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The Charles Murray Event at Middlebury College

Charles Murray, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, was scheduled to speak at the College on March 2, 2017, by invitation of the student American Enterprise Institute Club. A crowd of more than 400, most of them students, filled Wilson Hall in McCullough Student Center. Many carried signs. 

When protestors disrupted the talk with 20 minutes of loud chanting, Murray and Middlebury College Professor Allison Stanger, who was to moderate the Q & A, moved to a video studio that had been set up for the occasion so that Murray could give his talk with questions to follow by Stanger.

Following the conclusion of the talk, as Murray and Stanger walked to a waiting car, they were surrounded by protesters, who tried to block their path. Professor Stanger was injured during the encounter and required medical treatment for a concussion.  

Following are links to information and some of the many responses to the Charles Murray event.

College Statements and Information
Other Statements
Community Resources
Reflections from Charles Murray and Allison Stanger
Opinions from The Campus
Selected Media Coverage

Opinions from The Campus

Open Letter to President Patton, Multiple Authors, 5/2/17

Do Better Middlebury, Ben Arquit ’20, 3/9/17

We Can Do Better, Annie Grayer, 3/8/17

Charles Murray, Middlebury, the Working Class and the Rise of Trump’s America, Charles Smith ’20, 3/8/17

A Disappointing Response, Adin Insoft ’20, 3/8/17

Unwittingly Promoting Murray, R. Curtis Brand, 3/8/17

We Got Played Last Week, Day Robins ’17, 3/8/17

This Is Not My Protest, James Scott ’19, 3/8/17

Illiberalism on Display, Richard W. Porter ’81, 3/8/17

I realized that I had done exactly what we never want anyone in our classroom to do..., Bettina Matthias, professor of German, director of the German School, 3/8/17

The Need for More Protests, Divesh "Parli" Rizal, 3/8/17

A Sad Day on Campus, Ata Anzali, assistant professor of religion, 3/8/17

Murray Should Not Have Been Invited, Peter Knobler ’68, 3/8/17

Vilification from the Protesters, Wentao Zhai ’17, 3/8/17

Rethinking the Consequences of Neutrality, Tyler McDowell ’19, 3/8/17

Deeply Disturbed by SilencingJacob M. Appel MD JD, 3/8/17

Toward Community Healing, Jeremy Stratton-Smith ’17, 3/8/17

Why We Should Listen to the Protesters, Juan Andrade-Vera ’19, 3/8/17

Shine a Light on Abhorrent Ideas, Peter Mandel ’79, 3/8/17

Questions for Those Who Shut Down Murray, David Stoll, professor of anthropology, 3/8/17

Nuance, Free Speech, and Responsibility, Erik Bleich, professor of political science, 3/8/17

Letter from Abroad, 3/8/17

Free Speech vs. Elevated Speech, Elizabeth Lee ’17, 3/8/17

Why We Protest, Anna Jacobsen ’16.5, Joshua Claxton ’18 and Austin Kahn ’17.5, 3/18/17

Coming Together, Thomas Leaycraft ’20, opinions editor, 3/8/17


Selected Media Coverage

June 1, 2017: Universities Should Be Safe Spaces for Intellectual Diversity, Real Clear Politics

May 28, 2017: How the Middlebury Riot Really Went DownPolitico

May 12, 2017:  "Whose Campus Is It Anyway?: Safe Spaces at College," NPR-Latino USA, Arianna Reyes '18

May 8, 2017: The Daily: The Campus Conservative's LamentNew York Times

May 2, 2017: When Flamethrowers Like Ann Coulter Come to Campus–Six students weigh inNew York Times

April 29, 2017: Middlebury College Punishes Students Who Disrupted Charles Murray TalkBoston Globe, Travis Andersen 

April 25, 2017: Addressing the Real Crisis of Free Expression on Campus, white paper from The Newseum, Jeffrey Herbst

April 24, 2017: Middlebury Struggle SessionWall Street Journal (requires subscription), editorial

April 21, 2017: Why Pick on Middlebury?, The American Interest, William M. Chase

April 15, 2017: Charles Murray's ‘Provocative’ TalkNew York Times, Wendy Williams and Stephen Ceci

March 29, 2017: Campuses Grapple With Balancing Free Speech and Security After ProtestsNew York Times, Christine Hauser

March 28, 2017: “Scientific racism” is on the rise on the right. But it’s been lurking there for years.Vox

March 18, 2017Right-Wing Billionaires Are Funding a Cynical Plot to Destroy Dissent and Protest in Colleges Across the U.S.Alternet

March 17, 2017Divisiveness Is Not DiversityInside Higher Ed, Associate Professor Linus Owens, Rebecca Flores Harper '11, and Maya Goldberg-Safir '12

March 10, 2017: Is Intersectionality a Religion?New York Magazine, Andrew Sullivan

March 10, 2017: Erica Robinson: A Middlebury

March 11, 2017:
 The Dangerous Safety of CollegeNew York Times, Frank Bruni

March 8, 2017: McCarthyism at Middlebury, Wall Street Journal (requires subscription), Daniel Henninger

March 7, 2017: Why Middlebury's Violent Response to Charles Murray Reminded Me of the Little Rock NineWashington Post, Danielle Allen

March 7, 2017: Protest Prompts Professors To Defend Free SpeechFox News/Tucker Carlson Tonight

March 7, 2017: 
Discord at Middlebury: Students on the Anti-Murray ProtestsNew York Times

March 7, 2017: 
After a protest turns violent, Middlebury finds a teaching moment for free speechBoston Globe

March 6, 2017: The Aftermath at Middlebury, by Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed

March 5, 2017: The Mob at MiddleburyWall Street Journal (requires subscription), editorial

March 5, 2017: Bell Curve Author Attacked by Protesters at Middlebury CollegeBoston Globe

March 4, 2017: Murray and Middlebury: What Happened and What Should Be Done, by Professor Matthew Dickinson

March 3, 2017: A Sad Day on the Middlebury College Campus, by Professor Ata Anzali, Addison Independent



For Media Inquiries:
Sarah Ray


Parents and Alumni:
Meg Storey Groves