Speech. Berkeley is expecting more problems as conservative thinkers continue to be invited to the UC Berkeley campus to speak. Next up is conservative commentator Ben Shapiro. While the Chancellor wants to protect the right to all speech, the university is also "deeply concerned about the impact some speakers may have on individuals' sense of safety and belonging." So, the school has offered faculty and staff the services of mental health counselors. I totally agree. If you cannot cope with simply hearing an opposing point of view from your own, then I would suggest that you do need mental health counseling.
The Mayor of Berkeley wants to go one step further. Mayor Jesse Arreguin has appealed to the University to simply prevent conservatives from speaking. After all, he tells us that we need to be sure that "while protecting people's free-speech rights, we are not putting our citizens in a potentially dangerous situation and costing the City hundreds of thousands of dollars fixing the windows of businesses." So, the Mayor not only favors a heckler's veto, he weighs the Constitutional First Amendment right to speech against broken windows - and comes down in favor of the windows. This is quintessential leftist thinking, showing no regard for the Constitution.
Kneeling during the National Anthem. It's a new season in the NFL, and players are already taking a knee during the playing of the anthem. I know, they have a beef, sometimes a very legitimate beef. So what? You need your life to be perfect before you will stand for the flag and the anthem? You need society to be perfect before you will stand for the flag and the anthem? Well, neither of those things will ever occur. So, the kneelers should be honest and admit that they will never truly love the country that has given them so much.
Fight for your life? Maybe not, according to Dr. Kathryn Kirkland, of Dartmouth's School of Medicine, in her Op-Ed in the 8/30/17 USA Today. Instead of using the war metaphor of trying to "fight and beat" what are likely to be terminal illnesses, she suggests asking patients "what can I help you fight for?" She suggests alternatives such as "time with family, completion of estate planning, restoration of relationships and even bucket lists." All worthy goals; but haven't doctors always suggested that certain patients "get their affairs in order."
I disagree with Dr. Kirkland. I had predicted this type of thinking after the passage of the Affordable Care Act - a decreased concern for protecting human life. But here's another reason I disagree - my brother-in-law. At age 33 he was diagnosed with a brain tumor and given 6 months to live. But he chose to fight, and became his own advocate. Initially, he was diagnosed with a glioblastoma, which has a very poor prognosis. His doctors recommended an atypically high dose of radiation treatment. The treatment would be brutal, but he agreed. Not feeling comfortable that he was given the correct diagnosis, he kept researching and consulting with the top medical experts. Ultimately, he was told he had an oligodendroglioma, which has a higher survival rate. For that he was treated with chemotherapy.
My brother-in-law passed away on August 18, 2017, at the age of 58 years, as a result of a side effect from the high dose of radiation. He was too young. However, by not giving in to his death sentence he survived another 25 years, during which time he married my wife's youngest sister, and together they had two bright and beautiful daughters. They made a life, albeit cut short too soon; but maybe the good Dr. Kirkland would do well to speak with their two daughters - two young ladies who would not be here if my brother-in-law did not fight for his life.