Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Friday, June 26, 2015

Feminist Smear Campaigns

The popular author Christina Hoff Sommers recently gave a lecture at Georgetown University. Her title was “What’s Right (and Badly Wrong) with Feminism?” Sommers describes herself as a feminist but sees the modern movement as greatly mistaken. Naturally, feminist students took offense. They called her a “rape denier” and begged the administration not to allow her on campus, because students might be traumatized just by listening to her speech. Then they protested during her lecture and hosted “safe spaces” in a nearby building for any student who was emotionally troubled by Sommers’ speech.

Sommers also spoke at Oberlin College this spring, where student activists responded with a smear campaign. They hung posters with the full names of the College Republicans who had invited her, announcing, that they “perpetuate rape.” Feminists define a “rape denier” as anyone who doesn’t believe the false rape statistics that feminists like to present. If you question the feminist line about the so-called “rape culture,” that means you’ve encouraged rape and blamed the victims. Sommers has presented solid research debunking the much-cited and very false statistic that “one in five women will be a victim of sexual assault.” She acknowledges that rape is a problem – it’s a crime – but the witch hunt on college campuses is a problem, too. And far from being a “rape denier” who blames victims, Sommers argues that false allegations and rape hoaxes are a problem because they discredit real victims.

The way liberal students respond to Sommers is a bad sign on college campuses. Any message feminists and liberal students don’t like is called a thought crime, and it’s met with noisy protests, smear campaigns, and attempts to silence the speaker. These students are planning to be our future judges and lawmakers, and these are certainly not appropriate responses to opposing ideas.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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