Princeton Free Speech News & Commentary

Guest Essay in PAW: We’re Calling on Princeton to Do More to Fight Antisemitism on Campus

November 30, 2023 1 min read

Jacob Katz '23, Leon Skornicki '06
Princeton Alumni Weekly

Excerpt: As PAW has compellingly demonstrated in recent articles, Hamas’ barbarous attacks on Israeli citizens hit close to home for many Princetonians. But the attacks’ aftermath has reached us all. Skyrocketing antisemitism has reverberated around the globe, and sure enough, it made its way through Fitz Randolph Gate. Following two student-led pro-Intifada rallies, concerned students reached out to alumni about unchecked antisemitism on campus.

As alumni, we want current students to guide campus discourse. We had our turn, and now it is theirs. But as Princeton occupies a prominent place in both our personal identities and our national conversation, we have reason to make our voices heard when something is awry. And when exasperated students turn to us and other alumni for help, something is awry.
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Can the Coming Crisis Revitalize our Republic? Thoughts on “Struggles of an Optimist,” a talk by Mitch Daniels ‘71

November 27, 2023 3 min read

By Khoa Sands ‘26

The idea of decline has always held a certain allure to historians and politicians alike. The high prophet of this declinism was Oswald Spengler, whose 1918 book The Decline of the West has become a motivating treatise for the American New Right. For these modern-day doomsayers, the United States is predestined to ruin, beset by internal crises of spiritedness and domestic politics as well as external threats of rising challengers to the US-led world order. These concerns are not unfounded – a revanchist China will be the largest geopolitical crisis of the twenty-first century and any casual observer of American politics can attest to the sorry state of domestic politics in America today.

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On institutional neutrality and double-standards

November 21, 2023 1 min read

Matthew Wilson, Daily Princetonian

 Excerpt: As I write this essay, the despicable poison of Jew-hatred has taken a firm hold at so many college campuses, Princeton included. Here at Princeton, activists proudly chant “Intifada” and demand the complete eradication of the world’s only Jewish state; elsewhere, from CornellHarvard, and the University of Pennsylvania to Ohio State and Cooper Union, frightening (and sometimes violent and illegal) exhibitions of anti-Jewish attitudes abound.

For the most part, university responses to these shameful displays have been tepid and restrained. these same universities, despite being so reticent to speak out now, have a prolonged public history of weighing in on a wide array of hotly contested and politically controversial topics. At Princeton, for instance, recent years have seen official statements issued deploring Supreme Court rulings on abortion and affirmative actioncondemning a jury verdict, and attacking a professor for his political views. On Hamas’s terrorist attacks? No official statements.

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Princeton-Iran ties again under scrutiny as Congress investigates research fellow

November 20, 2023 1 min read

Olivia Sanchez and Lia Opperman
Daily Princetonian

Excerpt: The House Committee on Education and the Workforce announced on Thursday, Nov. 16 that it is launching an investigation into University research fellow Seyed Hossein Mousavian, amid allegations that Mousavian is using his position to advance the interests of Iran. 12 Republican committee members wrote a letter to University President Christopher Eisgruber ’83 with 10 questions to aid their investigation. No Democratic committee members signed the letter.
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November 20, 2023 2 min read 2 Comments

A PFS Editorial

Last week was a good week for free speech at Princeton. Three separate events were held covering controversial topics that had drawn protests and even shout-downs at other universities, and there was only one minor and appropriately carried out protest. Furthermore, university administrators addressed all concerns of the event sponsors, supplied on-site security, and in one case, reminded a small group of protestors of the rules on protesting before the event.

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Suggestions for Witherspoon Statue Include Destroying, Toppling, Hiding

November 16, 2023 1 min read

Julie Bonette
Princeton Alumni Weekly

Excerpt: Though the speakers at the second Committee on Naming symposium on Princeton’s John Witherspoon statue were specifically asked not to make recommendations for the future of the statue, one presenter advocated for the destruction or permanent storage of monuments with ties to racism, and others alluded to adding contextual information, displaying it in the University’s new art museum, displaying an empty pedestal, and toppling the statue, which one presenter described as “a bad work of art.”

The two recurring themes of the afternoon were the broader reckoning of art with connections to racism in the country and the impermanence of art, despite a widely held public perception that art is permanent.
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