Identity of Speakers
Invited for academic lecture
David Azerrad is a professor at Hillsdale College's Van Andel School of Government
Incident Political Orientation:
University administration changed university policy as a consequence
- Did not involve Speech Codes
On April 8, 2022, Azerrad gave an invited lecture entitled “Black Privilege and Racial Hysteria in Contemporary America” as part of a conference organized by Saint Vincent College’s Center for Political and Economic Thought. In the talk, Azerrad claimed, inter alia, that “for all the talk of white privilege, the real color of visible privilege is Black,” and that BIPOC Americans top the nation’s “semi-official racial hierarchy.” The lecture drew a swift backlash from the campus community, prompting the college’s president, Reverend Paul Taylor, to initially issue a statement condemning racism. Then on April 19, the president announced a new policy that would require all public speakers sponsored by the college to be approved by the president and cabinet to “make sure that the message to be delivered is not in conflict with the spirit and Mission of the College.” The announcement was condemned by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, which called it the “most extreme example of guest speaker censorship” the organization had seen in its history.