Murray On Middlebury

Following on our earlier post — and with thanks to our commenter Jason for the link — here are Charles Murray’s own remarks on having been assaulted by a violent leftist mob at Middlebury College last week. We read (the item refers to Professor Allison Stanger, who had invited Mr. Murray for an interview, and Bill Burger, the college’s Vice President for Communications):

I had expected that they would shout expletives at us but no more. So I was nonplussed when I realized that a big man with a sign was standing right in front of us and wasn’t going to let us pass. I instinctively thought, we’ll go around him. But that wasn’t possible. We’d just get blocked by the others who were joining him. So we walked straight into him, one of our security guys pushed him aside, and that’s the way it went from then on: Allison and Bill each holding one of my elbows, the three of us plowing ahead, the security guys clearing our way, and lots of pushing and shoving from all sides.

I didn’t see it happen, but someone grabbed Allison’s hair just as someone else shoved her from another direction, damaging muscles, tendons, and fascia in her neck. I was stumbling because of the shoving. If it hadn’t been for Allison and Bill keeping hold of me and the security guards pulling people off me, I would have been pushed to the ground. That much is sure. What would have happened after that I don’t know, but I do recall thinking that being on the ground was a really bad idea, and I should try really hard to avoid that. Unlike Allison, I wasn’t actually hurt at all.

The three of us got to the car, with the security guards keeping protesters away while we closed and locked the doors. Then we found that the evening wasn’t over. So many protesters surrounded the car, banging on the sides and the windows and rocking the car, climbing onto the hood, that Bill had to inch forward lest he run over them. At the time, I wouldn’t have objected. Bill must have a longer time horizon than I do.

Again: Who? Whom? This is the real thing here, folks: a mob unafraid to do violence against its ideological enemies. If the New York Times and Hollywood celebrities are the good cop, this is the bad cop.

This is nothing new in America; it is nothing new in the world. But it is here, and it is here now — and if you are morally, politically, or religiously sympathetic to the ancient civic and cultural traditions of Western civilization, or to the historical American nation (or, indeed, to any of the human universals and natural categories that have given essential structure to every society that has ever flourished anywhere on Earth), then you, and all that you cherish, are what that mob seeks to destroy.

How long before someone is killed at one of these riots? How long before the motionless and tormented eagle reveals its “formidable beak and claws”?

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One Comment

  1. Bluefin Tuna says

    Were the security people armed? If they had any sense, they’d have hosted the event somewhere just off the edge of campus proper- Vermont law does not restrict the carrying of weapons, whether concealed or open, though universities can set their own policies. I doubt the mob would have been quite so enthusiastically grabby if everyone in Murray’s party had a visible sidearm (no permits required).

    This is a more general issue- in the centuries-old war between town and gown, the academy has always claimed extravagant immunity to the normal rules and customs of society on its own property. Why insist on hosting these events directly on campus, when interested students can just as easily attend a lecture 100 feet over the line in a hotel conference room or city park? At least then you’re under the jurisdiction of the local police, rather than a campus PD or security service taking orders from the provost. Usually, the local boys in blue are townies who don’t like spoiled college kids to begin with.

    Posted March 6, 2017 at 3:19 pm | Permalink