Reaction to Star Parker shows intolerance of left

Before author and columnist Star Parker spoke at Wichita State University earlier this week, attacks were already launched, providing illustration of the rampant political correctness and intolerance in effect on the modern college campus.

An editorial in the WSU Sunflower, the student newspaper, took issue with Parker’s visit to WSU. Not only was Ms. Parker herself attacked, but also Johnny Stevens, the Wichita businessman who had the idea to bring her to WSU and who paid the not inconsiderable expenses of the event.

Here’s an example of the overblown rhetoric at Wichita State University, as used in this editorial:

WSU College Democrats co-chair Katherine Paige contended, “It is ethically problematic to ask a group that believes in the value of public schools, helping the homeless and those in poverty and the separation of church and state to condone the wholesaling of our campus to conservative radicals such as Star Parker.”

A few points: First, the university rented some of its facilities to a private person for one evening. Contrast this with the taxpayer-funded use of the university every day to promote leftist political agendas.

Then, does this writer really believe the premise of her statement, that the public schools are doing a good job? That government really helps those in poverty? That it is “ethically problematic” to allow views other than those she agrees with to be expressed at a university?

If so, this is more evidence of the decline in critical thinking and civility at our universities.

The editorial also mentions “anti-government conservative propaganda,” presumably to be presented at Parker’s lecture. The implication of the writer is that the facilities of the university are to be used only for the glorification of government. Is no dissent allowed, even if the speaker pays for the privilege?

That is what’s really troubling about this editorial, if it is representative of WSU students today. Not willing to allow alternative views to be heard, they turn the idea of “liberalism” on its head. Instead of being tolerant, the writer of this editorial and the WSU College Democrats co-chair show themselves to be as close-minded, intolerant, and bigoted as they believe are the conservatives they hate.

Besides this, the editorial is wrong on two factual accounts. One relatively minor error is the report that Stevens “contacted the WSU Alumni Association with the hopes to bring Parker to the University.” Stevens said that this never happened.

A more important error is the claim that WSU student fees will be used to pay for some part of this event. Stevens assured me that he is paying for all expenses the university might incur. He donated money up front, and his instructions were that he would supply additional funds if necessary after all the bills were known so that no university funds would be spent.

Will the Sunflower publish a correction?

3 Comments

  • The student who wrote this editorial is identified as Michael Agnew but I think the correct name is Matthew Agnew. He ought to be ashamed. Bashing wealthy people: who does he think earns the money to pay the taxes to support the university? So he can be a “women’s studies” major? Hopefully someday this student will grow up and express the tolerance that I’m sure is preached in the women’s studies department, but practiced only on those who hold the correct positions.

  • His name is Matthew Agnew. The printed Sunflower was in error, but the online edition was corrected.

    Here’s a little information about Matthew:
    He is an intern for Raj Goyle, 4th Congressional District Democratic Candidate. Matthew briefly served as President of the College Democrats, and now claims to hold an “advisory” position.

    Matthew makes claims about “student fees” being used to bring Star Parker to the WSU campus. Matthew believes that because the Center for Student Leadership is funded in part by student fees, that student fees have been used to bring Star Parker to campus. The Center for Student Leadership recently brough a speaker to campus to speak about alcohol and decision making. This event was only advertised and open to Fraternity and Sorority members. He didn’t write an editorial to the Sunflower about that speaker, now did he?

    Student fees are allocated by the WSU Student Government Assocation. Matthew has never served on the Student Government Assocation, but claims to have knowledge of its workings. Each Registered Student Organization (RSO) can request student fee money for bring speakers to campus throughout the year. I can assure you all that no RSO requested money from the Student Government Associaton for this event. Each RSO is allowed $700 total to pay for travel, publicity, and hotel accomodations of their speaker. Funding requests for speakers aren’t approved on whether or not the speaker will deliver a bi-partisan or even significant message. They are approved based on whether or not the correct paper work has been completed, and if the RSO has enough funds left in their pool. Some RSO’s that recently requested and received student fee money for speakers include: That Gay Group!, the creative writing association, and another group that creates pottery.

    I serve on the Student Government Assocation. I was elected as a Senator to the Liberal Arts & Sciences department. Over the summer I was appointed Legislative Director of the SGA. I also currently serve on the Campus Issues committee.

    I am the President of the College Republicans at Wichita State. I also had the honor of introducing Star Parker that evening. I give you my word that our RSO did not request money to bring Star Parker to campus. I got a phone call this summer from the Center for Student Leadership asking if our group was interested in sponsoring the event. Of course we were! Star Parker spoke at the K-State campus last spring and was sponsored by the KSU College Republicans.

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