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Because I missed it, all right?
Wednesday, March 03, 2004
 
I have just seen the Britney Spears of conservative punditry: she's loud, omnipresent, and not particularly good at what she should be doing. Ann Coulter has come to Wash U. Beforehand, a guy had posted flyers around campus suggesting that people should protest by incessantly clapping until Ann leaves. As it turned out, everyone but him chickened out, which amusingly resulted in Ann unsuccessfully trying to talk over a single guy standing over a seated audience, giving her unending rhythmic applause. You could tell that it kind of put her off-guard: her momentary response was a kind of unsure insult to the guy, "are there any men in the audience?" Eventually, the guy got kicked out. You gotta admit, it is a little hypocritical to criticize someone's oppressive stance on civil liberties by curbing their ability to speak.

...The clapping was really entertaining, though.

In general, Ann struck me the most in two ways: with her rampant use of comic hyperbole, she really seemed like a stand-up comedian whose views I totally disagree with (her cracks on John Kerry were pretty funny though, I have to admit), and she really seemed unnerved by having a predominantly liberal audience, if not by the clapping guy; while for the most part, her super-confident posturing remained pretty solid, she tripped up in speaking more often than one would expect. Alright, now for the meat: here's the main things you should know about what she said here:
1. She essentially totally discredited the Muslim religion. During the Q+A session, a guy asked if she has respect for any aspect of the Muslim tradition. To give you the gist of what she said: no, she doesn't. She's said some notoriously racist things about people of Arab descent (she used the phrase "swarthy males" a lot), but I doubt anyone expected her to go quite as far as she did. I was totally dumbfounded, she just completely insulted an entire religion, and several world cultures.
2. A girl asked her about her perspective on the Bush administration's handling of the environment. You just knew that Ann was going to be merciless. She told the girl, "people who know more than I do about that, and certainly more than you do would disagree with what you said." The girl tried multiple times to say something along the lines of "I don't appreciate having my intelligence insulted," but Ann just wouldn't let her talk, completely ignoring and interrupting her, and moving on directly to the next question. Total bully.
3. A guy asked why, if conservatives are so for the family unit, that they're so against gay marriage and families. She responded with something like "to allow gay marriage would be breaking 3,000 years of tradition." I sat there thinking "it could be argued that human slavery was a tradition for several thousand years as well," but alas, the Q+A session was over.
4. Ann Coulter really loves racial profiling.
That's all. I'm speechless.
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