Rutgers Republicans: Clinton invite reveals double standard
- The Rutgers University College Republicans are accusing liberal students and professors of "hypocrisy" following the announcement that Hillary Clinton will deliver a speech on campus.
- Students, with encouragement from faculty members, vigorously protested a commencement speech by Condoleezza Rice in 2014, citing her support for the Iraq War and alleged complicity in "torture" as Secretary of State.
- In a press release, the CRs point out that Clinton voted in favor of the Iraq War while she was a senator, and served in an administration that was also sharply criticized for utilizing torture.
The Rutgers University College Republicans are accusing liberal students and professors of hypocrisy for exempting Hillary Clinton from the protests that greeted Condoleezza Rice.
When Rice, the first black female Secretary of State, spoke at Rutgers’ 2014 commencement and received an honorary degree, students and faculty offered strong resistance, citing her support for the Iraq War and involvement in a presidential administration that “utilized torture,” according to a CR press release that was provided to Campus Reform.
The College Republicans attached several faculty emails from 2014 encouraging students to protest Rice and attend a “teach-in,” as well as a poster juxtaposing Rice with images of torture and the coffins of American servicemen. Although many student organizations expressed support for Rice, she eventually backed out of the invitation.
Yet the CRs point out that Clinton—who held the same post in the Obama Administration as Rice did under George W. Bush—is susceptible to the same criticisms that the Rutgers community cited as objections to Rice.
As a Senator from New York, Clinton voted for the resolution authorizing use of military force against Iraq, and as Secretary of State, she participated in an administration that also received criticism for its use of torture techniques.
According to a Rutgers press release, Clinton will speak on “American democracy and its institutions, her political career, and her role in the women’s political movement.”
The CRs, however, point out that in the fallout from her failed presidential campaign, Clinton blamed her loss on American women who did not vote for her (46 percent), even chalking up their decisions to pressure from their husbands.
“Her failure to recognize these women’s choices is a disgrace to the feminist movement she claims to support,” the conservative group declared.
The Rutgers press release also lauds Clinton for “her path-breaking political career and her singular role in shaping women’s political history,” and contextualizes her visit by highlighting the school’s “Center for American Women and Politics.”
One school official even labeled her “the most important American political woman of our time.”
The CRs, on the other hand, say that “since Secretary Clinton is coming to campus to discuss political institutions, the lack of transparency in her rise to the top of the Democratic ticket deserves to be addressed,” noting that former DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile has openly admitted that the 2016 primary process was rigged in Clinton’s favor.
Animus against Rice, meanwhile, has not subsided since the 2014 controversy at Rutgers.
Just one day before the CR press release was issued, on March 25, Rice faced a group of approximately 20 protestors when she spoke at San Jose State University. According to the Spartan Daily, students chanted “Condoleezza is a war criminal” and carried signs reading “Kinda-lies-a lot-Rice” and “Condi lied, millions died.”
An alumnus even told the paper that “it is disgusting that San Jose State is asking for her advice when she is responsible for multiple war crimes.”
The Rutgers CRs, though, made clear that they do not share the censorious tendencies of their liberal counterparts, stressing that they “are not protesting Secretary Hillary Clinton’s right to speak on campus, as was regrettably done to Secretary Rice,” but merely wish to highlight the contrast between the treatment that Rice and Clinton have received.
“We here at College Republicans strive to protect and promote free speech on and off campus,” the CR press release concludes. “Today, we are challenging you to reflect on your own convictions and take responsibility for your own biases, as an individual and as a university community.”
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