Charles Murray, a conservative political scientist and author, stirred up some not-so-surprising contention Tuesday with a protest from both students and faculty at Notre Dame as he gave his most recent lecture, according to USA Today College. This follows a violent protest that broke out when he spoke at Middlebury College in early March.
Murray is best known for his theories on social welfare programs being more hurting than helpful, and that there are differences in intelligence between racial and ethnic groups—which he wrote about in his book The Bell Curve, according to The Boston Globe. Needless to say, many people aren’t fans of his convictions.
Notre Dame professor Vincent Phillip Muñoz explained his reasoning for inviting Murray in Real Clear Politics. He said that he invited him to speak, regardless of numerous requests for him to be uninvited, because his book Coming Apart was read in his class.
He also believed it would be a good learning experience for his students. “I certainly did not invite [Murray] because I agree with him or disagree with him,” he told USA Today College. “What I try to teach my students is we should evaluate arguments on their merits, but you have to read the arguments or listen to the arguments or listen to the speaker before you can evaluate them.”
Understandable. But still, if a man with such extreme points of view is causing this much disruption wherever he speaks, maybe it isn’t a good idea for colleges to keep inviting him.
— Margaret Fosmoe (@MFosmoe) March 28, 2017
— Megan Valley (@meganevalley) March 28, 2017