great to see others acknowledging our efforts to challenge progressives’ control of the campus debate this year.
But, why, some might ask, is it even beneficial that we exist and grow as a publication? Simply put, we are showing a different way forward for those who are unhappy with the mainstream campus debate on both on- and off-campus issues. Instead of basing ourselves on intolerant “inclusiveness” and censorious “safety,” we believe in the fundamental importance of individual rights, and the principles that are the basis of Western civilization.
One of these rights is due process, including the presumption of “innocent until proven guilty.” Sadly, such a right does not mix well with the impulses of campus activists. In the case of the Ferguson shooting of last year, students marched out against what they assumed was the racist murder of an innocent man before the facts were out. While some might argue that the justice system is inherently racist, the Justice Department’s recent report supporting the decision of the grand jury should at least give activists pause.
America is still infected with racism, but that fact should, if anything, make us want to strengthen individual rights, rather than abrogate or infringe on them. Instead of immediately resorting to ill-founded assumptions and angry rhetoric, we urge students across the political spectrum to take a step back. Listen to and understand your fellow Americans. Get to know your fellow human beings as individuals with hopes, dreams, and fears, not as caricatures that are labelled by any number of hateful adjectives. This goes for both conservatives and progressives.
We believe that you have the right to speak your piece whether or not we agree with you, regardless of what some students might say. Case in point, over the past year, a number of centrist and self-identified liberal students have joined our staff because they felt there was not enough room for their views in the mainstream campus debate.
In a campus that is so obsessed with tearing down the “establishment,” we will continue to build up those who do not conform to the established view on campus. The CI is at its strongest in years, and we are eager to grow further and challenge more of the comfortable conformity that attracts well-intentioned progressives. While it is central to our conservative principles that everyone be safe from physical harm, no idea should be safe or privileged from discussion and debate.
We are the publication that must not be named, and we are here to stay.
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