Monday, February 4, 2019

Grand Canyon University Should Let Ben Shapiro Speak

Last Friday, I received an Email from the school news regarding the school's decision to cancel an upcoming speaking engagement by Ben Shapiro. The rationale for canceling his appointment is to focus on opportunities that bring people together. It's not quite clear what they mean. The email goes on to list all of school's philanthropic causes and mentions campus diversity in passing, but never gives a substantial concrete reason for uninviting Ben Shapiro. The statement makes it clear that he was invited to address a specific student club, not the entire student body, so the reason why they think he should be bringing people together is beyond me. I'm not too familiar with Ben Shapiro. All I know is that he is a prominent conservative figure associated with the online anti-SJW movement and is often featured in click bait compilation videos dedicated to destroying libtards with facts and logic. While I recognize that as a private christian university, they have the right to not invite or ban any speaker they want, they should be considerate of their students' desire to listen to and discuss new ideas and opinions regardless of their popularity. Besides, we can only grow intellectually, and spiritually, by challenging old dogmas with ideas and information we have not yet considered. I attend GCU online and live on the other side of the country, so this recent turn of events is not personally relevant to me; however, for those student who live on campus or in the Phoenix metro area, the school should seriously consider their mission statement, which last time I checked, was about preparing students to become 'global citizens', critical thinkers, 'effective communicators, and responsible leaders. You can't do any of that living in your own echo chamber. Do the right thing; let the man speak.

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