By Mark Anderson
The newly released pro-free speech docudrama “No Safe Spaces: You Have the Right to Remain Silent” is finding more safe spaces through which to air its vital message that our long-cherished First Amendment is not only being devalued in mainly leftist venues such as universities. It’s also being wildly attacked and could go asunder unless we put an end to broadening censorship.
At its debut in Phoenix, the film scored “the second largest opening for a documentary on a single screen in history after Michael Moore’s ‘Sicko,’” according to a press release from its producers.
“No Safe Spaces”—co-starring conservative radio talk show host Dennis Prager and comedian and “podcast king” Adam Carolla—continued its market expansion in South Carolina and Florida, taking in an estimated $65,000. The film will also be shown in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Fresno, Kansas City, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, Orlando, and San Antonio.
In “No Safe Spaces,” Carolla and Prager travel America to talk to experts and advocates on the left and the right, visiting college campuses while examining their own upbringings “to try to understand what is happening in America today and what free speech in this country should look (and sound) like,” the press release noted.
An even more familiar figure in the docudrama is comedian Tim Allen, known for his oft-censored, conservative-flavored sitcom “Last Man Standing.” In a panel discussion in the film, he observes, “Isn’t it spooky we’re having this discussion? It’s spooky even thinking about that you have to be ‘modulated.’ I’m a little alarmed about things that I ‘cannot’ say; I do it anyway, but it is weird that I’m ‘thinking’ [about self-censoring].”
The documentary shows an on-stage discussion, which was held on Feb. 15, 2017 at Cal State Northridge. Carolla tells Prager about his assumed “white privilege,” with regards to a “semi-heated debate” Carolla had via radio with an accomplished black man who had earned a University of Michigan law degree and whose black wife also had a successful career.
“He went on to explain to me that I didn’t know what I was talking about because of my white privilege,” Carolla related. “And I said, ‘Well, let’s examine my white privilege, may we?’ I said I got out of North Hollywood High. I did not go to college. I worked cleaning carpets. Later on, I worked on construction sites—digging ditches, picking up after the carpenters. I felt like my ‘white privilege’ wasn’t kicking in. Mom was on food stamps and welfare; dad was eking out a living.”
Notably, the docudrama covers a lot of other ideological ground and features conservative political commentator Ben Shapiro, CBS commentator-reporter Sharyl Attkisson, black liberal-leaning CNN contributor and political commentator Van Jones, gay “classical liberal” commentator Dave Rubin, young black conservative and Trump defender Candace Owens, conservative media pundit and “former Trumper” Ann Coulter, and Canadian psychology professor Jordan Peterson, who frequently challenges political correctness.
These contributors lament the stark reality of today’s students “lashing out at any speaker brave enough to say something they disagree with—precious snowflakes demanding ‘safe spaces’ to protect them from any idea they haven’t heard from their liberal professors.”
The ongoing attack on free speech and free thought “began in the universities, but, fair warning, it’s coming to your neighborhood and your workplace,” the movie’s promoters stated.
Mark Anderson is AFP’s roving editor. Email him at [email protected].