• During his talk at Georgetown University, Jonathan A.C. Brown condemned slavery when it took place historically in America and other Western countries, but praised the practise of slavery as it happened in Muslim societies, explained that Muslim slaves lived “a pretty good life”, and claimed that it is “not immoral for one human to own another human.” Regarding the vexed matter of whether it is right or wrong to have sex with one of your slaves, Brown, who is director of the Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, said that “consent isn’t necessary for lawful sex”.
  • No mob of anti-sharia people has gone to Georgetown, torn up telephone poles, set fire to things or smashed up the campus, as mobs did at Berkeley.
  • Milo Yiannopoulos has never argued that the Western system of slavery was benevolent and worthwhile, and that slaves in America had “a pretty good life”. He has never argued against consent being an important principle in sexual relations. If he had, then the riots at Berkeley would doubtless have been far worse than they were and even more media companies and professors would have tried to argue that Yiannopoulos had “brought the violence upon himself” or even organized it himself.

Sometimes the whole tenor of an age can be discerned by comparing two events, one commanding fury and the other, silence.

To this extent, February has already been most enlightening. On the first day of the month, the conservative activist and writer Milo Yiannopoulos was due to speak at the University of California, Berkeley. To the surprise of absolutely no one, some of the new anti-free speech brigade attempted to prevent the event from happening. But to the surprise of almost everyone, the groups who wish to prevent everyone but themselves from speaking went farther even than they have tended to of late. Before the event could even start, Yiannopoulos was evacuated by security for his own safety. A mob of 150 people proceeded to riot, smash and set fire to the campus, causing more than $100,000 of damage and otherwise asserting their revised version of Voltaire’s maxim: “I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend to your death my right to shut you up.”

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