Letter to the Editor: SCR is Here to Stay
On February 25th, the Stanford Daily’s Editorial Board Chair Claire Dinshaw published a piece arguing that “SCR does not deserve its place on campus.” We have endured many similar attacks on our freedom of speech over the years, and this Op-Ed is no different. After reading Dinshaw’s litany of falsehoods and complaints, it is clear that Dinshaw has never interacted with our organization or our speaker events.
We consequently drafted a letter to the Editor to the Stanford Daily responding to these false accusations. However, rather than give us the opportunity to address a broader Stanford student audience, Dinshaw and the Daily Editorial Board refused to publish our response, claiming that the piece violated the Daily’s Editorial Standards, which simply states the Stanford Daily’s refusal to publish pieces it disagrees with.
We are sad to see the Stanford Daily’s active role in promulgating fascism and ideological conformity. However, the Stanford Daily’s behavior is reflective of the argument Dinshaw advances in her piece. Ultimately, Dishaw believes we should be removed from campus for one reason: because we choose to unflinchingly stand for conservative ideas.
Dinshaw accuses us of promoting “racist, misogynistic, and hateful rhetoric.” However, she does not provide a single example of us doing so. Even if Dinshaw may disagree with our social media posts or our position on the numerous documented election irregularities surrounding Biden’s presidency, none of these is “racist, misogynistic, and hateful” rhetoric as Dinshaw asserts.
Moreover, Dinshaw cites our public opposition to the “perverse and farcical [...]ideology” of transgenderism. An objectively scientific statement such as “men can’t be women and women can’t be men” is not hateful, it is fact. Moreover, it is morally wrong, evil and cruel to affirm a reality that people are simply not, and to lovingly stand for the truth is the most real acknowledgement of one’s humanity that we can give.
Additionally, contrary to Dinshaw’s assertions, we’ve never ‘doxxed’ anyone, as Dinshaw wrongfully conflates doxxing with the rightful exposure of left-wing actors who promote and inflict violence and intimidating behavior. Was it doxxing to expose the fact that disgraced Professor David Palumbo-Liu had founded an Antifa Network established with the explicit purpose of driving “[conservatives] off campus”? Was it doxing to expose how David Palumbo-Liu has justified acts of violence for political ends, congratulating students for an anti-Israel protest that resulted in several traffic accidents and injuries? Or was it doxxing to expose his prolific history of antisemitic comments? Here are just a few for reference from Palumbo-Liu’s own Twitter account:
July 25th, 2014: “Israel: stop telling me the Holocaust story over & over again.”
April 8th, 2018: “Israel’s aim: kill beauty, kill truth. The tools of justice.”
May 14th, 2018: “If Israel is not the most hated nation in the world, there is something deeply wrong with the world.”
Dinshaw claims we also targeted another individual for publicizing “controversial remarks.” This could not be further from the truth: then-Resident Assistant Hamzah Daoud threatened Jewish students with physical acts of violence. Daoud was a person placed in authority over Stanford students, and it was our moral responsibility to expose his threats of physical violence.
Moreover, Dinshaw falsely claims that we “doxxed” several students who came to “protest” the night before our lecture with Ben Shapiro. Let us set the record straight: those students were not there to protest but rather to deliberately silence conservative voices on Stanford’s campus. The agitators were reported through proper Stanford channels and the Department of Public Safety. We never publicly released their names.
It is not doxxing to hold leftists who promote and inflict violence and intimidating behavior accountable. Curiously, Dinshaw never once provides the context for any of these purported doxing events. Why is that? Because Dinshaw knows as well as we do, that the accusation of “doxxing” is simply a smear used by critics to aid and abet malicious actors from being held accountable for their own words and actions.
Another reason why Dinshaw believes that we should be removed from campus is for our “controversial” ‘Change My Mind’ tabling events, and for our “adversarial and intentionally alarmist” tabling topics. We hate to break it to Ms. Dinshaw, but “Abortion is Murder” is just stating an obvious reality, as well as being a mainstream conservative position. The issue to Dinshaw however isn’t the tablings themselves, but that we dare stand for conservative ideas at all.
Dinshaw also claims that we have a history of inviting speakers with “racist, anti-Semitic, and xenophobic” viewpoints to campus, to which we can only scratch our heads, as these accusations do not describe our speakers at all. In 2017, we hosted Robert Spencer to give a substantive lecture on the implications that the ideology of radical Islam has for U.S. Foreign Policy. And unless Dinshaw has issues with basic scientific fact, it is not controversial for Charlie Kirk and Candace Owens to say that there are two genders. Lastly, Dinshaw perpetuates lies regarding Dinesh D’Souza that we have already debunked before, lies D’Souza personally addressed when he spoke at Stanford. No other organization on Stanford’s campus has done as much to combat antisemitism as SCR, so we find the assertion that we would invite anyone promulgating antisemitism perplexing.
By calling for our removal from Stanford, Dinshaw isn’t calling for the enforcement of an “unspoken social contract.” Instead, she is calling for the enforcement of totalitarian mob-rule. The only rule we have broken is our refusal to cower in the face of ideological conformity and fascism. Moreover, we have actively worked to expose antisemitism and hold violent actors accountable for their actions. By conflating doxxing with public accountability, Dinshaw implicitly demonstrates she couldn’t be bothered less with aiding and abetting the violent actors.
Our organization fills a critical intellectual and political void on our campus. Without our speakers and tabling events, students might go through four years of a Stanford education without hearing a single conservative idea or perspective. At an institution where the purported “winds of freedom blow,” this is unacceptable. It is blatantly clear that individuals, such as Ms. Dinshaw, have no interest in attending our events or understanding our point of view. Rather, Dinshaw joins a concerning trend of students interested stifling any and all healthy debate and civil dialogue at Stanford.
Last week Friday, March 5th, we hosted Dr. Atlas to give a lecture on “Science, Politics, and Covid-19: Will Truth Prevail?”, where Dr. Atlas articulated a true scientific approach to handling the coronavirus, one that addresses both public health and the need to conserve our precious freedoms. We were not surprised when the Stanford Daily smeared our event with Dr. Atlas in the news reporting of the event, accusing Dr. Atlas of “using” our event to “rewrite history.” The piece repeated the same very same groundless accusations Dr. Atlas refuted at our lecture on Friday, so one can wonder whether the Stanford Daily event attended our event. This should not be surprising, as it isn’t just Dinshaw who has embraced totalitarianism but the entirety of the Stanford Daily.
Both Dinshaw and the Stanford Daily have no interest in furthering dialogue on campus. Dinshaw’s op-ed and the news reporting of the Stanford Daily are reflective of this fact.
If the reader by now continues to believe that Dinshaw’s argument has merit, we encourage them to watch our Lecture featuring Dr. Atlas, which can be accessed here. Moreover, we encourage them to watch the lecture and read the Daily’s reporting of the event. Who is telling the truth? You can see for yourself.
Stephen Sills ‘22
President of the Stanford College Republicans
This article was originally submitted to the Stanford Daily for publication. However, the Stanford Daily refused to publish this article on the grounds that it violated the Stanford Daily’s ‘Editorial Standards’. Unlike the Stanford Daily, the Stanford College Republicans are committed to making Stanford a free marketplace of ideas.