Phi Beta Cons

The Crazy Word That’s Verboten at Smith College

The left’s lexicon of words deemed too hurtful to be repeated has reached a new level of ludicrousness.

The word “crazy” was redacted and replaced with “ableist slur” in the school’s newspaper and in a transcript of a panel event at the school on the subject of – wait for it – free speech.

It doesn’t get much crazier than this.

In response to this madness and other idiocy as a result of the Smith panel discussion, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education’s co-founder and chairman Harvey Silverglate wrote in the Wall Street Journal that “on campuses across the country, hostility toward unpopular ideas has become so irrational that many students, and some faculty members, now openly oppose freedom of speech.”

“The hypersensitive consider the mere discussion of the topic of censorship to be potentially traumatic,” he continued. “Those who try to protect academic freedom and the ability of the academy to discuss the world as it is are swimming against the current. In such an atmosphere, liberal-arts education can’t survive.”

This country was founded in part on the ideal of freedom of speech; it’s the First Amendment for crying out loud. And yet there are colleges out there that charge tens of thousands of dollars annually (in Smith’s case – $44,450) to foster this notion among students that hurt feelings trump free speech. This ideology does not prepare students for the real world, in which life is not fair and feelings are often hurt.

When will the madness end?


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