The regressive left continues eating its own at Brown University

March 27, 2016 • 12:00 pm

Is it any surprise that this latest bit of identity theater is based at Brown University, one of the most student-authoritarian schools in the U.S.? As reported by both the Daily Beast and The Blaze,  Janet Mock, a trans woman, LGBTQ activist and a well known author (she wrote the bestseller Redefining Realness)was scheduled to speak at Brown. But there was a Big Problem: she was scheduled to speak by the group Moral Values, which happens to be a Jewish organization, and she was also to speak at Hillel House, a facility run by a different Jewish organization.

Well, what do you think happened? The Blaze reports on the inevitable conflict:

“Hillel as a corporation has consistently defended and even advocated for the Israeli state’s policies of occupation and racial apartheid,” Brown University students wrote in a petition to Mock urging her to reject the Jewish group’s invitation. “Israel’s violent policies center on colonialism, ethnic cleansing, and genocide of native Palestinians.”

“We do not condone the use of queer people of color as props to hide occupation,” the petition added.

Mock cancelled the event after the students’ protest.

Mock’s representatives told Moral Voices, “We feel the focus of Janet’s work was lost leading up to the proposed event, and her visit was received with controversy and resistance rather than open dialogue and discussion about the issues closest to Janet’s work in movements for trans liberation, racial justice and intersectional feminism.”

The sad thing is that Moral Voices has no group position on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and Mock’s visit was co-sponsored by other groups, including the Brown Center for Students of Color, Sarah Doyle Women’s Center, LGBTQ Center, Sexual Assault Peer Educators, Office of the Chaplains, and the Rhode Island School of Design’s Office of Intercultural Student Engagement. But the talk’s highly indirect association with Hillel House, a building, and a more direct association with (horror!) Jewish students, was enough to make the Brown students protest vehemently. Better to not hear a pro-LGBTQ activist at all than hear one partly sponsored by Jewish students—ones that have no official position on Palestine.

Finally, let us remember that Israel, whatever its faults, is the only state in the Middle East where being gay is not a crime, often a crime punishable by death. And yet even saying that is equated by the double-standard crowd as “pinkwashing”: trying to promote Israel’s image by noting its gay-friendliness. But gay equality was not promulgated in Israel to deceive the world; it was passed as a human right. It’s the height of LGBTQ hypocrisy to call for the no-platforming of Mock in solidarity with groups that would kill these very activists should they be openly gay in Palestine.

This is pathetic. The students don’t get to hear a respected trans activist because of a tenuous association of her talk with Jews, and by implication—an unsupported one—with Israeli’s policy toward Palestine. As Moral Voices posted on its Facebook page:

“This cancellation is the result of gross mischaracterizations of Brown RISD Hillel and the intentions of the student activists on the Moral Voices Committee who worked since last spring to bring Ms. Mock to Brown. Both the Moral Voices Committee and Brown RISD Hillel community are comprised of people whose intersectional identities make Ms. Mock’s message personal,” the group added. “We were eager to hear from and raise up the voice of Ms. Mock in partnership with other campus groups and centers. Today is a very sad day for the entire Brown community and for LGBTQ+ activism — there are no victors.”

Indeed. Who won this round? The group of 159 mushbrained students who signed the petition that drove Mock away.

I’ll give the last word to The Daily Beast:

Way to go, student activists at Brown! You succeeded in creating a hostile environment that led to a trans woman of color being discouraged from sharing her voice and opinions. This all helped the Palestinian people how, exactly?

Brown President Christina Paxson expressed disappointment. “I respect her decision to avoid having her talk be overshadowed by an issue unrelated to her work. However, I am disappointed that a valuable learning opportunity was lost,” she said in a Sunday email to the student body.

At least the University President didn’t pander to the Offended.

Authoritarian and regressive leftists are welcome to try to “debunk” this report, which I’ve checked in several places.  I think that the regressive group is finally starting to see the dilemma it’s got itself into, but instead of some thoughtful introspection, they simply respond with more rage.

Fortunately, some Brown students have apologized for the behavior of their peers.

Janet Mock

h/t: Grania

59 thoughts on “The regressive left continues eating its own at Brown University

  1. “We do not condone the use of queer people of color as props to hide occupation,”

    ‘Use of’

    Queer people of color (or at least Janet Mock) do not have agency or the ability to make their own decisions. Got it.

    Considering that we’ve been calling them the ‘authoritarian’ left, it’s hardly surprising that they don’t respect that individuals have agency. And it’s way too common with them.

    1. Hey Geoffrey, are you the same Geoffrey that I have seen commenting on the Slacktivist blog at patheos?

      Some of the people there are absolutely batshit, professional victims.

      1. I have posted there on occasion. Haven’t done so for a while. Overall, the blog and it’s comments section aren’t too bad, but it’s definitely into identity politics and I kinda got tired of it.

        I do still pop in from time to time, but probably won’t make any posts that would get me into arguments. I don’t recall ever having a proper discussion in the comments section there, at least, not one that went contrary to the message of the page.

        Might go there more if Clark resumes his Left Behind reviews, as those were why I went there in the first place. But he’s pretty much stopped doing those, and it seems more and more identity politics have crept into it’s place. I check it from time to time to see if there’s more Left Behind stuff, and maybe read a few articles while I’m there, but that’s it for now.

        1. @Geoffrey Howe

          Some of my SJW stories come from there.

          I was discussing cultural appropriation on that blog, and one commentator stated that “why the fuck do you think that your opinion matters vs that of an oppressed person?”

          In other words, if a marginalized person says that eating tacos is racist, you should stop eating tacos immediately, cuz ‘lived experience’. The opinions of oppressed persons carry the most weight simply because they are oppressed.

          This is the same zealot who claimed that use of the word ‘cult’ *harmed* her, since she is a polytheist cultist, based on the ancient meaning of the word. She is also the person who said that we should not believe tumblr activists, since they are ‘not real activists’, however, she herself is a tumblr activist, but ‘that’s different’.

          I check her Disqus feed regularly for the lulz, she keeps coming up with real doozies.


          I wish I was joking. In fact, my example is not nearly as over-the-top as she.

          1. I am also getting sick and tired of the regressive left now, and I’ve considered myself as belonging to the left side of politics my whole life.

            As an example, I’ve heard from feminists that I have the Stockholm syndrome for viewing men as equals instead of as enemies to be defeated.

            I was annoyed just earlier today reading a guy that reviewed one my (previously one of my favourite) shows. According to him the show was horribly misogynistic because it had some evil women in it and those women were defeated in a fight by male heroes. When someone pointed out to him that just as many men were killed as well he responded it didn’t matter because violence against women shows the misogyny of the writers. Appearantly , only women matter and those of us that disagree are monsters, even if we are women ourselves.

            I used to be able to call myself feminist with pride, but now that word has been taken from me. Other feminists (many of them self hating men sadly) think that I should hate men as much as they do, and I never will.

            The other thing that annoys me about the regressive left these days is the word priveliege. Not all white, heterosexual men live a wonderful, privelieged life and not all minorities or women are oppressed.
            Saying that f.ex women or homosexuals should all go around around and be sad about their lives is truly misogynistic and homophobic.
            The sad thing is the don’t see their own hypocrisy.

            Sorry for the long post, needed to rant a bit.

            1. Not at all! I am reading these posts with fascination. I am glad that you and Cindy et al., are describing what goes on in those places.
              The legends are real.

              1. “The legends are real”

                That made me laugh out loud.

                I keep wanting to make a site called:

                “Shit SJWs Say”

                But I just don’t have the spoons.

                It would be glorious though.

                As others have pointed out, I don’t think that they are as sincere in their beliefs as they pretend to be. I spend time on a few SJW blogs, under a variety of personas, and I have noticed how people change their story depending on what blog they are on. I have had the same person tell me in one situation that biological sex is a social construct, and in the other, that *I* am batshit for stating as such. Sometimes I pretend to be a rabid SJW and other times I criticize them.

                The more extreme the SJW blog, the more likely that my batshit statements (dicks are female, ultra masculine be-penised trans women need the protection of women’s only spaces)the more likely that no one is going to call me on the crazy. Most people will be too scared to question me.
                On one blog I made the comment that ultra masculine trans women who look like Arnold Schwarzenegger (and who express themselves as masculine) need the protection of women’s locker rooms because they will get beaten up in men’s lockers rooms based on nothing more than their internal gender feelz. Only one person responded, and this person was anti-SJW. She asked why an ultra manly trans woman would get beaten up in men’s facilities especially if he looked and acted like a man. Otherwise, silence.

                I mainly concentrate on trans issues because it is the issue du jour, but I have recently started talking about Muslim sex attacks on women. They don’t seem to ‘get it’ , do they? That Islamic men (not all, but many) really really do not respect women? That these men believe, deeply, morally, that western women who dare to leave the house uncovered are *whores* who *deserve* to be raped. That such rape is *moral*. Either they get it, and just don’t care (as they are privileged and thus wont’ suffer, that’s for the working class) or they are living in some fantasy dream land where all cultures are equal.

                Anyways, in essence, what I am trying to say here is that I really don’t think that most SJWs are sincere. I think that they like to signal how virtuous they are by constantly one-upping each other and by criticizing dissenters, and even allies, for even the tiniest faux pas. They increase their own social status within the group by grinding your head into the ground with the heel of their 600$ Louboutins. They back down and change their stories depending on venue. They use whatever tools are at hand to make sure that *you* are constantly reminded of how superior they are.

              2. Isn’t that spoon theory the best? I read it a while ago an honestly it helped me let go of things and not stress. Look, I only have so many spoons and those spoons are less than many so don’t worry about the dust on stuff or vacuuming all the time (I got roombas for that) and see how things go with working.

          2. Are you the one who was attacked for using the word “female” to describe people who can generally become pregnant?

            1. Yeah. That was me.

              I went back to the blog a few months later and told the person that she was a vile bully. Her bff told me off, stating , essentially, that as an out-grouper, I more or less “had it coming”, whereas giving in-groupers the benefit of the doubt is not unfair at all. Amusingly, a few months later, “angry bff” said that only females can get pregnant, and he was informed, *nicely*, that he was wrong about that.

              Oh. As for me being out group, the person who attacked me did so on a site that I had been a regular on for years. SJWs are “in group” wherever they go:p

              Amyhoo, every run in that I have had with SJWs has been surreal. When I repeat their words, across various sjw blogs, often verbatim, I feel that it must be obvious that I am trolling, because who would say this stuff with a straight face? Yet they do!!

              I can’t even!!

          3. I think I might know who you are talking about. I recall there being one person with a generic female name who was annoying enough to drive me from posting any arguments in their comment section again… but I don’t recall her being nearly as bad as you say.

            Honestly, I don’t much care for the people there, but if you’re not exaggerating, then I’ve never seen anyone there near as bad as what you posted.

            Of course, I never dallied too much outside of the Left Behind posts. I did so from time to time, but even posts I didn’t have problems with were just the same thing I could see on atheist blogs, just with a wishy-washy liberal Christian perspective.

            1. I think I might know who you are talking about. I recall there being one person with a generic female name

              No, not that person, though more than a few of them are annoying as all hell.

              Such simplistic thought processes. Drives me nuts.

          4. ““why the fuck do you think that your opinion matters vs that of an oppressed person?”

            If your opinion does not matter then by definition you are the oppressed one here.

    2. I really cringed at that statement. It reminded me of how Muslims who criticize things like jihad or Islamism are called “porch monkeys” and “uncle Toms”. As if Mock had no mind of her own and was being manipulated by the establishment (I’m assuming of Jews??) to attend this function. Really insulting to Mock and it goes against everything she stands for.

      1. The whole “uncle Tom” thing truly is bigoted, but those people using such expressions can’t see the beam in their own eyes.

        We have a political party here in Norway that is quite controversial and populist (it’s called the progress party). They’re in government now, mostly because of people voting on them for their restrictive immigration policy (they haven’t really followed up on it while in government however).
        I personally didn’t vote for them because there’s a lot I disagree with, but I still think they have a lot of stuff right about immigration.

        As with all political parties, they have among their members Muslims and foreigners.
        Those foreigners are often verbally admonished by people from the other side of politics as being traitors to their own, or “uncle Toms”. It annoys me that some people can’t seem to understand that foreigners and Muslims can have their own opinions.

  2. “Identity theatre”

    I like it.

    And yeah, the voices of ‘marginalized people’ matter up until the point that the marginalized person disagrees with the ideology, at which point they are ‘white supremacists’ or somesuch, because they have the ‘power and privilege of white society behind them’. Which is why, in the regressive leftist world, Maajid Nawaz and AHA can be neo-Nazis as far as the SJWs are concerned.

    1. If I saw her in the men’s restroom I would think that I accidentally entered the woman’s room.

      I wonder what will happen when bearded, muscled men are seen in the woman’s room.

      NC has to be the most retrograde state in the country right now. I hope the businesses against this law actually do something more than speaking out against it. Money talks.

      1. “I wonder what will happen when bearded, muscled men are seen in the woman’s room.”

        I wonder why women and girls have less privacy rights then men claiming to be transgendered. And nothing can be done about it. I guess this is to erase their ‘heteronormative privilege’

      2. Actually, the trans bathroom laws in most states, such as WA, are based on *gender identity* not gender expression.

        Which means that a bearded muscled man with penis who claims that xie is a woman will have the legal right to enter women’s private spaces, and ‘she’ cannot be kicked out, since personal internal gender identity is king.


        And yes, some trans women have beards and look very manly:

        Google: Varmit Coyote yotuube Stefonknee Wolscht youtube.

        1. …which is ridiculous. I think they should put a picture of a penis on one door and a vagina on the other. This wouldn’t have anything to do with your sex or gender identity, but just what equipment you’re packing. Want to use the other facility? Get the right equipment.

          1. What you just said is hate speech and would get you banned from FTB or any SJW blog.

            Because we don’t reduce people to their genitals, dontcha know? Genitals don’t matter, neither do chromosomes or your ability to produce sperm or ova.

            No, it’s whats in your head that counts!

            1. Yes, and I identify as a taxicab and should be allowed to park in Taxis/buses only parking at airports. My daughter identifies as luggage and should be allowed as my carry on bag when boarding airplanes…without buying a ticket. My dog identifies as a person and should be allowed anywhere that I can go. Etc. Etc.

              1. Bro, you should sue Uber for cultural appropriation!

                I had a trans person tell me yesterday that it was pure evil to question someone’s personal identity. So I asked xir about otherkin, to which xie replied that the identities of otherkin can be disrespected because they don’t have ‘science’ on their side.

                BTW, squirrelkin are f’ing awesome:


              2. My dog would be down with that. She totally identifies as a person. It’s just that her darn paws don’t work like fingers or she’d go to school and get a job and show you all!

        2. I don’t believe him. I just don’t. Why the heck would you have a beard if you were a transwoman? Shaving your beard is a very societally accepted way to look less masculine, so you think he’d do it, rather than wear and maintain a nice goatee.

          I suppose it could have been a ‘cover’, but then he worked for American Atheists! I doubt many people who didn’t hate him for that already would much care if he acted a little feminine and had a shaved face…

          Listen, Danny, do whatever you like. I don’t get transgendered people (my maleness begins and ends with what is in my pants. No part of my ‘identity’ is male, any more than my identity is brown haired) so maybe what you’re doing makes perfect sense.

          But there’s a very large part of me that thinks that far too many SJWs are only pseudo-transgendered. There are people out there who have been kicked out of their homes for wearing the wrong clothes, but this guy is just going to walk around his perfectly accepting family and co-workers with a beard and mens clothing for several months.

          I don’t have enough information about Danny, or transgendered people in general to really come to any kind of conclusion, but I am more than a little skeptical.

          1. Why the heck would you have a beard if you were a transwoman?

            I think you’re confused. There are women transitioning to (or transitioned to) men. Some of them grow beards. In NC, these beard-growing men will have to use the women’s room because they have two X chromosomes.

            But there’s a very large part of me that thinks that far too many SJWs are only pseudo-transgendered

            You think they fake something that takes significant personal time and effort, brings on a huge social stigma, and increases their chance of being murdered by something like a factor of 100x? To look more SJWy?

            Well, regardless of their sincerity, why do you really care? Maybe having a toddler has made me a bit more blasé about bathroom use etiquette and what is allowed ‘when you gotta go,’ but frankly I could really care less who is in the stall next to me or washing their hands next to me. I’m not really clear why we need laws against alternate bathroom use in the first place. Etiquette and convention seems to me to be the level at which these things should be regulated. I don’t know of any rash of abuses, do you? The ‘stalker using the women’s bathroom’ seems to be about as common as the candy-offering-van-driving pervert. Which is to say – maybe one or two per hundred thousand people, but really more of an urban legend than an encountered reality.

            1. @eric

              Geoffrey Howe is not the one who is confused

              There are trans women who have beards and dress like men. The only evidence of their womanhood is their declaration that they feel like women. They have penises, testes, sperm and xy chromosomes.

              They choose not to transition or to even dress like women. They are “women” who are indistinguishable from men in every way. They are natal males who declare themselves to be women all without changing a thing.

              I provided a link, and this is what Geoffrey is talking about.

              1. I would have thought it was simple. If they can pee without sitting down they use the mens room.

                Or am I too simplistic?


  3. There is just so much wrong with that. (Excellent apology petition at the final link.)

    Israeli soldiers probably treat Palestinians better than many US cops treat blacks. They’re certainly far better trained, and it shows.

    Also, if I wanted to put pressure on Israel to improve conditions for Palestinians, I would be building up connections with human rights groups in Israel, rather than simply assuming all Jews are by definition part of the problem and boycotting anyone who even dares to associate with them.

    And I would be trying to explain to Palestinians that effective political action does not include running madly through the streets trying to knife random pedestrians.

    And has there *ever* been a social justice campaign as big, long lasting, and well funded as the BDS movement that has achieved so little? Faulty analysis of the problems and the situation leads to useless or counterproductive campaigns.

    1. You’re right imo. I feel like this whole situation is some sort of bizarre joke.

      I oppose the BDS campaign, but of course support their right to exist. However, it seems that’s yet another thing Ted Cruz and I disagree on. In his speech at AIPAC last week he promised the group would be banned if he became president.

      1. Of course he’d have to ban it. Can’t have anything like some pesky attempts to interfere with commerce and speech getting in the way of heavy prophecies concerning Israel and the End times. Papa Rafael, the fire and brimstone preacher, thinks that his son was anointed and sent by God to help bring about the End Times which includes the (ominous) Great Wealth Transfer, which in this instance means the transfer of wealth from the wicked to the righteous, which has grave social implications and is tied to the Prosperity Gospel. Somehow, I think this is all related. I am convinced that Cruz would try to institute a theocrazy (a lapsus calami, but a fortunate one, so let it stand) And the Cruzes, pere and fils, are serious about all this. Not to be taken lightly. Their theology bears checking out.

        1. Cruz’s father is one scary dude. The videos of him being introduced to evangelicals as the father of the man God has anointed to be president are creepy. It gets worse when they all start praying about the things Cruz will do when he becomes president like banning same-sex marriage.

      2. Oh that’s a smart idea from Cruz — ban a group that calls for boycotting. Maybe the same office that will be patrolling “Muslim neighborhoods” could also prevent people from not buying Israeli products.

    2. I am always saddened when I hear nothing helpful from Atheist/Humanist groups on campuses. I wish they’d take a stance against this silly SJW stance and give counter opinions to those who see Israel as a bad and Palestine as good.

  4. This is just so nuts, and a case of who needs fiction with these wacko facts to entertain and instruct. To make a general statement about all this PC repression from the left: not long ago, Jerry had wrote about Susan Jacoby’s most recent book, “Strange Gods.” In the book she notes that Stefan Zweig, writing about Calvinism, observes that “any reign of force which originates out of a movement towards liberty is always more strenuously opposed to the idea of liberty than is a hereditary power.” Sadly, I think he’s correct as far as the universality of his assertion.

  5. “… the use of queer people of color as props to hide occupation.”

    That doesn’t even make sense. It’s not like Hillel sponsored her to do a runway walk atop the Gaza wall, trying to distract attention from what it’s there for.

    “Eating its own” sounds like a good idea. Let’s send the lot of ’em on a winter-semester sabbatical in Donner Pass, see if any survivors come straggling outta the Sierras after the Spring snow melt. That’d teach ’em to appreciate safe spaces.

    1. The subtext is also that she “is used” therefore not thinking for herself and being manipulated like a thing. This of course begs the question, “manipulated by whom?” Jews? The establishment (of Jews?)

  6. Finally, let us remember that Israel, whatever its faults, is the only state in the Middle East where being gay is not a crime, often a crime punishable by death.

    Just to show the hypocrisy of the BDS cretins, here’s a link to a story of an atheist gay writer and poet from Iran who has asked for asylum in Israel. I bet those cretin students at Brown would agitate against this guy if he were invited to present a talk at Brown. And by the way, Mr. Feili is not Jewish.

  7. eating its own

    That’s an established successful technique since … oh, Cronus swallowed Demeter, Hestia, Hades, Poseidon and the rest.

      1. Paint them with babies faces?
        Or … we need an Indian chef.
        #INCLUDE “Stone_Soup_Parable.h”

  8. Perhaps we should be more precise when we talk about groups like this and give them the name they deserve: e.g. “self-styled Moral Voices”. They remind me of the “peace activists” of the 1960s: as Tom Lehrer put it, “We’re against poverty, war and injustice, unlike the rest of you squares.”

    1. Errm, it wasn’t Moral Voices who were protesting nor did the disinvite Mock. So far as I can tell from this story they did nothing wrong.

      (Personally I feel suspicious of any group with ‘Moral’ in its name, but that’s just my prejudice).


  9. “Israel’s… genocide of native Palestinians.”

    You gotta love the accusations of genocide.

    The number of ‘Palestinians’ in Israel has increased by an order of magnitude since 1948, a rate of growth much faster that of Jewish Israelis. In fact, in a year or two, the number of ‘Palestinians’ in Israel will exceed the number of Jewish Israelis.

    With ‘genocide’ like that, we should pay Israel to conduct ‘genocide’ against endangered animal species.

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